Dean Baker Gut Punches the Ryan Medicare Plan

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Dean_Baker.jpgIt’s a pdf — and it’s really wonky — but the tenacious numbers cruncher Dean Baker, has written up a serious study of the economic impact of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s plans for Medicare.
The CEPR paper, titled “The Ryan Medicare Plan: Winners and Losers” was co-written by Dean Baker and David Rosnick.
In short, he shows that the rising costs of health care and the diminishing coverage from the government for elders will capsize the savings of most elders across the country — while generating huge transfers to health care providers and insurers.
The conclusion of the Baker-Rosnick paper:

This paper shows the implication of the CBO analysis of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s plan for overhauling the Medicare system. According to the CBO analysis, rising health care costs will quickly make a Medicare equivalent plan unaffordable to most beneficiaries. Also, since costs rise as beneficiaries age, a Medicare equivalent plan will become less affordable to the same beneficiary as she gets older. Finally, this plan implies a huge transfer of income from beneficiaries to health care providers and insurers, since the cost of delivering the same quality care will be substantially higher under Representative Ryan’s plan than under the existing Medicare system.

Well worth reading in full.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

44 comments on “Dean Baker Gut Punches the Ryan Medicare Plan

  1. Tank Man says:

    “Everywhere money in transferred in our society form one
    hand to another, including from a younger current worker to
    an older former worker, without some financial middleman
    taking a cut, represents nothing but a lost opportunity to
    these predators.”
    Families Fight VA over Control of Veterans Benefits. VA
    turns over 110K+ accounts valued at $3.2B to Trustees. In
    addition to not being responsive to Vets and their families,
    they are making a 4% commission. American institutions are
    corrupt and rotten to the very core.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/08/us/08vets.html?hp

    Reply

  2. questions says:

    Prosser JKlo on second read — Waukesha County — clerk error, 7000 vote net swing to Prosser.
    Maybe someone else in the state also didn’t learn place value and indeed there’s something good lurking.
    But somehow, I think not.
    What if we really have to play out, to total ruination, the libertarian fantasy?
    What if we cut taxes and save a few thousand bucks or less for most of us, and we get no services, and we have to buckle down and cope with significantly lesser lives while our overlords lord it over us?
    And what if we do this with the approval and general complacency of middle class suburban white people who will suffer all the more because they don’t even begin to know how hard life is without services?
    It boggles the mind.
    What if we all become Mississippi, or worse?

    Reply

  3. questions says:

    The Prosser-JKlo race is totally up in the air. Kos has a running tally in the comment sections of various posts, and there seems to be an entire municipality that never reported any votes or something and it may swing the entire election.
    That would be fuckin’ ugly. But it’s so close to 50/50 that things like this are sadly to be expected.
    The level of energy the [Wonkette] right would get, the level of legitimacy that the [Wonkette] Paul Ryan would feel over this …. too painful to bear.
    On the other hand, maybe the recalls work their magic and the whole state legislature switches.
    And as many have noted, the fact is that Prosser was miles and miles ahead, has a more mellifluous name, and was incumbent in a seat for life…. Hard to dump someone from that, and JKlo made it most of the way there, if not all the way.
    But, gack, I don’t want to live in a nation of Prossers and the Kochs that support them. It’s a truly ugly world these people inhabit. Truly ugly.

    Reply

  4. Tank Man says:

    “…the flow of some extra retirement funds out of Treasuries and into Wall St. where fees and bad investment decisions will munch down the bulk of the money…”
    Bing! The real catalyst for the attacks on SS are the blood sucking vampire squids on Wall St. They have a keen eye for a hustle when they see one. Just another opportunity to leverage that great investment they’ve made in their gov’t lackeys to swindle the masses and make a little coin.

    Reply

  5. JohnH says:

    duh-oh! “our health care system was completely and utterly unprepared to respond to a nuclear emergency.” It’s also utterly unprepared to deal with Americans’ other severe health needs. Contact with the medical system is the third leading cause of death in America after cancer and heart attacks. Hospital visits are particularly prone to end in death due to physician errors and system errors.

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  6. Carroll says:

    A pox on them all…. the ‘liberals’, the ‘progressives’, the ‘conservatives’, the ‘tea-baggers’, the ‘libertarians’…
    All of them are idiotic children…the whining bleeding heart liberals, the foot stomping we want our nanny state progressives, the elite conservatives who think the little people wouldn’t know what to do with money if they had any, the red neck bulls in the china shop tea baggers and the retarded libertarian individualists, who would be the first ones demanding some kind of government intervention if they were in trouble.
    Ah yes, I hope all of them cling to their ideologies and me-ism and extremes and political Stepford memberships……then I will get my wish.
    That it all ..all of it…collapses on their heads.

    Reply

  7. PissedOffAmerican says:

    In 2003 a report was issued, revealing that our health care system was completely and utterly unprepared to respond to a nuclear emergency.
    Since that time, we have seen the Department of Homeland Security impose draconian search measures at our airports. Invasions of privacy by our government have been justified and implemented. War on three fronts. All of this justified by these lying money sucking pieces of shit in DC waving the prospect of a “dirty bomb” in our faces, and blathering on about what a danger a nuclear Iran would be. Has there ever been a more egregious and dishonest con-job than this racket known as “Homeland Security” and the “War on Terrorism”???
    Well, what has changed since that 2003 report??? Its gotten WORSE. We are less prepared now than we were then…..
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/2011/04/07/AF6ZSavC_story.html?wprss=rss_homepage
    So, uh, what have these fuckers done with TRILLIONS of our dollars if not spent it on actually making us safer? Not much, it seems. Except of course committing to actions that MAKE people want to set off a dirt bomb in one of our urban centers. Or make countries such as Iran WANT a nuclear weapons program so they can deter these pieces of shit like Bush or Obama from invading them.
    You people see the algae in DC doing anything today that is actually going to impact you in a POSITIVE manner? Does this mealy mouthed little fuckin’ wimp Reid personify someone you want “respresenting” you?? Or what about this vain tanned smug asshole Boehner??? You want that greasy posturing elitist determining policy for you?
    Three fuckin’ wars, trillions of dollars spent, a country on the verge of economic collapse, and these pathetic elitist pricks bicker like schoolgirls for political gain, and gut the nation’s coffers to the benefit of the special interest groups they’re whoring themselves to.
    What the hell do these elitist pieces of shit know about late rent, a twenty year old vehicle, an unpaid doctor bill, the impossibility of sending a child to college or providing little Jimmy or Sally with health insurance??
    Are you sickened when you see this tanned bag of excrement Boehner declaring “I feel your pain” on CNN, or view the squeaky little pissant Reid on MSNBC trying in vain to employ his truant gonads at anything resembling political courage and true representation?? If not, you should be. This whole dog and pony show is an embarrassment, a pathetic display of partisan grandstanding and disfunctional governance.
    FUCK ‘EM ALL. They sure as hell don’t represent me, or anyone else I know. Except, of course, some of my customers, huge Bakersfield oil money, and agri-biz megabucksters.
    Any of you see Los Angeles in the fifties and sixties? Well, if so, it musta been on a day the Santa Anas were blowing. So don’t fuckin’ tell me we don’t need an agency like what the EPA used to be, responsibly regulating emissions and minding our environment.
    And what the hell does Planned Parenthood have to do with the “federal government funding abortions”??? Thats simply a lie. Planned Parenthood does not fund abortions.
    Lying scumbags. Are we really so naive we think that these loathsome criminals can restore this nation into something to be proud of?

    Reply

  8. DakotabornKansan says:

    Barack Hoover Obama says Paul Ryan has good ideas

    Reply

  9. questions says:

    Dan,
    Going along with what you put down so clearly, in fact what the Repubs want is for Dan’s parents to be supported by Dan Bonds, for questions’s parents to be supported by questions bonds and so on.
    The goal of tying individuals to their own fates is the goal of removing any scrap of “moral hazard” from individuals. If you don’t save enough for your own retirement, then it’s your problem. Either your kids will support you, or you’ll work til you drop, or you’ll live in penury, homeless, cold, and ready to drop in the streets. Doesn’t matter anything else. There’s some sense that it’s more humane somehow to leave people to their own relationship with their own maker/destroyer than to intervene by helping.
    What motivates many on the right truly seems to be an Ayn Randian feeling that I, this egoic, self-centered subject, am weighed down by the mediocrity of all the other disgusting humanity and flesh around me. I, this egoic, self-centered subject, can thrive only by divorcing myself from the file flesh of the other and getting on with my own egoic, self-centered projects.
    What teenager doesn’t think this way? What libertarian doesn’t think this way? What suburban white-flight anxiety wreck doesn’t think this way?
    The basic result of dumping SoSec will be the increase in the number of “Dan Bonds” in the world, the increase in the number of impoverished and malnourished elderly in the world, the flow of some extra retirement funds out of Treasuries and into Wall St. where fees and bad investment decisions will munch down the bulk of the money, leaving small numbers of people with larger pools than SoSec might have provided — but it’s a pretty big risk to dump your whole savings from a life of work onto Wall St.
    The fantasy underlying the program needs to be pointed out again and again and again.
    People feel that being responsible for other people is too heavy a burden to bear, and they seem to think that they won’t have to bear the (obese) weight of others if we just get rid of the government.
    Paul Ryan doesn’t think in terms of “Paul Bonds” while he’s paying 50 grand a year for college for one of his kids, trying to save for his own retirement, dealing with his underwater house in Janesville (or wherever he lives), and buying a new car because the 16 year old smacked the last one into a wall or a post or a wind mill.
    Paul Ryan doesn’t think. He reacts like a typical Randian, and he’s got a lot of supporters because it’s a great fantasy, and it works when you’re 16! You can tell your parents to fuck off, to go to hell, to destroy themselves, you can “divorce” the fucking ‘rents, you can HATE them for all their stupid ways…and they will still bail you out of jail, they will still leave dinner out for you, they will do your laundry, drive you to school, remind you to practice piano for a recital, pay for your sky diving lessons, buy you 200 dollar sneakers….And at the end of every day, they will still love you.
    THAT is what Paul Ryan thinks the world is about.
    He’s 16, frozen in adolescence, sure that when he fucks up and is selfish, he’ll be bailed out, but man alive, he doesn’t think anyone else exists. And what a great fantasy it is. Privilege and no responsibility. Literally unconditional love met with personal spite.
    Ayn Rand must be deposited on the ash heap of history.
    But it can’t really happen that way because every adult spends a full calendar year as a 16 year old, and for some of us, that is one fucking great year of egoic, self-centered subjectivity, and we cannot let it go and join the world.

    Reply

  10. Dan Kervick says:

    How Social Security works always comes up during these big budget brouhahas, and a lot of misconceptions are passed around. Here

    Reply

  11. questions says:

    POA, thanks! I’ll get to the link soon.
    Linda, not quite the same actually.
    It’s one thing to set up exchanges for insurance for younger healthier people. They can find policies that, together with adequate subsidies and community rating, should work for many people, though likely not for absolutely everyone.
    To set up exchanges for OLD SICK people, and to limit the subsidy to an overly low cap, is something entirely different.
    There are old people whose medical expenses will be hundreds of thousands of dollars. They are basically uninsurable. Their expenses simply have to be subsidized, shared over large numbers of people, or they have to die.
    There are healthier old people who aren’t going to want to share the expenses of their diseased compatriots, and therein lies the problem.
    We all have to pay in, and share, and guarantee coverage for a vast array of medical procedures because that’s the only way we can guarantee that we, too, will be covered should we suddenly get a nasty bit of news from a doc.
    What Ryan is doing is taking one of the more expensive and hard to insure populations and saying to them “you’re on your own.”
    What the Obamacare version does is to take a much cheaper to insure population, grant it guaranteed issue, income-based subsidies, and community rating, and says to that population, “Here’s a long list of insurers. See what works for you, and we’ll help you pay for it on an income-based subsidy system” — note it’s not a voucher with a max out value.
    These are very different populations, very different medical needs, and to be honest, largely different abilities to cope with a website sign up process. And very different subsidy mechanisms, to boot.
    ************
    Best news in ages — Bloomberg’s education chief is out after 3 months!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    What a [Wonkette] he is to have thought that a publishing industry exec could run a city school system. The article in the NYT has the following hilarity:
    “Aides complained that she required intensive tutorials on every aspect of education policy. ”
    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/07/cathie-black-is-out-as-chancellor/?hp
    FUCKING HILARIOUS.
    I hope they made her take a bunch of number 2 pencil bubble form standardized high stakes tests on every aspect of education policy she was in charge of after they lectured at her intensively! And I hope Bloomberg loses his job because one of his “students” FUCKED UP on the BIG TEST!!!!!!
    Could we just realize that having a billion or more dollars is proof of no ability save that of ripping off money from others?!
    Could we, please?!

    Reply

  12. DakotabornKansan says:

    Return of Hoovervilles?
    Obama was initially compared with Franklin Roosevelt. Today he is looking more and more like Barack Hoover Obama.
    An idea for an American Spring?

    Reply

  13. DonS says:

    “Don S, did you ask people in France what they think of our health care system compared to their system? ” (Linda)
    Yes I did. What with some language difficulties, terminology difficulties, etc., we didn’t get too far although I do not think the concept that private many individuals are totally responsible for cost, either of insurance, or of medical bills, or both, is one I was successful in conveying. That is, don’t think the few I talked with could conceive that the government could be totally out of the loop and, of course, I (and most sentient beings) are probably far from understanding the realities of medical cost financing anyway, so we couldn’t get very far in discussion.
    One conversation with a Canadian couple whoe have basically been living full time in France (while doing fabulous work building a house next to where we were staying — I mean he, who is a designer, sculptor, retried teacher, is doing it by hand, mostly in tile, stone, recycled ancient pillars, and concrete), was interesting. They flew under the radar in France all those years, but figured it was time to get legal what with aging and some emerging medical needs — they want coverage availability in both places (basically still pay their taxes to Canada). They are now allowed to buy into the French system for what they consider the fabulously expensive rate of about $8000cdn for both of them. That does sound expensive, when you consider the cost of Medicare contribution by US seniors — maybe around $1500 per individual annually, to the extent of whatever coverage that provides. But considering that they are buying in cold — with no prior “contributions” to the system throughout a working life — it doesn’t sound too bad. FWIW, they had no complaints about the Canadian system.
    [quirky captcha watch: 2vzzzz]

    Reply

  14. Kathleen says:

    Chris Matthews did a segment on the Ryan cuts medicare and increases tax cuts for the wealthy piece last night.
    Think people will be interested in what you tube is up to

    Reply

  15. Linda says:

    Don Bacon is correct. Obviously Ryan plan is terrible for Medicare, Medicaid, and all health care, but everyone should be aware that ObamaCare is merely Ryan Plan Lite. Both Republicans and Democrats are owned by and sold out to Big Pharma and big insurers. The only way to reduce and control health care costs is to have single payer and a system that is primarily non-profit.
    Don S, did you ask people in France what they think of our health care system compared to their system?

    Reply

  16. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Ahem. Not so sure I appreciate the notoriety that associates me with kneepads.
    Its disheartening seeing these two parties of worthless whores posturing so shamelessly while they gut benefits for the poor, the ill, and the elderly.
    This piece of shit Boehner has more money in tanning bed time than I’ve got in a lifetime of dental care.
    The east coast of Japan just had a 7.4 a few moments ago. Chiapas, Mexico just had a 6.5. There is definitely some plate realignment going on. Its a good thing we are immune to major earthquakes here on the West Coast of North America, so our politicians can devote their time to important stuff, like giving us working stiffs a good un-lubricated ass reaming.
    Meanwhile, the clocks on San Onofre’s and Diablo’s walls tick tock their way into the future, aging, aging, aging…
    Coupla billion in on Libya now. Feinstien Inc. and associates must be ecstatic. Keeps them bombs comin’, baby.
    Noticed another big ‘ol pothole has sprung up on the 58 just east of the Keene offramp. A real monster. Travel the slow lane at your own risk, and watch out for those big rigs swerving to avoid it.
    Patience, people, we’ll get around to fixing this stuff after we get done buyin’ latkes, white phosphorous, and free health care for all them Israelites.

    Reply

  17. DakotabornKansan says:

    Get your kneepads out

    Reply

  18. DakotabornKansan says:
  19. DonS says:

    I printed out the Baker piece — and I wish I had had it to read on my plane flight yesterday.
    One of the things I pretty much universally heard in France were positive attributions about Obama — e.g., you come from “Obamaland” (versus the despised “Bush”) — from a several of black French guys, and others (they don’t seem to think much of Sarkozy; think he is swaggering in Lybia to boost his image). Most seemed a bit surprised at my less-than-enthusiastic reading of Obama. I conclude we commenters are far more tuned into the nuances of the Obama charade than the average, European or otherwise.
    I might say the same for commenters pretty precise disgust with the policy vacuum, or travesty, of both R’s and D’s, as opposed to the mostly political/culture psychological resonance of our fellow citizens. Or something like that (I’m still a bit jet lagged)
    Just talked with our daughter — a budget type with federal agency, who just got out of a meeting of managers — and reports chaos and frustration at what ‘our Congress’ is about to do in our name. I don’t care what your position is on the federal government being too large or too small, there are many hard working people trying to do a job. And the Congress apparently sees it their job to do political grandstanding instead. Will they suspend their own paychecks, travel, etc.? Fucked up.

    Reply

  20. questions says:

    American (!!??) Spring:
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/04/07/964307/-%28Updated%29-Protesters-Occupy-Wa-State-Capitol,-Major-Labor-Rally-Friday
    If the semi-left can speak with a single pro-labor anti-Ryan anti-Randian commonsense voice, if the semi-left blogosphere can speak with a single well-informed clear voice that opposes the Ryanization of America, then maybe we’ll have our own Spring movement as a sustained, electoral-based, policy-oriented pushback against the oligarchy and the laziness of policy action in Congress.
    If we force Obama to be the Obama we want, if we speak in a unified, respectful [Wonkette] the other party tone, we may see some worthy policy output.
    This is community organization 101, and it’s what we should be doing.
    Good on Steve for the occasional econ posts. There should be more so that the FP world and the econ world and the policy world all line up for rational thought.

    Reply

  21. DakotabornKansan says:

    Drowning in the bathtub

    Reply

  22. DakotabornKansan says:

    Reverse-Robin-Hood

    Reply

  23. JohnH says:

    Brigid–yes the GOP is the party of capital, for capital and by capital. Capital is their god. People with capital their patrons.
    The difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Republicans do whatever their capital-rich sponsors want; Democrats “agonize” before they do whatever their capital-rich sponsors want.
    Democrats can’t respond effectively to Ryan’s proposals because they feed from the same trough as Republicans.

    Reply

  24. Don Bacon says:

    Obama stiffed progressives when he doubled up on war, went for a mandated commercial medical insurance plan and (via Clinton) proposed a large expansion in foreign aid.
    The Ryan FY2012 budget doesn’t cut war spending much, would continue Obamacare for people as they age and cuts foreign aid drastically.
    Who in the donkey party is going to fight against these proposals? Nobody, especially not Mr. Change you can’t believe in. They’ve got their kneepads out (thinking of POA).

    Reply

  25. JohnH says:

    Stephanie Kelton is correct. What gets lost is that the result of declining surpluses of the trust funds, which were “borrowed” for war, is that the warmongers are going to have to come up with new sources of funding for their adventures. Their solution? Gut Social Security and Medicare so that they once again generate surpluses that can be used for war. Non-entitlement budget deficits are truly gigantic. Entitlement deficits, not so much.

    Reply

  26. Brigid says:

    So, when you boil it down, the GOP is really about decreasing taxes for rich individuals and corporations while dismantling the paltry safety net we have, justified by the lie of fiscal conservatism. The CBO unmasks this pathetic deception. And the GOP has now framed the next election to be a referendum on their plan to kill Medicare and give more tax breaks to people who don’t need them. Even Koch Industries can’t make that sale. The Democratic response should be a simple one, expand Medicare to include everyone who wants it (thereby controlling medical costs and bringing universal coverage), and increase taxes for the wealthiest as a way of curing our deficit problem.

    Reply

  27. Dan Kervick says:

    Stephanie Kelton corrects some common misconceptions about government trust funds and their solvency:
    http://neweconomicperspectives.blogspot.com/2011/04/4-trust-fund-3-problems-why-is-other.html

    Reply

  28. JohnH says:

    Philip Girardi gut punches “humanitarian” interventions, which are a major source of the deficit: “Many countries are not shy about massacring civilians. The United States has itself killed tens of thousands of them in Iraq and Afghanistan…By any metric Israel should be attacked first to prevent massacres of civilians as it has killed thousands of Arabs in internationally recognized war crimes carried out in Lebanon and Gaza…Both Republican and Democratic doctrines should be rejected because experience suggests that they do not save lives anywhere, quite the contrary, and each unfortunate overseas adventure only represents a new burden that has to be borne with no discernible gain for the American people.”
    http://original.antiwar.com/giraldi/2011/04/06/humanitarian-interventionism-by-the-numbers/

    Reply

  29. Joe says:

    Surely nobody can be surprised that Republicans are trying to attack main street in order to help Wall Street. Republicans don’t give a damn about the poor, middle class, or elderly. They only care about the wealthy, big corportions, and Wall Streeth.
    If Republicans had their way, the U.S. would be a third world slave nation. It already is to a certain extent.

    Reply

  30. questions says:

    Mike Konczal on more things to be found in Ryan’s world (h/t nakedcapitalism):
    http://www.newdeal20.org/2011/04/06/why-is-paul-ryans-budget-trying-to-dismantle-financial-reform-40853/
    This one focuses on “living wills” — which would seem to be documents that spell out how the feds are to take down TBTF banks. Banks don’t like writing their wills for whatever reason. Fear of mortality? The cost involved? The possibility that they have to reckon with not being bailed out?
    And apparently Paul Ryan is happy to help, with his budget plan.
    We should focus not just on the health care aspects, but on all aspects of his document.
    From the link:
    “The GOP

    Reply

  31. DakotabornKansan says:

    A big thank you to Steve Clemons for bringing attention to Dean Baker.
    It

    Reply

  32. Dan Kervick says:

    Don’s numbers appear to come from a Wall Street journal article by Stephen Moore. And Moore in turn appears to have relied on numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
    ftp://ftp.bls.gov/pub/suppl/empsit.ceseeb1.txt
    For some reason Don thinks a measure of the size of government should be based on comparing the size of the government sector to the size of the manufacturing sector. But the manufacturing sector contains only a fraction of our total private sector workforce. When you look at the government sector workforce, and compare it to the size of the total workforce involved in both goods-producing and service-providing, you see that the percentage of the American workforce employed by government in 1961 was 9.7%, and the percentage in 2010 was 9.3%. So government is not getting bigger.

    Reply

  33. Don Bacon says:

    Yesterday, all 53 Democratic senators voted to table a

    Reply

  34. Don Bacon says:

    Linking a daily rate to an annual figure is an incredibly meaningless obfuscation — apples and oranges. I don’t understand how anyone could do it. It defies all attempts at logic, and indicates a lack of serious purpose. Plus it makes no sense.

    Reply

  35. Don Bacon says:

    This is satire, correct? The Republicans have promoted a larger military and more wars?
    Democratic Senators Obama and Clinton led the move for an expanded U.S. ground force years ago, and when they got into higher office they expanded the Afghanistan war into Pakistan, while retaining 50,000 troops in Iraq, upping attacks in Yemen and Somalia, and now starting a war in Libya.
    They’re now looking for a way to keep 15-20,000 troops in Iraq after the Dec 31 withdrawal date. This is the date in an executive agreement that the Dem senate led by nominees Obama & Biden refused to debate as a treaty, according to the constitution, in the Fall of 2008.
    The Iraq and Afghanistan wars were enthusiastically supported by the Democrats, with even the sainted Al Gore taking part. U.S. involvement in the other major wars was accomplished by Democrats — the war party.
    So any contention that its the Republicans who have primarily promoted the military and war, is pure BS.

    Reply

  36. non-hater says:

    How much is a billion? A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive.
    That’s so incredibly stupid. How about providing a useful comparison, like this: a billion is 1/15,000 of the total GDP of the USA in 2011.
    The primary problem with the federal government’s finances is that tax revenue has fallen from over 20% of GDP in 2000 to less than 15% (projected) in 2011. Getting taxes back to where they were, stopping a couple of unnecessary wars, and paying for Medicare D gets the deficit down to a sustainable number.
    Anyone who pretends to care about the deficit but isn’t talking about those three issues is either lying or stupid.

    Reply

  37. JohnH says:

    Sorry, Bacon. Republicans do hate the American public. But they LOVE their military. The proof? They have showered the military with money. Total military spending is now $1.2 Trillion. And it has more than doubled in the last decade, while spending for the rest of the discretionary budget actually declined in real terms.
    http://mondediplo.com/openpage/the-real-u-s-national-security-budget
    But instead of paying for their pointless and futile wars, Republicans chose to negatively fund their military profligacy by cutting taxes, particularly for the wealthy.
    Now the bills are coming due. And who will pay? Ordinary Americans, particularly children, the disadvantaged, and the elderly who have fully funded their Social Security but will probably have their benefits gutted to fund more war. Yes, Republicans hate ordinary Americans.
    Any debate about the budget is a phony one, if it doesn’t include a serious discussion about how to seriously cut the military or to fully pay for its adventures.

    Reply

  38. Don Bacon says:

    I don’t think there is any hate involved. There are other factors, some not so nice, but also there is a very real difference regarding the role of government in American lives. No matter which side of the issue one is on, there are certain facts that are incontestable.
    * The relative size of government is increasing.
    Today in America there are nearly twice as many people working for the government (22.5 million) than in all of manufacturing (11.5 million). This is an almost exact reversal of the situation in 1960, when there were 15 million workers in manufacturing and 8.7 million collecting a paycheck from the government. It gets worse. More Americans work for the government than work in construction, farming, fishing, forestry, manufacturing, mining and utilities combined.
    * The federal debt is out of control. The defecit in February was a record $222 billion. That’s a DAILY deficit of almost $8 billion. How much is a billion? A billion minutes ago Jesus was alive.
    * China leads the world (2007) with a current account balance of $272bn, the U.S. is dead last in the world with a negative current account balance of $561bn. Don’t try that at home.

    Reply

  39. paulo says:

    I am really perplexed. Why exactly do these conservatives hate the American people?
    That isn’t a specious question. I am serious in asking it. At every turn they seem to support a position that makes life for the average American worse.
    Does anyone have a coherent explanation? Even Randism doesn’t seem to explain the full breadth of this hatred.
    Or is it that the only time they believe in Darwinism is when they can apply it against their fellow citizens?

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  40. Don Bacon says:

    Ryancare forces America

    Reply

  41. questions says:

    Politics or ideology? Hint, the answer is politics according to this:
    http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2011/04/is-it-politics-or-ideology.html
    But I’d say there’s some ideology too, only it’s not budget-based ideology, it’s class, race and, ummm, race. And maybe sector, too. But no, it’s not about the budget, stupid.
    Ryan, though, is a Randian. So there’s some adolescent foolishness as well.
    On every front Ryan’s “plan” must be defeated. And it must be defeated without its providing a shift in the policy positioning/Overton window effect.
    We cannot suddenly tolerate ridiculous cuts just because they PHEW! aren’t Ryanized.

    Reply

  42. JohnH says:

    The Ryan plan “will capsize the savings of most elders across the country — while generating huge transfers to health care providers and insurers,” which is exactly what it is intended to do. Class war, savage capitalism, take no prisoners conservatism.

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  43. questions says:

    Brad DeLong adds to the merriment:
    “If I am calculating this right, under current law the CBO projects that the U.S. government will spend $35,000 year-2010 dollars to cover a 75-year old Medicare patient in 2050.
    Under the Ryan plan, however, the CBOI projects that a 75-year old Medicare patient in 2050 will have to spend $52,000 year-2010 dollars to buy a Medicare-equivalent plan in 2050. Of this, Medicare will reimburse the patient for–a mere $10,000.
    Plus there are all the Medicare copays that 75 year olds will have to pay…
    Why the $15,000 difference? Because without Medicare’s bargaining power on the other side for-profit hospitals and for-profit doctors will charge more, and because of the extraordinary overhead of private health insurance companies as they spend trillions trying to figure out how to craft their policies so as not to pay for sick people.
    That is a truly extraordinary plan to propose…

    http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2011/04/cbo-projections-of-the-ryan-plan-for-medicare.html
    ****
    DeLong (channeling Jonathan Zasloff) has a piece up about how easy it can be to be a west coast blogger as one simply reads David Brooks early on and one has an instant topic.
    http://delong.typepad.com/sdj/2011/04/republican-plan-to-make-america-a-third-rate-nation-watch.html
    I am beginning to thing Paul Ryan was jealous of Brooks’s status as resident [Wonkette].

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