Marathon Man: Does Paul Ryan Play Fast and Loose with the Facts?

Submitted by Elaine Magliaro, Guest Blogger

In an article for Huffington Post, Miles Mogulescu wrote the following about Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan:

He comes off like a Midwest choir boy who grew up busing tables and just wants to help unemployed 20-year-olds get jobs and move out of their parents’ house. This ‘aw shucks’ act may play well among heartland voters who could swing the election.

But Ryan lies like a hooker telling her john that she loves him. And given a media that tends to cover the horse race rather than the substance, there’s a good chance he could lie his way all the way to the vice presidency.

Mogulescu—among others—has written and spoken about the number of inaccuracies and untruths included in the speech that Paul Ryan gave at the Republican National Convention last week.

Sally Kohn of Fox News wrote:

to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryan’s speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech. On this measure, while it was Romney who ran the Olympics, Ryan earned the gold.

The good news is that the Romney-Ryan campaign has likely created dozens of new jobs among the legions of additional fact checkers that media outlets are rushing to hire to sift through the mountain of cow dung that flowed from Ryan’s mouth. Said fact checkers have already condemned certain arguments that Ryan still irresponsibly repeated.

In Paul Ryan’s breathtakingly dishonest speech, James Downie wrote:

Yesterday, at an ABC News panel, Mitt Romney pollster Neil Newhouse said, “We’re not going to let our campaign be dictated by fact-checkers.” Wednesday’s speech from Paul Ryan certainly took that disdain for truth to heart, as his address was filled with falsehoods from start to finish.

Pat Garofalo of ThinkProgress wrote that Ryan’s speech “was riddled with lies.”

Matthew Dowd, a former chief political strategist for George W. Bush’s re-election campaign in 2004, also criticized Ryan for the falsehoods included in his speech on ABC’s This Week. He said that “at some point, the truth should matter”:

DOWD: Paul Ryan, what he did in his speech, I think so stretched the truth. And I like Paul Ryan, have a lot of great respect for Paul Ryan, but the elements that he said about closing the GM plant which closed before Barack Obama took President [sic], about the Simpson-Bowles bill which he opposed and then all of a sudden he faults Barack Obama for. At some point, the truth should matterHe was trying to convey that Barack Obama was responsible for the closing of that GM plant and that isn’t true.

Aviva Shen provided us with this list of what she thinks are “Ryan’s most glaring lies from his speech”:

1. “A downgraded America.” Ryan blamed the president for the nation’s credit downgrade in August 2011 after Republicans threatened to allow the government to default on its debt for the first time in history. But the ratings agency explicitly blamed “Republicans saying that they refuse to accept any tax increases as part of a larger deal.”

2. “More debt than any other president before him, and more than all the troubled governments of Europe combined.” Romney has made the almost identical claim, that Obama has amassed more debt “as almost all of the other presidents combined.” But their math doesn’t add up: when Obama took office, the national debt was $10.626 trillion. It has increased to slightly above $15 trillion.

3. Shuttered General Motors plant is “one more broken promise.” Ryan described a GM plant that closed down in his hometown, Janesville, Wisconsin, and blamed Obama for breaking his promise to keep the plant open when he visited during his campaign. But Obama never made that promise, and the plant shut down in December 2008, before Obama even took office.

4. Obama “did exactly nothing” on Bowles-Simpson. Ryan said, “He created a bipartisan debt commission. They came back with an urgent report. He thanked them, sent them on their way, and then did exactly nothing.” In fact, Ryan was instrumental in sabotaging the commission, leading the other House Republicans in voting against the plan.

5. “$716 billion, funneled out of Medicare by President Obama.” Ryan’s favorite lie is a deliberate distortion of Obamacare’s savings from eliminating inefficiencies. Furthermore, Ryan’s own plan for Medicare includes these savings. Romney has vowed to restore these cuts, which would render the trust fund insolvent 8 years ahead of schedule.

6. “The greatest of all responsibilities is that of the strong to protect the weak.” Ryan closed the speech with an invocation of social responsibility, saying, “The truest measure of any society is how it treats those who cannot defend or care for themselves.” However, numerous clergy members have condemned Ryan’s budget plan as “cruel,” and “an immoral disaster” because of its devastating cuts in social programs the poor and sick rely on. Meanwhile, Ryan would give ultra-rich individuals and corporations $3 trillion in tax breaks.

Paul Krugman feels that Ryan’s “big lie” is his claim that “a Romney-Ryan administration will protect and strengthen Medicare.” Krugman claims that it would actually “kill the program.”

I understand that politicians often fudge the truth, leave out details, take their opponents’ comments out of context, etc., in order to win votes. But one “untruth” that Ryan told recently in an interview with Hugh Hewitt confounded me. Ryan claimed that he had once run a marathon in under three hours.

Excerpt from Ryan’s interview with Hewitt:

HH: That’s okay. Hey, in high school, what did you do in high school? Were you a speech and debate guy? Were you a bandie? What were you?

PR: No, I was student government and athletics, honor society, you know, that kind of thing. I was kind of a combination. I was class president my junior year, I was the school board rep my senior year. I lettered in varsity, you know, my first year in high school, mostly soccer and track. I was a distance runner and a soccer player. So kind of well-rounded. I can’t, I can play a cowbell. That’s about it for instruments.

HH: Are you still running?

PR: Yeah, I hurt a disc in my back, so I don’t run marathons anymore. I just run ten miles or yes.

HH: But you did run marathons at some point?

PR: Yeah, but I can’t do it anymore, because my back is just not that great.

HH: I’ve just gotta ask, what’s your personal best?

PR: Under three, high twos. I had a two hour and fifty-something.

HH: Holy smokes. All right, now you go down to Miami University…

PR: I was fast when I was younger, yeah.

Well, it turns out that Ryan has run but one marathon in his life—and that was when he was just twenty years old and in college. He did not run that marathon in under three hours as he had claimed. He did—in fact—run the marathon in just over four hours.

So why, I wonder, would someone who is running for vice president and who knows the press will likely pick up on everything he says lie about something so trivial?

It appears that James Fallows of The Atlantic wonders too. He wrote: “the mystery in this case is why someone just stepping into the spotlight of national attention would risk telling an (a) entirely unnecessary and (b) very easily disprovable lie. It doesn’t make “normal” political sense, where you lie to get out of a jam, or because you think you can’t be caught. ..”

He continued:

We’ve all exaggerated to make ourselves look better. You’ve probably done it. I know I have. (Let’s not think about the whole category of “what happens on first dates.”) But out of prudent self-protection, most people have a sense of “situational awareness” when it comes to self-burnishment. Somebody you’re talking to in a bar, and you’re never likely to see again, is in one category. Somebody interviewing you for national broadcast is in another. That is what I’m having a hard time fully understanding.

You’re on a nationwide show. You’re one of the handful of people most prominently in the national eye. You know that everything you say is going to be recorded, parsed, and examined. And still — last week, not at a freshman mixer or in a Jaycees speech somewhere — you happily reel off a claim that is impressive enough to get people’s interest and admiration, and specific enough to be easily testable.

I don’t understand this. I can understand, while obviously deploring, why Bill Clinton brazenly said “I did not have sexual relations with that woman” on national TV. It was a flat-out lie that to him might have seemed necessary to his survival. I can understand the little embellishments politicians and everyone else make — especially when these occur in early days of the campaign, or in odd corners where you think no one is listening.

That’s why I mention it one more time: This doesn’t fit the normal model of “efficient” political or human truth-shaving. It was a lie that was totally unnecessary — if he’d said he had run a five-hour marathon, we’d still know that he’s physically very fit. And telling it in his current state of 24/7-scrutiny and prominence was either unbelievably naive (“no one will ever double-check this”) or plain reckless (“I don’t care if they do”). Unless we get into Jonah Lehrer territory — that is, the realm of people who self-destructively take needless risks with the truth — I just am amazed.

Are you amazed too? What do you think about Paul Ryan’s marathon claim?


Lie or Mistake? Paul Ryan’s Marathoning Past (The New Yorker)

How Fast Can Paul Ryan Run? (The New Yorker)

The Real Mystery of Paul Ryan’s Marathon Time by James Fallows (The Atlantic)

Three ‘Post-Truth’ Related Items (The Atlantic)

Paul Ryan Has Not Run Sub-3:00 Marathon (Runner’s World)

Paul Ryan Interview (Hugh Hewitt)

Did Paul Ryan Really Run a Sub-Three-Hour Marathon? No, He Didn’t. (Slate)

Paul Ryan: Lying Liar (Huffington Post)

Paul Ryan Address: Convention Speech Built On Demonstrably Misleading Assertions (Huffington Post)

Fox News: Paul Ryan’s Speech “Greatest Number of Blatant Lies” (Daily Kos)

Paul Ryan’s speech in 3 words (Fox News)

Bush Chief Political Strategist: Paul Ryan’s Speech Was Full Of Lies (ThinkProgress)

6 Worst Lies In Paul Ryan’s Speech (ThinkProgress)

Paul Ryan’s breathtakingly dishonest speech (Washington Post)

Facts Take a Beating in Acceptance Speeches (New York Times)

The Medicare Killers (New York Times)

110 thoughts on “Marathon Man: Does Paul Ryan Play Fast and Loose with the Facts?”

  1. “The thing about Ryan is that he has always resided in a counter-factual universe. He is a product of the hermetically sealed right-wing subculture. Many of the facts taken for granted by mainstream economists have never penetrated his brain. Ryan burst onto the national scene with a dense, fact-laden attack on the financing of Obama’s health-care bill that was essentially a series of hallucinations, pseudo-facts cooked up and recirculated by conservative apparatchiks who didn’t know what they were talking about or didn’t care. His big-think speeches reflect the influence of fact-free conservatives and collapse under scrutiny.

    During the last couple of years, Ryan took his act to the big city, expanding beyond his Washington conservative movement base and pitching himself to a broader audience as a straight-talking avatar of fiscal responsibility. That he managed to pull off the feat was completely incredible. Ryan’s entire career had been rooted in the “Reagan proved deficits don’t matter” wing of his party, and he spent the Bush administration consistently pushing for even more fiscally irresponsible policies than even George W. Bush could bear, and then spent the Obama administration relentlessly killing any effort to ameliorate those deficits. The genuine Paul Ryan is a man deeply devoted to reducing tax rates for Job Creators, and staunchly opposed to universal health insurance and other social spending. He is not a deficit hawk. The tension between Ryan’s policy goals and the persona he crafted was strained to the breaking point. When the press corps finally applied even the slightest pressure to it, it immediately and inevitably snapped.” Jonathon Chait, New Yorker

  2. Elaine M. 1, September 3, 2012 at 7:37 am


    Do you remember the swiftboating of John Kerry…what the dirty tricksters of the Nixon campaign did to Ed Muskie and his wife…Lee Atwater?

    Most members of the media have been enamored of Paul Ryan. Maybe some of them are beginning to understand who he really is.
    Is Paul Ryan the Golden Boy? I don’t trust Paul Ryan, and I don’t trust Sarah Palin either. Mitt Romney? You decide.

  3. He got the time wrong on a race he took years ago and corrected his statement when it was brought to his attention. What, seriously, is the big deal about the marathon issue? Frankly, it taints legitimate critiques of Ryan’s statements.

  4. The Flimflam Man
    Published: August 5, 2010

    One depressing aspect of American politics is the susceptibility of the political and media establishment to charlatans. You might have thought, given past experience, that D.C. insiders would be on their guard against conservatives with grandiose plans. But no: as long as someone on the right claims to have bold new proposals, he’s hailed as an innovative thinker. And nobody checks his arithmetic.
    Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

    Which brings me to the innovative thinker du jour: Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin.

    Mr. Ryan has become the Republican Party’s poster child for new ideas thanks to his “Roadmap for America’s Future,” a plan for a major overhaul of federal spending and taxes. News media coverage has been overwhelmingly favorable; on Monday, The Washington Post put a glowing profile of Mr. Ryan on its front page, portraying him as the G.O.P.’s fiscal conscience. He’s often described with phrases like “intellectually audacious.”

    But it’s the audacity of dopes. Mr. Ryan isn’t offering fresh food for thought; he’s serving up leftovers from the 1990s, drenched in flimflam sauce.

    Mr. Ryan’s plan calls for steep cuts in both spending and taxes. He’d have you believe that the combined effect would be much lower budget deficits, and, according to that Washington Post report, he speaks about deficits “in apocalyptic terms.” And The Post also tells us that his plan would, indeed, sharply reduce the flow of red ink: “The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that Rep. Paul Ryan’s plan would cut the budget deficit in half by 2020.”

    But the budget office has done no such thing. At Mr. Ryan’s request, it produced an estimate of the budget effects of his proposed spending cuts — period. It didn’t address the revenue losses from his tax cuts.

    The nonpartisan Tax Policy Center has, however, stepped into the breach. Its numbers indicate that the Ryan plan would reduce revenue by almost $4 trillion over the next decade. If you add these revenue losses to the numbers The Post cites, you get a much larger deficit in 2020, roughly $1.3 trillion.

  5. The names are confusing. Ann Rand, Rand Paul, Paul Ryan. Similar, dissemilar. For the VP Choice I like the name mentioned above by the dog.: Big Ears.

  6. James in LA,
    you are welcome. I do like your acronym! You may also be right about the RCC. The far right crazies within the church are part of the reason it is rightfully struggling.

  7. Yah, Rafflaw, there is much corruption to work out. But I see more sunshine in the future, not less. We have been made to wear the Rapture Goggles for so long, as long as I have been alive via the Cold War. It’s only recently that we have the context to see the extent to which we have been misled. And frankly, we’re still in shock. One symptom of that condition is trading in facts for Whatever Comes Out Of My Mouth (WCOOMM — everything should have an acronym.).

    The latest pair of End Of Ends Eyewear are given to us by a class of people who, from their point view, see their world most certainly ending as it grows less white by the hour. I demure on their glasses, though. I can see fine.

    Let us assume Bron’s cabal of neocons, catholics, and libertarians. Mighty weak tea. Wars are ending, not beginning, and America is tired of it. The RCC will soon be sued out of existence if Milwaukee is any indicator. Plus, religious people are not being replaced in near sufficient numbers as they expire. Ironically, Libertarians are not popular with the elderly.

    Thanks for your props upthread.

  8. James in LA,
    You are correct about the signer in chief designation. Romney and Ryan will be doing the Koch brothers bidding. You are also right that Obama has caved to the military industrial complex when it comes to security issues, but he was a big drone guy during the last campaign as well. I am also disturbed that Sheriff Joe has been given a pass by the Justice department. That is a travesty.

  9. James in LA,

    Greetings brother. Your collegues installed Mosaic in by PC at work and said “Welcome”.

    You swing very well, the keys you master, mixing metaphors.

    I could just as well have said New Yorkians, or Dallasites. No offense to Chicago. I only develop rapid prejudices on the basis of at least an acquaintance.

    “And do not think the GOP doesn’t know it, nor do they care. Listen very, very carefully: they only want a signer in chief, not a leader. They are scrambling very hard to take everything they can and hide.”.

    Yep, and more. The tracking, eavesdropping device you bear can now be cut off, courtesy of Apple. Rest assured they have developed and are offering it to the power for other OSs. NO videofilming. No nothing. Dead. Stone dead, exccept to track and listen tto what you sya and attempt to text.

    That was quick wasn’t it. And who says free enterprise is not good?

  10. James in LA:

    “the Bohoemian Grove”

    I know it well. And that is all I will say on that subject.

  11. Bron,

    In all fairness, much of Cain’s wound was self-inflicted. Not just his affair, but his unerring ability to sound like a dictator in the making. It’s not his fault though. He was just a really good example of why the top down management world of business is not actually a good place for training democratic leaders. Cain came across as an Imperial boss. Everyone who has ever worked in any business of scale knows the type and they are nearly universally disliked by their employees and disagreeable to their business partners. There was a conspiracy to take Cain out of serious consideration, but it was his lips collaborating with this tongue, vocal chords and brain that did him in.

  12. The forces of power still hold the reins.
    The world looks different to the young, and thank god for that. In their smartphones equipped hands lies a doorway to any part of the world, even language being no barrier with simultaneous translation.

    But reins were not confounded by OWS. It could not concentrate enough power to make a difference. It did not control the “image” created against their goals and methods. “Mike check” did not reach all the minds needed for change to happen. It did not become a mass movement.

    Why? The eternal why. Let us look at the dream which became a nightmare which lasted 72 years, the USSR.

    There were all persons controlled. Starting with the food to live on. The whole of Ukraine was starved so Moscow and the apparatchniks could live. Result? Ukrainians ate their children.

    Life became a living nightmare. Without a job; and the state and its puppets (Writer’s Union for ex) controlled who got a job. Without one, you became a beggar, a sleeper in others apartments or dachas. If you knew any who dared.

    What does that say to us today?
    Who pays your paycheck? What security do you have? Think seriously.
    Do they control your freedom of thinking by the info fed to you, the freedome of expression by diverse ordinances, laws (DAA?), rulings.

    The corps are persons now. How much do you have to spend to say what you feel is right? How many can get a campaign going for truth without risking being stamped with “terrorist supporter”, and a minimum of 20 years; or a drone missile at worst.

    We talk of the internet miracle and the Spring of the
    Arab world. Well, yes it was important. But it was touch and go in reality that the net would be of any use, as the Egyptian secret police cut it down.

    Why did the revolt win. Simply because the people had had enough, and the Egyptian government was not prepared to use mass slaughter, lethal gas or sound cannons or radio wave heating of the masses of people. Or FEMA camps for disturbers of order. Obama has imperial powers now. You must have heard of them. Declaring a national emergency gives him or Romney (god forbid) total uncontrolled power.
    (Why else did the Repugs drool on the way to their seats to vote for it. The prospects of their using it was irresistable. Paradise realized, for them.)

    The forces of evil in America know that they can control our minds, our consent, and simply by controlling the media and our stomachs. Yours and your families.

    Fight? Yes, but are we aware of the need? Are we prepared to suffer as the people of Syria are now?

    Probably not.

  13. Bron, utterly fascinating, as much as it is unverifiable. So, to carry on that spirit, I will add my own anecdote: a dear friend of mine since high school worked for about a dozen years as a server at a place called the Bohoemian Grove in northern California (Mote Rio) where Republicans gathered to h’rumph the times and select their leaders, including Presidents. My friend, Chris, claims to have had conversations with the likes of Dole, Kemp and even NIxon! His reflections mirror yours in that the GOP is very choosy about its leaders. Primaries are just a formality. He worked there when they chose Dole and W, for whom they had the same plans as Ryan. Trouble is, W was, how shall one say, less than a dependable intellect.

    But that also seems to be changing. This is not your father’s GOP. This is something altogether different and in dire need of a straight-jacket.

  14. Idealist707, I see we agree more than we do not, and share a common history with regards to being networked long before the internet. I ran a telephone system based bulletin board system (BBS) for 10 years beginning in 1985 and only unplugged it when I ran Mosaic for the first time.

    That aside, I want to focus on this word “Chicagoites” you used. The city of Chicago has been fictionalized to a fault, and this continues through the present. The phrase “Chicago style politics” is meaningless because it acts like no other major cities exist, or that their politics are any better or worse. It just does not add up to reality. What plagues Chicago, like all cities, is gross under-funding of education that creates intellectual wastelands.

    Chicago is otherwise as awesome town. Go during Taste of Chicago and listen to the Blues. It will cure most anything.

    What irritates me most about Obama is it’s clear he wants success, and the GOP does not. And yet Obama is an accomplice to war crimes. And yet, the whole purpose of the Norquist tax pledge is not to govern, but disassemble it so the White Horse Romney can usher in the waiting theocratic oligarchy. And yet Obama refused to uphold the rule of law at the very moment is was most crucial he do so. Sucks to be me, it does.

    Like W, Obama gave the green light to any procedure — documented on this blog every day — that is only slightly less awful than waterboarding is now ready for rapid deployment by drone coming to your police very soon now. The people who enjoy inflicting pain on others continue to salivate.

    But these old farts who brought it are now clueless what to do. Fish out of water, their lies exposed, they look ridiculous, like Romney and Ryan did last week. And do not think the GOP doesn’t know it, nor do they care. Listen very, very carefully: they only want a signer in chief, not a leader. They are scrambling very hard to take everything they can and hide.

    In 2012, there is no where to run. For a small fee, you can know the movements of anyone you wish.

  15. James in LA:

    no, I am serious. I was at a cocktail party here in DC Saturday night with some republican party members and one of them had had a few too many. I thought he was joking but the upper echelon of the republican party does not like Romney and picked him because they knew that they could then force Paul Ryan into the VP spot. Most of the upper echelon are Christian Neo-Cons; Romney isnt one of them but Ryan is. He also has ties to Koch industries and Ayn Rand.

    This is a cabal between the Neo-Cons, the Catholic Church and the libertarians to become the power base in the US.

    I am surprised the msm havent gotten this story yet. But then they dont call it the lame stream for nothing.

    Who would choose a Mormon for a candidate? Look at the cast he was going up against in the primaries, I could have looked good against those bozos. Herman Cain was deep sixed by repubs with the help of David Axlerod, the repubs wanted plausible deniability and Axlerod and the dems were only too willing to help; the last person they wanted to go up against was a conservative, successful black man. And the last thing the repubs wanted was a man like Herman Caine, he isnt a house or a field slave. And you know how repubs like their black people to go along with the party dictates.

    Dont believe what you hear or see in the press or anywhere on the internet, the republican party is not behind Mitt Romney. Ryan is their choice, bought and paid for by the Kochs.

    Fear the Kochchurian candidate.

  16. James in LA,

    Although I strained to couch my words to avoid irritating you, it appears you have been none the less.

    Did I write unclearly. I live in Sweden and am unfamiliar with some terms. But I see you had none either for the concept of those who inhabit the net.
    I called them “nettites”, as in Chicagoites. Have no idea how you find anything disparaging in my comments of despair.

    I am enthralled, even often uplifted by the power and energy, creativity and hope expressed by the net and those there.
    BUT, in summation, I still see the forces of control still unhindered by the truth streaming on the net.
    I see the streams of propaganda, countering the good values and efforts.

    So, understand. I am for the internet. Hopefully it will be the greatest help to mankind since Gutenberg.
    It can, as I believe it will, usher in an epoch that is more important for this species than anything in the last 2,000 ýears.

    I was out on the net before the Web was created. Using line commands to fetch documents. So, when the web came, I was jubilant. And still am.

    So your dreams have my support. But I see the forces of evil there. The controllers of our world, the agencies of Big Brother, etc, and all highly organized and funded to increae their grip on the net and on us.

    You are not the first, nor am I to see the possibilities of direct democracy. At times I feel like Moses and the promised land. If we can get there I will be content. Now, it looks doubtful.

    You say:
    “Only those who want to lie resist it.”

    Look again, I must counter. Most who lie, USE it.

    Hope you did not mean that I am lying. Did you?

    PS I often offer only points of opposition. And they in no way summarize my stance on the whole spectra of problems we face.

  17. @ Bron —

    So here’s how I think the effort to get Mitt Romney committed would go:

    Expert for the plaintiffs (forensic psychiatrist): I have examined and evaluated Mr. Romney and I find that he believes a salamander or something was guarding some gold and that Joseph Smith thereby discovered the Book of Mormon which you can now get for free almost anywhere.


    Q: Were you there?
    A: No.
    Q: So you don’t know how much gold that salamander was guarding?
    A: Not from first-hand knowledge, no. But–

    JUDGE: No further questions. NEXT?

    Expert for the Defendants (forensic psychiatrist): I have examined and evaluated Mr. Ryan and I find that he believes that a young woman who was still a virgin got pregnant by one part of a three-part indivisible god and then she rode on a donkey with her fiance to Bethlehem where she gave birth quite modestly to an infant son who was thereafter visited by three unnamed homeless Orientals purporting to be kings.


    Q: Was this virgin’s mother also a virgin?
    A: I’m a psychiatrist, Your Honor; that is outside the scope of my expertise.
    Q: We have ways to make you talk.
    A: I do talk, Your Honor. Hail Mary full of grace, the Lord is with thee…

    JUDGE: No further questions. NEXT?

    Both attorneys: That’s all we have, Your Honor. (Quietly, to each other, “Baruch HaShem”)

    JUDGE: Both are committed. Give them some meds. Do they have insurance? Make those meds generics. NEXT?

  18. idealist707, when you you use a word like “netties,” you are essentially making my point for me. If I understand the reference, you mean most Americans, and most of us use the internet in some capacity. But I also hear a slur in your use of “netties,” a perceived threat I neither see nor understand.

    You do not see that Island Truth is preferable to the landless ocean of lies we had to endure in the Age of Newspapers. If the island is volcanic enough, it will persist. And there is no bigger volcano of though that the internet. The people who committed torture are not safe; don’t think so for a minute. They got PInochet and Milosovic ‘ere t he end, and the tools in those times were primitive compared to what we have now.

    We are mid-way through a transition in which the very old and the very young are separated by a widening chasm. Until this chasm begins to close, our politics will be Old v New, which in our case is GOP v Democratic, respectively. GOP policies, particularly Ryan’s, want to send us back to 1812 and the country is just not going to have it, certainly not if he has to lie shamelessly to do it.

    It’s soooooo much more than hit counts on a blog. Way more. The next evolution of social media will include direct participation in politics. It will be seen by those under 40 as the rational solution to the ridiculous problem we have now of who can lie the loudest. Much of govt can be done by machine in 2012 so it will be coming.

    Only those who want to lie resist it.

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