Now it’s official – Wisconsin is the new center of the conservative universe. You can Mess with Texas again, just don’t Dis’ The Wis.
In case you have been in a coma since 2010, Wisconsin’s red tide has served up Governor Walker, Senator Johnson, Congressmen Duffy and Ribble, a Republican assembly and state senate, Justice Prosser, the Packers’ Superbowl, the summer recall defeats, Brewers’ division champs, Braun MVP, Rogers MVP, Priebus chairman of RNC, Badgers in the Rose Bowl, Miss America, the Walker recall drubbing, and now Paul Ryan picked as Vice President.
And yes, of course I know that not all of those are political races, but you have to admit that is one impressive string of reasons for the nation to pay attention to Wisconsin. We’ll never know for sure, but maybe it was Newsweek calling him a wimp that led Romney to come to Wisconsin for a Veep with some stones.
He came to the right place. Our Governor Walker rides a Harley, our former Governor Thompson hammers out 50 pushups like a teenager, and our new VP-select Paul Ryan proudly poses in camo over trophy bucks he takes down with bow and arrow.
Contrast those visuals to these disturbing images: Obama riding his Pee Wee Herman bicycle with a kid’s helmet, throwing baseballs like a girl, and channeling his inner Urkel holding that construction pick like he was allergic to the darn thing.
Hey, don’t blame me – that was the President’s White House PR machine that put those images in our heads; that was their idea of him being a regular guy. A regular guy from Illinois, maybe, but you won’t see moves like that in Hayward.
And it’s not just the boys making noise in the Badger State; there is a cadre of conservative women who are smart, fearless, accomplished, and tough-as-nails. Some hold elective office, some organize the grass roots, some lead Tea Party events, some inform the public, and all stand up for the things they believe in. I don’t have space to list them all, but they know who they are and why they matter.
It is fitting that Wisconsin - the state which birthed both the Republican Party and the Progressive movement - will be the state where the former will be saved from itself and the latter will be vanquished into remission. It’s been “game on” in the Dairy State since the summer of 2009; it is about time the rest of the nation caught on.
Paul Ryan is not a libertarian, so don’t expect me to heap praise on his policy prescriptions or his ideological bent. But he is a fine Republican selection for Vice President and a worthy native son to represent Wisconsin to the world. He is a decent man, and wholly undeserving of the character assassination sure to be hurled his way by the unhinged left. The hinged left will be barely more civil.
Ryan’s selection frames the November election as a stark choice between the serious and the unserious, between boldness and blame, between a plan and no plan.
We recently had one of these campaigns in Wisconsin, and perhaps Governor Walker’s decisive recall victory over the no-plan candidate in a battleground state moved Romney and folks at RNC to double down on guys with plans.
Romney has published a 59-point plan to move the economy into recovery, and his new VP selection Ryan put out a detailed budget plan to curb federal spending and reform entitlements. By contrast, the President and his VP have no plan, no clue, and no chance. I’ll go on a limb – 8 point margin, called in 20 minutes.
Naturally, I don’t think either the Romney or Ryan plans go nearly far enough to tame government spending and scale back its unconstitutional reach - I like Rand Paul’s plan better and Gary Johnson’s plan much better. But not far enough in the right direction is a whole lot better than any distance in the wrong direction.
For the 95% of Americans who will not vote for my Libertarian Party this November, the choice between Romney/Ryan and Obama/Biden is easy – it is opportunity versus entitlement. Pick your side.
Both Romney and Ryan can articulate the virtues of free enterprise and the principles of liberty and self-sovereignty upon which this nation was founded; they can do this well because they believe in those traditional American ideals and values. They will be running against a team that does not, and no amount of negative ads can hide that fact.
Once in office, Romney and Ryan will surely disappoint us when they fail to live up to our expectations – that is the nature of politics. But falling short of high expectations would be a relief after four years of blowing it on low ones.
While it is true that the lesser of two evils is still evil, it is also true that less evil is better than a lot more evil. Paul Ryan is going to make the choice clear, and he is going to make Joe Biden look like a buffoon in the debate.
I have only one piece of advice for Mr. Biden: Don’t Dis’ The Wis.
“Moment of Clarity” is a weekly commentary by Libertarian writer and speaker Tim Nerenz, Ph.D. Visit Tim’s website www.timnerenz.com to find your moment.