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SENTRY JOURNAL » Constitution, Democrats, Founding Fathers, Obama, Paul Ryan, Roadmap for America's Future » Paul Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future 2.0

Paul Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future 2.0

I first heard about a plan to get America back on the right track on a conservative talk show a few days ago.  Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, from Wisconsin is proposing a “Roadmap for America’s Future” that directly addresses many of the real issues that are bankrupting this nation.  To my surprise, I learned that this newly released “roadmap” is actually an upgrade and was first introduced in May 2008.  Maybe it never popped up on my radar because it was an election year, but it’s definitely on my radar now.  Below is part of the introduction from the Roadmap’s site.
A Choice of Two Futures
Rarely before have the alternatives facing America been so starkly defined.
For the past year, Washington’s leaders have taken an already unsustainable budget outlook and made it far worse. They have exploited Americans’ genuine economic anxieties to justify an unrelenting and wide-ranging expansion of government. Their agenda has included, among other things, a failed, debt-financed economic “stimulus”; an attempt to control the Nation’s energy sector; increasing domination of housing and financial markets; the use of taxpayer dollars to seize part ownership of two nearly bankrupt auto makers; and, of course, the planned takeover of Americans’ health care, already heavily burdened, manipulated, and distorted by government spending and regulation. This domineering government brings taxes, rules, and mandates; generates excessive levels of spending, deficits, and debt; leads to economic stagnation and declining standards of living; and fosters a culture in which self-reliance is a vice and dependency a virtue – and as a result, the entire country weakens from within.
Increasingly, Americans are rejecting this approach, and for good reason. But the status quo is not acceptable either. The Federal Government’s current fiscal path is unsustainable: it leads to unprecedented levels of spending and debt that will overwhelm the budget, smother the economy, weaken America’s competitiveness in the 21st century global economy, and threaten the survival of the government’s major benefit programs. The President and congressional Majority are only hastening America’s march toward this reckoning, adding to trillions of dollars worth of unfunded liabilities, and accelerating the erosion of Americans’ health care and retirement security. Their “progressivism” ironically points backwards – to a future in which America’s best century is the past century.
There is another choice, as reflected by the proposal described in this report: A Roadmap for America’s Future. It is a comprehensive, alternative approach to the Nation’s most pressing domestic priorities. Specifically, the plan addresses the following:
▫ Health Care. It provides universal access to affordable health coverage, not by expanding government, but by reinforcing the role of consumers – patients – in a truly competitive marketplace. In conjunction with this, the plan takes on the necessary task of restructuring the government’s medical entitlements, making them sustainable for the long term.
▫ Retirement Security. It saves and strengthens Social Security, making the program sustainable for the long run, and helping expand investments needed for economic growth.
▫ Tax Policy. It offers an alternative to today’s needlessly complex and inefficient tax code, providing the option of a simplified mechanism that better promotes and rewards work, saving, and investment.
▫ Job Training. It helps the Nation’s workforce prepare for success in the global economy by transforming 49 job training programs, scattered across eight agencies, into a flexible, dynamic program focused on results, and accompanied by clear measures of transparency and accountability. The plan requires the development of performance measures, and gives each State the option to consolidate funding into one program, if such an approach can be shown to improve outcomes and achieve job training goals.
For the complete plan read here.
President Obama at one point said the plan was worth a serious look.  Then a few days later the White House along with Democrat allies began to tear apart the plan point by point.  Their swift and predictable reactions to the plan were highlighted by fear and class warfare tactics.  Politico reported that the Democrats accused the GOP of trying to privatize Social Security, cut taxes for the rich, and increase taxes on the middle class.  
Many GOP leaders felt like the administration set up Congressman Ryan and his plan.  Representative Devin Nunes, (R-Calif) , an ally of Ryan’s and a collaborator on the plan, said the Democrats’ playbook was obvious: Obama elevated Ryan’s plan in order to methodically break him down. Democrats dismantled the road map point by point over the past week, framing it as a radical shift back to George W. Bush economics.
I have to tell you I read through his plan and I’m found it to be informative and thoroughly researched.  I am very impressed with this effort.  It’s the first step in a conversation that needs to take place in our country, because the truth is that most of our entitlement programs are unsustainable.  Our current tax system can be simplified with a two tier system that resembles a flat tax, and there are common sense approaches we can take to improve healthcare coverage and reduce costs without a 2,000 page bill.  I implore all of you to read this plan.  You might not agree with all the proposals and that’s ok, but it’s still a debate we need to have.  We need to remember if we are going to solve our nation’s most critical problems it’s going to take bringing many different ideas to the table.  Our Founding Fathers did this when they created the Constitution.  Many of the Framers had differing opinions on how we should be governed or how we should self-govern this nation.  Some believed in a strong central government while others wanted the power of government to stay with the states.  There were times when the debate became so heated that some delegates actually walked out.  But they never quit.  In the end after a hot summer in 1787, one of the most remarkable documents ever crafted was completed.
You see our Founding Fathers knew the debate was going to get ugly that summer in Philadelphia, but they also realized it was something that had to happen.  They didn’t use fear and class warfare tactics to shut the debate down.  In fact they opened to floor to many different ideas and philosophies because they all believed that the cause of America was greater than their own petty differences.  They faced the mountain and climbed it.  This is where we are at today.  Most of us already know the issues.  We talk about them each day with our friends, coworkers, and family members.  We know these problems are vast and could ultimately lead to the bankruptcy of the Republic if ignored.  Or worse yet, enslave our children with massive debt.  Our elected officials in Washington need to stop insulting our intelligence and trust that we can handle the tough news as long as we’re open to discuss possible solutions.  They need to stop placing their own petty differences ahead of the cause of America.  We need to bring the best ideas to the table from all sides and starting digging this country out of the entitlement program mess that both parties had a hand in creating with the help of our apathy.
Paul Ryan’s roadmap might not solve every problem we face, but it is a darn good start.  I salute him for his effort and thank him for his honesty.  He has displayed a courage that is a rarity in Washington these days.  He is trying to treat us like adults and laying it out as he sees it.  So I say we accept his invitation to start having these discussions and turn away from those politicians who will try to distract us from the real issues with shallow emotional rhetoric about how one party wants to destroy a program that will eventually collapse on itself anyway.
You and I deserve more respect than that.  We also deserve a tad more credit than our elected officials seem willing to give us. 
Liberty forever, freedom for ALL!



Filed under: Constitution, Democrats, Founding Fathers, Obama, Paul Ryan, Roadmap for America's Future

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  • LD Jackson February 14, 2010 at 9:27 PM

    Great article, John. Thanks for sharing Ryan's plan and your thoughts on the subject. I heard him on NPR the other day and he is very passionate and articulate about his proposals.

    It would surely be nice to see our politicians move beyond the rhetoric that has been so prevalent in the last few years. Not sure that will happen, but we can always hope and vote and if they do not follow through, vote some more.

  • John Carey February 14, 2010 at 10:38 PM

    Thanks for the comment LD.

    I believe we need to start taking steps to have the conversation about what we really need to do to get us out of this mess.

  • Ron Russell February 15, 2010 at 7:51 PM

    I have heard Paul Ryan before and he comes across well. His proposals are vague and very general, but do represent a blue print for a way out of this fiscal mess our leaders have gotten us into. Obama's goal is singular—wealth redistribution–and he will do nothing to change that goal.

  • John Carey February 15, 2010 at 7:57 PM

    Thanks for the comments Ron.

  • WomanHonorThyself February 15, 2010 at 8:49 PM

    lets hope the GOP gets back on track!

  • Forgotten Liberty February 15, 2010 at 11:10 PM

    My favorite part of the plan is simplifying the tax code. That would be wonderful if it would ever happen. Something has to change with our tax code, whether it's the Fair Tax (my personal favorite) or a flat tax, the code has become so complex that even accountants and tax attorneys can't understand it.

  • John Carey February 15, 2010 at 11:46 PM

    Thanks for the comments WHT and Liberty.

    Yes a simplified tax code is achievable and reasonable. We need to drive a stake into this progressive tax code. In my opinion it is unconstitutional.