It appears that Mitt Romney is not the only major liar in the GOP. With statements from Rep. Paul Ryan like:
“The reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand.” – 2005
“I give out ‘Atlas Shrugged’ as Christmas presents, and I make all my interns read it. Well… I try to make my interns read it.” – 2003
It is surprising to see Rep. Ryan say this recently in an interview with the National Review discussing Ayn Rand:
I reject her philosophy…It’s an atheist philosophy. It reduces human interactions down to mere contracts and it is antithetical to my worldview. If somebody is going to try to paste a person’s view on epistemology to me, then give me Thomas Aquinas. Don’t give me Ayn Rand.
When I first read this on Think Progress I did a double take and assumed this must be an attempt at being like The Onion. I’m afraid that is not the case. Even though he has now dissed his hero, and appears to be going for a more “Godly” approach, we should notice that he has not dissed his budget cuts plan (inspired by his hero Ayn Rand) that would cut important social programs like Medicare and Food Stamps, and give trillions in tax cuts to corporations and the rich – thus shifting more tax burden onto the poor.
What I find amusing about all of this is that Rep. Ryan calls Rand’s selfish philosophy an “atheist” philosophy despite noting that as a Christian he followed her philosophy and admitted to getting into politics because of her. Obviously, the “virtue” of selfishness, as Rand referred to it, is not exclusive to atheists, but can be found in any walk of life.
The big question is, what is the catalyst for his change of mind? The answer could be videos like this from The American Values Network.
The video is clearly designed to clarify, “Look, the GOP are following an ATHEIST! That does not reflect the values they should have as Christians.” Rep. Ryan was even asked recently why he based his budget plan on Rand and not on Biblical principals like sharing and caring for everyone. His bizarre claim that his budget is based on his Catholic faith has been demolished by numerous groups of Catholic leaders and scholars. He has not answered the question or the criticism; this pressure could be another reason why he has lied.
I do not believe that Rep. Ryan had any sort of epiphany or his budget would have also changed. We all know that you can follow a person’s philosophy without adopting the religion (or lack of religion) that person has. For example, I am a non-believer but I can still appreciate Biblical views of a loving nature without having to claim Christianity…By TSM Contributor James Queale