A collection of newsworthy information as reported from newspapers, magazines, and blogs.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Falsely Accused

Conservatives falsely accused President Obama of being influenced by William (Bill) Ayers but, says nothing about Paul Ryan’s implementation of Russian Atheist – Ayn Rand monetary policy.  Rand used words such as “refuse” and “parasites” to describe the poor, while celebrating millionaire businessmen as heroes.  She abhorred government social programs, such as Social Security, at least until she reached the age of eligibility, and reportedly signed on for both its benefits and those of Medicare.  Ayn Rand’s views of selfishness have left a more lasting legacy in the policies that Paul Ryan and Willard Mitt Romney embrace.

Obama did not have a close relationship with William (Bill) Ayers. Yet, the matter was initially raised by Sean Hannity and other conservative talk radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh.  Moderator George Stephanopoulous brought the issue up during a debate between Clinton and Obama in April 2008. In October 2008, the matter was mentioned in attack ads, robocalls, mass mailings, and campaign speeches by Republican presidential candidate John McCain and vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin as an issue in the general election campaign.

Ryan’s Rand references have been so frequent and impassioned that “he can no more denounce Rand than he can denounce his own white grandmother.”  Rand’s works were an early and important influence on him, shaping his thinking as far back as high school.  Later, as a Congressman, Ryan not only tried to get all of the interns in his congressional office to read Rand’s writing, he also gave copies of her novel “Atlas Shrugged” to his staff as Christmas presents.  In 2005, Paul Ryan explained that he often looks to Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged” as inspiration for his views on monetary policy.  Ryan paid fealty to Rand in a speech he gave to the Atlas Society, the Washington-based think tank devoted to keeping Rand’s “objectivist” philosophy alive. He credited her with inspiring his interest in public service, saying, “[T]he reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand. And the fight we are in here, make no mistake about it, is a fight of individualism versus collectivism.”

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