In the Washington Independent: An interesting admission in Benjy Sarlin’s interview with Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), the GOP’s brainy ranking member on the House Budget Committee who’s been targeted by Democrats for his entitlement-cutting proposals. Ryan said his vote for the bailout was influenced by Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism, a popular book among conservatives that argues that Nazism and other fascist movements were actually left wing in origin, and his belief that a second Depression would threaten capitalism—and rescue Obama’s presidency.Don't worry Paul, after a year, it looks like most people forgot how you guys collapsed the world economy. I guess we haven't had enough Republican chaos. Here's Rachel Maddow with her take:
“I’m a limited-government, free-enterprise guy, but TARP… represented a moment where we had no good options and we were about to fall into a deflationary spiral,” he said. “I believe Obama would not only have won, but would have been able to sweep through a huge statist agenda very quickly because there would have been no support for the free-market system.”
Video is there, despite the black screen:
A more technical analysis of Ryan's Medicare dismantling comes from Paul Krugman:
"Mr. Ryan’s release says that it "Strengthens the current program with changes such as income-relating drug benefit premiums to ensure long-term sustainability. The CBO, helpfully, translates (pdf):
People who are age 65 or older in 2020 and other existing enrollees at that time would continue to be covered by the current program, although some higher income enrollees would pay higher premiums, and some program payments
would be reduced.
In other words, Medicare would face cuts. And the CBO’s detailed analysis provides an estimate of those cuts. I’ve taken the table comparing projected spending with baseline as a share of GDP (xls), and scaled it up using the CBO’s projections of GDP. What I get is an estimated cut in Medicare spending over the next decade of about … $650 billion.
So, cutting Medicare by $500 billion is wrong — support Republicans, who want to cut it by $650 billion!