In today's Washington Post, Robert Samuelson argues that it was liberal protectors of the entitlements, not the Tea Party, that "won" the most in last week's debt deal. The military, he says, was the real loser:
House Budget chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) will lay out his vision for America's foreign policy in an address to the Alexander Hamilton Society tonight in Washington. Crediting Charles Krauthammer's 2009 essay in THE WEEKLY STANDARD, "Decline Is a Choice," Ryan will insist the United States maintain its leading role in the world by addressing the growing debt and entitlement spending crises.
Lately, I’ve been staying up late at night because I’m just too stressed over the state of the union. Unable to sleep, I often find myself toggling between scores of Excel spreadsheets, crunching all sorts of numbers to get my mind around the gaping budget deficit that is threatening the country. It isn’t pretty, as we all know, and unfortunately my computations have only made me feel worse.
If there is one thing that political strategists, pollsters, and elected officials of both parties have agreed on for decades, it’s that entitlement reform is a sure political loser. Social Security is the “third rail”—touch it and you die. Suggest changes to Medicaid and you don’t care about the poor. Propose modest reforms to Medicare and you’re the target of a well-funded “Mediscare” campaign that ensures your defeat.
Talking late this afternoon with THE WEEKLY STANDARD, Republican congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin blasted New York Times columnist Paul Krugman for his "intellectualy lazy" attack on Ryan's fiscal "Roadmap." In his Friday column, Krugman called Ryan a "charlatan" and his plan to reform the welfare state and eliminate the debt a "fraud" that is "drenched in flimflam sauce." Ryan responded to Krugman in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel over the weekend, and elaborated on his criticisms of Krugman this afternooon.