Moderate George Will loves Paul Ryan’s plan for economic recovery

Rep. Paul Ryan

Editorial from the Press Telegram. (H/T ECM)


Ryan would eliminate taxes on interest, capital gains, dividends and death.The corporate income tax, the world’s second highest, would be replaced by an 8.5 percent business consumption tax. Because this would be about half the average tax burden that other nations place on corporations, U.S. companies would instantly become more competitive – and more able and eager to hire.

Medicare and Social Security would be preserved for those currently receiving benefits, or becoming eligible in the next 10 years (those 55 and older today). Both programs would be made permanently solvent.

Universal access to affordable health care would be guaranteed by refundable tax credits ($2,300 for individuals, $5,700 for families) for purchasing portable coverage in any state. As persons under 55 became Medicare eligible, they would receive payments averaging $11,000 a year, indexed to inflation and pegged to income, with low-income people receiving more support.

Ryan’s plan would fund medical savings accounts from which low-income people would pay minor out-of-pocket medical expenses. All Americans, regardless of income, would be allowed to establish MSAs – tax-preferred accounts for paying such expenses.

Ryan’s plan would allow workers under 55 the choice of investing more than one-third of their current Social Security taxes in personal retirement accounts similar to the Thrift Savings Plan long available to, and immensely popular with, federal employees. This investment would be inheritable property, guaranteeing that individuals will never lose the ability to dispose every dollar they put into these accounts.

Ryan would raise the retirement age. If, when Congress created Social Security in 1935, it had indexed the retirement age (then 65) to life expectancy, today the age would be in the mid-70s. The system was never intended to do what it is doing – subsidizing retirements that extend from one-third to one-half of retirees’ adult lives.

My last post on George Will is here: Moderate George Will lauds the virtues of Michele Bachmann. He’s actually quite moderate, not at all a conservative, so this is very interesting.

ECM also send me this article from the American Spectator.


Ever since his back and forth with President Obama during last week’s question time at the Republican retreat, Rep. Paul Ryan’s “Roadmap for America’s Future” has been gaining attention as a plan that the Congressional Budget Office has projected would actually solve our nation’s long-term entitlement crisis.

[…]“The lower budget deficits under your proposal would result in much less federal debt than under the alternative fiscal scenario and thereby a much more favorable macroeconomic outlook,” CBO writes in page 14 of its analysis of the Ryan plan.

CBO projects “real gross national product per person would be about 70 percent higher in 2058 under the proposal.” But after 2058, the CBO’s model completely breaks down when trying to project current trends, “because deficits become so large and unsustainable that the model cannot calculate their effects.” By contrast, the model shows the Ryan plan continuing to achieve economic growth in the decades that follow. This is demonstrated by the CBO chart below.

So the CBO is backing up Ryan’s calculations.

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