Marco Rubio's Wall Street Journal op-ed today is a deeply hilarious document. The headline is Rubio's pledge to refuse to lift the the debt ceiling, and therefore possibly collapse the world economy, if Democrats don't agree to "a plan for fundamental tax reform, an overhaul of our regulatory structure, a cut to discretionary spending, a balanced-budget amendment, and reforms to save Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid." (That's all you need, just the immediate enactment of the entire GOP economic agenda? No permanent abolition of the Democratic Party? Obama doesn't have to give you his daughters?)

But the whole feel of the piece his a strange, slightly inhuman combination of stridency and rote intonation. Look at this succession of cliches at the end:

Whether they admit it or not, everyone in Washington knows how to solve these problems. What is missing is the political will to do it. I ran for the U.S. Senate because I want my children to inherit what I inherited: the greatest nation in human history. It's not too late. The 21st century can also be the American Century. Our people are ready. Now it's time for their leaders to join them.

Do you get the feeling that "Marco Rubio" is not an actual human being at all but some kind of computer program designed by the Republican Party? Imagine they had the technical know-how to create a candidate like this. What would they come up with? They'd come up with Marco Rubio, a cinematically handsome Latino from Florida who hews to the Tea Party line while spitting out patriotic cliches that sound as if they were programmed like a computer.

I'm not saying I'm sure Rubio is a robot. I'm just saying that I want to watch him walk through a metal detector.