The New York Times editorial page has taken a huge dump on Paul Ryan’s Path to Poverty 3.0.
All the tired ideas from 2011 and 2012 are back: eliminating Medicare’s guarantee to retirees by turning it into a voucher plan; dispensing with Medicaid and food stamps by turning them into block grants for states to cut freely; repealing most of the reforms to health care and Wall Street; shrinking beyond recognition the federal role in education, job training, transportation and scientific and medical research. The public opinion of these callous proposals was made clear in the fall election, but Mr. Ryan is too ideologically fervid to have learned that lesson.
The 2014 budget is even worse than that of the previous two years because it attempts to balance the budget in 10 years instead of the previous 20 or more. That would take nondefense discretionary spending down to nearly 2 percent of the economy, the lowest in modern history. And in its laziest section, it sets a goal of slashing the top tax rate for the rich to 25 percent from 39.6 percent, though naturally Mr. Ryan doesn’t explain how this could happen without raising taxes on middle- and lower-income people. (Sound familiar?) [...]
If the Ryan budget is any indication, Mr. Obama’s quest to bring reason to an unreasonable party may be doomed from the outset.
Following the 2012 election, I assumed that GOP would continue to be the GOP, but I certainly didn’t imagine we would go through an exact repeat of 2011 and 2012. Although, since House Republicans had their majority reaffirmed for at least another two years, perhaps we should have expected this.
What this really tells us is that they view Paul Ryan’s Path to Poverty as a long-term policy goal, not just some short-term gimmick, and they won’t let it go until they lose their majority.
The results of the 2010 election will haunt us for at least another two to four years.