Pretense and phoniness:
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Paul Ryan visited a soup kitchen here Saturday on his way to the airport, but by the time the GOP vice presidential nominee and his family had arrived shortly before noon, the grits, sausage and doughnuts had been served, the hall was empty of patrons and the volunteers appeared to have already cleaned up. [...]That was The Washington Post's report. Here's what The New York Times reported:
Ryan stood at the sink and took some large metal pans that did not appear to be dirty, soaped them up and rinsed them, remarking as the cameras clicked and the TV cameras rolled that he had spent a summer washing dishes when he was younger.
“We had a Hobart, though, which was — you get calluses on your fingers because it’s so hot,” he said, referring to the Hobart industrial dishwashing machine.
Afterward, Mr. Ryan stopped with his wife and children at a nearby soup kitchen. The family put on aprons and washed several large pans, though they did not appear to need washing, according to a pool reporter. There also was no one to serve at the soup kitchen, as breakfast had ended.
Turns out the soup kitchen isn't all that happy, either:
The head of a northeast Ohio charity says that the Romney campaign last week “ramrodded their way” into the group’s Youngstown soup kitchen so that GOP vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan could get his picture taken washing dishes in the dining hall.
Brian J. Antal, president of the Mahoning County St. Vincent De Paul Society, said that he was not contacted by the Romney campaign ahead of the Saturday morning visit by Ryan, who stopped by the soup kitchen after a town hall at Youngstown State University.Sure, all politicians do stupid photo ops. But this seems a little different in that it's doubly fake, and unwanted. Like the R/R budget plans, except that the fakery hasn't convinced people they don't want it. In fact, it's the fakery of which they're particularly fond.
“We’re a faith-based organization; we are apolitical because the majority of our funding is from private donations,” Antal said in a phone interview Monday afternoon. “It’s strictly in our bylaws not to do it. They showed up there and they did not have permission. They got one of the volunteers to open up the doors. He added: “The photo-op they did wasn’t even accurate. He did nothing. He just came in here to get his picture taken at the dining hall.”
[Update: Stephen Colbert reports: