Before we talk about how Paul Ryan is a pseudo believer in small government, I find it prudent to at least mention a simple statement: Ryan is not a horrible pick. A true Libertarian Mr. Ryan is not, but then again, he’s a far cry from Mitt Romney and his “less than small government” agenda he set forth as governor of Massachusetts.
One of the bigger criticisms of Paul Ryan is that of his proposed budget, which does cut some spending, but most small government activists believe the Ryan budget to fall short of instituting true reform. Others point to the budget and are thankful that the Wisconsin Congressman at least put forth something on which to debate. Small victories, I guess, in today’s political world of virtually no progress.
Ryan voted in favor of a $15b bailout to General Motors as well as another $192b in so-called “anti-recession” spending. Ryan supports using the Constitution to define marriage as between one man and one woman and supports a Constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Ryan supports making the Patriot Act permanent as well as an initiative to allow electronic surveillance without a warrant.
Ryan supported the military invasion of Iraq in 2002 and voted in favor of the nearly $80b in emergency spending in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ryan was not in support of bringing our troops home back in 2007 (and again in 2011) and previously voted to allow indefinite stationing of troops in Iraq as part of our nation’s supposed “War on Terror”.
Ryan does offer some better qualities. For example, Ryan voted to terminate funding for National Public Radio in 2011. In 2000, he supported a $46b tax cut plan for small businesses in the U.S. and generally supports the concept of tax simplification, as well as a nearly $400b deduction in marriage taxes over 10 years.
But, Ryan’s support of propositions like the Patriot Act, DOMA, TARP and a wide variety of wasted stimulus spending leaves a lot to be desired in Paul Ryan’s support of small government. Again, not a horrible pick, but definitely nothing too encouraging when it comes to his actual voting record that Libertarians and small government activists could hang their hat on.
The Obama campaign is quickly distancing itself from a new super PAC political ad that falsely accuses the Bain Capital shutdown of the GST Steel plant of causing the death of a former steel worker.
The ad features Joe Soptic, a steel worker who was laid off after the GST plant closer. He claims in the ad that he lost his insurance after the layoff, and shortly thereafter, his wife was diagnosed with cancer. 22 days later, she died. The ad does not mention, however, that Joe’s wife remained employed for some time after his layoff and even maintained health coverage. Further, it neglects to reveal that his wife’s unfortunate death came 5 years after his layoff.
The Obama campaign team claims to have no knowledge of the situation, even though Joe’s story is highlighted on the Obama campaign’s own web site (as of August 9th). Further, Joe Soptic actually spoke with the Obama campaign several months ago regarding the story of his wife’s illness.
The Obama campaign responded by claiming they have no control over what Super PACs do and cannot dictate the ads that they run, and added: “The important point here is that Mitt Romney’s campaign is based solely on his experience as a corporate buyout specialist, and while he has been quick to claim he created jobs, he refuses to accept responsibility for the jobs that were lost and workers that were impacted.”
False. The important point here is this PAC attempted to use an inaccurate report of a woman’s death to further Obama’s campaign, and this so-called “husband” apparently let it happen.
According to Ron Paul’s campaign spokesman Jesse Benton, the Republican Party has been nothing but respectful and friendly to the Ron Paul campaign and his staff throughout the process of logistical planning in the lead up to the convention.
In fact, a Ron Paul rally scheduled to be held at the University of South Florida’s Sun Dome was planned in large part by the GOP. This may be a ploy to help encourage Paul and his supporters to ultimately get behind the GOP’s likely nominee, Mitt Romney, once the convention has passed.
Paul has said he is not yet decided whether or not he will throw his support behind Mitt Romney.
Calling it “foolish and insulting”, Romney took a golden opportunity offered up by President Obama – almost on a silver platter – to bash the current president over his remarks that entrepreneurs who run successful businesses do not deserve the credit because they received help along the way.
To a cheering crowd, Romney pounced. “To say that Steve Jobs didn’t build Apple, that Henry Ford didn’t build Ford, that Papa John didn’t build Papa John’s Pizza…” he said, “is insulting to every entrepreneur in America”. This extends to “everyone in America, to those who want more skills and a higher income…people who try to lift themselves up…Obama would say ‘well, you couldn’t have gotten to those schools without the roads that government built for you’”.
“We have less success [under President Obama], and I will change that,” he finished.
I am certainly no particular fan of Romney, but his comments here are accurate. It’s insulting that the president of a so-called free country would stand in front of a crowd of people and diminish the hard work and determination that successful business owners put into their organizations. To say that government-furnished roads helped those business owners in their success and, therefore, limits the effect that the owner had over his business’ success is naive and fundamentally embarrassing to a country who’s private sector is second to none.
Governments do not build societies, Mr. Obama. Governments provide essential services and protect the people against national security threats. Businesses provide jobs. Businesses innovate. From the cars you drive to the cereal you eat, private business is the root of any 1st world society.
Imagine a candidate who proposes a 43% cut in the military budget (yes, nearly half), an end to the wasteful War on Drugs program, an immediate stop to the never-ending War on Terrorism, believes in true Internet freedom and actually has a chance at winning the election in 2012, albeit remote. Who is this candidate? I’ll give you a hint: it’s not Ron Paul.
This candidate’s name is Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party and ex-Governor of New Mexico. Johnson has successfully dented Mitt Romney’s stronghold on the “other than huge government” crowd and promises to continue fighting and striving for victory. “The idea is to win,” Johnson said in an interview with the Huffington Post.
Johnson strikes me as, well, appropriately small government. The man supports an end to these costly wars overseas and might be the only major politician who does not want to bomb Iran. He supports removing the government from the business of marriage and wants the Internet to remain free of government censors. He supports repealing the Patriot Act, which he calls an “assault on privacy” and believes in a woman’s right to abort until the fetus is viable.
The real world gives Johnson next to no chance at securing victory in 2012. But then again, the real world does not make a lot of sense either. Every day, Americans break laws that they did not even know existed. Americans have become complacent and comfortable within the confines of a so-called government “safety net”. They have become content – until something jarring enough hits them hard enough to knock them out of their own little worlds. This year, it’s health care.
Johnson’s web site says 15% support in the polls gets him a podium at the debates. Let’s find out if Americans feel that sensibility in government is worth not throwing their vote away on the “big two”.
President Obama apparently finds himself with the requisite business credibility to lecture successful business owners on how much of their success is owed to others rather than their own hard work and determination.
“There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me — because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t — look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart.”
Well yes, President Obama. While certainly there is some degree of help provided by others that cannot be denied, successful businesses are rarely spawned by the brains of dumb people. Why is our president, who has nothing in his past that could even be remotely tied to business experience, lecturing the American business community about success?
“The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires, we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.”
Clever. Linking the services that our tax money goes to fund for the protection of all people and owning a private business designed to make money and hire portions of the population. The point is, Mr. President, that businesses succeed because of sheer will and determination of the business owner. It is easy to give up, but it is not so easy to remain steadfast in pursuit of bigger and better things. Help is wonderful, no doubt, but help cannot make up for laziness, and it is definitely no substitute for mediocrity.