Is there anything that we do not know about Mitt’s running mate?
I will join in all the hoopla over Mitt’s pick for a running mate….the darling of the far right, Paul Ryan. He hails from the same town as my father’s family, Janesville, Wisconsin and if I ever spoike to any of my father’s people I would get a feel for the man….but since that will NEVER happen….I have to go with what I read and pass it along in an effort to educate my reader on what to expect from the candidate……..
Now that we have Ryan as the VP candidate we hear a lot more about his “Plan”….but what does the general population know about his plan? I can help……….The following is from an article written by Jamelle Bouie for the American Prospect:
Ryan wants to end most taxes on the top earners
On average, according to the Tax Policy Center, people earning more than $1 million a year would receive a tax cut of $265,000 under the Ryan plan. For the richest Americans, after-tax incomes would increase by 8.7 percent:
Ryan achieves this by eliminating all taxes on capital gains, interest, and dividends (by contrast, Romney only wants to reduce them). And because he also calls for large cuts to existing social services, the effect of this arrangement is to raise taxes on the poorest Americans, by way of lower benefits and fewer services. To give a concrete example of what this means, a multi-millionaire who receives his income through investments—Mitt Romney, for instance—would see his taxes decline to an effective rate of 0.82 percent on income of over $21 million. This isn’t a 0 percent tax rate, but for the wealthy, it’s close enough to nothing.
Ryan would end guaranteed health care for seniors
Late last year, Florida-based fact checkers PolitiFact gave their “Lie of the Year” distinction to the Democratic claim that the Ryan Budget would end Medicare. “The Democratic attack about ‘ending Medicare’ was a pervasive line in 2011 that preyed on seniors’ worries about whether they could afford health care,” wrote the outlet. Their argument was straightforward: The Ryan plan changes the mechanism of Medicare—giving pre-paid vouchers to seniors to buy private insurance—but doesn’t end the program itself.
That’s a semantic quibble. Medicare was created as a program of guaranteed health care for seniors—a promise that our elderly would not go without health care due to an inability to pay. The Ryan plan breaks that promise:
The problem is that the vouchers aren’t meant to keep pace with rising health care costs—Medicare payments are placed on a budget, and anything more is the responsibility of seniors. Yes, he preserves the original, government-run program as an alternative. But because all new beneficiaries would be moved to the vouchers, eventually, original Medicare would become too small and too expensive to survive. The Congressional Budget Office found that, under the Ryan plan, heath-care spending would double for the typical 65-year-old. By any reasonable logic, that is an end to the traditional guarantee of affordable health care for seniors.
Ryan would “save” Medicaid by slashing its budget
Besides Medicare, the other major government health-care program is Medicaid, which provides health insurance for low-income Americans, as well as care for the elderly and disabled. Traditionally, the states share the cost of Medicaid with the federal government. On average, the government pays for 57 percent of a state’s Medicaid costs. Ryan goes a different route:Under his budget, the government provides a block grant to states—essentially, a check.
This check is pegged to the state’s Medicaid funding for 2011, adjusted for population and inflation on a year-to-year basis. But health-care costs grow faster than overall inflation, and over time, the grants would lose their value. The result is a huge cut to the program:
States could deal with this by paying more of their own money, or by raising eligibility requirements and kicking people out of the program. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, between 14 million and 27 million people would lose health-care coverage as a result of this plan, on top of the 17 million who would lose coverage as a result of repealing the Affordable Care Act. To pay for his tax cuts, Ryan would take health care from millions of people.
Ryan is not a deficit hawk
Ryan presents himself as a fiscal conservative, and his ideas as necessary to reducing our debt and fixing our economy. For this vocal concern, he has won praise from journalists and pundits. In its write-up of Saturday’s vice presidential announcement, the Associated Press described Ryan as “an ardent conservative and devoted budget cutter.” Likewise, Slate correspondant Will Saletan called Ryan “a real fiscal conservative.” That’s absurd. He’s nothing of the sort:
With Ryan’s plan to drastically cut taxes, lower revenues, and raise defense spending, debt grows by more than 10 percentover the next decade. Is Paul Ryan a conservative reformer? Yes. Does he plan to reduce the debt or balance the budget? Absolutely not. Which brings us to the final point …
Ryan actually wants to shred the social safety net
In its analysis of Ryan’s plan, the Congressional Budget Office found that, by 2050, it would shrink government to 15 percent of GDP, about where it was in 1950. At The Atlantic,
In 1950, the programs that made up the bulk of today’s federal spending didn’t exist. In order to shrink the federal government to 1950s size, you have to either end all social insurance programs, or preserve them—in much smaller form—and eliminate everything else. Ryan’s budget does the latter; he shrinks “all else” to 3.75 percent of GDP, with a significant portion reserved for defense. So what is “all else”? In 2011, “all else” (excluding defense) came to $646 billion, or just over 4 percent of GDP. This pays for everything we associate with the federal government, from food stamps and Pell Grants, to weather monitoring, law enforcement, and regulation. Long-range budget predictions are difficult, but if this stays unchanged in terms of GDP, then by 2050, “all else” should come to more than $1.4 trillion. Under the Ryan budget, Thompson estimates, it’s $100 billion. To shoehorn today’s federal government into $100 billion dollars would require draconian cuts. To do it in 2050 would require an end to the federal government as we know it.
Ryan bills himself as someone who wants to make government sustainable, but his rhetoric is littered with references to “makers,” “takers,” and “government dependency.” Alone, this doesn’t tell us much. But put it together with his budget and the picture is clear: He wants to rid the United States of social insurance. In Ryan’s world, if you suffer any misfortune, you’re on your own. If you weren’t born with the advantages of wealth and privilege, you’re on your own. If you want clean air, clean water, safe products, and protection from abusive employers—you guessed it—you’re on your own.
This is just a short synopsis of the Ryan Plan but it should give the reader an idea of what it is about and if they need more information to make a “rational” choice this election then they should use their Google button and NOT to depend on pundits to define the plan for them…..I realize that many on the Right will not heed that but I tried and if it bites them in the butt…..then I can have a good laugh and heavy sigh!