I put much of this up on Facebook already, but allow me to quickly elaborate on my thoughts regarding Paul Ryan’s unbelievable speech at the Republican convention last night. I can honestly say, free of melodrama, that it was one of the best political speeches I have ever heard in my life. I do think it was exactly what the Romney-Ryan ticket needed politically, but that is not the issue I am most enthused about this morning. Paul Ryan made the MORAL case for free markets, and he tied in the dignity of the individual to earned success – to overcoming challenges – to conquering against all odds. This could be described as “anti-Obamanomics”, except for a lot of us already call it “free market economics”. But Ryan did it with passion, conviction, and flare. It was just remarkable.
His line regarding college graduates looking at faded Obama posters in the same bedrooms they grew up in wondering when they will find work and begin their adult lives was PRICELESS. That entire paragraph was priceless. His ability to make the case for Medicare reform, and to make this a liability issue for Democrats, may very well go down in history as one of the bravest and wisest political maneuvers ever. He passionately made the case for Mitt Romney as executive-in-chief, and he offered a sincere and eloquent defense of all human life. I do not know what anyone else could have wanted.
My friend, Larry Kudlow, is complaining this morning that Ryan did not lay out an adequate pro-growth message. I disagree. In his defense of markets, and individual liberty, and self-interest, and the removal of government impediments to job creation and economic activity, he IS making the case for growth. But he is doing it in the most important way it can ever be done – not on an appeal to efficiency, but on an appeal to human dignity. Ryan knows that human beings suffer in the depths of their souls when they bounce from one handout to the next. He knows that it is the glory of achievement that gives us meaning in our lives, and he knows that Obama’s shameful rhetoric (and policies) to the contrary render him unqualified to serve in a leadership position in this country. The pro-growth message Larry wants IS this message. He nailed it.
By the way, the GM plant in Wisconsin that he referenced did not close until June of 2009, and everything he said was completely true.
And by the way, if it is true that he wrote his own speech, the vast majority of political speechwriters should quit, because they are not needed.
Last thought: Condoleeza Rice’s speech was also an absolute thing of beauty. This may have been the best hour of Republican speech-making I have seen since President Reagan. Is Mitt going to be able to follow last night’s act? God, I hope so.