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'Seriously' Embarrassing (Paul Ryan's proposal and "unicorn sightings")

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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:09 AM
Original message
'Seriously' Embarrassing (Paul Ryan's proposal and "unicorn sightings")
Edited on Wed Apr-06-11 11:11 AM by ProSense
Josh Marshall: 'Seriously' Embarrassing

On Monday and Tuesday, politicians and commentators were practically falling over themselves to praise Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) budget proposal as "serious" and "courageous", even in cases where they disagreed with it on policy terms. Whatever you think of his policy positions, the argument went, give the man credit for telling it like it is and grappling with the hard numbers. But after a day or two of looking at the numbers, it turns out a lot of his assumptions and predictions are completely preposterous. Not just in the sense of the normal padding and optimistic assumptions that most budgets include. But really preposterous. Like 2.8% unemployment? Really curious what all the Ryan-o-philes are going to say about these numbers. Check out our report. Really must read.

TPM report: Paul Ryan's Absurdly Optimistic Budget Projections Draw Widespread Ridicule

2.8% unemployment? $150 billon a year in new economic growth? Tax revenues that rise with tax cuts?

All this can be yours -- and more! -- even while cutting trillions of dollars from the federal government and lowering taxes on the wealthy and corporations, according to a giddy estimate of the Republican budget by the conservative Heritage Foundation. Even as Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) proudly touted his "fact-based budget" and decried Democrats' "budget gimmicks" yesterday, he prominently cited the think tank's absurdly rosy numbers, drawing widespread mockery from economists, budget experts, and health care wonks. Even the developer of the model that Heritage used to crunch the numbers can't figure out how Heritage reached its conclusions.


As Paul Krugman put it, Heritage's take "depends an awful lot on unicorn sightings -- a belief in the impossible."


"CBO is what they use on the budget side -- as a matter of procedure, any numbers from the Heritage Foundation or anybody else are essentially worthless," Bruce Bartlett, a former Treasury official under President George H.W. Bush, said in an interview. "You can assert whatever you want to assert, but you can always find some half-baked tax think tank that will make up any number you feel like."

Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research..."I think they just misprogrammed it," he told TPM. "Note that the unemployment rate falls by 2.1 percentage points relative to the baseline in 2012 even though they only created an extra 900,000 jobs. That doesn't make any sense."


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n2doc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:25 AM
Response to Original message
1. ...
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emulatorloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:26 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Perfect n/t
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barbtries Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:33 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. that's a great cartoon
riding my little unicorn...
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barbtries Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 11:28 AM
Response to Original message
3. what really kinda hurts
Edited on Wed Apr-06-11 11:32 AM by barbtries
is i'm convinced that those proposing this nightmare know that it is pure bullshit. we've been trying to make this shit fly since reagan and it does not. so since they must know it would never work they must be completely cynical, greedy and uncaring. and these are the lawmakers in a country that is purportedly run of, for, and by the people. it makes me sad.

a quote from the article:
The Heritage analysis bases its numbers on a "dynamic" model that it says takes into account the explosive growth unleashed by tax cuts. As a number of commentators have noted, it's the same approach that led them to conclude the Bush tax cuts would reduce the deficit and create millions of new jobs -- instead they exploded the deficit and unemployment worsened, eventually skyrocketing.

i frickin laughed out loud when i read this. guess i'm getting cynical too... :(
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okieinpain Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 02:58 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. that's what I don't get, the repugs have tried this experiment and
it failed. from 2000 to 2006 bush and company had a majority in both houses and the supreme court. for six year they got to do exactly what they wanted to do and it did not work. at the end of it we got a great recession and big deficit and no jobs, yet they continue to propose the same crap.
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FrenchieCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 12:12 PM
Response to Original message
5. Yep.
The media doesn't seem to be embarrased though....
they love it, and they love him.

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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-06-11 02:42 PM
Response to Original message
6. Alice Rivlin doesn't support Ryan's proposal


"We talked fairly recently and I said, 'You know, I can't support the version that you have in the budget," Rivlin said. "I don't actually support the form in which he put it in the budget."

Rivlin said it's "not quite fair," of Republicans, including Ryan to cite her as an advocate of his plan. "We had worked together but the version that's in the budget resolution is not one that I would subscribe to."

Her objections are pretty severe. She prefers a reform in which people 54 and younger would have a choice between traditional Medicare, and a menu of private, subsidized insurance options when they reach retirement age. Ryan's budget doesn't include this choice. Neither did a deficit-reduction proposal the two of them produced together outside of Congress.

Rivlin's principal objection is that Ryan has also lowered the rate at which those insurance subsidies grow. In other words, beneficiaries would be getting less and less money over time relative to the growth of their premiums, and would have to make up the rest themselves without being allowed to hop back in to traditional Medicare.

"I don't think that's defensible," Rivlin said. "It pushed too much of the cost onto the beneficiaries."



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