Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan knocked President Barack Obama for "shadowbox[ing] a straw man" in his inaugural address. Speaking Tuesday morning on the Laura Ingraham Radio Show to guest host Raymond Arroyo, Ryan responded to Obama's statement that Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security "do not make us a nation of takers, they free us to take the risks that make this country great."
Ryan called Obama's insinuation that he and other reform-minded Republicans consider recipients of these benefits "takers" a "switcheroo."
Glenn Hubbard, appearing live on CNBC Wednesday morning, was struck by a falling piece of the set. Hubbard, who was the chairman of President George W. Bush's Council of Economic Advisers and an economic adviser to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, was discussing the need for Congress to address the forthcoming entitlement crisis when a banner fell and hit him on the head:
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, the top Republican in the Senate, blasted President Barack Obama for not leaving anything on the "fiscal cliff" negotiating table this morning in remarks on the Senate floor.
First off, it’s not a “fiscal cliff.” What we’re slated to hit as of New Year’s Day, as the Wall Street Journalnotes, is a tax cliff. Our fiscal cliff, which drops off into a far deeper canyon, is what looms because of our $16,000,000,000,000 debt and the runaway entitlement spending that fuels it — Medicare, Medicaid, (and now) Obamacare. In truth, the debt deal passed in the summer of 2011 — which the press now says we must scrap if we are to avoid the “fiscal cliff” — was designed to postpone our going over the (actual) fiscal cliff.
President Obama the self-proclaimed compromiser sounds the same as Obama the partisan politician running for reelection. At his press conference Wednesday, he harped on what had been a chief talking point of his campaign—raising taxes for the wealthy.
A new chart put together by the minority side of the Senate Budget Committee finds that, since 2001, the "number of non-citizens on food stamps quadrupled." Here's the chart detailing the growth in regards to non-citizens:
Yesterday, when speaking via video to the AARP, President Obama said, “But what I’m not going to do, as a matter of principle, is to slash benefits or privatize Social Security and suddenly turn it over to Wall Street.”
Yet last year, during the budget ceiling debate, President Obama said he'd be up for cutting Social Security.
The Villages, Fla. “This is my mom Betty,” vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan said as he took the stage at a campaign rally with his 78-year-old mother in Florida’s largest retirement community. “She's why I'm here,” Ryan continued. “She and her grandkids are why I'm here.”
“Old age puts more wrinkles in our minds than on our faces; and we never, or rarely see a soul that in growing old does not come to smell sour and musty. Man grows and dwindles in his entirety.”—Montaigne
Before the sun had set on Mitt Romney’s choice of Paul Ryan, the Obama campaign was out with ads talking of the “End Medicare as we know it.”
Robert Samuelson has a strong column today on how one of the biggest obstacles to Social Security reform might be psychological. Though FDR's original vision for the program was a "contributory pension plan" and most Americans are still under the the impression that this is what it is, the reality is that it's structured much more like a welfare program: