It seems plausible that the Ryan pick stunned a lot of Romney's liberal critics, just as it sent right wingers into transports of joy.
What I can't get past is Ryan's infatuation with Atlas Shrugged and Ayn Rand.
The mostly backstage hero of the book is John Galt, a man with superhuman powers of invention (he generates electricity from the air, and effortlessly extracts oil and gold from some random rocks in a Colorado canyon, as well as inventing an invisibility shield, etc.)
Galt's ambition is "to stop the engine of the world." That ambition stems from his dislike of the American system of government, and he carries it out with the ruthless fanaticism of a true sociopath - the billions he will kill in the process are nothing to him. He is also given to endless uni-bomber style blather about his own crackpot philosophy, mostly a really dumb guy's rehash of Nietzsche.
His only human trait is stalker's obsession with the heroine, who is clearly intended to be a way cooler version of Rand herself.
And Galt's devoted acolyte (he makes his staffers read the thousand turgid pages of the book) will be the next Vice-President, or, as Romney introduced him, "The Next President" of the US. Well, if so, they might just stop the engine of the world.