Why the Left freaked out about Paul Ryan telling the truth about the Janesville closing.

From Paul Ryan’s convention speech yesterday:

President Barack Obama came to office during an economic crisis, as he has reminded us a time or two. Those were very tough days, and any fair measure of his record has to take that into account. My home state voted for President Obama. When he talked about change, many people liked the sound of it, especially in Janesville, where we were about to lose a major factory.

A lot of guys I went to high school with worked at that GM plant. Right there at that plant, candidate Obama said: “I believe that if our government is there to support you … this plant will be here for another hundred years.” That’s what he said in 2008.

Well, as it turned out, that plant didn’t last another year. It is locked up and empty to this day. And that’s how it is in so many towns today, where the recovery that was promised is nowhere in sight.


This is, by the way, a perfectly accurate statement. There was a GM plant in Janesville. Barack Obama did make a speech there in 2008. He did, in that speech, make those comments*. And the plant did not “last another year” – despite, I should note, the Obama administration’s bailout of GM that the administration is kind-of, sort-of touting as an ‘achievement.’ These are all true things; which has not kept the Left from screaming otherwise, to the point where the Obama campaign has officially (and in my opinion, unwisely) called Paul Ryan a liar.

There are two things that jump out at me about the reaction to Ryan’s comments:

  1. The liberals who were not aware of the details originally are displaying what is frankly an appalling level of ignorance about… well, take your pick. The President’s embarrassingly bad track record when it comes to his promises? The state of America, outside of the Leftist Pale that is the Beltway? Paul Ryan’s rhetorical history? – Pick one or another; they all fit. Particularly this last one; nobody should have been surprised to see the Republican VP nominee talk about a factory closing in his home town.
  2. And that leads to the liberals who were aware of the details originally: those folks are being pretty appalling, all on their own. There’s a certain level of ignorance here, as well – but there’s rather more mendacity. You see, unlike the Leftist blogs and websites and rank-and-file membership, the people running the Democratic party actually know what is going on with the world today. They can’t help but know about it; after all, they’re almost exclusively responsible for the state of affairs which has made this economic recovery the weakest one within most people’s memory.

And yet, instead of simply gritting their teeth and taking the hit, the Democratic Establishment is trying to incite its base by calling something true a lie. Which to me suggests that the Left – specifically, the Obama for America team – is simultaneously utterly contemptuous of its own base’s ability to reason, and quietly terrified that said base might eventually wise up to the fact that it’s being taken for the Mother Of All Rides. That these two attitudes are subtly contradictory should be no surprise: to mangle Lewis Carroll, the Left has long been accustomed to believing six impossible things before breakfast.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

*Read the whole speech; it’s a hoot. Especially the part where Obama slams Clinton for supporting the war and wanting a health care mandate. Oops?


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