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Jonathan Kraut: Alliterative ticket timing a tad tardy

Democratic Voices

Posted: September 25, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: September 25, 2012 2:00 a.m.

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I am so tired of the creative void that exists in the media. The brilliant minds who bring us “information,” rather than thinking of new ways to communicate, keep repeating the same old tired scripts of yore.

But alas! A new alliteration — “Romney-Ryan.”

When the GOP presidential ticket was announced, I first thought, “What kind of Ryan is this? Could this be a new kind of Ryan, perhaps a Romney-Ryan?”

Then I realized this thought was, even under the surface, entirely correct.

Romney has been criticized for a lackluster communications style. For example, instead of answering questions directly, he replies with “if we are better off than four years ago.” When complaining that President Obama, “doesn’t know how,” Romney simplistically asserts that he “knows how.”

The most obvious Romney inflexibility used to be how he turns his whole body to look in a new direction, instead of how most humans move their heads, by turning at the neck. But his recent communication limitations reveal his messages are robotic as well.

There are many deserving conservative ideas to be brought forth in this election cycle, but we can agree nominee Romney has not been the most convincing communicator. That’s why a 42-year-old rah-rah was needed to bolster what would have been a sterile Republican ticket.

Paul Ryan from Wisconsin as the vice presidential nominee brings to the campaign everything that Romney is missing: knowledge of the issues, vitality and taking a stand in what he believes.

The former Massachusetts governor supported and implemented mini-Obama Care and now is against the plan he devised. He has been both for and against abortion. And Romney has been both for and against using taxes to provide for the common good (i.e. a redistribution of wealth). He also seems devoid of personality and is about as anti-charismatic as any public figure I know, aside from Janet Reno, whom I believe embodies the term “gender gap.” When asked what the Romney presidency would do for America, Romney said that although the economy was recovering, he would help it recover faster; that although jobs are being created, he would insure that jobs are created faster; and with our national debt rising, under Romney it would rise, but more slowly. Romney basically says his mission is to repair the damage from the Bush years, yet blames Obama for not digging out fast enough, while intending to repeat the Republican policies that created this abyss in the first place.

When asked how Romney would accomplish these lofty goals, his routine response is “I know how to do these things” — not a good answer.

So when I wondered what kind of Ryan is a “Romney-Ryan,” my conclusion is that this is whatever ideas Ryan brings to the table.

Ryan proposes to fundamentally restructure Medicare, gut the government, cut spending by outsourcing government services to the lowest bidder, and throw back the responsibility of caring for our citizens onto the states. It’s not that I always disagree with Ryan, but some of his proposals are just too much for the American public to embrace.

In the fight for the Republican nomination, unlike his colleagues who blew up early and often, Romney basically said nothing. Romney’s message lacked content but he earned the nomination because he avoided pushing his own self-destruct button. Ryan, on the other hand, brings content, charisma and ideas.

Even when Romney attempts to lift his voice, like a Southern Baptist preacher sustaining a vocal pitch as if it might echo off the Rockies, his content goes flat: “Over history there have been people that have changed Washington from the inside, and they’ve done it effectively by showing leadership from the top. … This president has not done that.”

Why this and other arguments go flat is because Romney is proclaiming that Obama is not leading effectively, and, as we all know, this is because the Republicans won’t cooperate. I’m afraid to say that Romney’s chance is gone. Even with Ryan, this election is now decided.

Dems defeat duo: Romney-Ryan routed. Obama overcomes. American aimed ahead again.

Jonathan Kraut serves in the Democratic Party of the SCV, on the SCV Human Relations Forum, and SCV Interfaith Council.



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