Paul Ryan: Fact vs. fiction

There is much misinformation about Paul Ryan’s plan to save Medicare. According to Andrew Biggs of the American Enterprise Institute, here are the facts about Ryan’s plan

• No one over the age of 55 would be affected.

• Traditional Medicare fee-for-service would remain available for all. “Premium support” — government funding of private insurance plans chosen by individuals — is now an option. No senior would be forced out of the traditional Medicare program. Ryan’s plan permits the market to provide seniors with less expensive, higher-quality choices that are optional, with the traditional Medicare option still available.

It’s Obamacare that threatens Medicare. Obamacare takes $700 billion out of Medicare and spends it on a new entitlement. Medicare has been a mandatory contribution for retirement health insurance. Subverting its funding is stealing. Paul Ryan’s plan restores that $700 billion into a trust fund to secure Medicare’s solvency. It’s Obama that is breaking the promise to seniors, not Ryan.

As chairman of the House Budget Committee, Paul Ryan knows the facts and fictions of the federal budget. In recent years, fictions have grown bigger than facts. Here are the facts (sources: Standard and Poor’s, OMB, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Morgan Stanley, Joint Committee on Taxation, U.S. Census):

• U.S. sovereign debt was downgraded for the first time in history.

• The budget deficit is 10% of GDP, highest since W.W.II.

• Federal debt is 67% of GDP, highest since W.W.II.

• Only 58.1% of the population is working, lowest since 1983.

• Long-term unemployment is 45.9% of total, highest since 1930s.

• Increase in employment since recovery began is just .5%, the slowest growth after a recession since W.W.II.

• Home ownership rate is 59.7%, lowest since 1965.

• Percentage of taxpayers paying income tax is 49.7%, lowest in modern era.

• Government dependency is 47%, the highest in history (defined as percentage of persons receiving federal benefit payments).

Democrats in power prefer to conceal the severity of this country’s fiscal predicament — they must do so, as the problem is largely of their creation and their policies are hopelessly incapable of putting us back on a positive track.

Ryan has a sober, mature, responsible view of our fiscal problems. His proposals are “tough love” toward the entrenched political class.

Yet, Paul Ryan is reviled by the entrenched political class because, in speaking truth to power, he makes their career security extremely uncomfortable. The forces arrayed against him are the instinctive, protective defenses of Washington careerists intent on keeping power. Ryan’s heart is with the American people out of concern for their future. His opponents are desperate to have you believe precisely the opposite.

Democrats will avoid debating the facts, even if that means the personal destruction of honest, courageous men like Paul Ryan. We should be thankful for statesmen like Paul Ryan, and we can only hope that Ryan’s commitment to a brighter future for this country will prevail in the end.

 Chris Murray is a member of the Republican Town Committee, which supplies this column.

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  • Waldo P. Swackhammer


    Please spare us your political truthiness. The American Enterprise Institute is far from “fair and balanced.” It’s a conservative Washington, DC think tank whose prominent members include John Bolton, Newt Gingrich, and Richard “Dick” Cheney to name but a few.

    Remember: “Blessed is the man who, having nothing to say, abstains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact.”

    –George Eliot

  • Christina

    “Paul Ryan’s plan restores that $700 billion into a trust fund to secure Medicare’s solvency. It’s Obama that is breaking the promise to seniors, not Ryan.”

    This is patently false. Ryan’s plan counts on the same $700B in projected Medicare expenditure reductions as ObamaCare does (in fact, these reductions were laid out under Clinton, but have not been put into practice as a result of annual lobbying efforts by the AMA). Ryan has no intention of putting money in a “trust fund” and restoring Medicare’s solvency. Nobody has a plan to do that — it’s mathemetically impossible. Ryan’s plan is nothing more than weaning people off Medicare slowly, starting 10 years from now, and moving to a voucher system. There will be a shortfall since vouchers won’t cover an individual’s total medical expenses — but his plan does not address how to pay for that. ObamaCare is not a panacea either, but please get the facts straight before you post such an article!!

  • RPOZ28

    The facts are SIMPLE this country is basically Bankrupt. So lets thank the DEMS FOR THAT. If you like the way thigs are going vote in the liberals and pay the PIPER. If you are smart and a Republican we need this stuff fixed. The dems spent more money in 3 years than all presidents before OBAMA combined. And we are still with an actual Unemployment rate of app 20%. The dems have no answer or fix for this as they had 3 + years to do so. Solution VOTE THEM OUT!!!

  • TRoberts

    I thought the new rules required names to be used to comment ?!
    I actually agree with a good portion of the GOP’s fiscal policies and know I will pay less in taxes if they are adopted (yes I am one of the 1%). I for one am not willing however to accept their prehistoric views on social issues. Things like gay marriage, woman’s’ rights, responsible gun laws, etc. And they should stop forcing their religious beliefs on me and using them to justify intolerance. I am gladly willing to pay more in tax dollars.

  • RPOZ28

    Fine then pay the piper!! So the republicans are intolerant. That is a good reason to vote in liberals that accomplished 16 TRILLION IN DEBT!!!

  • RPOZ28
  • CMcQuilken

    Ridgefield Press, are real names needed or not? Please advise.

  • George

    Well, this system allows you to log in from FB, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., so if you establish a fake name account at one of those sites, you can then log in here with the fake name.

    I used my Facebook account, and it pulled my first name and profile pic, but I don’t see any way of determining someone’s last name. The picture and name don’t seem to be clickable.

    Also, I get 404 errors often when visiting the home page. But not always, so that’s a little odd.

  • Secondhand Rose

    So where’s the forum?

  • TRoberts

    Must be the LIBS or the DEMS !

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