The Ryan Masquerade

If you asked Americans to name the two most dangerous persons with their hands on the levers of power in the U.S., Donald Trump would be a near universal choice. But the other person would not be nearly so. In my view, that person is none other than Paul Ryan.  The speaker obviously holds a very powerful elective office. But what makes Ryan more dangerous is that he has come to this position with a near universal (media acclaim) reputation as being knowledgeable, wonky, earnest and honest. However as the Obamacare repeal and replacement plan fiasco, known as the American Healthcare Act (AHCA) illustrates, he is none of these.

In fact his actions indicate him to be a callous person who cares not one whit about his fellow Americans’ suffering if they happen to belong to the bottom 99% economically. See his response to a Fox News interview by Tucker Carlson, after the Congressional Budget Office came out with their report saying that more than 24 million Americans will lose their healthcare, if the AHCA passes. One begins to wonder if he is capable of having basic human empathy. He seems to have internalized (and has a greater reverence for) the teachings of Ayn Rand, more than the teachings of Jesus Christ. This was superbly illustrated by Nick Kristoff in his brilliant column.

As for his supposed wonkishness, this man does not appear to have even a rudimentary understanding of how insurance works. And yet, he purports to change the American health care industry (roughly one-sixth of our GDP) in a matter of 3 weeks with rushed committee hearings and no external testimony. Talk about flying blind. As Paul Krugman has maintained for over six years, Ryan is a clueless ideologue masquerading as a very serious thinker and he has been aided and abetted in this scam by a fawning media.

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