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The Paul Ryan Guide to Pretending You Care About the Poor


The Paul Ryan Guide to Pretending You Care About the Poor

Ben Spielberg

A handy guide just in time for the tax debate


A lot of not-so wealthy voters have been supporting this type of screw-the-poor scheme, and must be now experiencing quite a bit of cognitive dissonance from continuing to support it when it is more obvious than ever that not only does the tax plan not favor the middle, working and lower classes as much as the uber-weathy, but it actually increases the amount of taxes most people will have to pay.

It would seem like a win-win to propose an amendment to the tax bill that would allow these voters the opportunity to bend over and take it in the rear (literally) from GOP congressmen and wealthy executives for, oh, say, $20 a pop. The rich would get what they’ve always wanted and would no longer be forced to pretend otherwise, and these morons at the polls would have a little more money in their pocket and wouldn’t have to feel so bad about voting against their best interest.


Those no-so wealthy voters you mention are so blinded by ideology that they don’t even notice that they’re getting screwed by the very people they voted for.

I saw a “Trump” bumper sticker on a van outside of a store today. The van’s owners were outside it. I asked, “How’s that Trump thing working out for you?” The woman said, “We have more freedom!” I asked, “What freedom? Freedom to do what?”

No response.


and let us not forget the immortal, wise words of one Rep. Paul Ryan:
“we don’t want to turn the safety net into a hammock”…that’s right…all of us getting any
government benefits, including unemployment benefits, like myself,
are just taking it easy, sipping mimosas under a shady tree…
or, planning for our next Caribbean cruise…yes, indeed…


For me, articles like these are of vital importance and have to constantly be re-written for every new polished to platinum turd dropper.

It may have been that at the time of the mentally impaired Reagun that his baritone and eloquence obfuscated the facts, but the veracity required for public policy has been demonstrated substantially since then.

How easily we forget.

Ryan does not hesitate or flinch when making his stand. Despite your obvious, deeply entrenched, researched and corroborated reality, the tone of his response and deflection nullifies anything you have said. His tone is at once compassionate and stern. He responds as if he has accounted for everything you present.

To me, that is the where the fight is. We have to reclaim the dialog. That is why Trump won. John Oliver dedicated an entire episode on this matter alone. If there in just a small niche for these verbal presentations, then it must be identified and established with every subject.


That Americans have approached impoverishment as a galactic referendum on one’s character is as old as the (fake) Republic.

Ryan isn’t doing anything that hasn’t been done all the way back to Winthrop and the Plymouth colony.

But this list is still pretty dead on. This is how it’s done. Pretend to be sympathetic and throw up your hands and say, “well, we tried! It doesn’t work!” which is a roundabout way of implying that it doesn’t work because “they’re unworthy, and all the help in the world can’t save these defects!”

In my limited lifespan, the only time I ever see most people break on this issue is when it finally hits them personally. That’s why the New Deal passed–the Great Depression smashed virtually everyone, so character arguments lost their effect for a few decades.

But as poverty rapidly expands, these same positions are losing their effects now, too. It’s hard to argue how millions of people who just a decade ago seemed to have sterling capitalist character all of a sudden became lazy bums virtually overnight.


Like your post a lot. (posted something similar two seconds before)


It’s not possible to not like “platinum turd dropper” :slight_smile:


Thank You.

The long term solutions, though, are scarce


The power currently held by the GOP at the state and federals levels is proof that many Murkins DO NOT come around on this issue “when it finally hits them personally”…they continue to not let facts get in the way of GOP propaganda. They will never admit that they have been swallowing the trickle down stories since Ronny’s reign despite their being constantly soaked in yellow liquid for decades.


So we have to break up the lamestreet media of and by the one percenter. You will never hear this on TV or cable.

 First of all, the biggest problem is that the right wing media has taken total control over free talk radio all over America.  Every single talk show host promotes the same lies and right wing propaganda over and over with nothing but wimpy NPR being the only possibility for disagreement and NPR focuses too much on foreign news and reporting.  Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, Howie Carr, and Imus dominate talk radio.  Where is the anger and disagreement and facts from the left?  There isnt any.  Then there has been the Fox News echo chamber and now we are going to have Sinclair taking over seventy percent of the TV news in America with Trump TV.  Liberal media my ass!  There is very little liberal media.  I am very liberal socially,  but fiscally conservative or at least moderate.  I am mad as hell, but there is no one speaking for me.  Believe me there is plenty of rage on the left, more rage than even on the right, yet we have no one to speak for us.  Our freedom of the press has been almost totally destroyed by these right wingers and for profit infotainment sensationalistic yellow journalists.  There is plenty of money for lies and propaganda, but next to no money for the truth.  Journalists who want to keep their jobs have to report the news the way their boss wants it, and no one is allowed to say anything bad about any of the sponsors of the program or else be fired like the Fox News journalists were.  The media didn't even report about the two Florida lawsuits filed by those Fox News journalists who were told to lie to the American people on the news or else be fired.  When they sued, the judge said there was no law protecting journalists from being forced to lie on the news so they lost their case, even though when they were hired they were told that they could report the truth.  The journalistic societies have acknowledged that they must tell lies, and violate the journalistic code of ethics if they want to have a job to pay their student loans and support their families.  Chris Hedges, a Pulitzer Prisewinning journalist was fired from his job for telling the truth, so now he writes books and runs a website, and he is not the only one in this situation.  When all everyone hears and sees 24/7 is right wing propaganda that the poor are just lazy and that disabled people are just scamming the system and should just go back to work, or that poor people and black people are getting thousands of dollars of food stamps, which is a lie, and these attitudes and false "facts" are repeated over and over, it creates the same effect as Goebbles propaganda during Nazi Germany.  If things are repeated over and over, especially by multiple people, it is possible to make people believe almost anything.  The biggest problem on the left is that we don't get our message out to the people in a way that they can understand, at a fourth grade level.  Where are the liberal radio talk show hosts?  I could make Limbaugh and his pals all look foolish and stupid if I had the chance and I'd do it for free.  Limbaugh gets hundreds of millions of dollars for promoting the right wing lies.  I can't be bought.  I only want to tell the truth, and if I am ever wrong, I can admit it.  They refuse to accept responsibility when they are wrong.
 I could also put every able bodied person to work right now by creating a recycling program for workers.  We would need a big piece of farmland with clean water access where we could build cob cottages and dorms to house everyone.  There would be free storage units for people's belongings so when a person loses their job their landlord won't throw out all their belongings and a moving truck to pick the stuff up and move it into a house or apartment when they leave the recycling center.  Everyone would work building, doing day care, growing organic vegetables, chickens, dairy goats, etc. and preparing and serving the food for everyone in a big cafeteria.  People would be assigned jobs on a rotating basis or sign up each week on Sunday for work in one of the work areas.  Then there could be a van to take people to the career center where they could have career counseling and apply for college or vocational training.  We could make connections with employers in the community and do job shadowing so people could get ideas about local jobs they might like, but in the meantime they would work every day at the necessary tasks with time off for necessary appointments.  This recycling center would be non profit and operate like an extended family that takes people in and helps guide them to careers that they really want to do and find out what their life's mission is.  There could be GED study groups and homework groups for students and kids.  They would get references as to how well they do their work and their behavior at the facility while they are there.  We would have dorms for the single men and women and large bedrooms with dividers and a family bathroom for families.  We could do recycling of stuff like goodwill does and composting and run a recycle store.  There could be crafts and microbuisinesses in the evenings and the inmates could sell their wares in the recycle store and make some money for themselves.  There are endless possibilities that could be expanded in time.  Local nursing students and social work students could provide some medical care or counseling if needed.  Perhaps we could even run a elder or disabled care facility on site for disabled homeless people and train the displaced workers to care for them. 
 This way people aren't all alone with no one to help them get on track with their lives.  Just giving people food stamps and small amounts of money and housing assistance is not enough to help them navigate the complex working environment that we have today.  People need guidance and mentoring and encouragement and positive reinforcement to overcome learned helplessness and discouragement and depression, which the general public misinterprets as laziness.  When people go to work every day and their children see this it helps encourage work.  Working gives people pride in their accomplishments.  Learned helplessness occurs when people try hard to succeed and keep failing because our society makes things very difficult for low income people to navigate the system.  Often out of work people do not have cars which makes getting to work and daycare very difficult.  Living in low income housing or the projects is very lonely and isolating.  In a center devoted to lifting people up and helping them get on their feet where mentoring and counseling occurs there are more opportunities to point people in the right directions and to community resources.  Human beings need each other.  Many people do not have extended families that can take them in when they are out of work.  Even people who are able to live with relatives need help navigating a return to the working world that is in a constant state of change so we might even run an outpatient group.  The modern work situation is constantly changing which makes it harder for people to adapt.  It is a real struggle for people to find their way in modern society all alone.  It can be very discouraging to keep trying and fail over and over, eventually people give up.  Centers like this can prevent this hopelessness and work for positive change.  There are already some places like this in America today.  The conservatives should be pleased that people are being put to work and it satisfies the left because these people's basic needs are being met and being met even better than traditional welfare does.  We could have sober dances and family recreation on weekends.  I believe that there is a place for every person in this world.  The challenge is to find out what each person is suited to do and what their purpose in life is to be to the best of our ability to discern.  People are not disposable.  They are recyclable!  We cannot just throw the unemployed and the poor or homeless people under the bus.  We have a moral obligation to give them a hand up, not just a hand out.  It is harder to teach a person to fish than it is just to give them a fish every day, but in the long run it is better for everyone when they are assisted to be able to care for themselves and I believe that we can rehabilitate displaced workers in this way.  I guess I'd better write a grant proposal!


Ryan has mastered the Ayn Rand BS lines that worked for her until she needed social security. Then, suddenly…oh, oops–the mantra was reworked to accommodate her needs. Considering that Ryan only got rich by marrying into wealth, he hasn’t really shown anyone that he can walk his talk. Entitlement by proxy, lol.


Exactly, freedom to do what? We certainly had more freedom when Obama was in office. My guess is that this grade school educated slop thought that freedom was more freedom to be a racsist and not have insurance.


Like this idea- only just do not share it with us- maybe you could help start something in your community with grass roots!


They are too absorbed in fetuses!


Like your post- perhaps you could write a piece in your local paper. This lazy thing is as old as eugenics or even older. If people are all lazy- well should we call farmers lazy but the cubicle dweller is not???


This Ryan ( or Howdy Doody look a like) even thinks that social security retirement is welfare! So, I guess we old people put into our own welfare with our taxes!


This dissonance is one of the reasons that suicide rates are up even with senior citizens . Wealthy people are happy about that.


when I was in grad school, a couple of sociology grad students were working on a study design for a project they wanted to do about public attitudes towards the poor. As someone with a peripheral interest in their work, I sat in on a couple of design meetings and we wound up talking about why this myth persists so strongly.

I remember responding that it was basically because the character defect argument is a critical linchpin in capitalist defenses. If people conceded that a system could create poverty, they’d have to look at the system generating it. That is one concession that can never be allowed. As a result, I didn’t think they could design an attitude study that could control for belief systems that require this myth to exist (versus specific appeals by public speakers–they wanted to know if the attitude was systemic or episodically induced).

I was the only theorist in the room, so apparently my comments made my colleagues sad…:slight_smile: But they did go on to do some terrific PhD projects in Seattle poverty.