Monday, September 3, 2012

Rosie Ruiz Republicans

Paul Krugman

Remember Rosie Ruiz? In 1980 she was the first woman to cross the finish line at the Boston Marathon — except it turned out that she hadn’t actually run most of the race, that she sneaked onto the course around a mile from the end. Ever since, she has symbolized a particular kind of fraud, in which people claim credit for achieving things they have not, in fact, achieved.

And these days Paul Ryan is the Rosie Ruiz of American politics.

It started when Hugh Hewitt, a right-wing talk-radio host, interviewed Mr. Ryan. In that interview, the vice-presidential candidate boasted about his fitness, declaring that he had once run a marathon in less than three hours.

This claim piqued the interest of Runner’s World magazine, which noted that marathon times are recorded — and that it was unable to find any evidence of Mr. Ryan’s accomplishment. It eventually transpired that Mr. Ryan had indeed once run a marathon, but that his time was actually more than four hours.

In a statement issued by a spokesman, Mr. Ryan tried to laugh the whole thing off as a simple error. But serious runners find that implausible: the difference between sub-three and over-four is the difference between extraordinary and perfectly ordinary, and it’s not something a runner could get wrong, unless he’s a fabulist who imagines his own reality. And does suggesting that Mr. Ryan is delusional rather than dishonest actually make the situation any better?

Which brings us back to the real issues of this presidential campaign.

So what is this election about? To be sure, it’s about different visions of society — about Medicare versus Vouchercare, about preserving the safety net versus destroying it. But it’s also a test of how far politicians can bend the truth. This is surely the first time one of our major parties has run a campaign so completely fraudulent, making claims so at odds with the reality of its policy proposals. But if the Romney/Ryan ticket wins, it won’t be the last.

Shorter: They're frauds and lying sacks o' shit and THAT'S their whole "platform" and the rest of the Repugs are totally down wid it. Win at all costs, get rid of President The Other, doesn't matter WHAT gets in as long as it's more Amerikkkan.

1 comment:

David Aquarius said...

The Repugs could have walked up on stage at the start of their little dog on pony show last week and said loud and clear "For the next three days we, the leaders of Your Republican Party, are going to be lying our asses off to you." They would have received a standing ovation.

To a Repug, telling a bald-faced lie means nothing. No remorse, no consequences, no empathy for those affected by their lies. They can't conceive of the concept of honor so being truthful and honest is impossible. They lie like we breathe. It's genetic.