For reasons that are unclear, I have been very busy over the last several weeks. I am hopeful that things will slow down. 🙂
I haven’t had much opportunity to review Paul Ryan’s budget. As you recall, his last budget caused quite a stir. After a cursory review, his budget, which was passed today by the House, is a perfect reflection of Republican ideals. We have very few opportunities to understand and see what people are really like. Politicians have PR men and focus groups to hone their message. This budget is a rare opportunity for us to look into the soul and heart of Republicanism.
Let’s dive in-
“It is so rare in American politics to arrive at a moment in which the debate revolves around the fundamental nature of American democracy and the social contract, but that is exactly where we are today,” said Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, chairman of the House Budget Committee and the architect of the blueprint. “Today’s budget is a vote of confidence for the American experiment.”
In last year’s Ryan budget, the cuts over ten years (fiscal years 2012-2021) totaled $4.5 trillion, of which at least $2.9 trillion — about 65 percent — would come from low-income programs. In Chairman Ryan’s new budget, the cuts (exclusive of the proposed defense spending increases) total $5.3 trillion over ten years (fiscal years 2013-2022), of which at least $3.3 trillion — 62 percent — would come from low-income programs.
In other words, the size of the low-income cuts is a bit larger, while their percentage of the total cuts is a bit smaller because the cuts as a whole are bigger.
Paul Ryan’s latest budget doesn’t just fail to address job creation, itaggressively slows job growth. Against a current policy baseline, the budget cuts discretionary programs by about $120 billion over the next two years and mandatory programs by $284 billion, sucking demand out of the economy when it most needs it and leading to job loss. Using a standard macroeconomic model that is consistent with that used by private- and public-sector forecasters, the shock to aggregate demand from near-term spending cuts would result in roughly 1.3 million jobs lost in 2013 and 2.8 million jobs lost in 2014, or 4.1 million jobs through 2014.*
Oh, and here’s the best part. It isn’t that Paul Ryan is taking money from programs that are actually helping people. No, it isn’t that. It isn’t that there are no Pentagon spending cuts or that his budget gives the Pentagon more money than they asked for. No, that’s nothing. It is that we need to follow the Bush model leading to ruin. We need to give huge tax cuts to the rich, again. It is as if we don’t remember how that worked out the last time. (See economic collapse of 2007.)
The Ryan budget includes a number of specific tax cuts, on top of making the Bush tax cuts permanent. All of its new tax cuts are both expensive and tilted toward high-income households. It would cut the top individual tax rate to 25 percent, the lowest level since the Hoover Administration more than 80 years ago. It would cut the corporate rate to 25 percent and eliminate both the Alternative Minimum Tax and the Affordable Care Act’s increase in the Medicare tax for high-income people.
A new TPC analysis finds that people with incomes above $1 million would receive a $265,000 average annual tax cut just from the new Ryan proposals (i.e., not counting what they would also receive from extension of the Bush tax cuts). Middle-income taxpayers — those with incomes between $50,000 and $75,000 — would receive $1,045, on average.
This is 100% Republicanism. If you don’t have money, if you are out of a job, sorry. We got nothing for ya except contempt.