Jewish World Review April 8, 2011 / 4 Nissan, 5771
Complaints About Budget Plan Veer Off Path
By Jonah Goldberg
Republicans want to "end
Cue cat shriek!
Here's the thing: Of course he wants to end
Personally, if I were on a plane that had one engine out and was belching smoke, I would certainly hope somebody with some judgment and competence might calmly remove his oxygen mask long enough to suggest "ending this flight as we know it."
I should back up. In case you haven't been paying attention, Ryan, chairman of the
In brief, he proposes:
* Turning Medicaid into a block grant to the states -- the way we did for the immensely successful welfare reform of the 1990s -- in order to allow for more flexibility and experimentation.
* Transforming Medicare into a defined contribution plan similar to what government employees and congressmen already have. Seniors will get a direct subsidy to buy insurance for themselves (along the lines of the popular prescription drug benefit enacted under
* Closing out various tax loopholes and corporate welfare -- like ethanol subsidies -- in order to lower tax rates and streamline the tax code without losing revenue.
* Freezing spending below 2008 levels for five years.
In response, Democrats have come unglued like wallpaper in an un-air-conditioned
The Ryan plan is "a path to poverty for America's seniors & children and a road to riches for big oil"
Let me say that again: No one who is currently elderly or who will be elderly within the next 10 years will see their
You can hardly say the same thing about the president's plan, or the congressional Democrats' plan (since they don't have one), or, most importantly, the status quo -- because under them, our metaphorical plane will crash into a mountainside of insurmountable debt. That's why Ryan's plan is not an attempt to destroy the social safety net, it's an attempt to mend it.
(Oh, and since only Republican talking points are subject to strict scrutiny from the "objective" press, let me quickly rebut
But, but, but, sputter Ryan's detractors, we can't rewrite the social contract between the government and our seniors. Again, we're not talking about that. We're talking about revising the arrangement between the government and people who will be seniors more than a decade from now.
Regardless, let's talk about this solemn promise in a bit more detail. Democrats sound a bit like the passenger on the failing plane who complains, "You can't end this flight as we know it! The airline promised we could get to
I'll give you a hint what's wrong with this. The correct response to such complaints isn't, "Oh, they promised? Well, let me tell the captain to stick to his original flight plan. I'm sure he'll be delighted to violate the laws of physics in order to honor that promise."
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