Republican economist Paul Ryan responds to the community-organizer/teleprompter-reader.
I’m very disappointed in the president. I was excited when we got invited to attend his speech today. I thought the president’s invitation to Mr. Camp, Mr. Hensarling and myself was an olive branch. Instead, what we got was a speech that was excessively partisan, dramatically inaccurate, and hopelessly inadequate to addressing our countries pressing fiscal challenges.
What we heard today was not fiscal leadership from our commander-in-chief. What we heard today was a political broadside from our campaigner-in chief.
I guess it’s no coincidence that last week when the president launched his billion dollar re-election campaign was the week we launched our effort to try and get this debt and deficit under control and get our economy growing.
Last year, in the absence of a serious budget, the president created a fiscal commission. Then with his budget he disavowed his fiscal commission. He ignored all of its recommendations. Now he wants to delegate leadership yet again to a new commission. How are we to expect different results? And the measurements of results of this new commission are lower than the measurements of success of the last commission that ended a few months ago.
We need leadership. We don’t need a doubling down on the failed politics of the past.
[…]Exploiting people’s emotions of fear, envy, and anxiety is not hope; it’s not change. It’s partisanship. We don’t need partisanship. We don’t need demagoguery. We need solutions. And we don’t need to keep punting to other people to make tough decisions. If we don’t make those decisions today, our children will have to make much, much tougher decisions tomorrow.
Paul Ryan and Jeb Hensarling are the two best-known Republican budget wonks.
You can read more about Paul Ryan in this Business Week interview.
President Obama called your plan “a vision that says if our roads crumble and our bridges collapse, we can’t afford to fix them … but we can somehow afford more than $1 trillion in new tax breaks for the wealthy.” How do you respond?
I don’t even know what to say about that. First of all, we’re not even talking about cutting taxes. We’re talking about keeping tax revenues where they are [by making the Bush tax cuts permanent] and cleaning up all the junk in the tax code for a flatter, fair, simpler tax system. So we’re not talking about cutting taxes. We want to keep the tax revenues where they are and fix the tax code. And with respect to all the spending—you know, that partisan-spending rhetoric—if you don’t fix entitlements, Charlie, if you don’t get spending under control, there’s not going to be any money left for those other things, for roads, for bridges, for education, for the environment. So I’m amazed that he would use that kind of hyperbolic, hyperventilating rhetoric to describe our plan.
I find it interesting that last week we heard William Lane Craig chastise the child Sam Harris for making “stupid and insulting” remarks about Christians, we are now getting Paul Ryan making similar assessments of our naive, childish President. Have Christians and conservatives finally reached their limit of tolerating stupidity and incompetence?
More about Paul Ryan and his budget proposal in my previous post.