Wednesday, May 18, 2011

McClintock's philosophical problem

At his town-hall on Tuesday, McClintock is reported to have pushed Paul Ryan's so-called "Path to Prosperity" as the answer to the debt crisis. He also mentioned that he won't vote for a long-term extension of the debt ceiling before doing a complete about-face, caving to the federal puppetmaster by saying he does support a 60-day extension.

There's a basic difference between how people like McClintock and Ryan view government and how people like Ron Paul view it. The former type are the accountants described by Paul:
"We are dealing with a problem in Washington as a budgetary accounting problem and that’s not it. It’s a philosophy problem. What is the philosophy of government? What should the role of government be?”

The Congressman went on to question the role of government in the economy and welfare system. “(Paul) Ryan doesn’t reject (the) notion (of a government-run welfare system). I do.”

Congressman Paul also criticized spending on “maintaining our empire” and “being the policeman of the world.”
It's not about having an efficient government. It's about restraining the government to protect our rights, whether that's the right to a market sans manipulation, the right to the produce of my own labor or the right not to have armed thugs order me how to live my life. Besides, who likes accountants?

Although, if you are one for looking at the numbers, Robert Wenzel's take on Ryan's "path" is spot on:
Ryan's "radical" budget would only reduce government spending to 20% of GDP by 2015. Obama wants to cut it to 23%. It is currently at 25%. In other words, there's only a 3 percentage point difference between Ryan's proposal and that of wild spending Democrats. And, this of course is before all the Congressional horse trading that goes on that would surely boost spending levels.
Responding from a more philosophical angle, he also wrote:
The only real way to deal with the budget is to cut it far, far below expected revenues. These walking on the edge of the knife budgets are irresponsible thinking, even for those who think government needs to play a significant role in the affairs of a country.