Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Budget Battle Brewing

I’m sitting here watching the recording of Sunday’s GPS with Fareed Zakaria thinking that people need to hear this. And -- DUH -- I write a blog. Fareed started the show with his take on Paul Ryan’s budget proposal. In his usual manner, Fareed was being kind. But he finally got around to saying, “His plan won’t work.”

Later in the show, Fareed brought on Martin Wolf -- the chief economics commentator for the Financial Times. Mr. Wolf called Ryan’s budget proposal, “political fantasy.” For those that have been paying attention, this echoes what Paul Krugman has been screaming from the top of his lungs. And the icing on the cake is that Paul Krugman points you to James Fallows’ take on it. (That would be "partisan" or "gimmicky" if you don’t have time to follow the link.)

You would think that this budget proposal would be laughed out of town. But no, it’s being taken seriously.

Good Plan!
Republican Paul Ryan's budget proposal is brave, radical, and smart.

”This dynamic of political evasion and reality-denial may have undergone a fundamental shift today with the release of Rep. Paul Ryan's 2012 budget resolution. The Wisconsin Republican's genuinely radical plan goes where Ronald Reagan and Newt Gingrich never did by terminating the entitlement status of Medicare and Medicaid. (It doesn't touch the third major entitlement, Social Security, though Ryan has elsewhere argued for extending its life by gradually raising the retirement age to 70.)”

Eliminating our social safety net is “brave”. “Smart”. Okay, let’s say you really believe we’ll go bankrupt if we don’t do something. You’re not cold hearted. You don’t want Grandma eating cat food. And you don’t want to take away her health care. What can we do? Who can we believe?

How about the smartest man on TV? Look for the graphs.

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Ryan's Private Savings - Path to Prosperity
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Destroy our country’s social safety net or repeal the Bush tax cuts? Which do you think is the right thing to do?

Don Brown
April 13, 2011

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