Here's a fun fact: Paul "Superchristian Randite" Ryan's two most super-favorite books in the whole darn world each offer their own forms of guidance on the matter of recognizing and dealing with wicked, unhinged, lying monsters:
Like a muddied spring or a polluted fountain is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked. -- Proverbs 25:26
By suspending your judgment, you are negating your person. When a man declares: ‘Who am I to know?’- he is declaring: ‘Who am I to live?” -- Atlas Shrugged
Bad company ruins good morals. -- 1 Corinthians 15:33
A process of reason is a process of constant choice in answer to the question: True or False? - Right or Wrong? -- Atlas Shrugged
How predictably hilarious, then, that the man third in line to the White House doesn't have the yams to follow the advice of either of the books which -- although they are diametrically opposed to each other in every way imaginable -- Ryan has said repeatedly were the lodestones of his moral life.
Instead (from Brother Charles Pierce):
Good lord, he must be looking at internal polling that turns his liver to water.
But, beyond that, what the hell does this mean? It means that Ryan doesn't have the stones to rescind his endorsement and that he is telling the rest of his caucus to swim away from the wreckage before it sucks them all down into the abyss. It also means that Ryan is resigned to a President Hillary Rodham Clinton and that his primary focus is to keep the power to obstruct yet another Democratic president.
It also means that Ryan still thinks there's enough energy in the dank regions of The Base to do him and his caucus real damage if he were to rescind formally his endorsement. His loyalty is purely toward his caucus, not toward the country. This was Paul Ryan's Ecce Homo moment. He did everything except ask for a basin in which to wash his hands. The essential gutlessness of the man always will shine through.
The most delicious irony in all of this is that, in virtually every Ayn Rand novel, every Sneering, Two-Dimensional Collectivist Villain always ends up right where Ryan is now: hostage to the whims of a mindless mob of berserk of yahoos which the Sneering, Two-Dimensional Collectivist Villain helped create.
What a pity that Paul Ryan never managed to make it all the way to end of any of Ayn Rand's terrible books.