It was back in April when audio of Paul Ryan praising Ayn Rand first gained traction during a debate over the libertarian icon's influence on the conservative congressman. Paul Ryan dismissed the suggestion that he was fixated on the author an "urban legend." National Review ran an article called "Paul Ryan Isn't a Randian" aimed at "refuting the Left’s favorite charge against Paul Ryan."
Several days later, The Atlas Society posted full audio from remarks Paul Ryan made to the Randian organization in February 2005 in honor of the 100th anniversary of Ayn Rand's birthday. In the remarks, which were quickly picked up and posted on the Atlantic Wire, Ryan praised Rand as a major inspiration on his life.
But the remarks praising Rand aren't the only telling part of the audio. As the liberal Catholic magazine America noticed, later in the speech Ryan went deep into associating himself with a Randian philosophy on entitlements.
"Social Security right now is a collectivist system, it’s a welfare transfer system," Ryan said.
Ryan continued, describing attempts by Republicans to privatize, laughing at using the word "personalizing" instead.
Ryan says "if we actually accomplish this goal of personalizing Social Security, think of what we will accomplish." He adds "every worker, every laborer in America will not only be a laborer but a capitalist. They will be an owner of society, they will be an owner and a participant of our free enterprise system, of our capitalist system."
Ryan insists that if more Americans had their money privately invest in entitlements and saw "the fruits of their labor materialize to their benefit" then it would result in "more people in America who are not going to listen to likes of Dick Gephardt and Nancy Pelosi, Ted Kennedy, the collectivist, class warfare-breathing demagogues."
Ryan says that Democrats only need to obstruct Republican legislation changing the system to keep Republicans from succeeding in privatizing the programs. With the growth in entitlement spending build into the future budget "autopilot will get them where they want to go."
"Autopilot will bring more government, more collectivism, more centralized government," Ryan says. If Republicans "do not succeed from changing entitlements from a "third party or socialist based system to an individually owned, individually pre-funded, individually directed system."
Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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