Election 2016

Tom Morello Says Paul Ryan Is a "Jackass"

Rage Against The Machine's front man also has a few words for Barack Obama.

Rage Against the Machine may be one of Paul Ryan's favorite bands, but the warm feelings aren't mutual. In august, guitarist Tom Morello wrote in an op-ed that Ryan "is the embodiment of the machine our music rages against." And in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter published Monday, the rocker again let loose on the Republican VEEP nominee.

When asked how he thought Ryan, who has become known as the fiscal architect of the Republican party's free market economic plan, could ever become a fan of Rage, given its leftist-anarchic lyrics, Morello said, "[Rage] is a band that casts the nets really wide, and that’s part of the strength of the band. People are drawn to it by the music, the aggression, the rockingness of it, and then they’re exposed to different ideas. Paul Ryan was a jackass before he listened to it, came out a jackass at the end, so he missed a lot of it."

Morello wasn't being overly partisan. He also had some words for Barack Obama...

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"I drank a little bit of the kool-aid initially," he sighed, referring of the cult of personality around the candidate four years ago. "It looked different than any other president, sounded different than any other president, and then he acted the same as all the other presidents. If you have war crimes on your record, and you still continue to suck at the corporate teat like he does -- my hopes were higher."

Morello has become the Occupy Movement's most visible celebrity supporter, so his feelings about what's not being discussed in this election should come as no suprise:


Of the many issues Morello believes are being ignored by both presidential candidates, he believes poverty is the most important and underrepresented.

"It seems like it’s a contest, between the two candidates, who can say the words ‘middle class’ the most," the guitarist groused. "Like, if you say ‘middle class’ the most, you win. Well, half the country is in poverty, kids are going hungry, from West Hollywood to Appalachia tonight. But those people don’t have a lobby, and they don’t donate to the campaign in a way that they’re going to get something back for it."

Read the whole thing at the Hollywood Reporter.