GOP: The Free Lunch and a Pony Party

At the Los Angeles Times, Doyle McManus writes about the Paul Ryan budget proposal and states what ought to be obvious:

[Ryan] has made it clear that if you’re serious about cutting the federal deficit, you have to make a choice: low taxes or guaranteed Medicare coverage. You can’t have both.

That may come as unwelcome news to millions of Republican voters, including “tea party” adherents who helped Ryan’s GOP win its majority in the House. Polls have shown that most tea party folks are just like everyone else: They want lower taxes and they want to keep their benefits.

McManus assumes that the Ryan plan really would shrink the deficit. I suppose it might, in the same way that I could save myself lots of work time by simply not working. But the CBO analysis shows that the Ryan proposal actually would increase the debt. The only result the Ryan plan is bound to achieve is a significant erosion in the quality of life for all but the wealthiest Americans.

I want Republicans to be called the “free lunch and a pony” party, because they have persuaded so many Americans they can have as much government as they need without paying for it.

But if they want Medicare, free powerchairs and all, they have to pay for it. If they want air travel to be as safe as possible, they have to pay for FTA regulations and inspections. If they want national parks, disease and epidemic control, and bridges that don’t collapse while you’re driving on them, they have to pay for these things. This should not be that difficult to understand.

McManus also makes a good point when he writes that Ryan’s plan for privatizing Medicare amounts to “Obamacare for the old.” Like the much-derided “Obamacare,” Ryan’s idea amounts to government assistance for buying private insurance. What, no free market solution?

Meanwhile, President Obama — who can be rightly criticized for staying out of the budget fight for too long — is going to present his own proposal that includes tax increases on the wealthy. We’ll see.

See also: “Conservative Economists Criticize ‘Off-the-Deep-End’ Republican Budget

13 thoughts on “GOP: The Free Lunch and a Pony Party

  1. I think “Privatizing Ryan’s” plan is their ‘Mein Kampf’ for when they control government again. But, I think I’ve gone into that before here.

    As for calling Republicans “The Free Lunch and a Pony Party,” I’m all for it.
    I also liked “The E-coli Republicans.”

    I have some:
    The “Pay for a Millionaire/Billionaire’s Yacht Party.”
    Or, the “Your Local Bridge is Falling Down Party” – with theme music already there.
    The “Convertible Airline Party?”
    The “RepubliConmen Party.”
    The “RepubliConfederate Party.”
    How about the “RepubliKKKlan Party?”

    Or, call them out for what they really are – “The Kamikaze Party.”

    As for Obama’s speech on Wednesday, it’d be nice if he could explain to people what the country might look like if we followed Liberal/Progressive policies – kind of like the America most of us over 40 grew up in, only with women, gay people, and people darker than Boehner more fully included.

    But, if he did that, we’d all need to go out on Thursday with reinforced umbrella’s, because pigs would be flying, and I don’t think they’ll be wearing any Depends.

    I don’t expect that, of course, because he and Harry kind of conceded the whole Keynsian thing on Friday when they boasted about the largest budget cuts in history, making the deficits sound apocolyptic, like that was something to crow about while we’re still in a major recession/depression. You’d think someone might have have told him about FDR in 1937.

    JOBS, ANYONE?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

  2. What happens to people when they leave their kitchen-table budgets knowing that if they reduce their income and don’t decrease their expenses, they’ll be in the hole big time but when some idiot tells them that they’ll have their taxes reduced while things like affordable health care will still be possible at the same time as the budget will be in balance, they believe it.

    Anecdote – when I was teaching, specifically teaching the art of propaganda and how people get suckered in to believing nonsense, I read of a case where a person ran an ad in newspapers asking people to send $1.00 to a certain address. The ad promised nothing in return. All sorts of people sent the dollar. So maybe I should not be surprised at how successful Republican flim-flamism is.

  3. Kamikaze Party sounds right to me, because I keep wondering who in this world would vote for them? However they keep gaining more seats in congress. The MSM must be doing a hell of a job on their heads, and it boilsd down to that everytime

  4. When you run on tax cuts, you can’t simultaneously run on program cuts, especially the big ticket items. Tell me again how the republicans are the ‘adult’ party? They’ve made promises simply for political reasons, nothing to help out the nation at large. If you want to call the Dems the tax and spend party, fine, at least it’s not the borrow and spend party.

  5. Well, if there is a silver lining to this doubling down on the stoopid, it’s that independents are beginning to notice.

    My take on the current Republicans: they are an alliance between hardcore Ayn Randians and hardcore looney evangelicals. Both have agreed not to collapse in laughter at the idiotic crap the other side believes; one side gets their all-your-uteri-are-belong-to-us and the other gets the pie.

  6. Some of you may have seen this already, but for those who haven’t it’s well worth the read:

    Paul Ryan’s Absurdly Optimistic Budget Projections Draw Widespread Ridicule
    2.8% unemployment? $150 billon a year in new economic growth? Tax revenues that rise with tax cuts?

    All this can be yours — and more! — even while cutting trillions of dollars from the federal government and lowering taxes on the wealthy and corporations, according to a giddy estimate of the Republican budget by the conservative Heritage Foundation. Even as Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) proudly touted his “fact-based budget” and decried Democrats’ “budget gimmicks” yesterday, he prominently cited the think tank’s absurdly rosy numbers, drawing widespread mockery from economists, budget experts, and health care wonks. Even the developer of the model that Heritage used to crunch the numbers can’t figure out how Heritage reached its conclusions.


  7. “Here’s a job opportunity for any of you guys who are down on your luck. It’s almost as grueling a job as our legislators experienced in hashing out the latest federal budget proposal.”

    I just returned from my first trip to Florida in a decade. I suppose I could paraphrase St. Augustine and ask, “Which one of us given the choice between death and moving back to the Tampa Bay Area, wouldn’t shudder, and choose death.” The rural South and the endtimers don’t look so bad to me now.

    I lived in Tampa for longer than I would care to say. There may have been the occasional homeless person before St. Ronnie, but very soon after his election, their numbers bloomed like wild flowers. Some veterans groups tried to determine the percentage of veterans among them and came up with 60%. (They seem to have an advocacy group nowadays as someone is furnishing safety vests with bright colors. I bet that makes their hearts a lot lighter.) Sometimes I think the deficit hawks purposefully skimp on outreach so that our old soldiers will just quietly fade away among the down and out rather than collect on the debt of care we owe them. Who da thunk it?

    Florida is a banana republic now. The impossible has happened. After twelve years of sound Republican fiscal policy, they claim to be in a hell of a mess. “No one could ever have imagined that such a thing was possible.” Time to crank up the free market Libertarian fantasy with the typical Republican bromides.

    I visited a lot of old friends of varying socio-economic levels. Ironically, the two with the hardest row to hoe, one quadriplegic and one with severe post polio syndrome, were the least daunted. A professor, doctor, constitutional lawyer
    and other professionals were the most pissed off and the most disheartened. I guess they can see what’s in store.

    I have it on good authority that the British novelist Alec Waugh was traveling South on Dale Mabry near Kennedy Boulevard in Tampa and remarked to his granddaughter, “This is the ugliest place I have ever seen.” This coming from a man who was a POW in both world wars. That was before there were so many “sin casas” in Tampa.

    It is daunting to imagine where Florida might be later in the reign of Rick Scott, but there we will all be in good time, basking in the Randian freedom of a free and just market, in the United Corporations of America. Who knows? Circumstances may make it necessary to “liberate” Canada and Mexico, so we may have some new job and travel opportunities open to us. Does anyone know how to fish for salmon or grow marijuana?

  8. It’s nice that Obama is going to try and get a tax increase for the wealthy and cut some entitlements, but if he doesn’t go after military spending and the whole boondoggle of the military-industrial complex then he’ll only be playing games to appear like he’s doing something positive. He’s got his press people out there proclaiming how they’ll search “every corner of government” and ‘every thing is on the table” ,but I bet they’ll never find that little inglenook of defense spending.

    So to my mind it’s why bother…You’re not serious to begin with if you don’t tackle the whole federal spending budget as a whole. There are no sacred cows for serious people.

  9. Swami, semi nude chicks beat you up AND you get 50 bucks?
    NIRVANA, bro.
    ‘Makes me want to go under cover, cuz you know some ass hat 30 something frat boy is the “director”.

  10. erinyes .. This ain’t your basic corporate CEO spanking by some super hot babe wearing Nazi regalia. No nirvana here!..Check out the picture on the ST. Pete times of the one guys back showing $25.00 bucks worth of beat down ..It’s really a sick capitalist exploitation of the downtrodden. Typical conservative behavior!

  11. The Ryan plan projects housing prices to miraculously bounce back to to the top of the housing bubble (2006 prices) by year 2015.

    What’s revealing about the state of discourse is the praise been heaped on him by the beltway media and pundits as if Ryan’s “budget tablets” had been handed down by gawd him/herself. Praise the Lord and bless Paul Ryan!

    If you read the comments on that LATimes op-ed you’ll get a real eye opener from many who think Ryan is serious and who blame Obama and the democrats for all that ails America. On the first two pages of comments (click oldest first) there is a guy by the name of clearville2 slapping em down as fast as I could type. That’s how I spent my Saturday morning.

    I’m beginning to suspect that many of the hyper partisan commenters on the republican side in these op eds are placed there by PR firms who work for the Crotch Bros et al. This is also happening in Canada, only the PR firms are being employed by the Federal Government itself using my tax money, especially on articles that concern “energy issues” which in my opinion is major shades of 1930’s Germany.

  12. “I want Republicans to be called the “free lunch and a pony” party”

    I agree but an easier description would be: freeloaders. If the democrats are smart (well we can dream) they will start using this language, freeloaders, short simple something even a dimwitted teabagger can understand.

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