Paul Ryan erases Ayn Rand from the picture

With his new-found high profile, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan is now on the “oft-mentioned list” of potential vice presidential candidates. Not coincidentally, he also finds himself trying to defend brutal cuts in services to the poor and others in need that he has proposed in his “Path to Prosperity” budget.

So, in an interview published Thursday in National Review, Ryan made it a point to dismiss as “urban myth” the notion that he draws inspiration and guidance from Ayn Rand, the libertarian philosopher-queen who celebrates the self over all else and who dismisses the very notion of a social contract.

Ryan was pretty explicit:

“I reject her philosophy. It’s an atheist philosophy. It reduces human interactions down to mere contracts and it is antithetical to my worldview. If somebody is going to try to paste a person’s view on epistemology to me, then give me Thomas Aquinas. Don’t give me Ayn Rand.”

I find urban myths a fascinating phenomenon. For example, you could write a book about all the urban myths that have popped up about Barack Obama, from the “whitey tape” and the birth certificate to “see India on $200 million a day.” If you try to trace them back to their source, as you would trace a creek back to its source, you often find yourself peering into a dark, dank swamp of fear and fabrication.

So which vile soul started this urban myth about Ryan’s supposed affection for Ayn Rand? I think I have found a clue:

And then there’s this:

“I give out Atlas Shrugged as Christmas presents, and I make all my interns read it. Well… I try to make my interns read it.”

And:

“Ayn Rand, more than anybody else, did a fantastic job explaining the morality of capitalism, the morality of individualism, and that, to me, is what matters most.”

And:

“The reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand.”

That’s all Paul Ryan, folks.

Now, as to this Thomas Aquinas fellow to whom Ryan suddenly and conveniently pledges such allegiance. If the budget chairman truly has begun to study the works of St. Thomas, such as his 13th century classic Summa Theologica, that’s great. He will have much to gain from the experience.

Regarding this alleged “urban myth,” for example, Aquinas might remind Ryan that “A lie is evil … it is unnatural and undue for anyone to signify by words something that is not in his mind.”

And as to that budget?

“Man should not consider his material possession his own, but as common to all, so as to share them without hesitation when others are in need.”

I can’t wait to see such lessons reflected in Ryan’s politics, can you?

– Jay Bookman

358 comments Add your comment

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:40 pm

TaxPayer
April 27th, 2012
3:37 pm

That paragraph of rubbish you just wrote shouldn’t even have to happen on something as simple as taken a Obama-proposed cut and using that to pay for the student loan bill.

(ir)Rational

April 27th, 2012
3:40 pm

TBS – I’ll be honest and say I haven’t read the whole thing. From the broad outline I have read, no. It doesn’t do enough to curb spending for my tastes. Then again, I doubt I’ll see the budget that does enough for my tastes.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 27th, 2012
3:41 pm

Peadawg

If this is your idea of a party….

What exactly did Obama propose to pay for with ACA funds?

Why do you continue to defend oil subsidies?

Ayn Rant

April 27th, 2012
3:42 pm

Jay, you’re the best investigative journalist in Christendom!

They BOTH suck

April 27th, 2012
3:43 pm

Rational

Thanks for the reply…….. That was my whole point…. The House is attempting to cherry pick something and expect the Pres to be happy…………

It is a two way street………..

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:43 pm

“What exactly did Obama propose to pay for with ACA funds?”

Go back and read the links to story I posted earlier like Adam did. I posted 3 or 4. You’re a big girl. I’m not re-posting them just for you.

“Why do you continue to defend oil subsidies?” – Show me where I’ve defended them. Please oh please oh please.

(ir)Rational

April 27th, 2012
3:45 pm

TBS – Sometimes you just gotta be happy with what you can get. Especially in a case like this where there is about a 0% chance of the entire budget ever getting passed. By either the House or Senate if I remember correctly. But I do understand the point you were making.

They BOTH suck

April 27th, 2012
3:45 pm

Rational

And as you know it is election year so I wouldn’t expect too many comprises of any significant consequence from either side

Sad but true

UNCLE SAMANTHA

April 27th, 2012
3:46 pm

jay
why don’t you INVESTIGATE all the books, people and sources that Obama was raised to believe in and let us know who they are

Jefferson

April 27th, 2012
3:47 pm

Be out of the market by Thanksgiving.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 27th, 2012
3:48 pm

Peadawg

You are defending them when you think it’s better to take dollars from preventative care than oil subsidies.

Your wife is more important to you than Chevron isn’t she?

(ir)Rational

April 27th, 2012
3:50 pm

TBS – From the way things have been going in Congress for as far back as I can remember, I wouldn’t expect much even if it weren’t an election year.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:51 pm

“You are defending them when you think it’s better to take dollars from preventative care than oil subsidies.” – Again, never said that. Show me where I did or stfu.

The GOP is using cuts that Obama himself proposed. Period. End of story. There should be NO votes against this bill. Stop playing political games and stop w/ the threats to veto.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 27th, 2012
3:53 pm

ir

ACA requires certain preventative are to be free.

what’s your co-pay?

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:54 pm

You want me to vote for you, Obama? Don’t raise the rates on my wife’s Stafford loans.

Tom Middleton

April 27th, 2012
3:55 pm

Well, if he’s out to prove that he’s cut from the same character cloth as Mitt Romney, you know, so he can be the VP pick, then he’s done it. We now know absolutely that Paul Ryan can flip-flop as well as Mitt for political office!

Now it we can just get Rush Limbaugh, who called Ayn Rand “brilliant,” Rand Paul, who called himself “a fan,” and Ron Johnson, who called “Atlas Shrugged” his foundation book, to do the same, we might have a political party that at least looks like it believes in God.

From an interview the late great Mike Wallace had with the atheist Ms. Rand:

Mike Wallace: You are out to destroy almost every edifice in the contemporary American way of life – our Judeo Christian religion, our government modified regulated capitalism, our rule by majority will, (while) other reviews have said that you scorn churches and the concept of God. Are these accurate criticisms?

Ayn Rand: Yes

I did say, “looks like” it believes in God, didn’t I? Good, because that’s all I meant. I mean, “brilliant,” Rush? Really?

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 27th, 2012
3:55 pm

Sorry, Peadawg, but you don’t get to period end of story this.

It’s above your paygrade.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:56 pm

The GOP is using cuts that YOU proposed yourself, Mr. President and cuts that DEMOCRATS voted for.

And now the GOP wants to use the same ones to pay for this bill and you threat to veto? That’s one way to reeeaaally get me angry.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
3:58 pm

Granny, you’re defending Obama while he plays a sick political game w/ student loans. I can period end of story this (in the Teddy KGB voice from ‘Rounders’) whenever the f*k I please.

(ir)Rational

April 27th, 2012
3:58 pm

GG – My copay for preventative is, oddly enough, $0.00.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
3:58 pm

Paragraph of rubbish, Peadawg. I see you have reduced yourself to that now. Is that your way of “winning”?

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
4:00 pm

I see another part of that healthcare legislation requires insurers to return one billion to the insured. Good show.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
4:01 pm

TaxPayer – my 3:58 goes to you too, sport.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
4:02 pm

Peadawg must be angry at the house Dems for offering to cut oil company subsidies in order to pay for the revenues that the Republicans will lose by not raising interest rates on their kids that attend college on loans. Take your ball and go home then, Peadawg.

Thulsa Doom

April 27th, 2012
4:04 pm

“The 1% don’t worry about clean water, they drink bottled water.”

Sometimes a lib makes a point that is so asininely stupid that you just have to edumucate them. Middle class and even poor people can afford to drink bottled waters. Because of poor water systems back home the immigrants from central america here largely drink bottled water.

And the dumbest point of that is that the 1%ers have to bathe in tap water and when they go to restaurants some of their food is boiled in or made with tap water. Gawd ya’ll say some really dumb things.

I'm a "con" and a vet. STOP SPITTING ON ME!!! (That Black Guy)

April 27th, 2012
4:04 pm

Adam

April 27th, 2012
1:52 pm
TBG: Touche. It appears that “failure” is in fact an antonym for “accomplishment.”

As a point of note though, how can one reasonably call things that DID pass, but didn’t achieve greater than stellar results, as failures? For example, the stimulus.
______________________________________________________________________

When have I done that?

I’m sure you are not asking me to justify what SOMEONE else said, right?

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
4:05 pm

TaxPayer
April 27th, 2012
4:02 pm

Nope, I’m angry at Obama and the Democrats for playing political games and being 100% hypocrites and threatening to not vote for and veto this bill just b/c the GOP proposed a cut that OBAMA HIMSELF PROPOSED.

Granny Godzilla - Union Thugette

April 27th, 2012
4:05 pm

Tax Payer

Sick stuff indeed.

stands for decibels

April 27th, 2012
4:12 pm

I know the party’s upstairs, but…

To repeat what I said earlier, every living person in this nation now owes over $200,000 as part of the national debt

Unless there’s some new math I missed, 14 trillion divided by 300 million ain’t 200 grand. It’s around 47 grand.

And frankly, carrying a 47 thousand dollar principal amount on a debt that’s financing the whole country? That doesn’t sound all that scary to me.

(Sorry Peadawg, I know you think this is “loony” talk.)

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
4:14 pm

No, Peadawg. You are either playing the part of the conned exceedingly well or else you have been conned. If you really cared about those student loans, you could just as easily say to your fellow Republicans, you know we don’t really have to make all that money off of students or you know, we could let the oil companies chip in. The funding that the GOP seeks most certainly does not have to come out of the healthcare legislation as you seem to think.

Mitt Zombie

April 27th, 2012
4:15 pm

Outstanding work Jay, it reminds me of the skewering The Daily Show administers to duplicitous politicians. I hope they will piggyback on your research and also expose the charlatan.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
4:19 pm

TaxPayer
April 27th, 2012
4:14 pm

If OBAMA really cared about student loans, he would stop playing games. I’m not saying where the funding comes from is ok. What I AM saying (and what you and Granny seem to missing) is that Obama proposed the EXACT SAME CUTS in HIS budget. And now he’s being a little b*ch b/c the GOP are proposing the same cuts. Why is that so hard for y’all to grasp?

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
4:24 pm

No, Peadawg, you do not get to take Obama’s proposals out of context. He proposed a package of items and the Republicans refused. You do not have the luxury of referring to bits and pieces as though they were offered as such. The house Republicans can now return to business as usual. Pass your house bill and then work with the Senate to agree on a final bill and pass it up the line to Obama. That is your option. You can continue to claim otherwise to your heart’s content I suppose for what good it will do you. Have fun with that.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
4:26 pm

“you do not get to take Obama’s proposals out of context. ” – How am I taking it out of context? He obviously was fine w/ the cuts when he proposed them. And now he’s not b/c the GOP is proposing them.

You can continue to defend Obama playing political game w/ student loans to your heart’s content I suppose for what good it will do you. Have fun with that.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
4:43 pm

Peadawg,

Take up your concerns with the House Dems and the Senate Dems. Get your bill past them and on to Obama. If you really care about making sure those kids have affordable loans, that’s where you should have your efforts focused. If Obama likes what he sees in the bill, he’ll sign it and if he doesn’t, then we can compare notes. Til then, this exchange is rendered moot.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
4:49 pm

Again, TaxPayer – You can continue to defend Obama playing political game w/ student loans to your heart’s content I suppose for what good it will do you. Have fun with that.

Hypocrite.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
5:01 pm

From your link, Peadawg:

President Obama has proposed $3.5 billion in cuts to the federal Prevention and Public Health Fund as part of the President’s Plan for Economic Growth and Deficit Reduction.

Again, Peadawg, trying to take Obama’s proposals out of context will get you nowhere with me. Obama made his proposals as a part of a package deal. You do not get to pick and choose no matter how much you want to. Just like you do not get to walk into the grocery store and open up a product and take the part labeled “10% more at no added cost” for free. Finally, calling me a hypocrite is really silly, Peadawg, unless you can back it up with some proof. You’re grasping.

Reagan Man

April 27th, 2012
6:46 pm

If Ryan said it, then it’s true.

You leftists are just trying to make a good man look bad by misquoting him in the past.

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

April 27th, 2012
6:50 pm

You leftists are just trying to make a good man look bad by misquoting him in the past.

Someone didn’t watch the video provided, I see.

Vast Right Wing Conspiracy

April 27th, 2012
7:06 pm

Lets run through the same drill for Emperor Nero. You have got to have Karl Marx front and center, although he does show some fascist tendencies – who can we compare him to on that front? He gives a much better Muslim testimony than Christian – who is his muse there?

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
7:07 pm

TaxPayer
April 27th, 2012
5:01 pm

“unless you can back it up with some proof.” – You’re defending Obama and Senate/House Democrats on being hypocrites, which makes you one also. Live with it, son.

Jay

April 27th, 2012
7:11 pm

Sure Vast. Sure.

As soon as you post the video in which Obama lauds Marx or Mohammad as the moral leader for out times, you’ll have a point.

Otherwise….

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
7:33 pm

You’re defending Obama and Senate/House Democrats on being hypocrites, which makes you one also. Live with it, son.

I asked you to provide proof that I am a hypocrite and you claim it is so based on your claim that Obama and the Democrats are hypocrites and I defend their hypocrisy.

Hypocrite – a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.

Cite my words that satisfy the definition, Peadawg.

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 27th, 2012
7:43 pm

“Hypocrite – a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings.”

Obama proposes a cut in his budget – good.
GOP proposes a cut to the exact same program in the student loan bill – bad

That’s a contradiction.

Damn you’re dense. We can go around in circles all you want but the fact remains, you, Granny, Pelosi, Reid, and Obama are hypocrites on the issue. Atleast 1 Democrat agreed w/ me earlier (Adam). Can’t the same about you and Granny, sadly.

See everyone Monday!

Kamchak ~ Thug from the Steppes

April 27th, 2012
7:45 pm

Peapup melt-down.

TaxPayer

April 27th, 2012
7:49 pm

Actually Peadawg,

Republicans had voted earlier in the week for a budget that allowed the rate to go up, but under public pressure offered a plan Wednesday to preserve the rate by cutting the Prevention and Public Health Fund created in President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

So, I think if the Republicans come out now claiming that they wanted to maintain those lower rates all along, then they would be the hypocrites (or just outright liars), not Obama.

Further, you did not cite anything I posted that supports your claim that I am a hypocrite.

independent thinker

April 28th, 2012
9:43 am

And Willard now says his campaign is based on “fairness” and that Obama is guilty of “unfairness.”
That is a typical Turd Blossom (Rove) trick of calling the other side what you areand lying about your true beliefs. After all George W. was a comapssionate conservative wasn’t he?

Lets see some of the unfair things Obama has done that Mr. Fairness and his cohorts would not have done:

1. Bail out the states when their unemployment funds ran out;
2. Bail out all the banks so their balance sheets improved;
3. Helped homeowners avoid foreclosure;
4. reduce payroll taxes;
5. end a highly unfavorable war in Iraq and bring all the troops home;
6. kill our top enemy Osama Ben Laden and others;
7. bail out GM and Chrysler making them highly profitable again;
8. give insurance to people who were unisurable due to preexisting conditons;
9. let the rich continue to have huge tax breaks given to them by “George w.etc. etc.
All of these are highly unfair aren’t they????????????????????????
I guess Ben laden would agree with Willard.

Sick-o

April 28th, 2012
10:12 am

Ryan has created God in his own image.

Kathy H

April 28th, 2012
10:42 am

So Ryan seems to have re-written the gospels in his own image, creative but definitely a detour from the lessons from Jesus Christ. I do believe in separation of church and state, but politicians seem to drag their faulty personal interpretations of Christianity in to solidify their un-Christian positions. They need to write the gospel of GOP- it would be an eye opener. On the other hand, it’s been a LONG time since any of them have read their bible. Next, I understand the concept of being broke . . . but are we broke? If so, more revenue is absolutely necessary, but cutting spending when we’re pulling out of a recession is crazy. Wisdom is in short supply, and blind ideology rules the GOP. To me, they have built their house on sand, and now it is starting to crumble under all the rediculous ideas they have foisted on us. Reagan and both Bushes spent so much money, shooting our deficits way up. Clinton eliminated the deficit and left us with a surlus o $5.6 trillion. And they blame Obama????? Analyze this: Bush spent 5.6 trillion, then added another 5 trillion by the time he left office. So who is the drunken sailor here?

blogenfreude

April 28th, 2012
5:36 pm

Tweet @RepPaulRyan and ask him if he has a Mittens Etch-a-Sketch too!

Peadawg - Obama wants to play hardball with student loans? I'm game.

April 29th, 2012
7:21 am

“Further, you did not cite anything I posted that supports your claim that I am a hypocrite.”

If you refuse to take your liberal blinders off, that’s your choice. I tried to help you see it but oh well.

Sho

April 30th, 2012
4:54 pm

Perhaps he’s pulling a “d’anconia” and not telling the truth for a purpose…

dbm

April 30th, 2012
5:11 pm

I see a number of people seized the opportunity to bash Ayn Rand. Did any of them say anything that hasn’t already been answered elsewhere?

dbm

May 1st, 2012
1:45 pm

USinUK

April 27th, 2012
12:38 pm

OBSESSION with ANYTHING is destructive. A fourteen-year-old is usually more vulnerable than an adult to falling into the trap of obsessing with one thing or another.

It is a very good thing to be inspired by an Ayn Rand hero.

It is a very good thing to emulate an Ayn Rand hero on a fundamental level.

It is s very good thing to agree with Ayn Rand’s ideas.

If you disagree, how about offering some rational argument?

Real Athens

May 1st, 2012
6:14 pm

It’s funny that far right the base of the GOP would all of a sudden fall in love with Rand. Besides her atheism she was the ultimate hypocrite. She took methamphetamine daily for 26 years to control a “weight problem”. Does anyone here know what 26 years of meth use does to you and your ability to think rationally?

Here, Georgia GOP, is your VP hopefuls greatest influence as interviewed by Mike Wallace in 1959 in an abridged and full version.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0TxCWbTqz9s

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

[...] Paul Ryan erases Ayn Rand from the picture | Jay Bookman Quote: I find urban myths a fascinating phenomenon. For example, you could write a book about all the urban myths that have popped up about Barack Obama, from the “whitey tape” and the birth certificate to “see India on $200 million a day.” If you try to trace them back to their source, as you would trace a creek back to its source, you often find yourself peering into a dark, dank swamp of fear and fabrication. So which vile soul started this urban myth about Ryan’s supposed affection for Ayn Rand? I think I have found a clue: __________________ In an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal, Lawrence B. Lindsey, a former economic adviser to President George W. Bush, wrote that Frank "is the only politician I know who has argued that we needed tighter rules that intentionally produce fewer homeowners and more renters." This space no longer for rent. . – GA_googleFillSlot("usmb-728×90-bottom"); [...]

[...] this one, still unanswered. Meanwhile, in the world of newspaper news, Paul Ryan cannot run fast enough to get away from his past infatuation with Ayn [...]

Steve

May 3rd, 2012
5:55 pm

I would be interested in what are people’s objections to Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism? Please leave the straw men out and attack the ideas and not the character of Ayn Rand. Where’s the flaw in her arguments?