The lesson: If a libertarian wants to get elected, he’s going to have to bend a few principles, deal with reality as it exists. The same is true if he wants to legislate.
Like Christ Christie and many others, Paul Ryan spent the opening weeks of the primary race steadfastly denying that he was interested in running for President.
However, I don't recall him rejecting the idea of being on the ticket in any other spot.
Now I'm beginning to wonder if he is interested in participating- just without the nasty hassle and mess of the primary season. I'm beginning to suspect that he wants to be on the Republican ticket at the Vice Presidential candidate.
Why do I say this?
Because he is apparently no longer taking Ayn Rand's calls and is in the process of pulling a sweater vest over his head:
‘You know you’ve arrived in politics when you have an urban legend about you, and this one is mine,” chuckles Representative Paul Ryan, the Budget Committee chairman, as we discuss his purported obsession with author and philosopher Ayn Rand.
That's an interesting observation from someone who has been previously quoted thusly:
"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," Ryan said at a D.C. gathering four years ago honoring the author of "Atlas Shrugged" and "The Fountainhead." ...
At the Rand celebration he spoke at in 2005, Ryan invoked the central theme of Rand's writings when he told his audience that, "Almost every fight we are involved in here on Capitol Hill ... is a fight that usually comes down to one conflict--individualism versus collectivism."
But perhaps I'm mistaken. Maybe his true voice is just getting distorted by the thick wool he is in the process of pulling over his head (and possibly our eyes):
"If somebody is going to try to paste a person’s view on epistemology to me, then give me Thomas Aquinas,” who believed that man needs divine help in the pursuit of knowledge. “Don’t give me Ayn Rand,” he says.
And here he slips his arms through the armholes and settles the v-neck around his collar:
“Liberals have accused me of not being a good Catholic,” he says. “It’s important to try and elevate the tone of this dialogue to a more civil tone — discussing how we exercise prudential judgment as lay people in the Catholic Church in public life. I’m delighted to have the conversation.”
So was Rick Santorum. In fact, he eventually conversed himself right out of the race. But he was successful for a good while- particularly in some states the the Republicans would like to hold.
Is Mr. Ryan imagining that he can tack away from Objectivism and toward the Catholic Church, and somehow navigate his way onto the ticket?
I think it bears watching.
In this year's race, goofier things have happened.