There's a line of thinking on the political left that Mitt Romney served up a great softball in picking Paul Ryan as his running mate.
According to Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page, "Ryan brings to the Romney campaign the Tea Party's style of magical thinking, a blissfully simplistic, ideologically driven world view that seems to think candidates can win votes by promising to reduce popular government services."
Republican candidates, they say, are ducking for cover to avoid being branded with budget reforms that Ryan, as chairman of the House Budget Committee, has proposed, particularly for Medicare and Medicaid.
Vice President Joe Biden, eloquent as always, told a mostly black audience in Virginia that Republicans want to put "y'all back in chains."
Although Biden has taken flak for this nauseating remark, he should get credit for summing up how Democrats really think: that government running your life makes you free and that anyone who proposes freedom and choice wants to put "y'all back in chains."
Earlier this year, Douglas Elmendorf, director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, sent a report on the nation's budget to House Budget Committee chairman Ryan.
Here's what he said:
"The explosive path of the federal debt that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects under what many observers would view as current policies underscores the need for policy changes to put the nation on a sustainable course.
"The aging of the population and rising costs for health care will push spending for Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and other federal health-care programs considerably higher as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP)."
Elmendorf concludes that without major increases in revenues and/or substantial cuts in spending, "the resulting budget deficits will increase federal debt to unsupportable levels."
So Paul Ryan's high crime is being courageous, honest and leveling with the American people about the tough realities facing us.
He, like most Republicans, believes that raising taxes, when our economy is growing at half its historical average, and with the unemployment rate 40 percent higher than its historical average, is economic suicide.
So Ryan takes on the major culprits in driving our long-term fiscal crisis -- entitlements spending.
Is this "magical thinking?" No, it's guts.
And what courageous measures do Democrat critics take on? No major spending-reform proposals and no across-the-board tax hikes, which Elmendorf suggests as the alternative.
Just the usual class-warfare rhetoric. Tax the top one percent, who already pay 39 percent of income taxes, and who alone could never cover the huge deficits that CBO is projecting.
In 1975, 10 percent of the population was on Medicaid. Now it is double that.
Ryan's idea of block-granting federal funds for Medicaid to states would give local latitude and responsibility to promote innovation to make more productive use of limited resources.
A new study published in the journal Health Affairs reports that 31 percent of physicians refuse patients on Medicaid. Yet, when innovative business models emerge to deliver care in underserved poor communities, they are attacked by the left.
The Center for Public Integrity, whose funders include George Soros, has posted on its website that Ryan's budget plan is a "Path to the Poorhouse." Yet it also attacks dental health maintenance organizations, a recent business concept to organize dental practices, making it feasible to accept Medicaid reimbursements and provide dental care in poor neighborhoods.
There is a saying that you can bring a horse to water but you can't make it drink.
Paul Ryan is courageously delivering truth to the American people, boldly and clearly.
He can't make anyone drink the water. But if honesty and courage is no longer what sells in America, we can be sure that the future is not pretty.
Romney's bet, and I think it is a good one, is that the American people are ready for Paul Ryan and an adult conversation.
The issue of black poverty, and black children in poverty, has not suffered from lack of attention. (comments)
Secularists relate to government, not as a protector, but as a tool of aggression to force others to accept and live with values they reject. (comments)
A leader in a diverse country is to keep things going in generally the right direction -- compromise is always part of the game. (comments)
The idea of the Olympics as a platform for promoting peace and goodwill among nations is particularly weak today. (comments)
Militant left wing blacks like Jesse Williams only care when tragedy serves their message of victimhood and oppression. (comments)
The culture wars that Thiel calls "fake" were not fake to Reagan. (comments)
Today the NAACP is part of the status quo and, despite its rhetoric, now fights to protect special interests. (comments)
When we don't take law seriously at the highest levels of power in the nation, the message reverberates throughout the land. (comments)
Without taking action, Social Security benefits will be substantially cut in just 13 years. (comments)
It is a total perversion of the purpose of society. (comments)
Why can't the Black Caucus stand up uniformly for free enterprise? (comments)
We will not be victorious over terrorism with might alone. (comments)
After new regulation, as much of 80 percent of the loan volume could be curtailed. (comments)
Why should our education system be shielded from capitalism, the competitive forces that produce excellence? (comments)
The civil rights movement became unmoored from the religious and moral values that drove it to begin with. (comments)
Many with great political power in Washington, who control so much of our money, cannot distinguish between a fact and an opinion. (comments)
Republicans have not stood ground and provided a real conservative alternative to the party of the left. (comments)
As the politics of the welfare state and moral relativism have increasingly taken control of the country, they have disproportionately hit our minority communities. (comments)
The constitution does not exist to use government power to force the set of values of one private citizen on other. (comments)