Ryan's statement has undertones of racial bias and ignorance, and it fails to acknowledge the depth of the context of America's dark history. A history that digs back to the tobacco farms of Jamestown, Virginia, then makes its way forward to the lunch counters in Selma, Alabama.
Even with the crucial anti-poverty programs we have in place, these are new and emerging faces of poverty -- the very opposite of the picture of poverty Ryan paints.
Most poor and working class families, whether black, white, tan or brown, would much rather be working and earning a livable wage than being excluded from the workforce by institutional situations whether policy driven or profit driven.
Inarticulate, inelegant, inner-city, it's not the "in's that are the problem. It's what comes "out" of their mouths that keeps hurting Republicans.
It's easy to attack and demagogue those who don't have a voice. It's easy to blame others when you fail to provide true leadership. And it's easy to reinforce stereotypes and misconceptions to win elections, or to win over your party's base. That is precisely what Paul Ryan did last week.
This presumption that some people -- "in inner cities, in particular" -- are lazy isn't just insulting, it's a premise used by Paul Ryan and others to justify great cruelty while ignoring the actual sources and causes of poverty.
Since there is currently a rather large amount of poverty around that ideally would be rapidly alleviated, you could legitimately expect that the proposals that each side brought to the table might significantly erode the poverty under review. Sadly, however, neither set of proposals do.
Paul Ryan's politics dictate that those who are down on their luck -- even children -- are soulless, not the Wall Street bankers who continue to crush the American middle class, necessitating such assistance in the first place.
Last week, my colleague on the Budget Committee, Rep. Paul Ryan, put out a report: "The War on Poverty: 50 Years Later." Let's be clear, this report is nothing more than an ideologically bankrupt battle plan to attack the poor.
It is a sign of how far right the Republican Party has moved that New York Times columnist Ross Douthat describes Rep. Paul Ryan as a "moderate." In any rational look at the spectrum of American political views, it is hard to imagine attaching the word "moderate" to Ryan on any issue.
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and his staff have reviewed whether President Johnson's "War on Poverty" has been effective over the last 50 years. There are at least five major problems with the report and the subsequent conclusions that are reached.
The result of the Republican budget would be opportunity only for those who already have money. So, of course, the GOP had to try to kill a budget conceived under the proposition of opportunity for everyone.
Ukraine erupted in crisis during the past week, as Russia's Vladimir Putin essentially grabbed Crimea in his own hissy fit. President Obama, of course, has very limited options for dealing with Russia.
For too long, reporters have been bamboozled by Ryan, who claims to be a both a budget expert and something of a social philosopher. But he's just a slick talker who appears to have flunked basic math in high school or college, because his budget numbers never add up.
It's a detailed, serious look at the issue but is beset with misleading evidence and conclusions. There's also something that I found fundamentally odd about the report.