August 6, 2010
Send Ryan to Denver
Among the great fibs heard in my lifetime, such as "ethanol is the answer to all our energy needs," I add Paul Ryan's "Road map for America's Future." Paul Krugman correctly identifies Ryan as the Flimflam Man, and Krugman proves his case. "Ryan is the Republican poster-child for new ideas," Krugman writes. His Roadmap is supposed to give us a "major overhaul of federal spending and taxes."
Ryan has been described as "intellectually audacious." If so, Krugman modifies it by calling it "the audacity of dopes."
Simply stated, Ryan's plan cuts taxes for the well-off, eliminates increases in domestic spending, inflation or no inflation, and gives vouchers to seniors instead of Medicare. Seniors, buy your own insurance. (Sounds like Newt.) But don't take my word for it, read Krugman's column in today's NYT.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HIGH. The brilliant privatizers are always coming up with cute plans that will ease the burden of taxing the rich and the corporations. Denver, in desperate need of money in 2008, bought into a complex funding plan that would make Bernie Madoff blush. The result? Denver is deeply in debt and there is no solution in sight. Denver might be better off its leaders had listened to their parents when they warned, "If it sounds too good to be true, it is."
The front page NY Times story on the Denver Schools desperate gamble is must reading. "To avoid mounting expenses the Denver schools are looking to renegotiate the deal. But to unwind it all, the schools would have to pay the banks $81 million in termination fees." Whoa Nelly! The system is breaking down and it ain't pretty.
Almost unnoticed is the Iraqi Crud. Hundreds of service members "have fallen ill--poisoned by the thick, black smoke produced by the burning of tons of trash generated on U.S. bases." Kellog, Brown & Root is being sued for the so-called burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan, reports the Washington Post. What's burning? "Plastic water bottles, styrofoam food containers, mangled bits of metal, paint, solvent, medical waste, dead animals. The garbage is doused with fuel and set on fire." (I'm not making this up.)
One man said, "You'd cough up black stuff and you couldn't catch your breath, and your eyes were burning." The taxpayers thank you, Brown & Root!
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You let Paul Ryan off too easily, Ed.
Ryan exposed what a scam artist he is -- not to mention the fallacy of the "conservative intellectual." Set aside any points about his policy proposals, horrible as they are. He just simply doesn't have the intellectual firepower to be taken seriously.
In recent interviews he has made plain, clear statements about macroeconomics that are simply demonstrably false. Not just statements pulling from the Ayn Rand, Milton Friedman world of Crazytalk where there are a handful of economists that say the same thing, but instead, statements that are directly contradicted by all empirical evidence and economic study. Paul Ryan doesn't have the intellectual chops to drill down into the finer points of economic and fiscal policy making. More to the point, he doesn't grap the big picture of it enough to be a credible voice, even a voice for the lunatic fringe.
He's a snake oil salesman. He, like other conservatives posing as "intellectuals" with "ideas," is about symbolic politics, the kind where a crafted image and style trump any substance.
Paul Ryan is dangerous. His "ideas" are mullarkey -- and they're hostile to the very day-to-day existence of working folks. But he's apparently charmed enough D.C. Beltway soft political media types to get fawning coverage that proclaims him a future GOP leader with "ideas."
I just hope that is Social Security and Medicare slash-and-privatize scheme that further enriches finance and insurance corporations off the tax dollars of working families gets the full hearing it deserves -- the one where we can all laugh him back to explain to the Janesvilles, Racines and Kenoshas of the state (which are in his district) how his policy proposals do anything to cure what ails the economic devastation for working families there.
Then again, a fawning and corporatist media might just give his plan the boost it needs to become "mainstream" and tear apart the most successful endeavor in American governmental history: our only (meager) attempt at social insurance.
-Peter Rickman | Madison, WI | August 6, 2010
What is Ryan other than an ambitious young man making an easy Republican career by saying what he hears his superiors saying and making up new phrases to keep doing the same thing, sequestering money for the rich? The kind of loudmouth who got punched on the playground for saying, who wants to be my friend?
Pay me and I'll talk like you want. Immature, transparent, amoral careerism.
-bruce powell | antigo wi | August 7, 2010
The Dummycrats outa give Krugman a contract with royalties. He just gave the left the greatest bumper sticker to come down the pike in ages! I'm gonna have a bunch made and take 'em down to my local Dummycrat headquarters.
Republicans- The Audacity of Dopes!
Man, it don't get no better than that!
-Griebnotz Doerkpfester | Egg Harbor, Wi. | August 7, 2010
The two commentors above nailed it on Paul Ryan - - he's an empty suit, a pretty-boy who's the male equivalent of the stereotypical blonde and should be on "The Days of Our Lives" instead of the House of Representatives. His ideas are just the same old crap that we've been hearing the last 30 odd years from the right-wing/'conservative'/libertarians, which has been the major factor in bringing us to this economic decline (with a vanishing middle-class and a 'jobless recovery' looming) and monstrous military swaggering around the world. Unfortunately, not enough people are paying serious attention and/or they are getting their 'news' from the MSM who have long been cowed into presenting the destructive ideas of the right as a viable alternative. I fear that things are going to have to get a lot worse before mainstream America finally abandons these hucksters and their discredited ideas....
-Big Em | Milwaukee, WI | August 8, 2010