Now that Mr. Romney has picked Mr. Ryan as his choice for the second spot on the Republican ticket, it’s important that those of us who do know the Romney-Ryan mindset get their policies and history into the public record, because the televised news media has become one big epicfail! As far as spending goes, Mr. Ryan is perceived to be a “deficit hawk” but his voting record tells another story; which is normal for Republicans.
Mr. Ryan’s voting record indicates that reducing the deficit, which has been the GOP’s favorite bumper sticker policy since running our economy off of a cliff and blaming the guy who came in to clean up the mess for not doing it fast enough. Not once since the 1970s has a Republican President or Congress reduced the deficit. We don’t know what Mr. Romney believes because it changes as often as mothers change baby diapers…..and probably smells as bad.
But don’t think about that. Mr. Romney-Ryan and the Republicans are really not particularly interested in reducing the deficit or cutting federal spending. What they want is to not raise taxes for the people that are financing their campaigns, remake the basic architecture of the federal government so that they can maintain the upperhand, and eradicate their opposition at any cost. Why else would the highest ranking Republican in the U.S. Senate, Mitch Mcconnell, have opened his speech on the floor of the Senate, after the 2010 election ,with the remark, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”? Because the GOP only worries about the GOP! Jobs? Nothing. Recovery? Nada. Middle-class suffering? Not even a mention.
Oh, and can Mr. Ryan, who has voted to increase deficits and expand government spending a multitude of times(until a Democrat was in the White House) be seriously considered a deficit hawk?
Facts and the Ryan Budget: The Bain of the GOP(sorry, couldn’t resist)
In a nutshell, these are the main goals of the Romney-Ryan budget:
1) Cut entitlement programs, particularly Medicare.
As bad as that sounds to people near or already on Medicare, that is not consistent with what the actual plan calls for, as you’ll see below
Per the Congressional Budget Office, the cuts to Medicare are only 60 percent as large as the cuts to Medicaid and other health-care programs. And the cuts to Medicaid and other health-care programs are only half as large as the cuts to non-entitlement programs.
Even if you add the long-term savings from Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, or any combination thereof, the largest cuts in spending are dwarfed by the “everything else”.
Everything else means the FBI, the CIA, Defense, Infrastructure, Energy Research, Food safety, National Parks, highway maintenance, bridge maintenance, national parks, education, you get the idea.
If you add all those together, Mr. Ryan’s budget caps the cumulative amount of those programs at 3.75 percent of GDP. They are currently at 12.5 percent. Defense alone has always cost more than 3 percent.
Mr. Ryan’s plan, in the short-term, RAISES the deficit over 10 years by $4 trillion and he has not identified the first offset.
2) Mr. Ryan voted for the George W. Bush tax cuts
3) Mr. Ryan voted for the war in Iraq, which was funded by writing I.O.U.s to the Social Security Trust Fund o the tune of $2.5 trillion. He voted for President Bush’s Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit, financed by those same I.O.U.s that we now owe to the Social Security Trust Fund. Now, tell me again why Social Security / Medicare doesn’t have enough money?
4) Mr. Ryan is best known for his plan to enact the Social Security Personal Savings Guarantee and Prosperity Act of 2005; or without the Washington-speak; a plan to privatize Social Security. The program’s actuaries found that Ryan’s first stab at a plan would require an additional $2.4 trillion in costs over the first 10 years, and the Bush administration ultimately omitted it as “irresponsible.”Romney-Ryan? Sure, sounds great!
5) Mr. Ryan originally proposed eliminating the traditional Medicare plan entirely and replacing it with a choice of private plans. This so outraged even Republicans that he later had to walk back the proposal and inserted a traditional Medicare plan as one option on the list of options. Either way, he restructures Medicare from a defined-benefit plan, in which seniors are guaranteed Medicare coverage, to a defined-contribution plan, for which they are given a voucher equal to the cost of the cheapest plans on the list of options and if they exceed the amount of the voucher, they have to pay the difference out of pocket.
6) As for Medicaid, Mr. Ryan’s plan calls for the individual states handling any Medicaid requirements for low-income or unemployed individuals with little or no help from the federal government.
7) Ryan’s Social Security proposal would divert Social Security contributions into private accounts. It also would end the tax exclusion for employer-based health care and replace it with a tax credit for individuals.
What Other Programs Does Mr. Ryan Want to Gut?
1) Transportation. Well sure, who needs highways? The National Highway System, first built in the 1950s, is reaching the critical end of its natural life. Did you know that literally everything you have, had , or will have, has at one time or another been inside an 18-wheeler?
2) Infrastructure. Our air-traffic control system is outdated, causing airport delays around the country. I guess you showed those “uppity” Controllers eh, President Reagan? Who needs airports? Doesn’t everyone have their own jets? Electric grid? Sure we could have a nationwide total collapse and total blackout like India just suffered with a newer system than our patched together mostly above ground network.
3) About one-quarter of the country’s bridges are either “structurally deficient” or inadequate to today’s traffic needs, according to the GAO.
4) A variety of analysts have pegged the cost of repairing and upgrading our transportation networks at approximately $200 billion and $262 billion per year over the next ten years. Mr. Ryan’s budget, meanwhile, allocates $78 billion per year. In his plan’s summary, Ryan claims he can meet the country’s needs by cutting back on “imprudent, irresponsible, and downright wasteful spending,” though it’s not clear what waste Ryan has in mind, much less whether it could make up the massive difference. I guess we’re supposed to just trust them.
The Grass is Always Greener
Up until now, we the voting public, have only gotten vague platitudes about what a Romney presidency would look like. At least by naming Paul Ryan as his running mate American can get a little clarity from Mr. Romney. Mitt Romney was well on the way to winning Olympic Gold for being the most secretive presidential candidate in history. After all, we shouldn’t be allowed to know our candidates for the most powerful office on earth, we should just trust them. It’s not like they’ve lied to us before. Oh wait. Yes they have. Oops.
While the statists pine for the Articles of Confederation over the Constitution, they would finally have their way with Romney-Ryan. Smaller government all around. Fewer policemen. Fewer firemen. Fewer and inadequately trained teachers. And 400 of the wealthiest people in America living off the work of the other 200 million or so. Here’s what you can expect with Romney-Ryan:
1) If you are sick? Die quickly. It’s just as well, the fat cats don’t want to be bothered with you panhandling for scraps anyway. Their windshields are cleaned by staff members after all.
2) If you are old and paid into Social Security and Medicare all of you life? Sorry, you’re on your own. You should’ve planned better, or at least not trusted John Corzine…pfft
3) If you were laid off through no fault of your own? Cardboard boxes make surprisingly good shelters. Free advice, no charge.
The rest of the civilized world looks at America and shakes their collective heads. How can such a rich country have ended up being so barbaric, so incapable of practicing the very Judeo-Christian principles they fight so hard to force onto others? And raising income taxes NEVER spurs job-growth; oh wait, Bill Clinton raised taxes and experienced AND had the lowest unemployment in decades. Huh. Maybe raising taxes on the wealthy doesn’t stunt job-growth. Well what do you know?
Random Thoughts About a Romney-Ryan Administration
How can the GOP value dignity for women who are brutally raped and impregnated by sick, demented men, so little while simultaneously defending unborn fetuses that, once alive and breathing, are on their own to be called lazy, ridiculed, or mis-treated for life because they weren’t born into a Romney, or Bush family?
Does fear and loathing for those who don’t look like us, or believe what we believe mean so much ? Is your marriage to a loving wife with a loving family really threatened by someone else’s who happens to be between two people of the same sex? Why are we the only civilized country in the world who runs for-profit medical care when even poor countries seem to be able to provide it? How does a 71-yr old man with a long history of heart disease suddenly go to the very front of the line for a brand spanking new heart? By being a lying, thieving, war-mongering, hateful son of a bitch. You enjoy that new heart Mr. Cheney.
Even though Mr. Ryan had to agree to release no more than two years tax return as part of the deal to be Mr. Romney’s running mate, we do know how Ryan thinks in great detail because, of Mr. Ryan’s voting record. As House Budget Committee chair, Mr. Ryan has released two blueprints of the government he envisions. It is a government that will be “out” when its people need it the most. It will not be there when the next Katrina hits. It will not be there to keep our national parks and parkways neat and trimmed and clean. It will not be there while we continue to run for-profit prisons filled to the brim with mainly people of color or people who smoke some pot. But we gotta keep those prisons full–some corporation depends on it to make money. Meanwhile, white, male, banksters who steal billions of hard-working Americans pensions, savings, and retirement packages get bonuses instead of jail time. When that interstate bridge collapses and you’re pinned inside a car leaking gasoline, those EMTs and firemen won’t be there. Those ungrateful bastards just wanted too much money. Besides, they belong to unions, those pesky organisations that look out for the workers.
No, under Romney-Ryan, government will not be there the next time wildfires consume thousands of acres of land and burn people houses because the GOP thinks that we already have too many government employees, park rangers, etc., and they need that money being spent on all those employees are keeping spme wealthy people from getting more tax breaks. Besides, “Who needs more firemen, policemen or teachers?” Mr. Billionaire wants to know. Government will not be there when you get e-coli poisoning from under-regulated meat packing plants or unclean packaged salads. It will not be there when your mother dies from a heart attack because a medication was not tested thoroughly before putting it on the market. Sorry, you should have worked three jobs instead of just two.
Policemen who put their lives on the line for a pittance in pay will not be there when your children are killed or by stray bullets in a drive-by shooting by thugs brandishing AK-47s, or kidnapped EVEN IN THE GOOD NEIGHBORHOODS. And government will be silent when the elderly cannot keep up with the costs of M.R.I.’s or prescription medicines, or when the poor and uninsured become increasingly sick through lack of preventive care. And if people can’t pay for their healthcare, guess what? There won’t be as many doctors either. If you aren’t wealthy, be prepared to have fewer and fewer options for doctors. With so many people not covered, doctors will go broke. Funeral parlors will be ok though. There will be lots of work for them.
More than three-fifths of the cuts proposed by Mr. Romney-Ryan, and eagerly accepted by the Tea Party-driven House, come from programs for low-income Americans. These cuts are so severe that the nation’s Catholic bishops raised their voices in protest at the shredding of the nation’s moral obligations. The bishops and even the “Nuns on a Bus” publicly question whether Mr. Ryan can be a true Catholic given his and Mr. Romney’s propensity to push for tax cuts for the wealthy that “will hurt hungry children, poor families, vulnerable seniors and workers who cannot find employment.” In the richest, most powerful country known to mankind, “These cuts are unjustified and wrong,” say the bishops and nuns.
All of this will be accompanied, of course, by even greater tax giveaways to the rich, and extravagant benefits to powerful military contractors who are now free to funnel unlimited funds into the campaign coffers of the Romney-Ryans of the country.
Democracy? I don’t think so. Democracies don’t encourage voter suppression. Democracies have journalists who don’t let questions be diverted into talking points. Democracies do not support the idea that corporations are people, my friend. Democracies don’t encourage monopolies or banks too big to fail.
If this kind of injustice is allowed to prevail, if this kind of anti-American folly is allowed to be practiced, if you are so worried that you may not be able to get that new iPhone if you were taxed a penny more so that everyone in this country can have access to affordable healthcare……you might wanna call Dick Cheney to see where he got that brand spanking new heart….because yours is dead; you just don’t know it yet.