Skip to comments.Ted Rall: Romney-Ryan extremism could revive liberal support for Obama (Stunningly bad)
Posted on 08/19/2012 9:52:24 AM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Soviet citizens had to be Kremlinologists, studying subtle linguistic and tonal shifts in state propaganda, noting the seating order of party leaders at official functions, in order to predict the future direction of their lives.
So too are we Americans, for without any way to really get to know our politicianstheir press conferences and interviews are too infrequent and carefully stagemanaged, unchallenged by compliant journalistic toadies we are reduced to reading signals.
Even to an alienated electorate, the tealeaves are easy to read on the Republican side.
Between Romney's selection of Paul Ryan as his running mate, his team of Dubya-rehash economic advisors (because that worked out so well) and Tea Party favorite Chris Christie as keynote speaker at this year's Republican National Convention, the Republican Party is in danger of doing something that seemed impossible just a few months ago: strengthening support among the liberal base of the Democratic Party for President Obama.
Granted, disappointed lefties will not soon forget Obama's betrayals. Guantánamo, the concentration camp that supposedly holds "the worst of the worst" terrorists, remains openalthough, now that the White House is reportedly negotiating with the Taliban to exchange captured Afghan ministers for an American POW, one assumes they're not all that bad.
The drone wars against Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere are an affront to basic morality, logic and decency. On the economy, this tone-deaf president has yet to propose a jobs program, much less try to push one through Congress.
But many progressives, until recently threatening to sit on their hands or cast votes for a third party, are reconsidering, weighing disgust against gathering terror as they read the signals from the gathering storm in Tampa. Where Obama fails to inspire enthusiasm, the Romney team seems determined to generate as much fear as possible that he plans to shove the needle even further to the radical right than Reagan or Bush.
Romney, who abandoned his history as a centrist Massachusetts Republican and is running as a right-winger, chose to balance his newfound extremism with Paul Ryan, an even-more-right-winger.
Ryan is a vicious, overrated ideologue whose greatest achievement, his theoretical budget proposal, paints a picture of America as a dystopian hell where an infinitely funded Pentagon wages perpetual war and the top 1 percent of the top 1 percent party on tax cuts while the elderly and poor starve or succumb to treatable diseases, whichever kills them first. (In the media today, this gets you lionized as "smart," "wonky," and "an intellectual heavyweight."
Ryan = Sartre.) Lest you wonder whether the Ryan selection is an anomaly, wonder not from Christie to the stump speeches to the men first in line to join a Romney cabinet, everything about Team Romney screams Tea Party, Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Ayn Rand minus the cool atheism and elitism.
This is a Republican Party that Barry Goldwater wouldn't recognize, batso nutso, stripped of the last veneer of libertarianism, completely owned by and in thrall to figures whom the media would characterize as "extreme nationalist" or "neo-Nazi" if they spouted the same nonsense in other countries.
If I were advising Romney, I would tell him that cozying up to the lunatic fringe of American pseudoconservatism is not a prescription for victory in November, when the outcome hinges upon seducing that 5 percent or 10 percent of voters who swing both ways.
Ryan isn't as crazy (or bold) of a choice as Sarah Palin, but what Republicans don't understand is that conservatives will vote Republican regardless of who is the vice presidential running mate or, for that matter, who is the Republican nominee for president. Lack of enthusiasm among the base wasn't Romney's big problem, it was Obama's.
Romney's biggest albatross is that he's a terrible candidate, a guy who obviously doesn't like people. And his campaign sucks. The deficit may or may not represent a looming existential threatunemployment and the environment are more urgent but "take your medicine" austerity isn't much of a sales pitch, especially when two-thirds of the people are already feeling squeezed. Voters reward candidates who present an optimistic vision, a future in which they see themselves richer, happier and with fuller, more lustrous hair.
The fact that Romney can't manage to put forward a credible economic program doesn't help either. Since his entire campaign is predicated on the argument that he's the economy guy and knows how to fix it, he needs to cough up a plan.
However, my real concern is that Romney's gangbusters right-wing extremism lets Obama and the Democrats off the hook.
If all Democratic strategists have to do to attract progressive voters is to frighten them with greater-evil Republicans, when will people who care about the working class, who oppose wars of choice, and whose critique of government is that it isn't in our lives enough ever see their dreams become party platform planks with some chance of being incorporated into legislation?
In recent elections (c.f. Sarah Palin and some old guy versus Barry), liberals are only voting for Democrats out of terror that things will get even worse. That's no way to run a party, or a country.
Gasp, chortle, wheeze, hahahahahaha!
"...what Republicans don't understand is that conservatives will vote Republican regardless of who is the vice presidential running mate or, for that matter, who is the Republican nominee for president. Lack of enthusiasm among the base wasn't Romney's big problem, it was Obama's."
Guess he's never visited this website.
I thought Ted Rall was banned from this site ?
Ted Rall is one of the most obnoxious people still drawing breath. I was at college with him and still remember his idiotic cartoons for the college paper. Since then, he managed to suck so bad, the Washington Compost dropped him. His main suckage is always being extremely disgusting, puerile and extremely offensive.
Heheh...calling Romney-Ryan extremists is like calling white bread an exotic food.
His theory that Romney is a right winger is total garbage ~ Rall is garbage ~ the people who believe Rall are garbage. Rall's syndicator is garbage.
I think somebody said Rall is banned. Ban him again!
“Ted Rall” and “stunningly bad” are redundant expressions.
It’s odd how these morons in the “media” NEVER refer to the communist Democrats as “extreme”. The ‘RATS are out to enslave Americans, destroy capitalism and America and these fags don’t see anything “extreme” about that. Fluken weird.
Obviously Ryan is the best choice. The Leftists are panicky to the point of suicide.
So to the American Left, I have this word of warning: Romney wants to put your lazy asses to WORK, and Ryan wants to cut off your FREE MONEY. It is your worst nightmare. It is your armageddon.
Surprised the Russians haven’t already taken him out with ricin or polonium. He’s so bad!!!!!!!!!!!
HA HA HA HA HA !
OMG.... Commies are so cute when they are rattled.
Romney and Ryan... Radical Right Wingers.... Yeah.... Riiiiiiigght!
This has got to be satire.
What, exactly, does Ted Rall actually know about "basic morality, logic and decency"?
Rall apparently doesn’t know any right-wing people...
Wow, people still take this complete wack job Rall seriously enough to waste ink on him? Guy hasn’t been right about anything in his entire life.
I think the thing to do if the RNC was smart was flip the issue and say it’s interesting the democrats are fixated on our VP guy when they really ought to be fixated on their own, who can’t seem to stop making a complete and utter ass out of himself every time he opens up his mouth. ANd then list the long list of current examples. And then say it makes you wonder if he’s all mentally there and perhaps maybe they ought to get their own VP slot figured out before expressing reservations about the republicans’ choice.
Notice how the media never talks about the billions spent in Afghanistan lately. Or that we’re still there, still killing people? In an unjust war? Notice how all the negatives they had ready to go with the republican on EVERYTHING GOING ON were all ready to go, now they hold all that crap back?
When the economic news is bad (and they know it will be) they still put “unexpected” or “surprise” in the headline like 43 months of 8% unemployment under the O-hole is really a shocker to anyone?
And they still get pissy when people call them on their bias, and get fake offended that we’d even think they were because we’re tired of them lying to our faces and getting pissed we don’t buy their lie about being objective anymore.
Why would the Russians take him out? He’s on their side!
The Russians recently reacquired religion.
...what Republicans don't understand is that conservatives will vote Republican regardless of who is the vice presidential running mate or, for that matter, who is the Republican nominee for president.
What liberals don't understand is that just because their side of the aisle is populated by tribal sheep doesn't mean that ours is. The fellows most responsible for the re-energization of the conservative base aren't Romney and Ryan. It's 0bama and his merry pack of race-baiters, redistributionists, and America-haters. Analyze that, Teddy.
Romney’s biggest albatross is that he’s a terrible candidate,
yeppers this is bad...
That should have been the title...