Twelve Things you Should Know about Paul Ryan

By now most people know that Mitt Romney has chosen Paul Ryan a Republican Congressman from Wisconsin as his vice-presidential running mate. A recent article byIgor Volsky in Truthout continues the parade of negative volleys fired by those opposed to the Republican slate. Nevertheless some of the factoids listed are interesting. First Ryan supposedly embraces extreme individualism and has heaped praise on Ayn Rand. I have always been puzzled that politicians would dare to become associated with the views of Rand. It must be due to choosing very selectively from her ideas.

No doubt her praise of free market capitalism and of the individual that attracts some. While as Volsky points out she does praise selfishness as a virtue and criticizes altruism as evil, she also condemned Christianity and faith in general. It seems simply weird that someone such as Ryan who is said to be a devout Roman Catholic would praise her. Rand was also pro-choice rather than pro-life as Ryan is. Not surprisingly in 2012 Ryan has now rejected her views! They might be a political liability

Ryan's GOP budget would raise taxes for the middle class and cut them for millionaires.. There would be just two brackets 10 per cent and 25 per cent. This would involve cutting the top rate from 35 per cent. Revenue collected would decline by about $4.5 trillion over the next decade. However to cover that loss there would be massive cuts to social programs although he also wants to close tax loopholes and shelters which would be a good move if it actually came about. But most of the savings would come for programs that benefit the middle and working classes. Ryan would extend the Bush tax cuts but not those of Obama targeting those with lowest incomes. Ryan's plan would see those households earning over a million a year get a tax cut of almost $300,000 a year.

Number three of the twelve things you should know involves increased costs to seniors for Medicare. Ryan would introduce a premium support system rather than a guaranteed benefit. Future retirees would receive a government contribution from which the pensioners could purchase private insurance from an exchange of private plans or traditional fee-for-service Medicare. However the voucher would not keep up with increasing health care costs so over time pensioners would pay more. Ryan would also raise the age of eligibility to 67. Ryan's plan manages to ensure that private ensurers would profit from the system since the vouchers would be used to buy private insurance. This article is already getting long. The other nine remaining things you should know can be found at this link. . .


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