Ryan picked – quick, initial reaction:
The flatness of politics typically derives from the narrow, compromised options available to voters. Competing candidates frequently seek to blur real ideological distinctions by instead drawing contrasts around “character” issues while wrestling for the “middle ground”. The result: Not much of a choice for voters beyond which candidate reminds them most of their own “values” biases.
This problem of limited distinction and thus choice has been increasingly receding in US politics since the GOP’s hard right turn under Bush II.
In the so-called boring election of 2012 it’s just been obliterated.
By picking Paul Ryan, an intelligent, articulate supply side ideological hardliner, Romney has just “doubled-down”. By selecting the right’s poster warrior for deregulation, small government, welfare cutbacks and further tax cuts for the wealthiest, Romney is presenting voters with a very clear choice. Credit for this.
Most coverage will focus on the horse-race implications; the calculations behind the pick. But before we get into that, we know this: 2 from 4 people will be running the executive branch of the US govt. next year.
It’s now perfectly conceivable that despite the calamity of the 2008 financial crisis brought on following 30 years of supply side economics and the deregulation that paved its way, the United States is about to turn further right than ever.
The choice for voters is very stark.
Boring election? Only if you’re not paying attention.