Ryan runs into his inner truth

Friday, September 14, 2012   |   Posted by Jim Hightower
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In Lyndon Johnson's colorful barnyard phrase, "You can't make chicken salad out of chicken sh[bleep]."

But Paul Ryan, the GOP's current vice-presidential nominee, has spent his lifetime career in national government trying to do exactly that. Over the years, the ambitions right-wing politico has carefully assembled a mixed salad of positive adjectives to create his public persona: an earnest, straight-shooting, big thinker with integrity and deeply-held, conservative convictions. The Washington media swallowed it whole, helping push him forth as a tea party rock star and, now, a man who could be next in line to the presidency of our nation.

But once on the national stage, the real Ryan has been revealed as a slippery, dissembling, fabricating, small-minded, political hack. His big debut-speech, at the Republican National Convention was so filled with lies and chicken sh[bleep] that it even caused Fox TV's gaggle of fawning commentators to gag. Since then, he has continued to stink up the campaign trail, establishing himself, in the words of one New York Times columnist, as "a veritable poster boy for hyperbole and hypocrisy."

Then, in a recent radio interview, Ryan really ripped it by making a little boast that showed the big dishonesty that resides in his innermost core. Bragging that he's a very fit fellow, the VP candidate claimed to have run a marathon in under three hours. Wow – that's championship stuff! Only, it was just more chicken stuff. Runner's World magazine checked it out, and Ryan's run turned out to take more than four hours – merely ordinary.

The candidate later tried to laugh it off as an innocent exaggeration. But whether in marathons or a run for office, facts – and integrity – do matter. Ryan can run in both, but he can't hide the truth about himself.

"Rosie Ruiz Republicans," The New York Times, September 3, 2012.

"Facts Took a Beating In Ryan's Speech," The New York Times, August 31, 2012.

"As Nominee, He Vows to Protect Medicare," The New York Times, August 30, 2012.

"The Hex on Paul Ryan," The New York Times, September 4, 2012.

"Paul Ryan Address: Convention Speech Built on Demonstrably Misleading Assertions," www.huffingtonpost.com, August 30, 2012.

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