I watched the Republican National Convention hoping to get some clarification on several vital issues. Unfortunately, I am even more confused now than I was before. Here is a short list of reasons for my befuddlement:
For the last six months (seems like six years) we have heard over and over from the Republicans that Barack Obama is not fit to be president because he has no private sector experience. But Mitt Romney has chosen as his running mate (and the man who will be one heartbeat away from the presidency) someone who has been working for the federal government for the last 22 years.
Paul Ryan has had only minimal experience in the private sector including part-time employment with Oscar Mayer that included driving the weinermobile. He has no other private sector experience on record that I can find.
The Republicans claim to be the party of fiscal responsibility but Paul Ryan voted for TARP, the unfunded Medicare drug benefit, the “Bridge to Nowhere,” and many other big spending programs. Ryan’s proposed budget doesn’t balance until 2040.
Romney claims that he will give everyone a 20 percent tax cut while increasing defense spending and preserving both Medicare and Social Security. This claim far surpasses the bounds of the mathematically possible. Romney won’t divulge the actual details of his plan because “it can’t be scored.” That’s Washingtonese for “the details don’t make any sense either.”
I have heard both Romney and Ryan call for more civility in the current campaign. This call was renewed at the Republican convention. However, every time I see a news story quoting Romney’s call for more-respectful discourse, the very next story is invariably about some new Romney-sponsored attack ad. Additionally, every fact-checking organization in the country has disproved the Romney/Ryan claims regarding welfare reform, Medicare and many other false statements. One of the Romney campaign managers recently said that they weren’t going to let fact-checkers “dictate” to their campaign.
Perhaps the craziest thing of all is that the theme of the entire Republican convention was “We Built It.” Sadly, every single speaker at the convention who had an “I built this” story to tell owed their success to government contracts, loans or tax credits. One woman had apparently made a fortune teaching other people how to acquire lucrative government contracts. What exactly did she build?
I’m not sure what is going on here. Maybe Republicans just speak a different language where up is down and black is white.
Whatever it is, you don’t have to do very extensive research to find out that almost everything they say is either false or nonsensical.