Aug 07, 2011 3:37 PM GMT
Rep. Ryan’s warning
Standard & Poor’s downgrade of the nation’s credit rating gives House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan every right to say “I told you so.”
Even earlier this week when President Obama was taking his victory lap for the debt-ceiling compromise, Ryan was disclosing the cold, hard truths of the economic troubles that lie ahead — truths that a jittery Wall Street has been more than aware of.
In an oped column in Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal, the Wisconsin Republican reiterated, of course, that the president really has no budget plan.
“The president’s February budget,” he wrote, “deliberately dodged the tough choices necessary to confront the threat of runaway federal spending. It was rejected unanimously in a Senate controlled by his own party.”
Well, so much for that auspicious beginning.
The president knew then and knows now that his health care and welfare state agenda demand new and higher taxes, that the costs of Medicare and Medicaid will continue to rise at unsustainable levels and that he has no plan for dealing with that.
In fact, when presented with options by his own debt commission appointees, Obama continued to be in denial.
Not so, Ryan. And he has a lot of help in the truth-telling department from the Congressional Budget Office, whose numbers he cites in the Journal oped.
“The CBO’s latest Long Term Outlook in June estimated that total tax revenues would have to double by mid-century in order to finance our current spending path,” Ryan wrote. Yes, DOUBLE.
Health-care costs, which rose 8 percent this year and are projected to rise anther 8.5 percent in 2012, are leading the pack.
Democrats have done a great job of demagoguing the Medicare issue in particular and Ryan’s proposals for putting it a more stable path, but they haven’t come up with a solution. He urged Democrats to “give the American people the debate they deserve.”
And with S&P breathing down the nation’s neck, isn’t it about time!