John Galt clutches his pearls

John Galt clutches his pearls

by digby

One of my favorite right wing quirks is their ability to shape-shift from Rambo to Aunt Pittypat in the blink of an eye. It's so boldly inconsistent that each shift inevitably knocks the lefties off their feet as they try to wrap their minds around the sheer scale of the hypocrisy. Here's Congressman Paul Ryan, Randian champion of individualism and Galtish superiority, suddenly worrying himself into a tizzy about dividing the American people. (Apparently the "parasites", "looters" and "moochers" might get the wrong idea ...)

In a speech at the Heritage Foundation, Ryan said Obama’s method of rallying public support for his $447 billion jobs package was “sowing social unrest and class resentment” and could be “just as damaging as his misguided policies.”

“Instead of working together where we agree, the president has opted for divisive rhetoric and the broken politics of the past,” Ryan said. “He is going from town to town, impugning the motives of Republicans, setting up straw men and scapegoats, and engaging in intellectually lazy arguments, as he tries to build support for punitive tax hikes on job creators.”

Ryan accused Obama of using “class-based rhetoric” in his re-election campaign. Obama’s tactics, he said, make “America weaker, not stronger.”

“Instead of appealing to the hope and optimism that were the hallmarks of his first campaign, he has launched his second campaign by preying on the emotions of fear, envy, and resentment,” Ryan said.

“This has the potential to be just as damaging as his misguided policies. Sowing social unrest and class resentment makes America weaker, not stronger. Pitting one group against another only distracts us from the true sources of inequity in this country – corporate welfare that enriches the powerful, and empty promises that betray the powerless.

Oh mah stahs Miss Mellie! Bring me the smellin' salts befoah ah faint dead away!

It must be so hard for the conservatives who have been nothing but polite and kind and compassionate over these couple of years to see this outrageous show of uncivilized behavior by the president. Why it makes them just want to break down and cry.

Divisive rhetoric is simply unAmerican:

"It drives the liberals crazy"

U.S. Capitol Police reported 12 arrests outside the office of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on charges ranging from unlawful entry to disorderly conduct. Pelosi, a California Democrat, had been a focal point for many of the protesters, including one who wore a mask depicting Pelosi holding handfuls of bloody fetuses.

Minnesota protesters made stops at the offices of Bachmann, and Minnesota Democrats Tim Walz and Keith Ellison. Walz was unavailable but Ellison met with them briefly.

Dozens of top GOP House leaders showed up on the Capitol steps to greet the crowd. But it was Bachmann, boosted by her status as a frequent conservative talk radio and television guest, who clearly was the main draw.

Now, as far as I'm concerned the Republicans had every right to their protests, no matter how crude and rude, even if they were led by elected officials. This is America. What's amusing is that the Republicans have absolutely no self-awareness (or, more likely, simply don't give a damn about appearing rational anymore) and think that they are the only ones who are allowed to express their grievances.

And Lord help the poor Democrat who even timidly attempts to speak to those grievances --- he or she is instantly attacked for "dividing the American people," (unlike that congressman who giggled and smirked about "driving the liberals crazy.") It's an extremely successful gambit that's deployed over and over again because liberals and establishment types invariably take the bait. For reasons best left to sociologists and psychologists, the mere hint from a right winger that a liberal might be divisive makes them run for cover.

For more on the phenomenon, here's a handy primer.

Update: It must be noted that Ryan is demonizing "corporate welfare." That's very cute. But I certainly hope that nobody gets the idea that he has any intention of putting the squeeze on the "jaaaahb creators." Whatever temporary cuts in corporate "tax expenditures" they come up with will come out of the safety net. He's paid very well to made sure of it.