Last Updated:November 1 @ 07:12 am

Sowell: The Paul Ryan Choice

By Thomas Sowell

Governor Mitt Romney's choice of Congressman Paul Ryan as his vice-presidential running mate is one of those decisions that seem obvious -- if not inevitable -- in retrospect, even though it was by no means obvious to most of us beforehand.

Anyone who wants to get a quick sense of who Paul Ryan is should watch a short video of a February 2010 meeting in which Congressman Ryan politely, but devastatingly, "schools" Barack Obama on the utter fraudulence of the statistics that the Obama administration was using to claim that ObamaCare would reduce the deficit.

As a long-time member, and now chairman, of the Budget Committee in the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan is thoroughly familiar with both the facts and the fictions in the federal government's budget. In recent years, the fictions have grown much bigger than the facts. But, as Congressman Ryan reminded the president, hiding spending is not the same as reducing spending.

If this year's election is going to be decided on the basis of hard facts, the Obama administration is doomed. But the Obama campaign is well aware of that, which is why we are hearing so many distracting innuendoes and outright lies about such peripheral issues as what Mitt Romney is supposed to have done while running Bain Capital -- or even what is supposed to have happened at Bain Capital, years after Mitt Romney was long gone.

The Obama campaign's big smear, about how Romney is supposed to have caused a woman to die of cancer, has been exposed as a lie by CNN, hardly a Republican network. What smears like this show is that the Obama administration cannot run on its track record, so it has to run on distractions from the country's real problems.

When Senator Harry Reid claims that Mitt Romney hasn't paid his income taxes, and demands that Governor Romney disprove this unsubstantiated allegation, that raises an obvious question as to why the Internal Revenue Service has not prosecuted Romney, instead of leaving that to a partisan politician in an election year.

What makes this a farce is that Senator Reid himself has not released his own income tax records, while claiming that Romney's release of only two years of his income tax records is not enough, even though it has been enough for other candidates in other years.

If Mitt Romney releases all his tax records going back to his childhood, it will not put a stop to this fishing expedition, much less bring an apology when those records show nothing illegal. It will just provide more material for making more distracting claims to change the subject from the track record of the Obama administration.

When Ronald Reagan ran against President Jimmy Carter back in 1980, he asked the question that should be asked of the voters when any president is seeking reelection: "Are you better off than you were four years ago?"

Four years later, when Reagan ran for reelection, he implicitly asked and answered that same question in a campaign commercial titled "Morning in America," which listed the ways the country was better off than it had been four years earlier. Don't look for any "Morning in America" ads from Obama. "Mourning in America" might be more appropriate.

This election is a test, not just of the opposing candidates but of the voting public. If what they want are the hard facts about where the country is, and where it is heading, they cannot vote for more of the same for the next four years.

But, if what they want is emotionally satisfying rhetoric and a promise to give them something for nothing, to be paid for by taxing somebody else, then Obama is their man. This is not to say that the public will in fact get something for nothing or that rich people will just pay higher taxes, when it is easy for them to escape taxation by investing overseas -- creating jobs overseas.

Even if most Americans do not have their own taxes raised, that means little, if they end up paying other people's taxes in the higher prices of goods and services that pass along the higher taxes imposed on businesses.

There are no doubt voters who will vote on the basis of believing that Obama "cares" more about them. But that is a faith which passeth all understanding. The political mirage of something for nothing, from leaders who "care," has ruined many a nation.

---

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305. His website is www.tsowell.com.

COPYRIGHT 2012 CREATORS.COM

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25 Comments

  1. inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
    August 14, 2012 @ 8:05 am

    The modern day Democrat party is the conquest of emotion over reason, the rule of the feeling over the facts, the action of a party that must at all cost gain their goals of entrapment of men via personal immediate gratification in the dark, behind the scenes, and keep “THE PEOPLE” in the dark lest the perversion of their economic love making be revealed to be as perverted and corrupt as the immoral love making they also do in the dark,,,, and would have us all engage in and become just as corrupt. In both cases when the light of reason and truth expose their corruption, the perpetrators just sit speechless when they and their distorted ideology has the light of truth come into their presence and the darkness and corruption of the destructive mantra of their immediate gratifications becomes visible for all to see. Paul Ryan is a beacon of light and a warrior for truth in an otherwise confused dark body of confused legislative men, who choose to live in the darkness of their immediate gratification, the consequences of which always becomes apparent to the thinking class who live in their minds and not in their emotions.

    Galatians 6:7
    “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”

    Paul Ryan is an articulate explainer of the fallacies of the Liberal argument of unlimited pleasure without ultimate cost. This Catholic Christian has studied his life giving lessons well, and understands and can tell the difference between the source that gives life to both men and governments, and the source that takes life from men and governments. Paul unlike many in Washington has not been deceived. Good Job Mitt Romney in your own actions of not being deceived and having the wisdom and insight of choosing such a man of the people, and for the people, who will serve the people and the source from which he came. Your Freudian slip introducing him as the next President ( After You ) may just prove to be prophetic, and Americans will be able to say in the future they ARE better off than they were 16, not 4 years ago.

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  2. oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
    August 14, 2012 @ 8:57 am

    His dependence on Ayn Rand’s Objectivism is a major concern.

    Objectivism was created by a USSR era Russian immigrant. They espouse an Asian/Eastern philosophy that is diametrically opposed to Western Civilization, the Enlightenment, the Judeo/Christian created US Constitution and the Christian ethics based American School of Economics, the modified Capitalistic plan of the Christian Founders.

    I am not saying BO is any different; he just hides this more effectively.

    Rand was a Sociopath who celebrated the child molester/killer William Edward Hickman as the ultimate Objectivist. You can look this up very readily; I will not detail this here. According to Rand, this murderer could do whatever he wanted, as it was in his “rational self interest”. She defended him in the press.

    She also stated that the destruction of Christianity in the US and the demolition of the Christian ethics based American School of Economics were among her most important goals.

    These ideas have entered mainstream politics despite America’s long held Judeo/Christian principles, as Government policy.

    Have we all forgotten that the USSR and the PRC have done everything in their power to destroy religion and especially Christianity in the world?

    Give me a Barry Goldwater or Ronald Reagan, please.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ooKsv_SX4Y&feature=related

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    • ClarkCComment by ClarkC
      August 14, 2012 @ 9:47 am

      I don’t care for Ayn Rand, but a lot of young people pick up some libertarian, anti-leftist ideas from her two most famous books. That is probably as far as Ryan’s admiration of her writings goes.

      Her admiration for Hickman was expressed in private journals that have not been widely read; I doubt that Ryan read them, or that he shares her sentiments about Hickman, so why try to force a guilt by association on Ryan?

      Does Ryan, who has expressed his commitment to his Catholic faith publicly, share Rand’s views on Christianity? If not, why bring them up? Guilt by association?

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    • arleyloefflerComment by arleyloeffler
      August 14, 2012 @ 10:09 am

      I just finished reading Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged.” It’s a poorly written book in my estimation, but if you look beyond the endless monologues you see one major theme.

      She was right about how Americans could (have been) destroy the “goose that laid the golden egg.” The goose being free enterprise, the egg being profit motive. In the book, when the prime motive for any business (imposed by government of course) shifted gradually to welfare and away from profit; the economic machine began to run down. Private property could be taken with no recourse. Business people were regarded as “greedy” and their accomplishments discounted in nearly the same language Obama used in saying,”If you have a successful business you didn’t build it.”

      So Ayn Rand may have been a not-so-hot writer and a sociopath per your view, but she was on target and prophetic about the US 55 years into the future.

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    • inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
      August 14, 2012 @ 10:10 am

      “Beware of altruism. It is based on self-deception, the root of all evil.”
      Ayn Rand

      She was right in that only when the American Atlas shruges off the Pigmys in Liberal ideology, will the burden we now uneccesarily carry on our backs and shoulders be removed.

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 14, 2012 @ 11:00 am

      No guilt by association, guilt by phliosophical association.

      Did you watch the video? Rand’s body language, eye contact issues all indicate a severely disturbed individual, let alone the garbage coming out of her mouth.

      No real Christian could abide Rand, listen to her thoughts on Christianity. The Founders of the Nation were Christians, what do you think they would say upon viewing this interview?

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    • inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
      August 14, 2012 @ 11:58 am

      According to Ayn Rand “It is immoral for man to act on his emotions, to be guided by the whim of the moment. Moralism to her consists in following your reason to the best of your ability

      “Objectivism – tells you that it is not right or proper to men to take anything of faith. Religion is a matter of faith you either accept a religion emotionally or are born to it. Objectivism is that man’s reason is his best means for his survival.” – Ayn Rand

      Ayn Rand has many truths, but like the secular of only the body and mind, they never get the whole truth by ignoring the spirit. When Moses went to the mountain top to meet with God he witnessed “The Great I Am” in the form of a flame within a burning bush.,,,for a reason. The very thing that flames give off are light and heat and when people only dwell in God’s light (Truth) and ignore God’s heat (Passion and Love) they live by half truths and flame out. This is the problem for many Conservatives of the mind. The same flameout also happens when we live only the heat of God’s passion and love, and ignore the light of his truths. This is the problems for many a Liberal mind. Their half truths also cause them to flame out.

      The whole truth of the matter is that we creatures called men are destined to be sparks of a whole eternal flame and when you have light without heat,,,,,,, truth without passionate love,,,,, or passionate love without truth, the flame always goes out.,,,,BECAUSE THEY WERE ALWAYS MEANT TO BE TOGETHER, just as the infinite flame of the source for which our race of men originated.

      Pray for a real leader who can combine the Conservative light of God’s truths with the Liberal heat of the Passion of his unadulterated love and the Flame of our forefathers will once again be rekindled in a united American nation who will regain the power of the eternal flame from which it’s light and truth also originated. Conservative, Liberal,,,,,Liberal, Conservative, the truths and passion of each WERE ALWAYS MEANT TO BE TOGETHER, and light the darkness of a very dark world indeed. You cannot have one or the other as we have witnessed or our flames begin to die out. This is the challenge for Mitt Romney, to do what previous Presidents since Reagan could not accomplish which is to unite the best of us both Conservative and Liberal and regain American status as a shining City on a hill, and the beacon of freedom in light and passion.

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    • CharieComment by Charie
      August 14, 2012 @ 3:54 pm

      Your fear of Paul Ryan is misplaced. He happens to be a very good Christian. I’m sure he has read The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged but highly doubt it went any further than that. The economics behind her writing can hardly be denied by Republicans.

      Don’t forget, if Josef Stalin said, “If you stand up in this rowboat you’ll be knocked overboard because the waves are 4 feet high,” you’re probably less than bright if you don’t take the advice. Good advice comes from many odd places and I think to link Paul Ryan, a good Christian family man is not only a stretch, it’s sheer silliness.

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 14, 2012 @ 7:30 pm

      To Charie

      Perhaps you are to young to understand the significance of oldtimerepublican. The American School of Economics was created and maintained by old time Republicans, 140 years before Ayn Rand’s terribly naive “free trade” theories came about.

      It was the Republicans that made the US the most prosperous nation on earth from 1789 to 1970. “Free trade” was the policy of Democrats. Reagan was a practitioner of the American System. Look what happened under his watch.

      For the last 20 years, under Clinton’s free trade, the US does not compete in the real world of International Trade, at all.

      150 other nations have Import Tariffs, Value Added Taxes, Currency Manipulation, Border Duties, that add up to a 60 to 300% import tariff, especially Red China. The US has an average 2.5% import tariff, the lowest in the world.

      The US has by far, the largest trade deficits in the history of the world, leading to most of our current budget problems.

      Here is a real conservative, not a Russian, the real Republican Howard Phillips discussing the “free trade” issue:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMQh503PZtk

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    • BillzillaComment by Billzilla
      August 14, 2012 @ 10:26 pm

      Since you seem to have an intense dislike for Paul Ryan because he has spoken favorably of some of the things Ayn Rand espoused, you’d not vote for the Romney/Ryan ticket and give Obama four more years? That seems to me to be cutting off your nose to spite your face.

      Personally I’ve read Ayn Rand’s books, though some years ago, and I was able to understand her points of view without necessarily agreeing with the things she believed in. Since I’m sure Paul Ryan is far smarter than I, I would have to imagine that he has some discernment when reading, or hearing the ideas, and opinions of others.

      Obama really has had his chance to prove himself, and has utterly failed to do so! Obama must go!

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 15, 2012 @ 6:31 am

      Bill, I have been a registered Republican for 45 years. I was invited to Romney’s town hall in Beavercreek, Ohio and was told by his people that I would be allowed to ask about returning to the American System, since it was a proven success and take us off of dependence on Red China, which I consider bizarre.

      Never happened, I got nowhere when I tried to show the Email confirmation upon arrival.

      The event took place in a WPAFB defense contractor’s facility that had been put out of business by off shored R&D. There are many such in the Dayton, Ohio area.

      The facility was back up and running, which is good. But, Romney pointed out that it had been purchased by an Indian firm, not an American enterprise, which is bad. He felt this was great and had a representative of the Indian company there.

      Bush and BO did nothing to correct Bill Clinton’s path and Romney and Ryan so far have not offered a platform leading to US independence in essential military equipment. Bush made an attempt early in his first term and the WTO ruled against him and he caved. He should have told the WTO we will just leave you, do not try to dictate terms of US national interest. I am at a loss for a candidate.

      You may want to read this:

      “I’m about to say something that people think is an exaggeration, but I think the evidence is pretty strong,” he tells me. “Every major company in the United States has already been penetrated by China.”

      “What?”

      “The British government actually said [something similar] about their own country. ”

      Clarke claims, for instance, that the manufacturer of the F-35, our next-generation fighter bomber, has been penetrated and F-35 details stolen. And don’t get him started on our supply chain of chips, routers and hardware we import from Chinese and other foreign suppliers and what may be implanted in them—“logic bombs,” trapdoors and “Trojan horses,” all ready to be activated on command so we won’t know what hit us. Or what’s already hitting us.

      Richard Clarke’s warnings may sound overly dramatic until you remember that he was the man, in September of 2001, who tried to get the White House to act on his warnings that Al Qaeda was preparing a spectacular attack on American soil. Clarke later delivered a famous apology to the American people in his testimony to the 9/11 Commission: “Your government failed you.” Clarke now wants to warn us, urgently, that we are being failed again, being left defenseless against a cyberattack that could bring down our nation’s entire electronic infrastructure, including the power grid, banking and telecommunications, and even our military command system.

      Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history-archaeology/Richard-Clarke-on-W ho-Was-Behind-the-Stuxnet-Attack.html#ixzz1qbPp4uG1

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    • CharieComment by Charie
      August 15, 2012 @ 1:06 pm

      You do remember that Reagan was a Democrat and not only that he was president of the actors’ union, SAG or AFTRA, I no longer remember which. People do, as a rule, tend to wise up when they get older.

      To connect Paul Ryan with the USSR and the PRC is way out there.

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  3. malcolmxComment by malcolmx
    August 14, 2012 @ 9:51 am

    libs are livid;; he is their hemlock.

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  4. malcolmxComment by malcolmx
    August 14, 2012 @ 10:25 am

    this political tryst has now entered a new ERA;;; FACT vs FICTION. CONSERVATIVES WIN BIG IN NOVEMBER 2012.

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    • BillzillaComment by Billzilla
      August 14, 2012 @ 10:28 pm

      A landslide for Romney, and the Republicans in the House, and Senate I believe!

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  5. Allen SComment by Allen S
    August 14, 2012 @ 10:55 am

    If only Thomas Sowell could get through to those who are believing the lies of the left. His comments are so very clear and to the point.

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  6. Mort_fComment by Mort_f
    August 14, 2012 @ 11:28 am

    I rather wonder how many have read Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged. It holds up a mirror, way before the fact, to the game plan of Obama and his czars. The quintential ‘bad guys’ in the book.

    As far as Christianity is concerned, I wonder how many have read Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee…. If Samuel Clemens were a Catholic, that book would have been justification for his excommunication.

    The question is only will Romney and Ryan be John Galts of our era, or at least for the near future.

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 14, 2012 @ 11:42 am

      I have read Anthem, The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged. Only Anthem was worth the time.

      I have the Complete Essays of Mark Twain, which I have read many times. If you are refering to his calling out of hypocrisies, I would rather think that puts him more in the Christian corner.

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 14, 2012 @ 12:41 pm

      referring, in a time crunch

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    • inluminatuoComment by inluminatuo
      August 14, 2012 @ 6:10 pm

      Mark Twain viewed Christians as hypocrites and only embraced Chritianity to the degree it brought him money.

      “I found out that I was a Christian for revenue only and I could not bear the thought of that, it was so ignoble.”

      “There has been only one Christian. They caught him and crucified him–early.” – Mark Twain

      “The so-called Christian nations are the most enlightened and progressive…but in spite of their religion, not because of it. The Church has opposed every innovation and discovery from the day of Galileo down to our own time, when the use of anesthetic in childbirth was regarded as a sin because it avoided the biblical curse pronounced against Eve.”

      He was no Christain

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    • oldtimerepublicanComment by oldtimerepublican
      August 14, 2012 @ 7:59 pm

      To inluminatuo

      He also pointed out that if the people he is critcizing for being hypocrites actually practiced the Christian moral codes and laws, these problems would not exist. See his essay “Letters to Satan”.

      The USA Christian nation hardly suppressed progress, we made more advancements in 200 years than the rest of the world in the previous 5000.

      Who claimed he was Christian? Not me, I reported that real Christians would largely agree with his picking apart of hypocrisies.

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  7. lovemygang8Comment by lovemygang8
    August 14, 2012 @ 3:17 pm

    great article great comments from people who know.
    I hope it’s a telling sign of how people out there feel of this administration which does NOTHING BUT LIE. I am 67 and don’t remember any other president and/or administration that has lied and covered up things as this one has. SAD for the people of this county. We’ve had so many young men and women die for this country and this batch of idiots LIE to the people of this country over and over SAD I’m so sick of the rich that support this guy and his headhunters and then they want to destroy the middle class family’s that work hard to get where they thought they might be. This administration and all democrates that go along with them are a joke! We really need to clean house and add term limits etc. NO MORE CAREER POLITICIANS. All they do is line their pockets and take and take and take away from those of us that work hard and are trying to make it and also be able to live as a retired person.

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    • BillzillaComment by Billzilla
      August 14, 2012 @ 10:34 pm

      They say anything that pops into their heads, and then expect us to swallow it hook line and sinker as the truth. When something is said about this administration that they don’t like, its; “all lies and hypocrisy”! They really do think that we’re all a bunch of uneducated hicks out here in “flyover country”.

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  8. librabobComment by librabob
    August 14, 2012 @ 3:32 pm

    I really hope the Romney Presidential Cabinet includes Mr. Sowell and Ms. Rice. Their vast knowledge and expertise in formulating and administering public policy would be invaluable to his administration and to the nation.

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  9. CharlieComment by vietnamvet
    August 14, 2012 @ 5:21 pm

    Paul Ryan may have ‘schooled’ Obama on the numbers, but Obama is still playing fast and loose with them.
    In a recent ad, Obama says that Romney makes 20 million, but only pays 14% in income taxes. Then, he says, “you probably pay more.”

    In truth, 47% of the people watching pay NO INCOME TAXES AT ALL.

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