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Thursday, September 29, 2016

By Michael Liksoky, Senior Fellow, The Century Foundation

Many reviews of Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget have found it lacking – mostly due to oversights or slights to poor and working Americans.  But the social safety net isn’t the only thing largely ignored in the Ryan budget.

It seems he overlooked a little something called infrastructure investment – done by either public or private entities.

Modernizing America’s infrastructure is a bipartisan preference in Congress, with governors and mayors, and among global businesses.  Just this week, a Gallup poll found that 77 percent of Americans support more infrastructure expenditures.  That 77 percent includes majorities of both parties and Independents.

President Obama made clear in his State of the Union address that infrastructure is a centerpiece of his economic plan going forward. In his 2013 budget, Obama mentioned infrastructure 108 times in 256 pages.  The idea is often to fuel greater private investment.

Representative Ryan is, by comparison, less supportive.

In his 91-page “The Path to Prosperity: Blueprint for American Renewal,” Ryan fails to mention infrastructure investment at all.  This is down from his 98-page 2013 budget, which mentioned infrastructure all of twice. And infrastructure did get one (1) mention in the Ryan-inspired budget plan that the House of Representatives approved this week.

The Ryan plan appears out of step not only with the broader citizenry, but also his own party – which has largely recognized the need for and benefits of infrastructure investments.  It seems everyone, perhaps with the exception of Ryan and some who supported his budget, realizes that few things help business and grow our economy more than investing in infrastructure.

It worth at least noting that the “renewal” Ryan writes about in his budget does not appear to include the arteries of commerce — our ports, rail lines, roads, bridges, or waterways.

AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File

  • 4sanity4all

    I don’t really think that Ryan thought his budget through with the emphasis on “what Americans need now”, but rather, I think he planned it around Republican talking points, which have less to do with what people need, and more to do with what Republicans want to give them. Which, in the case of the middle class and poor is, nothing.

    • doninsd

      I don’t believe little Paulie possesses the intelligence to compose a functional budget. I forced myself to read the first one, and it’s awash with vague generalities, and devoid of almost any specifics. I maintain that a high school senior with above average ability could have done better with the research material at hand. That he earned a reputation as a budget “wonk” simply makes a sad, pathetic statement about the GOPers.

      • docb

        hear hear, don!

      • adler56

        Maybe it’s his high school fascination with Ayn Rand and her fantasy books.
        Does he even know she ended up on Social Security and Medicare? Her grand plans didn’t help her.

        • Independent1

          Like every good Republican, he conveniently ignores all the bad parts about the things he believes in; like all the faux Christian Conservatives who forget that Jesus was in no way conservative in thinking (he judged no one and said we must think of others before our selves), and that every tenet of the GOP is as anti-Christian as it gets. Showing clearly how much you love money, as Ryan’s budget clearly does, demonstrates quite clearly there’s nothing Christian about him or the GOP.

      • plc97477

        You’re a better man than I am. I would touch it with a long pole.

    • neeceoooo

      Very good point

    • idamag

      The problem is that the tea party sent a bunch of people to Washington who have their ideals, but not a lot of intelligence.

      • BDC_57

        Like idiot from Minnesota.

        • Independent1

          And what’s surprising to me about that, is that Minnesota (Minneapolis) is where the I-35 bridge collapsed in August, 2007, killing 13 people and injuring 147 because of the lack of inspections and maintenance And yet, here we have a congressional representative from the state where that tradgedy occurred creating a budget that would likely result in more frequent incidents of collapsing interstate bridges. It’s like Paul Ryan is hellbent on driving money into the pockets of his big donor industries that he’s developed total amnesia about anything related to reality.

          • BDC_57

            You got that right. All they care about ther rich buddies.

          • plc97477

            I have noticed that repubs seem to have their own reality.

          • Barbara Morgan

            Independent1, Bachmann is the Rep. from Minnesota, Ryan is the Rep. from Wisconsin where Walker is Governor. Ryan does not care about anyone that has less than a few millions in the the banks and oversea accounts like him , his wife and inlaws and Mitt Romney do. He considers 98% of the country expendable. When he and Bachmann both are expandable and need to be replaced with people that care more for their Country than these 2 airheads do.

          • Independent1

            Thanks for the correction. When I was writing the post I thought I might be getting them mixed up.

          • Bill

            Ryan is from Wisconsin, but I understand your point.

      • plc97477

        They don’t own a lot of intelligence, so they couldn’t send anybody with some

    • garryowenault

      One is tempted to respond about his thinking it through, but let’s end that and say Ryan was thinking exactly what to say and how to lay it out. Best thing we can do to outfox him is to keep up the pressure and keep pointing out the obvious shortfalls of his One Per Cent worship. Oh to have HST back in the White House giving them the Hell they so justly deserve.

      • plc97477

        That would be a meeting that I would love to see.

  • bpai99

    It’s interesting how Ryan’s motivation appears to be cutting the budget, period. Whether the cuts help or hurt the economy or people seem to not figure into his thinking in the slightest.

    “Fanaticism consists in redoubling your effort when you have forgotten your aim.” – George Santayana

    • idamag

      I think Doninad, above, put it very well.

    • Bill

      How does giving more tax breaks to the rich help the budget?

  • As I remember, the Ryan family fortune came from . . . . building roads and other governmental projects. Very odd that he’s leaving infrastructure out.

    • garryowenault

      Not really. Doing that would cost money and that means raising taxes. Can’t do that and expect to get all the riches from the Koch Brothers and the rest of the ONE PER
      CENT crowd. It begins to look like “The Hunger Games” is not fiction, after all.

    • plc97477

      Not odd at all. All repubs think “I got mine, screw you.”

      • BDC_57

        They anybody but them selfs.

  • Reducing the deficit, our reliance on borrowed money, and accumulation of debt on the backs of senior citizens and students, while promising to reject attempts to eliminate loopholes and subsidies that benefit the wealthy, is a despicable proposition that only appeals to the most partisan and the uninformed.

    Having said that, I would not count the GOP out yet. Many Americans are concerned and want our fiscal and economic integrity restored. Rep. Ryan’s efforts, while excessive and misguided, appeal to many Independents and moderates. Unfortunately for him, his tendency to go for the jugular and put ideology ahead of pragmatism and humanity is likely to harm him, at least short term.
    Make no mistake, he and the GOP will take full credit for the reductions in spending that have taken place during the past couple of years, as well as future reductions in spending and less dependence on credit. He is an over ambitious politician who will stop at nothing to get what he wants. His biggest problem, if he is nominated in 2016, is going to be the presumptive Democratic nominees. Who is an apprentice compared to Hillary Clinton who, if she decides to run may win by the largest landslide in the history of the USA…especially if she chooses Elizabeth Warren as her running mate. As for Rubio, Cruz, and Paul, well, they are likely to be benched players in 2016.

    • old_blu

      Exactly Dominick, if we thought Romney was too far right imagine what the American people are going to think of Rubio, Cruz, Paul, and for that matter Ryan as well, they will have to come up with someone a lot more toward the center if they don’t want to get spanked again.

      • neeceoooo

        Although, if they keep spewing their right wing propaganda then we have a much better chance of winning the senate and the house during the next election.

        • TheSkalawag929

          I agree but it won’t happen through wishful thinking. We can’t make the same mistake we made in 2010. We have to turn out in huge numbers to make things go our way in 2014.

          • neeceoooo

            You’re right, and the midterm elections usually don’t get the numbers that the presidential election does. So we need to come out in numbers to make sure the GOP is defeated.

          • charleo1

            That’s for darn sure! The entire Country continues to pay, for
            that little foray down into the goofball world, of the American
            nit wit.

      • TheSkalawag929

        If Hillary decides to run in 2016 it won’t matter who the republicans sacrifice. I think that person will be committing political suicide.

        • old_blu

          I think you are absolutely right about that, and if she has Elizabeth Warren as a running mate as Dominick says there will be no stopping them, although I was talking to a family member the other day and she said that she likes Elizabeth right where she is. (just something to ponder)

          • neeceoooo

            I think I heard that same thing and it is something to ponder, as much as we like a Clinton/Warren ticket.

          • TheSkalawag929

            I’m inclined to agree with your family member. We need all the good Democratic representation and support we can get in the House and the Senate.

          • Sand_Cat

            The key point is “good” Democratic representation: we haven’t seen a lot of that for awhile.

          • TheSkalawag929

            And we won’t unless we get out there and work to get more democrats elected to all levels of government.

          • Adam Wu

            The only downside to Warren running for and winning the vice presidency would be that her Senate seat will be vacated and Scott Brown might be tempted to kick at that can again….

        • Sand_Cat

          That’s what everyone said after the first Gulf War about any Dem who ran against Bush the first.

      • Obama is so center that is impossible.

    • garryowenault

      We have already seen a Very Good Senator leave the Seanate to replace Hillary and thankfully the voters got behind another Democrat. Let’s leave Elizabeth Warren in the Senate as she is really causing concern there to the ONE PER CENT.

  • charleo1

    At what point do we stop trying to explain Ryan’s budgets as simply reflecting
    an honest, but wrongheaded viewpoint of what he believes would be best for
    the Country? And start seeing them for the darker, betrayals of America, and
    the sacrificing of the American Middle Class, to a global economy? Which is
    what these budgets accomplish, far more efficiently than they balance the books.
    And certainly more than they prepare this Country to lead the coming global
    economy. Do we really need a poll here, to determine what role Americans
    want to take in the 21st century? I think we need to make a serious examination
    of the role the people Ryan, and much of the Republican Right, are carrying the
    water for. And see if they envision an America leading the world in the next 50
    years. And if so, why aren’t their minions like Paul Ryan, acting like it? And, we
    had better find out soon. The rest of the world will not be sitting on it’s haunches,
    waiting. While we bend ourselves into pretzels, trying to make Paul Ryan out to be
    this, serious policy wonk. With the best interests of his Countrymen in mind.

    • Barbara Morgan

      I have been wondering myself if the Republicans have decided to destroy the USA as we know it and let it become a third world country ripe to be invaded by one of our many enemies or even some of our so called Allies like a certain Country in the middle East whose war plane attacked the USS Liberty in international waters a few years back. If they are thinking that by allowing that to happen they would become the only party allowed.

      • charleo1

        No, I don’t think Republicans want to be invaded. They just want
        the people here, to work for them for nothing. I think they really admire the
        control governments like China have over their labor force. They
        do see an advantage in playing geo politics. And having the most powerful
        military in the world at their beck, and call. Especially, if it’s paid for by
        eliminating the costs of medical care, or safety net programs, is something
        they see as some sort of a Holy Grail. First, of buying control of a government. Then, having the institution they own, and control, do their bidding.
        So, for all their protestations about Socialism, or Communism, they
        aren’t so enamored with Capitalism, as they are in creating a system by
        which, any Socialism looks a lot like the bank bailouts, or the money lent
        to them at zero interest. And the Capitalism, that deems labor is paid at
        the lowest possible price the market, they control, will allow. So all they
        really want is, to control, all the money, and the power to make us do what they say. They don’t want much, do they?

        • Barbara Morgan

          Maybe they don’t want for us to be invaded but some of things that they do have made me wonder about that. I do think that if they had been able to buy the Presidency along with the White House and bought controll of both chambers we would be on a track to become a one party nation with only the rich being able to vote, that is how little I trust the Republicans-Teaparty members of Congress today.

          • charleo1

            Well, I certainly can agree about wanting to buy the White House,
            and Senate. It was for me, the thing I worried about the most.
            And, it wasn’t for lack of trying. We are watching the Supreme
            Court today, with Conservatives on the Court, predictably protecting
            the authority of the State. Republicans knew the President that
            won the election, would have perhaps two nominations, turning the
            Court Conservative 25, or 30 years! And, the T-Party’s radicalism,
            and willingness to obstruct democracy itself, is very troubling to
            a lot of Americans. Now, if enough people show up for the mid-
            terms, we’ll be okay. But, we can’t forget there is an inexhaustible
            amount of money. And we can bet they are ready to spend whatever
            is necessary to reach their political aims. And if getting a handle
            on the money pouring into our political process, is not made a
            real priority, I just don’t know how optimistic any of us can be,
            about the survival of real democracy.

          • idamag

            You trust them like I do.

        • angelsinca

          Opinions have to be respected, but saying Republicans want people to work for them is not only bizarre, but not truthful. I believe your president still has on the table a program for mandatory volunteer civil service, yes? BTW, I am an American but Obama made it abundantly clear he does not represent half the nation, hence the term ‘your’ president.

      • angelsinca

        Strongly disagree Barbara, Based on the radical actions and changes we’ve witnessed from Democrats the past 4 years, it appears a destruction of the USA, as we used to know it, can’t be attributed to Republicans.

        • Barbara Morgan

          I very strongly disagree with you. What radical actions and changes have you witnessed from the Democrats in the last 4 years? I don’t know how old you are but I have been around in this Country for more years than I care to think about. The only Party that has changed and it hasn’t been that much of a change for them is the Republican and their tea party partners. I have always voted for the person not the party that I thought would do the best job for all the people and the Country and I have not voted for a Republican President since before Reagan. I have voted for for Republicans that have ran for the House or the Senate but I will not vote for one of them again. My mother who was child during the Great Depression always said before she died that Republicans only look out for one group of people and that is the people with lots of money and she also said that everytime we have a Republican President we have a depression or a recession within a year of them coming into office or a year before they leave office and there will all ways be some kind of military action when there is a Republican President. I thought she is just saying that because of the rough times she had when growing up. I don’t say that now because I found out she knew what she was talking about all along.
          The Republican party has done everything it could to keep this Country from the road of recovery because they wanted to make President Obama a one term President and they said they would do anything to make him a one term President even before he took office even it it hurt the Country, per McConnell in December 2008.. Republicans did everything they could to keep this Country in recession and to stop economic recovery trying to make President Obama a one term President. Well they lost when he was reelected to office in 2012. They still don’t care what they do to this Country all they want to do is to make the President look bad. In December 2012 a Republican member of Congress brought to the floor a bill that would help veterans find jobs after they leave the service it was defeated because the Bohmner and McConnell thought it might make the President look good. That is why I say the Republicans want to destroy the President even if it destroys the Country also. so once again what radical actions and changes are you talking about in regards to the Democrats?

          • angelsinca

            The gov’t takeover of healthcare is kind of radical. We have radical social changes challenging most traditions involving race, gender, creed, speech. Radical debt. Radical advancement of the democrat mantra throughout the middle east. Radical lavishness for upper echelon civil servants, radical challenges to the constitution, radical disregard for exisitng law ny the USAG and POTUS. Maybe this is all normal for you. It seems kind of chaotic with no order or clear future that includes everyone.

          • idamag

            As I pointed out, you are an ideologue. Let’s take your points one by one:
            1. Healthcare should have never been the bottom line on the stock market page of the Wall Street Journal. Healthcare should not be a status symbol for the rich. We are the only industrialized country that lets people die. Example: Our community had a young father who needed a liver transplant. He was told he had to have $100,000 up front before they would look for a donor. We were holding fund raisings, but he died first. Nasty war mongering Dick Cheney got a transplant. Maybe the cost of the program will be offset by the savings. Right now, for every $2,500 spent on medical care, $800 goes to pay for those who can’t or won’t. I don’t think the healthcare act went far enough. We need a public option. Your arguments will be continued next post by me.

          • angelsinca

            Thanks for offering the point-point rebuttals. I’ll play along and see how it goes. The effort you put into it deserves recognition. Thanks.

            1. I’m pretty sure you are trying say that money affects bioethical decisions. You offer Cheney vs. young father as a vague supporting example. Then you propose that a public healthcare option would have prevented the young father’s death. I don’t see how subsidies by the government (to offer lower priced health insurance) would have effected bioethical decisions for the young father’s transplant, unless care is rationed according to the ability to pay. Then, the solution isn’t more gov’t subsidy, but regulations to address the unethical practice of wealth-based biomedical decisions. Cheney’s war profiteering is entirely irrelevant and another unethical topic.

          • idamag

            2. Radical social changes that challenges traditions. Traditions are not more important than people. The only example I can think of is the debate going on in the Supreme Court over gay marriage. Gay marriage is none of my business. If two loving people want a relationship, my mind should not go to what they are doing in their bedrooms. Get your nose out of their crotch. I have many gay friends. I know they were born that way.

          • angelsinca

            2. There should be no special rights for married people. Why should singles or underage children have any fewer rights than others? People should keep their crotches out of other people’s faces. Modesty shows respect to the privacy of others.

          • idamag

            3. If you are talking about political correctness: that is not a law. It is more common decency adopted by less angry and hateful people. If you are talking about repealing the voting rights act because (as Scalia put it) it is a minority entitlement, voting is not an entitlement – it is a right.

          • angelsinca

            3. “…radical social changes challenging most traditions involving race, gender, creed, speech, age…

            PC is now “…more common decency adopted by less angry and hateful people”?. LOL. People have become so moronically PC, they can’t even identy each other by skin color (ie, “no, it’s the black guy next to the white guy in the blue shirt”). They wince at terms that are based in religious (ie Christmas, Easter, God) for fear of offending someone that might be offended as easily as themselves. It seems we’ve traded plain talk with aversions and distractions that don’t dare highlight we have differences.

            The voter’s rights act provisions ought to be implement in all states equally until they can each prove they don’t discriminate against other political parties.

          • idamag

            4. Radical debt? The spending has been drastically cut. However, if there is no money coming in, the normal bills go on. Bush’s answer to the economical crisis was to lower tax rates for the “job creators.” If that was a good idea, everyone is doing well, there is no unemployment and the country is rolling in dough. Obviously it wasn’t such a good idea. The jobs were created overseas and that isn’t doing any good to this country. The answer to the debt crisis is to get more revenue coming in. The 83 cents an hour worker in India is not paying taxes to this country. He is not buying from American businesses. American workers, who are employed, are paying down the National debt and they are the consumers. The stimulus package worked, but it needed to be more. In 2005 unemployment rose to 9.3 percent . It is now at 7.2. Put the people to work and they will pay off the debt and raise the economy.

          • angelsinca

            4. The liberal version of economics usually makes everyone groan about the economy. The conservation version of the economy usually makes liberals groan about republicans. The Ue rate is effected when you move five percent of the population from unemployment to social security disabilit. SInce the gov’t is paying out more in entltlements now that ever before, it must have more revenue to offset that enormous liability. You don’t create more revenue by increasing liability with added debt and calling it ‘stimulus’.

          • idamag

            6. Please define what you mean by radical advancement for the Democratic mantra throughout the Middle East. We need to get out of the Middle East. Iraq should never had been attacked and that is still costing us.

          • angelsinca

            5. got neglected.
            6. yes, we need to get out of the middel east.

          • idamag

            7. Boy , do you love that word, “radical>” Explain what you mean by radical disregard for the law by USAG AND potus? Also present some facts about radical lavishness for civil servants. I used to be one and I can tell you I never lived in post lavishness.

          • angelsinca

            7. The norm for our civilian aged is austerity and poverty. Can’t say the same for our pensioned bureaucrat brethren. Nice benefits packages, especially when you double and triple dip into multiple agency pensions plus medicare plus SS. Don’t see many ex G8’s-up living in poverty. Holder+Obama=fast & furious+EO.

        • idamag

          Instead of being an ideologue, try studying the issues. History tells a lot about what is happening today. I feel the same way about political parties as some of our founding fathers did. James Madison said parties would divide the nation and create chaos.
          Because of the extreme hate, the throwing rocks through Democrat Headquarter windows, the ugly rhetoric, I voted straight Democrat last election as it is the least destructive party right now.

          • angelsinca

            I prefer to be an ideologue. As a spectator on this and similar left-leaning sites, I see a lot of anger and hate directed at republicans and conservatives. When I spectate at conservative sites, I see the same directed at liberals and democrats, but with less voracity. I’d rather remain apart from one sided views that are targeted against another group. It makes it easier to embrace cooperation and remain open minded to refreshing views and ideas that usually result in the most effective solutions. I don’t like being caged by political boundaries. Thanks for the advice anyway.

  • Clearly Ryan would be all for infrastructure improvements IF they were tied to more WELFARE FOR THE WEALTHY.

    And, of course, CUTS TO MEDICARE, MEDICAID, AND SOCIAL SECURITY.

    • BDC_57

      You are right all he wants is his rich buddies to get the breaks not the people that voted him in.

  • howa4x

    Any good economist realizes that we cannot cut our way out of the deficit. We need investment in our country, which translates to infrastructure improvement. Who is going to build a factory if the roads to it are potholed, or the bridges are deemed unsafe. It is interesting that he still is tied to the republican game plan of creating more tax breaks for the wealthy while cutting expenditures everywhere else. If he really wants to cut spending why give another tax cut which is spending by another name. If he is the budget wonk for the republicans, they are in deep touble.

  • JDavidS

    The Ryan budgeting philosophy…Ready!…Fire!…Aim!
    I’m sure his middle name is “Idiot”.

    • idamag

      JDavid, good way to put it.

    • Independent1

      And he probably would have done a better job of selecting where to spend and where to cut spending, if he had actually just used darts and thrown them at a board set up with the different parts of the budget that are realistically open to being cut or expanded.

  • GOP has a lack of vision problem as well as any long term planning skills. Get the $$ is their priority, not helping or strengthening any part of US.

    • BDC_57

      They still dont know why lost.

      • garryowenault

        Some never well. Other’s know why and are beginning to sharpen up the long knives for the movement to remove the not knowing what is about to happen Tea Party types, including Ryan.

        • plc97477

          I think it may be interesting. Could be fun to watch karl rove and the tea party take pot shots at each other.

          • garryowenault

            Am looking forward to that with great relish. How about a bumper sticker for 2016 : No Fist Term For Ryan

  • Independent1

    I’m not that up on what types of companies do the majority of infrastructure work, but it seems to me that the majority of it is done by regional or local contruction companies; that there isn’t really a major national or international comglomerate that contracts to build new highways, railways, bridges, government buildings, etc. or to do repairs to them. So doesn’t the fact that Ryan’s budget is devoid of one mention of infrastructure work kind of telling us who may be driving the drastic spending and budget cutting focus of Ryan’s budget? Like maybe his budget doesn’t make a lot of sense to anyone with a true brain, because it isn’t created from a sense of doing any benefit for America at all, but rather it’s total focus is to simply further line the pockets of big donors to the GOP like the fossil fuel, financial, defense, healthcare, casino, and other nationally and internationaly prominent industries that donate heavily to the party? And shouldn’t this be a warning sign to small business people? Sort of telling them that the GOP isn’t really looking out for their best in interests at all? despite all the rhetoric the party sometimes spews about supposedly wanting to help small businesses survive. but are they really? When Ryan’s budget would clearly put a big damper on America’s economy, it seems to me that his budget sends a big message to small business people, we don’t mind destroying what helps small business prosper, a robust economy, we’re focused on seeing how much money America’s national and international companies can make, even if it’s at your expense.

    • neeceoooo

      Not to mention that taking the infrastructure work out of the budget and the economy eliminates the jobs that this would create for the blue collar workers of America.

      • Independent1

        Good point! But isn’t the GOP suppose to be all about creating jobs? Weren’t they screaming before the election, where are the jobs? where are the jobs? at virtually everything Obama tried. So Ryan’s budget uncovers one more thing – the GOP’s lies about wanting to create jobs – they don’t really care about those either!! It’s all about stuffing moe and more money into the pockets of those who already have more than they should realistically ever need in this life!!

        • neeceoooo

          You’re right

        • 4sanity4all

          Yes, they were screaming where are the jobs?- but then they watered down the President’s jobs bill. It worked, but it could have done more if it had been passed in its original form. And now they are stalling bringing his current jobs bill to a vote. They say one thing, but their actions betray their real agenda, which is to make the President look bad, no matter how much that damages the economy and the citizens. I don’t know how working class republicans keep missing this; their party is screwing them, but they all get behind red herring issues, like abortion, birth control, and gun control, and they keep supporting the GOP. Go figure.

          • Barbara Morgan

            All of us that know working people that voted for the Republicans last year need to remind them that everytime the President has tried to get jobs bill passed that the Republicans tried or did block everyone of them. Also that the Rebublicans are blocking a raise in the minium wage. Also remined any Vets that you know that are looking for a job that in December 2012 a bill brought to the floor of Congress that would help Vets get jobs and was brought to the floor by a Republican member of Congress but was voted down by the Republicans because it might make President Obama look good. The election was over and Republicans still refused to do anything to help the men and women that are Vets and who fought in their 2 unfinanced wars, one of which was an illegal war.Let’s show all that voted Republican in 2012 that they voted against their own self interests and voted to make themselves poorer while making the rich richer.

        • Barbara Morgan

          That is why all of us need to start today reminding the voters that the Republicans have not kept their election vote promise of jobs, jobs, jobs and have tried to block or have blocked every effort that President Obama has tried to get more jobs created by small businesses or any other size business. All the taxbreaks and corporate welfare given to large businesses and corporations and their owners have not created jobs they just made them richer. Reminding people what little the Republicans have done to get people back to work and how they have stopped the President’s efforts to put people back to work should be a good vote getting stragety(spellcheck not working). Also reminding the Vets that a Republican member of Congress wrote a bill that made it out of committee to help vets find and get jobs but it was defeated because other Republican members of Congress thought it might make the President look good and the bill was introduced after the 2012 elections.

          • Independent1

            You bring up an issue that I feel really needs to be addressed: ‘reminding the voters’. I’m astonished at the number of people who post comments on Yahoo news items and even The National News who appear to be totally clueless on many politically related facts. And that is despite the enormous amount of money spent by both parties on TV ad campaigns. There has to be a better way to educate the voters – and we need to find it. We need to find a cheaper, better way to get messages on top such as you mentioned out to more voters than TV ads appear to do. My hunch is that there have been so many TV ad blitzes that most TV viewers either, change the channel, turn down the volume or just simple ignore the ads. We need someone really creative to come up with a better way that doesn’t cost campaigns million upon million of dollars to get a message out. Is it creating an enticing app for smart phones? I’m not sure. I just know that the voter information processes that we’re using today are not working. Because if they were, two snakeoil salesman whose total campaign based on lies and distortions of the facts that anyone with one ounce of common sense could see through, would not have received anywhere near 47% of the popular vote last November.

          • Barbara Morgan

            I have an idea how to do it, just do not know who suggest it to. My idea is to get a core group of people and teach them the facts and numbers that prove the Republican party only represents the rich and not the people that voted for them. Then have them go to each county in the state and working with the local Democrat party leaders train a number of in the county the facts the person learned say like in my state Tennessee at the state Democratic headquarters and get them to cover their county to show the truth about the Republicans and how they work.

    • Barbara Morgan

      Not always infrastructure work is usually bid on by more companies than local companies and the one that gets the job can come from a different state to do the job. Since Ryan and others like him want only their donors to make money that could be why infrastructure is not mentioned by because I haven’t heard of a any Constrution Company that is nationwide. Ryan and the Republicans do not seem to understand when the infrastructure is gone none of their rich donors will be able to get their products from point A to point B nor will their money be safe anywhere, if the infrastructure is broken, the bank or corporate bulding could go down a sinkhole like the house in Florida did. I don’t want any one hurt or killed but it would be poetic justice if one or of the rich donors to Ryan and party homes was swallowed up by a sinkhole because of infrastrucuture failure.

      • Independent1

        Or, how about if a number of large Republican corporate donors’ companies were shut down for weeks because of a major breakdown in the country’s power grids? Or if a dam failed due to the lack of maintenance and a number of their corporate donor’s factories were destroyed by the flooding?
        Unfortunately, what may happen, is that most Republicans are so clueless about the need for infrastructure, that they’d write these disasters off as just part of doing business, and not realize that they were the result of the party totally ignoring the need for infrastructure maintenance. During Bush Jr’s two terms, he gradually cut more and more each year in federal subsidies to the states from his budgets, not only for programs that helped the needy like medicaid, but also for the maintenace of interstate highways and bridges and for federally mandated programs like the disasterous No Child Left Behind fiasco, that his budget cuts were clearly the reason that a large number of states ended up on the verge of bankruptcy.

  • adler56

    When are people going to realize Ryan is without clothes. Are Democrats the only ones that can see that? I hate to even look at him- he has that hangdog look of a sick puppy-and his eyes look like a mistake on God’s part. So he just has this myth going for him- republicans think he’s a numbers guy but he has no background in economics that matters.

  • latebloomingrandma

    Paul Ryan, for all his vaunted intellect, is just a typical left brain thinker. Looking just at the ledger and numbers. Left brain types make the mistake of thinking that the federal government’s budget is the same thing as our household budgets, just on a larger scale. That’s easy to sell to people. The lawmakers who really believe in the greatness of America are the right brain thinkers. The visionaries who gave us the first intercontinental railroad, the highway system, the space program, the golden Gate bridge, the Hoover dam, etc., etc. Ryan envisions a poorer, hopeless, America of the haves and have-nots. But we will be freeee—-free to be hungry and ill, uneducated, grasping at jobs with low pay, and beholden to the plutocrats who hold all the cards. But hey–we may have a balanced budget, if that is the ultimate goal of government. .

  • adriancrutch

    The path to prosperity and the bridge to nowhere! (long title version)

    • Independent1

      Be careful. You may remind posters here, that the infamous “bridge to nowhere” was a funding earmark inserted into a piece of legislation by a Republican from the red state of Alaska, and I believe, was a request for federal goverment funding of a project that had previously been approved by none other than Sarah Palin. Correct me if I’m wrong.

      • neeceoooo

        I do believe that you are correct.

      • old_blu

        You’re not wrong!

      • BDC_57

        You are correct.

      • Barbara Morgan

        You are not wrong.

  • ORAXX

    Ryan and others continue preaching to the converted and remain oblivious to the fact that the country is moving on without them. They offer no solutions. To anything. Ryan is, evidently, willing to take the country down in the name of conforming to Ayn Rand’s insane idea of what the country should look like.

    • Barbara Morgan

      The ironic part of Ryan’s liking of Ayn Rand is that according to what someone posted on anothe site she ended up on Social Security and medicare before she died..I wonder if she was still alive today and drawing SS and being on medicare if he would want to cut them or would he forget that she was a menator thru her writings for him in his younger years and still insist that seniors and people that are disabled be allowed to die because of no money which in turn means no food, no medical care and no home. His wanting to cut the safety net for some many makes me think that he is trying to bring back the poor houses where so many seniors ended up in up before Social Security along with the handicapped and poor families. Knowing the way his cold hearted self thinks he would also try to do away with poor houses if they still were around.

  • Betta

    ‘March Madness: Obama 108, Ryan 0’

    I guess that would be 108 federal FELONY indictments against Obama and 0 against Ryan.

    • plc97477

      I have an idea you are probably mad in all the months.

    • Siegfried Heydrich

      I don’t suppose you’d care to substantiate those 108 FELONY indictments, or is this just another example of a bagro pulling a number out of their ass? My guess, of course, is the latter, and that you’re just another mouth breathing knuckledragger.

      • idamag

        She is what I have come to think of the Republican Party and I will never vote Republican, again, until they get rid of the lying whackos

    • Barbara Morgan

      No , it mean 108 wins for President Obama and 0 for Ryan. If there any federal FELONY indictments to be issured it would be for your hero not our President. Ryan doesn’t give a pluged nickel for you unless you have millions in a bank accounts and overseas accounts. None of the Republicans in Congress care about anyone but their rich selves, their families, their rich donors and their families and the rich and their families that are just as greedy and cold hearted as Congressional Republicans are. Be sure and not have anything to happen where you might have to ask the Republicans for help, there answer would be “you are a taker, we don’t help takers just people like the Koch brothers, Robert Anderson, and others like them” So go post your lies on a Republican site where you will be believed.

  • Sand_Cat

    The only “renewal” he really cares about is the one that seems to happen automatically every two years when the idiots send him back from Wisconsin to Washington. Maybe they can’t stand having him around, either.