RYAN'S HOPE | WisCommunity


[img_assist|nid=22099|title=Paul Ryan|desc=Paul Ryan with "road map" sign|link=none|align=left|width=173|height=94]Remember that little kid who announced he was going to hold his breath until he got his way? And how his mom said no deal, then watched him slowly struggle to hold it in until junior finally gasped in defeat?

Welcome to your modern Republican Party -- little kids who collectively hold their breath and then blame the grown-ups when their ill-considered blackmail scheme fails.

Republican House budget chair Paul Ryan didn't pull any punches today after a Democrat running hard against his plan to essentially end Medicare won a heavily Republican New York congressional district. Ryan blamed the upset victory of Democrat Kathy Hochul over Republican Jane Corwin on Democratic "scare tactics" aimed at his draconian Medicare proposal. Democrats have already laughed off Ryan's charge, calling it Mediscare.

But it's clear the Janesville congressman just isn't listening to the street. Seniors and other Americans indeed are scared by his proposals -- not because of imaginary Democratic demagoguery, but because of what Ryan himself has proposed.

Ryan said that if the two parties don't get together and work out a Medicare reform plan, the nation's finances are in deep trouble, concluding, “You can’t have a negotiation with just yourself.” He was referring to Democrats but should instead have been referring to his own party, which has since the Bush era defined compromise as Democrats agreeing entirely with Republican ideas.

Ryan also said Democrats were “inflicting political paralysis” by not agreeing with his proposal. He made some noise about Democrats not having a serious plan of their own, but of course they do. It's called including tax hikes on the wealthy along with budget cuts. And President Obama long ago included Medicare reforms in his own proposals, reforms that would retain the fundamental nature of the current system while making it more efficient. Unlike Ryan's plan, which destroys Medicare as we know it and hands future recipients an insufficient voucher, instead.

Republicans have already said tax hikes are a non-starter, so logically that means there will be no compromise between the two parties. Then, in typical GOP redirection, it will be Democrats who are to be blamed for the GOP's continuing intransigence. Indeed, Ryan made clear that, in his view, compromise can only come from the Democratic side of the aisle. Ironically, as he was saying this, Democrats in the Senate along with a handful of nervous Republicans voted 57-40 against Ryan's plan.

Back to square one, which, in Ryanworld, is his plan dusted off and submitted all over again. A non-starter still looking for jumper cables.


May 25, 2011 - 7:12pm