Thursday, May 24, 2018

Paul Ryan's wasted, corrosive House Speakership

[Updated from 5/23/18]: As Paul Ryan skips the DOJ briefings which Trump has manufactured for his own benefit, these from the Twitter feeds of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and NBC Capitol Hill reporter Kasie Hunt:
4 hours ago

By choosing not to attend the Gang of 8 meeting today, has abdicated his responsibility to the House & the American people.
I asked if he has any concerns at all that is doing lasting damage to FBI or DOJ. No, he said,

4 hours ago


If I hear one more cable TV news pundit throw Paul Ryan a 'he's-in-a-tough-spot' lifeline, I might call my satellite dish provider and have them come collect its equipment

He's not in a tough spot: we're in a tough spot.

Ryan is holding a treasured, historic, taxpayer-paid, perk-laden post with a super-sized staff, security detail and Constitutionally-defined authority as Speaker of the House of Representatives - - which puts him second in the line of succession to the Presidency.

It's a plum post with what is said to be the best view of the Nation's Capitol monuments that only a few dozen people in American history have ever held.

That's a tough spot? Please.

Being in a tough spot is trying to make ends meet when people like Ryan and his serve-the-rich, bigoted, nativist and callous caucus want to strip you of food assistance, health insurance, Medicare or voting rights. 

Or have made their number one priority The Saving of a Dangerous Presidency.

And the position Ryan disrespects by abandoning it and from which he may be bounced even more prematurely than he wants comes with so much political and budgetary power that all he needs to do is text any office holder or any reporter or any TV news anchor in DC or any lobbyist or CEO in town and they'll be in his office in a matter of minutes, hanging on his every word, buying what he's selling and anxious to remain in his Rolodex.

But there he sits, inert, unable or unwilling to do the basics and manage his solid House majority.

And uphold his oath of office by standing firm against renegade House Oversight and Intelligence committee chairs of his own appointment, and being a brave bulwark against a President openly flouting truth-telling and the Constitution on a daily basis.

A President with dictatorial impulses and dreams who is undermining right in front of Speaker Ryan the independence of the Justice Department and, for example, the public health and safety mission of the US EPA.

Where press freedom took a big hit yesterday, an agency where every official and employee draws a paycheck from a budget Ryan moved out of the House.

An agency where Ryan is fine with EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's pro-pollution preferences, and where Ryan will do nothing to help make sure Pruitt does no further damage to the First Amendment.

And speaking of the Constitution, Speaker Ryan stands with the NRA and its distortion of the Second Amendment while blood-letting gun violence aimed at America's school children has become routine.

So Ryan has made himself into a lame duck.

But first, The Once and Former Deficit Hawk made sure to deliver the Koch brothers their tax cuts - - then announced his early retirement somehow comfortable with massive new deficits of his own creation.

Now it seems as if the Gohmerites whom he's coddled and caved to want him replaced with someone possessed of even fewer scruples than what Janesville's leading Ayn Randian and former leading GOP It Guy was said to possess.

The country would be better off if Ryan gave the poorly, paradoxically-named Freedom Caucus its wish and left early, thereby reducing by one the country's surplus of spineless clerks with little to do except picking up a check and watching a pension grow fatter.

1 comment:

Minnesconsin Tom said...

When Ryan claimed to have never wanted the Speakership, I believed him. He knew it would expose him as the charlatan that he is. The whole intelligent, wonkish whiz-kid image was a facade.

The Speaker of the House is actually required to have leadership abilities. Ryan was much happier just being a congressman, when all he had to do was follow the orders of his corporate donors. He couldn’t quit as Speaker and keep his congressman job, though, because that would completely expose him as a lazy fraud. Hence the baloney about wanting to spend time with his kids.

He’ll be back eventually. My guess: if Ron Johnson keeps his word and quits after his second term, Ryan will run to take his place in the Senate.