Why I Oppose Ryan 10-Year Plan
While many conservatives and Republicans are holding up Rep. Paul Ryan's 10-year plan as the model for deficit reduction and a return to constitutionally limited government, I see it as capitulation to Washington business as usual.
First of all, America doesn't need another 10-year plan to restore economic prosperity and responsible government. Washington needs to put the brakes on all borrowing now and start living within its means today — not 10 years from now.
The old Soviet Union, which America is more and more resembling, was famous for its five-year plans — which never quite lived up to their rosy projections for turning around the command-and-control economy of that model tyranny.
A 10-year plan in America is meaningless because it gives the opportunity for five new Congresses and three new presidents to renege, reverse course and change priorities.
Clearly, a Congress can only be responsible for itself — not future Congresses. Therefore, the Ryan plan represents little more than a statement of good intentions for the future. What it means for the next two years is all that really counts.
Worse yet, the Ryan plan concedes the need to raise the deficit this year — to continue the insane and irresponsible borrowing that is the fundamental crisis America faces.
In the name of pragmatic politics and compromise, the Republicans are, in effect, despite many good suggestions for reforms in the future, conceding business as usual right now.
There is another fatal flaw in the Ryan plan. Pragmatically, it doesn't have a ghost of a chance of being accepted by the Democratic Senate or Barack Obama. It's dead on arrival politically.
So what is the alternative to the Ryan plan? There are only two things Republicans can do in the next two years that can precipitate a radical change of direction in the culture of Washington.
— They can, without any help from Democrats, veto any effort to raise the debt limit. The Republican House majority can do this without any compromises, without any 10-year plans, without a single Democratic vote in either house. This would instantly force Washington to start living within its means, without any ability to borrow more. This would force cuts and reforms much more dramatic than anything included in the Ryan plan. And it would do so without risk of default because there is plenty of revenue (trillions) to service the debt and avoid default on loan obligations, which amount to approximately $200 billion annually.
— Without any help from Democrats, they can veto any tax increases, since both houses of Congress would be needed to approve them.
Can I ask a simple question? What's wrong with this plan?
Why do members of the Republican House leadership insist on working with Democrats who have no interest in changing the direction of government in Washington? Republicans can do all that is necessary to make this happen right now by themselves.
I'm gratified that other loud voices — like those of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Michael Savage — have all gotten on board with the Farah plan, otherwise known as the "No More Red Ink" campaign.
It is quite literally the only thing Republicans can do this year to live up to the promises they made to regain control of the House in November.
Why Republicans insist on working with Democrats who only want to spend more is beyond me. Why would any Republicans give Obama permission to spend more this year and next year? Does that make sense?
The American people, according to every poll on the subject, are opposed to more borrowing. Even a majority of Democratic voters oppose raising the debt limit.
If Republicans don't take the only action they can take to reverse course, they will be back out in the political wilderness next year.
To find out more about Joseph Farah and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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