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Republican America « Previous | |Next »
March 19, 2013

An insight into the Republicans vision of a prosperous America comes from Wisconsin Representative, and former vice-presidential candidate, Paul Ryan. It is a roadmap to a minimalist government through a balanced budget that is premised on a fundamental rewrite of the social contract.

The rhetoric of Ryan's economic conservatism is premised on fear about deficits, deficit reduction and fiscal responsibility. He says that:

Unless we change course, we will have a debt crisis. Pressed for cash, the government will take the easy way out: It will crank up the printing presses. The final stage of this intergenerational theft will be the debasement of our currency. Government will cheat us of our just rewards. Our finances will collapse. The economy will stall. The safety net will unravel. And the most vulnerable will suffer.

The only way to prevent this kind of future is the politics of austerity. Ryan proposes $4.6 trillion in spending cuts over ten years, with no increased revenues; dropping the top tax rate from 39.6% to 25%; and higher taxes on low- and middle-income earners to pay for his proposed tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations.

Defence spending remains almost untouched, as does Social Security-- Social Security privatization has been placed on the backburner. The majority of the spending cuts come from cuts to healthcare programs (repealing Obamacare and turning Medicare into vouchers); and cuts to infrastructure, education, research, housing, public health. This shrinks the federal role on priorities like infrastructure and education to a tiny fraction of its current level.

This is no "deficit reduction" plan. It is not about fiscal responsibility. The Republican vision for America is an "expansionary austerity" that starves the government beast' and redistributes income and wealth to the best-off Americans from everyone else. It's the same old vision.

Too much of American taxes now goes to bail outs of banks on Wall Street and that is why the social contract between the liberal state and the middle classes is broken.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 11:34 AM | | Comments (2)
Comments

Comments

Was going to say how dare they preach moral hazard after the bank bailout, but it's covered in the last para.
What they ducked doing, despite the conferences, was introduce things like a Tobin Tax, to keep tabs on money flow sources and destinations; avoided mutual obligation that should have gone with the bail outs.

Paul Krugman’s position is that austerity in response to a Great Recession is a self-destructive, insane policy. A lot of the American media assumes that austerity is the only “serious” policy.