Crack the Golden Egg

The truth about Paul Ryan's 'adult' budget proposal.

Hero politician Paul Ryan is now hailed as the only serious adult in Washington.

He has gained National Hero status for showing 'political courage' (it is, in fact, political audacity) in proposing a radical budget plan at a time when everyone is afraid of rocking the boat.

The state of affairs in Washington and the mood of the country are all on his side and have favored his dangerous gamble. Ryan is a man blessed by circumstance, and the ideology fueling his 'serious proposal' radically shifts this country's long held philosophical inclinations toward assisting the poor, helpless and disenfranchised, and favors a massive upward flow of wealth and privilege to where it's needed the least.

The Punditocracy, led by the master of milquetoast and the crank of conventional wisdom, David Brooks, has hoisted Paul Ryan on a pedestal. This is a place he will stay, so long as an assault on the specific ideologies behind his budget proposal are further delayed by the Democrats and anyone in a position of speaking out on the matter. Democrats are currently worthy of even more scorn than their opponents in Congress, who are merely serving a radical component in their base. The Democrats, on the other hand, have taken a cautious, spineless wait-and-see approach at a pivotal time for their party, abandoning their base altogether for political gain.

This is a time for action: specifically, for passing an imperfect budget compromise. As useless as speeches usually are, this is also, strangely, a time for speeches. It's vital that the serious, deadly ramifications of Ryan's budget plan are outlined and conveyed to the general public. It has been hailed as the first political golden egg of the season. It's time to crack that egg open and spill its ideological contents. Next to the inaction of the Democrats, it shows forward momentum, which is admirable, but its ideology has serious consequences for the country and not just that, but it may define America's philosophy toward its people for decades to come.

This budget plan, a forbearer for Ryan's eventual Presidential campaign, will widen the gulf between the haves and have-nots, embolden the rich, disenfranchise the poor, and bring our country that much closer to a place Ayn Rand would have been proud to call home.

The fight about who is right about the budget, and what direction our control should take, this fight that's playing out over the newspapers, on the radio and on television: it's not about whose ideas are best. It's about who is best at controlling the discussion. The Democrats are (yet again) displaying the sort of amoeba-like spinelessness typical of their party, while the Republicans (as usual) pander to elements of their base they fear, and hammer points again and again until they become mantras for the American people to digest and accept.

The truth is, Ryan's plan, while unafraid to slash funding from almost all entitlement programs, represents a social and political philosophy that, on its face, goes against all in America that has ever stood up for the disenfranchised and downtrodden. This plan is, practically and philosophically, an assault on poverty, a bastion for wealth, and a nightmare scenario for the United States. It may not pass, but if the narrative in this country lauds its ideas, it will usher in a new age in American politics, one defined by privatization, corporate control, and an uber-Capitalistic enterprise derived from the fever dreams of Milton Friedman, Barry Goldwater, Grover Norquist, Rand Paul and countless others who embrace this dangerous extremism.

Alarmingly, it is also a plan that has been breathlessly embraced by the media and the American Public, who at this point are simply desperate to see an end to this week's budget stalemate that they are willing to see any idea, any proposal, as a godsend. For the media, Ryan's 'Very Serious Adult Super Serious Fiscal Budget Plan (tm)' represents an exciting break in an otherwise dull stalemate, and for that, they are willing to give him his day in the sun for as long as it will last.


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