Isabel Sawhill, the almost pathologically moderate and polite Brookings economist, unloads on Paul Ryan’s budget plan. Unlike most of the reporters, Sawhill knows what it means to be fiscally responsible, and she notices that Ryan’s plan ain’t. Reducing the deficit can be done by cutting domestic spending, cutting military spending, or raising revenues. The Ryan plan is all about domestic spending. Sawhill remarks:
It’s like a stool with only one leg. It will not stand.
And Sawhill provides some rhetorical advice:
For starters, progressives should be unabashed in labeling the Ryan plan for what it is: an ideological manifesto for a Tea-Party-dominated Republican Party … Voodoo Economics is back in full gear.
The basic fact about American political life today is that one of the two major parties is dominated by dangerous extremists. The basic fact about American journalistic life today is that reporters aren’t reporting that fact. The fact that Belle Sawhill is finally willing to call lunacy by its right name ought to matter, though it probably won’t.
I’m hoping that the rather flaccid response from the White House to what’s been coming out of Capitol Hill since January is a set-up for a “sanity against extremism” campaign for 2012.