PAUL RYAN’s Two Choices on DEFICIT/”Fiscal Cliff”: Yahoo!

The title of a recently released Yahoo! article is “On (the issue of the FISCAL) Cliff, Ryan Faces Choice of Two Paths” (Web-site/URL:–politics.html). Which “path” will Ryan choose?

“Fresh from the campaign trail and mulling his options for the future, former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan will play a pivotal role in negotiations over the fiscal cliff and faces a choice of two paths”. “mulling his options for the future” suggests that Ryan is STILL SORE about him & MITT ROMNEY losing to President Obama.

“The Wisconsin congressman, known for his ZEAL for (i.e. ENTHUSIASM “for”)  budget cutting, COULD opt for IDEOLOGICAL PURITY and emerge as a leading voice urging his fellow Republicans to RESIST TAX INCREASES  and DEMAND STEEP CUTS in entitlement spending. “demanding” of course is a fundamental characteristic of “Difficult People” (Web-site/URL:  Given how partisan Congress has becomethis is the path that Ryan will MOST LIKELY choose.

“Or he could use his role as House Budget Committee chairman to push for THE BEST deal possible for Republicans, but then demonstrate BI-PARTISANSHIP (?) by getting behind a COMPROMISE (?)” “bi-partisanship?” “compromise?” IS THIS POSSIBLE?

“Republican strategist Steve Schmidt said Ryan has an incentive to WORK TOWARD AN AGREEMENT“. REALLY? More specifically, Schmidt, a top adviser to John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign” said: The ability to show YOU’VE BEEN PRACTICAL, the ability to show that YOU’VE COMPROMISED, the ability to show that you have BENT THE NEGOTIATIONS IN YOUR DIRECTION and GOT THE BEST DEAL THAT YOU CAN, ALL OF THOSE THINGS POSITION YOU BETTER THAN PURE IDEOLOGY  in the context of a presidential campaign”Again “pure ideology” is EXTREMELY PROBLEMATIC because this is another example of a lack of EMPATHY (Web-site/URL: Again empathy is critical because it can be colloqially translated into “If you don’t care what I think why should I care what you think?” (Web-site/URL:  “He HAS THE ABILITY to provide leadership in a situation like this and PERHAPS this will be his GREATEST testSomeone who “has the ability to” do something DOES NOT mean that this person is WILLING to do itAlso, again, “perhaps” IS NOT a guarantee.

In a change (?) from the debt-ceiling talks, he has joined the daily Republican leadership meetings, alongside Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp (and) Committee on Energy and Commerce chairman Fred Upton”Do POLITICIANS EVER “change?” According to Boehner spokesman Brendan Buck, “Chairman Ryan is back here because HE WANTS TO SOLVE THESE PROBLEMS (?)” Since when have POLITICIANS been genuinely about/concerned with “(solving)…problems?”

According to Conor Sweeney, “a Ryan spokesman”, “He opposes raising tax rates because doing so would STIFLE ECONOMIC GROWTH and COST JOBSas if Republicans are or ANYONE is doing anything about these two issues.  “He added that Ryan wants to see what the White House’s opening argument will be and whether President Obama will “offer RESPONSIBLE SOLUTIONS (?), identify SPECIFIC SPENDING CUTS and DEMONSTRATE LEADERSHIP to tackle this pressing challenge”. What are “responsible solutions?” CUTTING EVERYTHING? As far as “demonstrate leadership” is concernedthis is yet another case of “We think they made us mad; they think we made them mad and here we go” (Web-site/URL:

According to Bill Hoagland, “a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, who has been in touch with Ryan’s staff…who is now a senior vice president at the Bipartisan Policy Center”, “Ryan will press “VERY,VERY HARD” on long-term entitlement reform, IF Ryan can wring concessions from Democrats on entitlements, it COULD help his presidential ambitions“. “could” is making another/its latest appearance. “IF he’s running in two or four years from now, he’ll be able to say [the deficit was reduced] because of MY INSISTENCE on entitlement reform”“my insistence” could be INTERPRETED as another version of the “force and pain technique” (Web-site/URL:

“Eric Ueland, Frist’s former chief of staff (who is now a vice president at the Duberstein Group), said Republicans recognize that Ryan might have to cede some ground in the budget talks because Democrats hold A SIGNIFICANT amount of leverage, given that they still control the Senate and that President Obama WON his re-election bid”. “What he does and what he’s able to do is judged against the baseline”.

“But Ryan’s critics DOUBT Democrats will be able to negotiate with him” of courseThis shouldn’t surprise anyone. According to  Jim Manley, “a former aide to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who is now at QGA Public Affiars”, “Nothing we’ve seen so far under Chairman Ryan suggests that he’s willing and or capable of negotiating bipartisan legislation. HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL, BUT I DON’T HAVE A LOT OF IT”. This is the latest damning criticism.

“But Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former Congressional Budget Office director (and former economic adviser to Sen. John McCain who is now president of the American Action Forum), predicted Republican House lawmakers would present a UNITED front (?)”. Is ANYTHING “united” these days? This is not a case where the administration’s going to DIVIDE and CONQUER”, which again as much as we hate to say itis what JOHN BOEHNER would say.

“Anti-tax activist Grover Norquist (and president for Americans for Tax Reform) DISAGREED with the notion that the congressman would feel pressure to water down his own principles in order to portray himself as a pragmatic dealmaker. “He will be both a man who can sell a plan to the rank and file and can sell a NO vote to Boehner”Does GROVER NORQUIST have any credibility?

“Steven Smith, a political science professor at Washington University in St. Louis, wrote in an email that Ryan might emulate former Democratic Sen. Sam Nunn, a powerful voice on national security issues. In Ryan’s case, he could TAKE A HARD LINE during negotiations (as if we need anyone else “taking a hard line”) and only offer his support for a Boehner-backed deal at the last minute. For Nunn, this offered THE APPEARANCE that he was CAREFUL and PRINCIPLED“, but in reality THE OPPOSITE IS TRUE. But, Smith warned, “This IS NOT an easy path for a prospective presidential candidate. First, endorsing a moderate solution risks alienating THE CORE of the party.Second, a long-term deal may take budget issues off the agenda and reduce the advantage that Ryan has over the field of candidates. Unfortunately, the alternative path, playing to the right and STANDING IN THE WAY OF a Boehner deal with ObamaIS NOT  likely to be popular with the general electorate”Maybe this would be OK for  a small election like for the US House of RepresentativesBUT OBVIOUSLY NOT FOR PRESIDENTAlso, a “BOEHNER deal with Obama” IS NOW POSSIBLE

“For now, Ryan is KEEPING HIS CARDS CLOSE TO THE VEST. Bill Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard and a leader in the effort to get Ryan into presidential politics, professed no knowledge of Ryan’s intentions”.

Finally, “Ryan wrote in an e-mail”: “My strategy is to ACKNOWLEDGE (the fact that) Obama won, CUT THE BEST DEAL YOU CAN and live to fight another day for big tax and entitlement reform”Key Phrase: “acknowledge (the fact that) Obama won”Keep in mind that Republicans were screaming for the last 2 years that they wanted Obama voted out of office and THEY FAILEDThat’s why Ryan is “(cutting) the best deal (he) can”EVEN THOUGH HE’S STILL LIVING/ABIDING BY THE SAME RIGID GOP PRINCIPLES/IDEOLOGY. 


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