This is a pretty long, but very educational, article from National Review.
Here’s the intro:
There’s been an avalanche of commentary on Paul Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity,” and rightly so. Ryan’s proposal, which would reform entitlement spending, balance the budget, and begin paying off the debt, is the most important legislative proposal of my lifetime. It may not pass in its current form. But there is a much better chance than you’d think that it will pass in modified form, perhaps under another president. Either way, it will change the way we talk about the deficit and the debt for a very long time.
The plan is quite comprehensive, encompassing discretionary spending, defense spending, financial regulation, Fannie and Freddie, tax reform, welfare programs, and Medicare and Medicaid. (As David Brooks puts it, PTP “dodges Social Security,” which is acceptable, given Social Security’s lesser impact on our long-term fiscal problems.)
As for getting debt under control, here’s what the Congressional Budget Office had to say about the “Path to Prosperity”:
The resulting budget deficits under the proposal would be around 2 percent of GDP in the 2020s [down from 9 percent in 2010] and would decline during the 2030s. The budget would be in surplus by 2040 and show growing surpluses in the following decade. Federal debt would equal about 48 percent of GDP by 2040 and 10 percent by 2050.
[...]So let’s sift through the most controversial aspects of the plan: those related to health-care entitlements. It’s going to be a rather wonky exercise, though I’ve done my best to make it readable by breaking it up into bite-sized chunks.
Here’s a summary of his nine points:
- It reduces the growth of Medicare and Medicaid spending so that it is similar to countries like France, Germany and Switzerland
- It reduces the costs of health care by letting individuals control how their own money is being spent – reducing demand naturally
- It lets individuals decide what medical insurance coverages they want – just like they do with auto insurance
- It mandates that seniors have to pay appropriate premiums for any extra medical insurance coverage they choose
- It encourages states to save money and to prevent fraud by giving them financial rewards for doing so
- It requires the rich to pay more for Medicare than the poor -by means-testing service provision
- It introduces a voucher system where the government gives each person money (e.g. – $15,000) to choose a plan they like
- The Democrat alternative to the “Path to Prosperity” plan is tax increases and rationing health care
- The CBO agrees that if we do nothing about entitlement spending, we will bankrupt the country
I really encourage my Christian readers to take a shot at reading this article. It is very important for us to be seen as being informed about policies down to the details, so that we can discuss things other than Christianity intelligently. No one is going to trust you to discuss spiritual things unless they can see that you have some familiarity with material things. The reason why Bill Craig can back atheists into an auditorium is because he understands things about cosmology, physics, history and philosophy. People trust him, because he knows what he is talking about. You have a plan for a Christian life too, and you need to be able to do a good job of making decisions. You need to understand your country’s economy in order to make good decisions. And not just voting decisions, but spending decisions, educational decisions, career decisions and investing decisions. And then when you talk about your faith to others in public, you can link it to all kinds of different public areas of knowledge. So that Christianity will come up naturally, no matter what the topic is.
- Republican Paul Ryan proposes over 6 trillion in spending cuts
- Michele Bachmann and Paul Ryan on the Wisconsin teacher union pensions
- Video and transcripts of response speeches by Paul Ryan and Michele Bachmann
- Paul Ryan explains why Republicans are doing what they promised to do
- What would happen if Paul Ryan headed the Budget committee?
- Paul Ryan discusses economics at the liberal Brookings Institute
- Paul Ryan explains taxes and spending to Chris Matthews
- Paul Ryan takes on Democrat Brad Sherman on the worsening economy
- Tragedy strikes! Paul Ryan is not going to run for President in 2012!
- Paul Ryan debates Robert Reich on Larry Kudlow show
- Paul Ryan debates on the relationship between tax rates and job creation
- Paul Ryan asks if America is becoming a European welfare state
- Sue Myrick interviews Paul Ryan about his Roadmap for America
- Fiscal and social conservatives unite in new free e-book “Indivisible”
- Paul Ryan talks about health care with Chris Matthews and Chris Wallace
- Videos of health care summit speeches by Ryan, Blackburn, Coburn and Alexander
- Paul Ryan discusses Obamacare and the federal budget
- Moderate George Will loves Paul Ryan’s plan for economic recovery
- Paul Ryan confronts Tim Geithner on Obama’s 1.56 trillion budget deficit
- Paul Ryan declares war on Obama’s record 1.56 trillion dollar budget deficit
- Paul Ryan and Ann Coulter make the case against Obamacare
- Paul Ryan explains the vision of conservativism
- When all else failed, Republicans will try conservative ideas