Speaker Ryan’s Common Ground

 

lossy-page1-640px-Speaker_Ryan_1.tifPaul Ryan “outlined his vision for a confident America at home and abroad, pledging that his top priority as Speaker in 2016 will be offering the country a bold, pro-growth agenda” (to quote the page on his website that features the full text of the remarks, hosts a video of the address and, inexplicably, contains a comments section on a par with the non-Ricochet parts of the interwebs).

True to his reform icon roots, the Speaker wants to retain Social Security and Medicare, but then goes on to lay out a vision more-or-less compatible with that offered by the various Presidential candidates: more growth, simpler tax code, smaller government, stronger military. This is presumably by design.

He has some great lines that should become staples of conservative discourse. Discussing how bureaucracy is doomed to failure in today’s world (more than a hint of Fiorina here), he says:

More bureaucracy means less opportunity—because big government and big business don’t fight each other so much as feed each other. … And so round and round the revolving door goes, all while the people stand on the sidelines. … That’s how today’s experts become tomorrow’s cronies. … Don’t outsource [problems] to the bureaucracy. Crowdsource [them to the people].

He also has some gestures towards why supporting trade agreements should be conservative policy:

We believe in free enterprise. We believe, if you have a good idea, you should have a fair chance to make it happen. That means Americans should not have to pay unnecessary costs or wait and wait and wait just to get a permit. They should compete on a level playing field with everybody else. I don’t know why we would not fight for every job out there. I don’t know why we would accept—or even worse, adopt—other countries’ corporate welfare when we know our way is better. There won’t be a level playing field—there won’t be free and fair trade—unless we work for it. China is out there every day pushing for crony capitalism. So it all comes down to this question: Are we going to write the rules of the global economy—or is China?

To my mind, he doesn’t quite seal the deal, here. (And to be fair, he makes a couple more half-arguments than this one.) But it is only one point in what is really a speech about “watch this space”.

He ends with an appeal to… I’m not quite sure. Who is Speaker Ryan addressing with this peroration?

So what it all comes down to is whether we conservatives have confidence in ourselves. Do we really believe our philosophy is true? Do we have the best ideas? If so, then I don’t see any reason why we should hold back. The truth is, the Left wants to make the debate about personalities. They want to paint us as irresponsible. That’s because we all know what the Left stands for. We all know what another progressive presidency would mean: just more of the same.

So don’t take the bait. Don’t play their game. Don’t give them a win by default. Put together a positive agenda, and take it to the American people. Give people the choice they are yearning for. And if next year, this House can say we have done that, then we will have done our job. Then the people will know that we stand for a more prosperous, a more secure, a more confident America. And the rest? Well, the rest will be up to the people—as it should be.

Oh, yeah. The hook is supposed to be ‘a confident America’ (or as the kids say these days, #ConfidentAmerica). This requires harping on the anxious, fearful America of today, which I wonder about.

Speaker Ryan” by Office of Speaker Paul D. Ryan via Wikimedia Commons.

Published in Domestic Policy
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There are 11 comments.

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  1. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    A bold pro-growth agenda includes accounting chicanery with the federal reserve and re-authorization of the Ex-Im bank wrapped up in a ‘highway bill’?

    • #1
  2. Fricosis Guy Listener
    Fricosis Guy
    @FricosisGuy

    BrentB67:A bold pro-growth agenda includes accounting chicanery with the federal reserve and re-authorization of the Ex-Im bank wrapped up in a ‘highway bill’?

    A shame that he’s using his goodwill up on cronyism. Something significant–e.g., holding the line on the eliminated Obamacare insurer bailouts–better be on the other end of this bargain.

    • #2
  3. OkieSailor Member
    OkieSailor
    @OkieSailor

    Paul Ryan came up through the Jack Kemp School so he’s not as libertarian enough to please me completely. That said he is for expanding liberty the only way possible, by shrinking government. He is willing to compromise in order to make progress. Until our side learns to take small steps in the direction of liberty we will continue to be outflanked by the statist “liberals”. I won’t like everything he does but I’m happy to have someone who understands both what needs to be done and how to get some of it done in a position to get something done. So I think he was talking to those representatives who refuse any compromise, those voters who sat out the vote in 2012 because Romney wasn’t perfect, and candidates who are afraid to articulate a clear conservative message because the media will misrepresent what they say.

    • #3
  4. Casey Way Inactive
    Casey Way
    @CaseyWay

    I heartily endorse his pro-growth agenda; the beard is shaping up nicely. If he can promote the fiscally conservative policy as visually then we really may have a winner. Time will tell…

    • #4
  5. Commodore BTC Inactive
    Commodore BTC
    @CommodoreBTC

    Tired of hearing this aspirational pap from Ryan/Rubio types. I don’t need a Dr. Phil in Congress.

    Go after crony capitalism.

    Go after the regulatory state.

    Go after the tax code.

    They highway bill Ryan just passed is an utter abomination, as is the education bill that extends NCLB. As is the budget that busts all spending caps.

    Talk is cheap.

    • #5
  6. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Commodore BTC:Tired of hearing this aspirational pap from Ryan/Rubio types. I don’t need a Dr. Phil in Congress.

    Go after crony capitalism.

    Go after the regulatory state.

    Go after the tax code.

    They highway bill Ryan just passed is an utter abomination, as is the education bill that extends NCLB. As is the budget that busts all spending caps.

    Talk is cheap.

    But, but, but Ryan is going to limit the government! I heard it on Ricochet!

    • #6
  7. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Commodore BTC: Talk is cheap.

    And still required.

    • #7
  8. Xennady Member
    Xennady
    @

    More bovine excrement served up in a silver spoon. Are we going to write the rules of the global economy or is China?

    I’d like to know why Ryan thinks that is an either/or proposition- except in reality I know that this is nothing more than a helping of bovine excrement intended to help make a case for the TPP.

    I see no reason why the United States or China should get to write the rules for the global economy- but we absolutely should get to write the rules about how our economy interacts with the rest of the world.

    Instead, with the TPP, this will be taken out of our hands and given over to a set of international bureaucrats, with precious little input or influence from the American people.

    And, of course, once this abomination passes Congress lickety-split after a quick sham of a debate we’ll be told that we consented to it all.

    I’m not seeing common ground. I’m seeing more of the same- globalism, transnationalism, and no reason to think the GOP disagrees with the left on the things that really matter.

    Thumbs down.

    • #8
  9. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    I have an idea.  Let’s not have a Speaker!  I’m baffled that some of my colleagues here think that we’re going to do better than this guy.  Raoul Labrador isn’t walking through that door.

    • #9
  10. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Commodore BTC:Tired of hearing this aspirational pap from Ryan/Rubio types. I don’t need a Dr. Phil in Congress.

    Go after crony capitalism.

    Go after the regulatory state.

    Go after the tax code.

    They highway bill Ryan just passed is an utter abomination, as is the education bill that extends NCLB. As is the budget that busts all spending caps.

    Talk is cheap.

    Well in Washington, it still costs a fortune.

    • #10
  11. Duane Oyen Member
    Duane Oyen
    @DuaneOyen

    So, the consensus here is, apparently, that Speaker Ryan favors crony capitalism, the tax code as it is, stifling government regulation, and massive spending.  Because if he just cared, he could eliminate all that stuff.

    How many cabinet departments did Pres. Reagan eliminate?  Good thing he never had any Washington “insider” types working for him, right?

    Good grief.

    • #11
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