I don’t claim to be an expert on electoral politics and, thus, generally steer clear of commentary about political communications but I’m so astonished by Paul Ryan’s convention speech that I’m going to do it anyway. One of the axioms of ALL effective communication is to never tell a provable lie. You can fudge the interpretation of facts but when it comes to casting outright lies about the other side that stuff is better left to those independent expenditure campaigns like the Swift Boat guys. By lying about factual matters in his foundational speech, Ryan sent a message to Republican voters that he is willing to lie to them. He could have easily built the same rhetoric using real, factual examples, but he went with lies. The subtext of that is bad communications and puzzling. There are plenty of Republicans who still remember Nixon and outright dishonesty isn’t going to sit well with them, no matter whom it’s aimed at.