So, it looks like Paul Ryan, Representative from Wisconsin, will become the next Speaker of the House of Representatives. I say this with some certainty as it appears that no one else wants the job. The current Speaker, John Boehner, not only quit that job but quit the House of Representatives as well. That’s not a good sign.
Ryan is a perfect fit for Speaker of the Republican dominated House. He blends the smooth, savvy talk of those in the fact free alternate universe with the sheer hypocrisy of the Conservative movement. He is well prepared for this position and is probably the best, and only, choice that the Republicans have.
Ryan’s rise to the top is a conservative’s dream. He was born into a wealthy family and although he occupied some of his time when he was young with various minor jobs, like driving the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, he was never burdened with the need to worry about money.
The family business was road building. I don’t recall ever buying a road. How about you? Actually, it is the government that buys roads. The road building business, historically, has been one of the most corrupt industries in this country. Price fixing, bid rigging, bribes, kickbacks, etc. permeated the industry. How many times have you seen perfectly good sections of I-64 being torn up and then resurfaced?
Sadly, Ryan’s father died when Ryan was 16. Ryan received Social Security Survivor benefits until he was 18. Since he was already financially secure, he saved that money for his college education.
In college, Ryan obtained, probably through family connections, internships with Wisconsin Republican lawmakers. From there he moved to permanent jobs as a legislative aid for various Republican politicians. He interspersed these jobs with gigs with various Conservative advocacy groups, which of course get their money from the political process. In 1998, he successfully ran for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives for Wisconsin; he has held that seat to this day.
In Congress, Ryan, along with his Conservative colleagues, has worked tirelessly to deny others the benefits that government has provided him including those same Social Security Survivor benefits. Destroying the social safety net, something provided to him indirectly through his government supported family business and directly with his government paycheck and generous fringe benefits, is actually his top priority. This inconsistency, both for Ryan and the Conservative movement, has never been an issue for them.
He is considered one of the Republican party’s budget experts, probably because besides being able to add and subtract he can also multiply and divide. Even given this, his budgets make no sense, both in terms of math and in terms of providing for the benefit of this country. I do have to give credit where credit is due, however. Ryan’s budgets have always included the elimination of the Republican’s 900 billion dollar Medicare Advantage program which wastefully overpays insurance companies to provide medical insurance in place of Medicare. This is the same “cut” that conservatives have blasted President Obama for advocating. So what’s new?
As a requirement for accepting the job, Ryan is demanding that he be given “family leave” so that he can spend time with his family. He has, of course, consistently voted against family leave for the general public. I presume the Republicans will give him this but don’t expect your getting it during his tenure.
In summary, Ryan has spent most of his life feeding at the government trough and at the same time advocating against the government programs that benefited him. This hypocrisy is what now drives the Conservative movement. So, what better than to have someone like Ryan at the top.