The Ryan Factor

(I’m on vacation. I spent today in a pool throwing Sal 11000 Beta up in the air. So, this week, I will just have an occasional post when the family’s asleep and I haven’t had too much to drink yet.)

I’ll give Team Romney credit for this: his VP pick sure has the Left shitting their pants. Today, some protesters tried to rush the stage. And the Democratic leadership, with Ms. Verbal Diarrhea in the lead, has been … to put it mildly … lying their asses off about him:

It had the makings of a scandal: Paul Ryan traded banking stocks during the financial crisis the same day as a meeting with top Treasury Department officials, a Virginia blog wrote Monday. But the rumor, which spread rapidly across the Internet, doesn’t hold up to scrutiny.

The meeting in question took place on Sept. 18, 2008, between Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, then-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson and congressional leaders including Nancy Pelosi, John Boehner and Harry Reid. The Richmonder, a progressive Virginia blog, noted on Monday that Ryan’s financial disclosure form from 2008 showed that he sold stock in Citigroup and JP Morgan, who were in crisis, the same day and bought stock in Goldman Sachs, which proved to be stronger. The blog claimed that Ryan also attended the meeting. The implication, they stated, was that he was using information gleaned from the briefing for personal profit.

It was wrong. In fact, the meeting with Bernanke took place in the evening after trading hours, meaning Ryan wouldn’t have had time to execute the move if he wanted to.

The Romney campaign said Ryan had nothing to do with the trades in the first place. They were part of a Russell 1000 index fund that automatically traded stocks as part of a pre-set formula. Ryan’s disclosure forms include several similar trade patterns at various points throughout the year.

There have been other lies too. There has been what Politifact labelled as their Lie of 20011: that the Ryan Plan ends Medicare as we know it. The Democrats are leaving out the part where people over 55 will not be moved to vouchers and other can opt out. They also incorrectly claimed that the Federal Personhood bill he supported (which was bad enough) tried to outlaw abortion, which it did not. It simply called on the states to recognize that life begins at conception. And so on.

Look, Ryan has a lot of controversial views. We can discuss them. But we don’t need to resort to making shit up, do we? No? No? OK. I don’t like his views on a number of issues, including abortion. But, as I said on Twitter, it’s unlikely abortion is going to be outlawed in the near future. It is likely — very likely — that we will go bankrupt or have a major fiscal crisis. And Ryan is one of the few people who has proposed doing something about it.

I expect, that as time goes on, most attention will focus on Ryan’s budget plan. This is a good thing; we need to be discussing the budget. Ryan will take a lot of heat for his plan but … well, this is what he gets for actually having a plan (unlike Obama) and not trying to have every plan simultaneously (like Romney).

The big problem is Ryan’s plan hits Medicare. You want to criticize him for it? Fine. But first you have to put out a plan that balances the budget without cutting Medicare (no, raising taxes on the rich won’t get us there).

You can’t. It’s impossible. Because, without changes, Medicare is going to swell to gobble up an unrealistic section of our economy. No budget plan — no plan — works without reining in MedicareMedicare. As Ryan said in testimony to the House, Medicare as we know it is ending. That’s not up for debate. What we’re discussing is how it’s going to change. Both Simpson-Bowles and the President’s semi-plan incorporate cost controls to Medicare. Medicare changes are going to happen; the debate is over how we are going to fix the program.

So all the people screaming about the Ryan plan need to shut up. Because what they are advocating is no plan. What they are advocating is bankruptcy.

Comments are closed.

  1. CM

    Look, Ryan has a lot of controversial views. We can discuss them. But we don’t need to resort to making shit up, do we? No? No? OK.

    I’ll sign up to that.

    Have a great vacation Hal.

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  2. Poosh

    His views on abortion are quite unacceptable and insane (not as insane as Keynesian), but luckily that’s not relevant, and luckily everyone knows Romney is very moderate on social issues.

    It’s just stunning how they are so fast to Palin’ Ryan though. I honestly have, I don’t know if it’s respect, but I guess I’m in awe of just how quickly and efficiently they can smear a conservative. It’s a tight ship they have.

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  3. Dave D

    It was REALLY difficult to not laugh when I heard BOTH bHo and Biden stating how both were such “decent guys. Really….” when I can recall both the “Romney killed my wife” ads from last week and the commercial of Ryan pushing an old lady in a wheelchair over a cliff from the 2010 campaign. And they say it with a straight face! These guys know no shame.

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  4. InsipiD

    His views on abortion are quite unacceptable and insane

    Which views would those be?

    I’m anxious to hear, too. Unacceptable would have to mean that he goes out on the street and performs abortions on women without their permission. Insane would have to be that he wants partial birth abortion to be the only allowed method.

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  5. Poosh

    Well first off he things goo is a human life but that’s not what I think is unacceptable, his belief that women who are raped should be denied abortions is what I find unacceptable. That being said, I don’t know if he would legislate and so forth, and I may be going on bad information that isn’t actually true (i heard this on a radio interview) so stepping back I may well have been duped.

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  6. Kimpost

    Well Ryan being a “personhood” (who dreams up concepts like that anyway?) law supporter isn’t exactly great, in my opinion. I have a lower bar of what constitutes unacceptable than actual attack abortions or mandatory partial birth abortions.

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  7. Poosh

    Thanks Xetrov, looks like a bit of a Fail on my part, I jumped the gun and ask for forgiveness. It looks like Team Obama are trying to make Ryan’s supposed abortion views the issue bypassing the reason he is VP i.e economics. It also allows them to continue their “Romney’s War on Women” strategy.

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  8. CM

    Fact Check on his “Insane” Abortion Record.

    As the piece notes, he’s signed up to a bill that allows states to ban abortion with no exceptions for rape and incest.
    Do we know that he agrees with exceptions?
    As outlined in your link:

    Ryan may, for all I know, believe that abortion should be illegal with exceptions only to save a mother’s life.

    Is he on record one way or the other?
    If not, we can say is that he has no problem with a state deciding that raped women aren’t allowed abortions. For many people that would be enough.

    All I can find so far are suggestions of what he’s said.

    As for cases and rape and incest, Ryan has refused to make any exceptions to his stance that abortion should be illegal, even in cases where the mother’s life may be endangered by following through with the pregnancy. Ryan has said that the states should be allowed to proscribe criminal penalties for women who undergo abortions.

    http://www.examiner.com/article/obama-claims-paul-ryan-would-ban-all-abortions-including-cases-of-rape

    He has 100 percent “pro-life” rankings from AUL and the National Right to Life Committee. His NARAL Pro-Choice America ranking is zero.

    However:

    In 2009, he voted to prohibit federal money from being used to pay for an abortion or for any part of a health plan that covers abortion — except when the abortion results from rape or incest or when the pregnancy threatens the woman’s life. Despite his voting record, he’s given little indication, especially in recent years, that he wants to go to the ramparts on the issue. He’s endorsed candidates who see abortion differently, saying he is willing to agree to disagree “with mutual respect.” Many years earlier, he backed bans on so-called partial birth abortion that made an exception for the life of the mother, but not for rape or incest.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/feedarticle/10388864

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  9. Xetrov

    As the piece notes, he’s signed up to a bill that allows states to ban abortion with no exceptions for rape and incest.

    Which is absolutely asinine to equate to him sponsoring a bill that outlaws abortion with no exceptions for rape and incest. Seriously, take the partisan shit out of it, CM. If someone tried to say Obama supported banning all firearms because he supported the brady bill, you’de be all over them like white on rice. You would demand actual quotes, or votes showing he supported the banning of all firearms, and would take nothing else. Never try to pass yourself off as non-partisan again.

    Here’s Ryan’s actual voting record on all things abortion –

    http://votesmart.org/candidate/key-votes/26344/paul-ryan/2/abortion-issues

    Show me the bill that outlaws abortion in all cases including rape and incest. Show me the quote from him that he doesn’t support abortion in the case of rape and/or incest.

    Such a double standard.

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  10. Poosh

    I realise it’s entirely my fault for bringing it up (dumb me) but abortion isn’t at all relevant and me even mentioning it – were I American – is entirely what the left want one to do. A conversation about abortion plays entirely into Obama’s game-plan.

    It’s not like Ryan’s Catholicism can clearly tell you what his economics will be (though Catholics are usually left-wing in economics I believe, oddly enough), it’s not like, say, a certain person’s marxist past… now that would tell you a lot about somone’s economics and vision for a country. If someone pal’ed around with left-wing terrorists, now that would be telling of his economics.

    But there’s totally no one in the White House like that, because the media who are doing all this digging on Paul Ryan would totally have brought these issues up if they existed.

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  11. CM

    Which is absolutely asinine to equate to him sponsoring a bill that outlaws abortion with no exceptions for rape and incest.

    I absolutely agree. I’m pointing out that your piece doesn’t provide evidence against what Poosh thought. It only says that the evidence usually put forward isn’t actually good evidence to make the claim. His support for the bill doesn’t ‘prove it’ either way. Which is true. It doesn’t. We don’t really know whether he agrees with the exceptions or not. He may agree with them, but his desire to allow states to decide may be stronger than he belief in the exceptions.

    Seriously, take the partisan shit out of it, CM.

    Um, that’s exactly what I did. Where is the ‘partisan’ in what I wrote? If I was partisan I most certainly wouldn’t have included the Guardian quote. I can’t think of many times when others here have provided even remotely a degree of non-partisan balance like that.
    Also, elsewhere I’ve only said positive things about Ryan.

    If someone tried to say Obama supported banning all firearms because he supported the brady bill, you’de be all over them like white on rice. You would demand actual quotes, or votes showing he supported the banning of all firearms, and would take nothing else. Never try to pass yourself off as non-partisan again.

    Show me the bill that outlaws abortion in all cases including rape and incest. Show me the quote from him that he doesn’t support abortion in the case of rape and/or incest.

    Such a double standard.

    I can only assume you misinterpreted what I posted.

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  12. Xetrov

    Apologies if I missinterpreted what you were saying, but I still think you’re partisan in how you approach topics. If someone said Obama was for banning all gun ownership, you wouldn’t spend time posting links that might possibly somehow be construed to support that belief, like you did with Ryan’s supposed Abortion position (the first link). Granted, you are certainly not the only one who does it (I do it at times, too). I just think your previous claims of “who, me?” when accused of it are BS.

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  13. CM

    Apologies if I missinterpreted what you were saying, but I still think you’re partisan in how you approach topics. If someone said Obama was for banning all gun ownership, you wouldn’t spend time posting links that might possibly somehow be construed to support that belief, like you did with Ryan’s supposed Abortion position (the first link). Granted, you are certainly not the only one who does it (I do it at times, too). I just think your previous claims of “who, me?” when accused of it are BS.

    Ok, thanks. You can certainly choose to disbelieve me, but in this case I went searching for evidence in either direction and posted what I found. No more and no less. Your piece didn’t disprove what Poosh thought, it just (correctly) points out that the evidence usually used to support the accusation isn’t good enough. I would have thought my post was pretty good evidence that I was trying not to take sides on this issue at all (especially given what I bolded in the last quote).
    But certainly sometimes if I know of something, or find something, which flat-out contradicts some claim made here, I might add it to the discussion. And since almost everything here is right-wing , what I add it most likely going not going to be consistent with the right-wing narrative/belief. After a while I’m sure it seems I’m more left-wing than I actually am. That’s only natural. If I did the same thing at a left-leaning site, I’d no doubt be labelled as a right-winger.

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  14. Section8

    If I did the same thing at a left-leaning site, I’d no doubt be labelled as a right-winger.

    Can you point us to a link where you did? Or is this only hypothetical? I know you’re stated you’ve been to left wing sites before.

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  15. CM

    Can you point us to a link where you did? Or is this only hypothetical? I know you’re stated you’ve been to left wing sites before.

    I hung out at UpSizeThis (I think it’s called something else now) for a while but posted almost nothing. Most left-wing sites I’ve visited have too many left-wing nutjobs to make it worthwhile. I get nothing out of it.
    Actually it’s probably Facebook where I’d come across as much less left. I have some friends there that are reasonably far left, and I often cringe reading some of their stuff. Often I can’t resist pushing back against it. The riots in the UK almost lost me a friend I’ve had since I was 3.

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  16. Section8

    Most left-wing sites I’ve visited have too many left-wing nutjobs to make it worthwhile.

    Many of them broadcast the same views and narratives you do, so I’m not sure what the problem would be. Now do you go as far overboard as some of them, not really, but overall it’s the same view.

    Anyhow, obviously you’re not going to link to your Facebook site, and that’s fine. I was looking for some evidence. I was pretty sure you’ve mentioned posting on leftist sites before and they accused you of being to the right. I figured a link would be pretty easy to dig up.

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  17. CM

    PolitFact has looked at this issue now. They find that Ryan seems to only support abortion where the mother’s life is at stake. This would be consistent with the whole ‘Personhood’ theory – the rights of the unborn trump the mother’s situation (i.e. whether she was raped or it was incest doesn’t matter).

    Our conclusion

    President Obama, through a campaign tweet, pegged Paul Ryan as supporting a ban on abortions, “even in cases of rape or incest.”

    Ryan does oppose those exceptions. Obama’s Twitter claim misfires in saying Ryan supports banning “all” abortions. In some cases, he has supported an exception for when a mother’s life is at stake.

    That’s an important detail that is left out. We rate Obama’s claim Half True.

    http://www.politifact.com/wisconsin/statements/2012/aug/17/barack-obama/obama-says-ryan-supports-banning-all-abortions/

    So what Poosh initially thought appears to be correct.

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  18. CM

    Many of them broadcast the same views and narratives you do, so I’m not sure what the problem would be. Now do you go as far overboard as some of them, not really, but overall it’s the same view.

    Nonsense. That’s part of the same old “they’re all the same” garbage that you guys get pissed off about.

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  19. Section8

    WTF is a ‘legitimate rape’ and a ‘forcible rape’?

    Sounds like the guy is an idiot to me. Maybe it would have made more sense if it was a Muslim cleric? This Senate candidate is low on the pity pyramid, so his comments are unacceptable. If he were higher up in the structure, it would be about understanding, and the concern about women would vanish to a simple well I disapprove but oh well.

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  20. Xetrov

    So what Poosh initially thought appears to be correct.

    Bullshit. Short of asking him and getting a straight answer, it’s other people’s speculations, not his stated opinion. The fact remains that he has never supported legislation that outlawed abortion in all cases, or even restricting it from rape/incest cases.

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  21. Section8

    Nonsense. That’s part of the same old “they’re all the same” garbage that you guys get pissed off about.

    Ok, and this is entirely voluntary obviously, but could you go to Kos and grab one item you’re in disagreement with? Or if you could post a link where you were accused of being right wing on some leftist site would be fine. I understand the facebook and all, but that’s not really a leftist site.

    Here is the link to Kos. All you have to do is click. http://www.dailykos.com/

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  22. CM

    Poosh said:

    Well first off he things goo is a human life but that’s not what I think is unacceptable, his belief that women who are raped should be denied abortions is what I find unacceptable.

    That’s what Politifact has found. As I understand it these days he doesn’t want to talk about it when asked (presumably because he wants to stay on message at this point in the campaign).*

    Politifact:

    From his first campaigns, in 1998 and in 2000, Ryan has said he supports an exception to any abortion ban for when the life of the mother is at risk.

    As for Ryan’s current views, there is no indication they have changed but Ryan campaign aides declined to talk publicly about his position. Since entering Congress, Ryan has focused on budget and fiscal issues so his views on abortion and social issues have not received much attention.

    September 26, 1998
    Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

    Ryan, a 28-year-old first-time candidate, said he has consistently opposed legal abortion and makes only one exception — cases in which a doctor deems an abortion necessary to save the mother’s life.

    October 30, 1998
    Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

    Ryan has said he favors only one exception to a ban, to save a woman’s life.

    http://media.jsonline.com/documents/ryan+abortion.doc

    I.e. he does not believe that woman who are raped should legally allowed to have abortions

    * Just saw this:

    Much of the chatter today has focused on whether Ryan opposes abortion in cases of rape. The Romney campaign confirmed today that Ryan does personally oppose it, while clarifying that a Romney-Ryan administration would not oppose it.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/post/how-bad-is-the-ryan-akin-anti-abortion-bill/2012/08/20/c7e37e04-eafe-11e1-9ddc-340d5efb1e9c_blog.html

    That would appear to make things pretty clear. Poosh’s original statement was correct.

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