House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan Is A Coward
One of the most interesting aspects of the fiscal 2013 budget debate is how the GOP is extolling the virtues of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) but, while taking credit for it passing the House is only talking about his budget plan in the most general terms.
In fact, as Congress gets back to work this week after two weeks back in the district for Easter and Passover, watch closely as Republicans talk about how "courageous" Ryan is for taking the lead on reducing the deficit while it stays as far away as possible from any discussion of the specifics spending reductions and tax cuts.
The reality, however, is just the opposite: When it comes to the budget Ryan is far more of a coward than anything else.
It wasn't at all courageous for Ryan to propose tax cuts and deep spending reductions that only House Republicans would approve. That's the federal budget equivalent of throwing raw meet to piranhas and then saying that you deserve credit for feeding them what they want to eat.
The courageous move would have been to propose a budget plan that challenged the GOP majority and attracted Democratic votes, that is, that was a compromise in the midst of hyper partisanship. That would have been far more difficult both substantively and politically -- like trying to feed raw vegetables to piranhas by hand while your in the water with them -- and would indeed have qualified as daring and leadership.
Ryan also gets no budget medal because he refused to specify which tax breaks would be curtailed to pay for his tax cut plan. Here again, the opposite -- having the testicular fortitude to challenge politically popular tax breaks and the individuals and businesses that get them -- would have been the courageous thing to do.
Completely refusing to name the tax breaks may have been good politics but it was also whatever word or phrase you want to use for "the opposite of courageous." Note: All suggestions accepted and encouraged.