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Wed Jul 30, 2014, 06:27 PM

The Three False Premises of the Ryan Poverty Plan

The Three False Premises of the Ryan Poverty Plan
by Stephen Pimpare Posted on July 30, 2014 at 8:30 am Updated: July 30, 2014 at 9:21 am

Paul Ryan has received a lot of attention for his recent poverty proposals. One wonders why, given that he has demonstrated time and again that he’s either unaware of the research on the topic, doesn’t understand it, or is intentionally misrepresenting it. In any case, he should be ignored.

But he’s Chair of the House Budget Committee, a leader within his party, and, whatever poverty scholars and more serious analysts might wish, he will still set many of the terms of the poverty policy debate in DC. He should be ignored, but he probably can’t be.

So what’s so bad about Paul Ryan’s thinking about poverty?

First, there’s nothing new in it. He offers block grants, cuts to programs, new work requirements, school vouchers, regulatory repeal, more money to faith-based initiatives, and privatizing social services, presenting us with little more than fresh marketing for tired ideas that — when tried in the past — made people’s lives worse, not better. Even the proposals that might seem promising are badly designed — like his way of expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit. With the possible exception of his proposals to reduce some mandatory minimum sentences — which advocates of all stripes have been agitating for for decades — it’s old wine in old bottles. Why should we treat it as newsworthy or innovative?

There’s a deeper problem with Ryan’s approach beyond the details of his proposal. The foundation itself is rotten: the project is built upon three fatal, false premises.


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Reply The Three False Premises of the Ryan Poverty Plan (Original post)
Judi Lynn Jul 2014 OP
yurbud Jul 2014 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Thu Jul 31, 2014, 02:06 PM

1. They are not even sincere premises.

They are rationales for giving tax dollars to cronies under the guise of helping the poor.

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