Paul Ryan is here to spread the gospel of prosperity to the inner city and apparently the gospel says inner city men are shiftless and lazy and if they would stop being shiftless and lazy they may discover what success feels like.
“[W]e want people to reach their potential and so the dignity of work is very valuable and important and we have to re-emphasize work and reform our welfare programs, like we did in 1996,” Ryan told Bennett. “We have got this tailspin of culture, in our inner cities in particular, of men not working and just generations of men not even thinking about working or learning to value the culture of work, so there is a real culture problem here that has to be dealt with.”
Because rich trust fund babies in the ‘burbs know all about the value of work; about the value of getting up early in the morning and doing something you hate and still not making enough money to pay your bills.
There’s nothing funny about Ryan’s racially-tinged ‘lazy inner city men’ story, but it’s hard not to laugh because Ryan is supposedly the man who will personally go to the inner city on some kind of mercy tour where he will hand down the stone tablets of prosperity. Ryan is supposedly the man who will tell you The Secret or that one weird trick to becoming rich.
Go ahead. Tell groups of inner city men that their problem is not that no one will hire them or that there are no jobs to be had. Tell them their problem is they don’t “value the culture of work” enough and then slink on back to Congress where you’re paid over $170,000 per year to legislate against them between your generous vacation time that covers roughly 2/3rds of the year.
Republicans tell themselves that there’s nothing wrong with their message; that they simply haven’t done a good enough job communicating it; but this is solid evidence that the real problem is their message is garbage.
Ryan probably thinks this is a very original message that someone only as brilliant as he could think of, but it’s old. It’s old and tired.(h/t Attorney Nicole Naum)