In a speech at the Economic Club of Chicago yesterday, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) laid out his “Path to Prosperity” 2012 budget proposal. Ryan also discussed how the U.S. government reached its big-spending tipping point:
By the end of the decade, we will be spending 20 percent of our tax revenue simply paying interest on the debt – and that’s according to optimistic projections. If ratings agencies such as S&P move from downgrading our outlook to downgrading our credit, then interest rates will rise even higher, and debt service will cost trillions more.
This course is not sustainable. That isn’t an opinion; it’s a mathematical certainty. If we continue down our current path, we are walking right into the most preventable crisis in our nation’s history.
The first step of Ryan’s plan is the simplest:
First, we have to stop spending money we don’t have, and ultimately that means getting health care costs under control.
His plan is a stark contrast to President Obama’s budget proposal, which calls for more spending of money that America doesn’t have.
Ryan’s plan just does not balance the budget, it pays off the debt. The “Path to Prosperity” reduces the deficit by a third in the first year, putting an end to trillion dollar deficits.
In his speech, Ryan stressed the importance of controlling entitlement costs like Social Security and Medicare, saying that Medicare was the engine driving up costs. The Ryan “Path to Prosperity” plan offers a real solution to the debt crisis, something the administration is not offering.
Heritage has also offered a budget solution titled “Saving the American Dream.” Both plans would be a welcome change to America’s current path.