Saturday, May 21, 2011

Ryan's feeble defense of his war on the poor

Paul Ryan writes an op ed in the Christian Science Monitor defending his budget plan against claims it will hurt the poor, but Jonathan Chait in the New Republic demolishes Ryan's arguments -- by offering a few facts. Such as, cuts in low-income programs appear likely to account for at least $2.9 trillion in the Ryan plan, as this. from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, illustrates:

Ryan does, hilariously, argue that he would prevent something terrible happening to funding for the poor. He says:

Mounting debt also threatens our poorest and most vulnerable citizens, because those who depend most on government would be hit hardest by a fiscal crisis. Harsh austerity would be the only course left. A broke government unable to finance its spending commitments would be forced to make indiscriminate cuts affecting current beneficiaries of government programs – without giving them time to prepare or adjust.
The argument is that, if there was a fiscal crisis, it would entail huge and immediate cuts to programs that aid the poor. Therefore we must enact huge, immediate cuts in programs that aid the poor. Oh, and also preserve the Bush tax cuts for top-income earners and cut the rate another ten percentage points. For the sake of the poor.

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