Margaret, when you hear a fool talking nonsense you can either call them on their bullshit or just shake your head and smile. Clearly I am the former which gets me into trouble and I need remind myself that maybe I should be a little more of the latter. It was nice to see Joe Biden has already figured that out. God love him, I thought he did well considering he had to be having a Déjà vu evening. Paul Ryan, like Sarah Palin, is difficult to suffer.
While I watched the debate, I often wished that Joe would stop smiling at Ryan and just reach across the table and slap the shit out of him. But, like I said, the Vice President is wiser than this old broad. Just like Palin before him, Ryan believes he has all the answers. Unlike Palin, Ryan is smart enough that he should know better.
Now I am sure comparing Paul Ryan to Sarah Palin is a stretch for some but when you are as old as Margaret and me you see these things a little more clearly. Nothing is more apparent to an older person than a younger person blinded by their own youth. With age comes wisdom. If you doubt me, just wait.
Four years ago, Palin debated Biden and painted the world in black and white – oil and snow. This time Ryan painted it in red and black – debits and credits. Everything gets all summed up in rows and columns where nothing matters but the bottom line. Life has yet to throw him any problem that can’t be solved with a calculator. During the debate, Ryan seemed to boil almost everything down to how much something costs. And the only thing that doesn’t seem to cost too much to Ryan is the price of war. I found that odd considering how tightly he wraps himself in his religious beliefs… which we’ll get to in a bit.
What does it say about the Republican Party that despite our being the richest country on the planet, all they can worry about is how expensive it is to take care of our elderly, our sick and our less fortunate? What kind of statement are they making when they focus almost exclusively on how much richer we could all be if we just spend a little less money on the sick and the elderly? There are more billionaires in America than in the next 10 richest countries combined. We are actually millionaires when it comes to the number of millionaires with almost 5 million Americans having that distinction – more than the next 10 countries combined. But the way Ryan describes it you would never know that the tax burden for American workers is one of the lowest on Earth… or that our defense budget is ten times greater than the next closest country.
The federal budget that Ryan apparently keeps next to his bible has a revenue line of more than $2 trillion dollars. That would be a two followed by twelve zeros. Twelve. It seems to me that Ryan should have a whole lot more than Medicare and Social Security to discuss before he gets to that last zero. We are debating the price of Medicare and Social Security but not the cost of war. I guess that’s why I am not a math person. The bottom line has never had all the answers for me.
All in all, I thought it was a good debate, but the point in the evening that had me on the edge of my seat was near the end when Martha Raddatz asked the two men how their Catholic faith affects their politics.
Ryan seemed not to understand the concept of a separation of church and state despite his infatuation with Iran – a country that clearly can’t separate the two. I think his exact words were: “I don’t see how a person can separate their public life from their private life or from their faith.” As a good Catholic he doesn’t believe in abortion or birth control and can’t separate that from his political life. Four times he has voted to defund Planned Parenthood, and his proposed budget would completely defund birth control, STD screenings, and cancer screenings for low-income women available under Title X.
Considering there are more than 300 religions practiced by Americans including 35 different Christian religious denominations a separation of church and state should make more sense to Ryan than it does. (By the way, I include Mormonism in that 35 even though many Republicans don’t.)
Compare Ryan’s answer to that of the elder statesman sitting to his right: “My religion defines who I am, and I’ve been a practicing Catholic my whole life… But I refuse to impose it on equally devout Christians and Muslims and Jews, and I just refuse to impose that on others, unlike my friend here, the — the congressman.”
I know Biden can’t exactly say what I can. That’s the curse of being a politician. So I am happy to say it here for him…
Mr. Ryan. You seem like a nice guy. Given a little time your heart might actually catch up to your brain. Until then, kindly take your spreadsheets, your bottom line and your religious intolerance and shove them up your ass. I mean it. Really.
Helen, honey, at times like these I am reminded why we are friends. Bottom line for me – you’re the tops. And to smiling Joe Biden I say – my husband is asleep by 9 and the back door is unlocked.
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