by John Brian Shannon
My comment on Professor Krugman’s article begins.
When 5 Minus 4 Equals 10: Republican deficit cutting
First off, let me say that I like Paul Ryan. Hey, I like Mitt Romney too.
I liked his dad, the great George Romney even more – a true and honourable captain of industry who represented American corporations with class and charisma. Now there was a man who should have been a two-term President.
The proof is in the pudding as they say and independent groups like the non-partisan Tax Policy Center have declared that the Paul Ryan spending cut and tax cut budget will result in a budget deficit $2.5 trillion dollars higher than the one President Obama’s team is promoting.
And that is after essentially dumping Medicaid onto the states (many of which can’t afford their current spending programs, let alone additional spending) and dramatic cuts to the food stamp program (meaning fewer American’s will be able to eat) and cuts to education funding (meaning fewer American’s will be able to attend college).
Not only spending cuts, but tax cuts for America’s highest income-earners and their sponsor corporations. All of whom, are just doing fine, thank you very much, even without the proposed Ryan cuts!
The Paul Ryan budget plan is to cut, cut, cut — but spend even more, with a total of $4.3 trillion dollars of cuts over the next decade — and still the budget deficit will zoom $2.5 trillion deeper into the red than the Obama budget.
How can $4.3 trillion dollars of spending cuts and tax cuts phased in over the next ten years, result in an unsustainable budget deficit of $2.5 trillion dollars? How can offloading Medicaid onto nearly insolvent states help those Americans who depend on it? How can dramatic cuts to the food stamp program not correspondingly increase the property theft crime rate? And how do tax cuts to wealthy Americans and American corporations help the middle class, not to mention removing grants for more kids to attend college?
We only need to look at the utterly predictable results of this economic plan, to accurately judge it’s merits.
1) Dumping Medicaid onto the states, many of which are near-insolvent already, would have the effect of making some of them fully insolvent. It would push other states which are just managing to hang on, to near-insolvency. Strong states would become weaker. How does this benefit the United States of America?
2) Dramatic cuts to the federal food stamp program in an effort to cut spending, will simply result in greater federal law enforcement spending as many thousands of hungry Americans turn to theft, to be able to eat every day of the year. I’ll just bet that the FBI and city and state police forces don’t love this Paul Ryan plan.
3) When fewer Americans can attend college, correspondingly more people will be entering the workforce with a lower level of education. How will the ‘dumbing down’ of America help the nation?
4) For those Americans in the top tax brackets and for many American corporations, tax cuts for them means a further concentration of wealth for 1% of U.S. citizens, a lower percentage of wealth for the middle class to share and even less for the lowest income Americans. What egalitarian society?
5) A substantially larger budget deficit allows more control over American policy by those financing American federal debt. For the foreseeable future, China (you know, that big, booming country that Republicans like to poke with a sharp stick at every opportunity) will be financing U.S. federal deficits and accumulated debt. As budget deficits and debt soar in America, the number of nations which can step-up to service that debt drops exponentially. The day is coming when China will be the only nation with the wherewithal to float the U.S. economy — IF they choose to do so.
Paul Ryan’s economic platform would weaken individual U.S. states, increase societal class friction, increase disparity in income and education, increase the national crime rate and allow more Chinese government say in U.S. policy.
If U.S. Republicans are America’s friends, who needs enemies?
John Brian Shannon
- An Unserious Man (nytimes.com)
- Ryan budget would hurt poor and elderly, experts say (kansascity.com)
- Paul Krugman: An Unserious Man (economistsview.typepad.com)
ABOUT JOHN BRIAN SHANNON
I write about green energy, sustainable development and economics. My blogs appear in the Arabian Gazette, EcoPoint, EnergyBoom, Huffington Post, United Nations Development Programme, WACSI — and other quality publications.
“It is important to assist all levels of government and the business community to find sustainable ways forward for industry and consumers.”