Because people like Steve Benen find it necessary to waste time launching stupid, content-free attacks against him, in an effort to take Ryan down.
Ayn Rand, I should note, is most definitely not my cup of tea. I read The Fountainhead almost nine years ago, found the writing to be over the top, exceedingly poor, and heavy-handed to the point of being laughable at times. But to call someone’s interest in Rand “borderline-creepy,” and “a crackpot,” and to concur with the views of the exceedingly silly and monumentally discredited Matt Yglesias (more on Yglesias here) in saying that Ryan is–wait for it!–“a dangerous madman” simply because Ryan purportedly likes Rand, is to engage in overstatement and hyperbole worthy of Rand herself. Are we sure that Benen and Yglesias are not Randians themselves?
Of course, this game is getting to be almost as old as the Republic itself. We all know this drill by now: (1) Republican becomes prominent; (2) Republican achieves a position of political importance; (3) Left-of-center foes get busy calling the Republican (a) stupid; (b) crazy; or (c) stupid and crazy. I suppose that the significant difference in this case is that Paul Ryan’s political foes are so incoherent and desperate in their rage, that Ryan must almost be welcoming the attacks. I mean, how seriously can one take blog posts whose critiques of Ryan consist of little more than “OMG! HE LIKES AYN RAND!!!!111!!“? Honestly.
I should note that this entire episode has caused me to doubt that Rand is Ryan’s favorite writer. Thanks to Benen and Yglesias, I am convinced that of all the writers that have ever trod the Earth, Ryan follows Voltaire’s example and teachings most faithfully. And apparently, he gets the same results Voltaire got.