I just don’t understand why Ron Wyden thought working with Paul Ryan would be a good idea. I like Wyden generally, and he is a real liberal and progressive, but there’s just no working with a guy who says stuff like this:
House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) took direct aim at President Barack Obama in a speech Wednesday morning, accusing him of “preying on the emotions of fear, envy and resentment” as he travels the country to sell his jobs plan.
In a speech at the Heritage Foundation, Ryan said Obama’s method of rallying public support for his $447 billion jobs package was “sowing social unrest and class resentment” and could be “just as damaging as his misguided policies.”
“Instead of working together where we agree, the president has opted for divisive rhetoric and the broken politics of the past,” Ryan said…. Ryan accused Obama of using “class-based rhetoric” in his re-election campaign. Obama’s tactics, he said, make “America weaker, not stronger.”
“Instead of appealing to the hope and optimism that were the hallmarks of his first campaign, he has launched his second campaign by preying on the emotions of fear, envy, and resentment,” Ryan said. [...]
Indeed, in almost every sense, Ryan says, Obama has been “fundamentally un-presidential” throughout the summer, “dragging his feet, failing to address the looming debt crisis — which he knows is coming — because he remains committed to his ideology.”
“This is, unfortunately, the way he operates,” Ryan says. “This is his pattern of behavior, this is his personality. For the next 18 months, it will probably be like this. It’ll be in-your-face class warfare, with bitter appeals to envy, fear, and anxiety, plus the demonization of the other side’s motives.”
There are criticisms to be made of Obama, but this is just paranoid raving that goes far beyond the norm. Yes, the Paul Ryan who objected to President Obama’s dastardly plans of…traveling around the country and talking to voters as the practical equivalent of the Bolshevik Revolution is definitely the person to work with here. What a dope. Why, Wyden? Why legitimize a toxic person like this?
I can always depend upon Jon Chait to put it into context:
What Ryan gets is pretty obvious. He has found a way to protect Mitt Romney. Ryan is the author of a radical House budget that, among other things, would transform Medicare into private vouchers, and ratchet down their value over time to the point where they covered a small fraction of the cost of health insurance. It’s wildly unpopular. Unfortunately for Republicans, Mitt Romney found himself in the position last week of embracing Ryan’s deadly unpopular plan, to the glee of Democrats. (Why did Romney do this? Because he needed a line of attack on Newt Gingrich, who had assailed Ryan’s idea as “right-wing social engineering.”) [...]
So, yes, from an intellectual standpoint, Wyden is winning powerful concessions from Ryan. But is that really worth anything? Ryan can simply continue to pursue his campaign for less government everywhere. If he can turn single-payer for the elderly into subsidized private insurance, he will. If he can turn subsidized private insurance for the nonelderly into you’re-on-you’re-own, he’ll do that, too. If at some future point, Ryan needs to argue that regulated, subsidized private insurance exchanges are an unconstitutional monstrosity in order to advance that argument, and somebody points out that he once endorsed a plan just like that for Medicare, is that going to stop him?
Ryan–Wyden, if properly designed, is not a horrible idea, and denunciations by the Obama administration and leading Democrats are way over the top. It’s the sort of compromise you could live with if you got something for it – say, the GOP abandoning its crazed revenge campaign to sabotage the Affordable Care Act. But it’s hard to avoid the conclusion that Ryan’s plan here is to help Romney get elected and then pass the Ryan plan. And then poor Ron Wyden can issue a press release expressing his disappointment that his friend Ryan couldn’t work together with him in a bipartisan fashion.
Finally, somewhere for my liberal anger to go that isn’t Republicans or Obama! But this is related in kind to Obama’s failures this year. Obama and Wyden are both policy wonks. That affects how they see things and how they act. When Republicans demanded unprecedented concessions in exchange for raising the debt limit, Obama’s response wasn’t indignant fury that Congress was enacting a power grab and denying him what presidents have gotten with no fuss for over a century. Instead he figured, hey, we both want a deal, let’s just do this! The deal is what excited Obama, not the politics. Similarly, Wyden is committed to creating a healthcare system that is basically the individual market in the Affordable Care Act, but for everyone. That was the big idea of Wyden-Bennett, his old plan. How he got involved with Paul Ryan I do not know. But it’s the same basic mistake: Wyden is excited about the possibilities of policy without necessarily thinking through the politics. Wyden-Bennett was pie in the sky because the biggest obstacle to universal healthcare is that people don’t want to lose what they have. W-B ensured they would. Wyden-Ryan might be worth discussion if Wyden were partnering with literally any other Republican in Congress. That the hackish and deceptive Ryan is the partner is a big clue. Might as well work with Glenn Beck. At least he’s honest about his delusions.
John Cole is right. Being a Democrat is just the worst.
- Give ‘em the boot, you know I’m a radical: Balloon Juice
- It’s not fair to deny me of the cross I bear that you gave to me: Balloon Juice
- Page 18 - Christian Chat Rooms & Forums: "LGBT RIGHTS"
- Page 4: The Most Powerful Man In The Free World
- 10 Right-Wing Lies That Owned Political Discourse In 2013. -S-T-L-A-L-: 30;] Personhood” has been given by a...
Wine Labels2012 Election Abortion Barack Obama Bullshit Bush Christianity Congress Conservatives Corruption Debt Ceiling Democrats Economy Fail Foreign Policy Fox News Gay Marriage Hatred Health Care Ignorance Insanity Law LGBT Issues Libertarianism Lies Media Mitt Romney Music Policy Polls Quotes Racism Rebuttals Recession Republicans Right Wing Sarah Palin Scandal Stupidity Teabaggers Torture Truth Video War Crimes War on Drugs War on Terror
- Just Say No (1)
- Metavirus: i don’t understand how these reporters get enough oxygen to stay alive, considering that...
- Ralph Nader Is Still Politically Stupid (1)
- Give ‘em the boot, you know I’m a radical: 30;] But there was one thing they were wrong about: Ralph...
- Big Win For Forces Of Tolerance In California (2)
- Shocking To No One (1)
- Metavirus: what an f’ing toolbox
- Massive Illogic (5)
- Mark Schumaker: This is just another example of the GOP wasting money while selling lies, hate and fear. None of...
- Metavirus: Fuck these fucking fucks. I would probably excuse ignorant flaming bullshit like this in the 90s as just...
- Matmos: Idaho’s New Anti-Gay Bill: Doctors and Teachers Can Turn Away Gays. Although the article has the following...
- Just Say No (1)
- Fox News Has a First Amendment Right to Lie – Updated
- Massive Illogic
- Oregon Ducks Win First Rose Bowl Since 1917
- Ralph Nader Is Still Politically Stupid
- Quote of the Day: Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged
- Exploring How Identical Twins Can Have Different Sexual…
- TownHall’s List Of Racist Liberal Quotes As Pathetic…
- Oh, Come ON! You Stereotypical Gays.
- Valentine for Freep
- March 2014 (1)
- February 2014 (33)
- January 2014 (31)
- December 2013 (25)
- November 2013 (32)
- October 2013 (57)
- September 2013 (32)
- August 2013 (57)
- July 2013 (56)
- June 2013 (44)
- May 2013 (42)
- April 2013 (41)
- March 2013 (66)
- February 2013 (42)
- January 2013 (74)
- December 2012 (67)
- November 2012 (44)
- October 2012 (51)
- September 2012 (35)
- August 2012 (50)
- July 2012 (36)
- June 2012 (35)
- May 2012 (51)
- April 2012 (42)
- March 2012 (64)
- February 2012 (85)
- January 2012 (79)
- December 2011 (68)
- November 2011 (76)
- October 2011 (67)
- September 2011 (55)
- August 2011 (53)
- July 2011 (44)
- June 2011 (71)
- May 2011 (103)
- April 2011 (107)
- March 2011 (120)
- February 2011 (124)
- January 2011 (82)
- December 2010 (97)
- November 2010 (92)
- October 2010 (93)
- September 2010 (80)
- August 2010 (44)
- July 2010 (63)
- June 2010 (33)
- May 2010 (60)
- April 2010 (34)
- March 2010 (50)
- February 2010 (66)
- January 2010 (67)
- December 2009 (72)
- November 2009 (78)
- October 2009 (91)
- September 2009 (75)
- August 2009 (105)
- July 2009 (81)
- June 2009 (178)
- May 2009 (152)
- April 2009 (147)
- March 2009 (86)
- February 2009 (52)
- January 2009 (118)
- December 2008 (18)