Ryan and Marino are Delusional about the Budget

English: Official portrait of US Rep. Tom Marino.

English: Official portrait of US Rep. Tom Marino. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Letter submitted to Daily Item.  We shall see.


“What do Paul Ryan and our PA-10 Representative Tom Marino have in common?   They both believe in magical budget fairies.

Paul Ryan is famous for his budget blueprint making him a “fiscal conservative.”  That has got to be one of the most famous boondoggles in history.  According to his own estimates, he balances the budget (teh annual budget, not the debt) around 2063!  Clinton, that poster boy of fiscal conservatism, got to a balanced budget in 8 years!

So, it is a joke that Ryan is a fiscal conservative.  He believes in a government that does almost nothing outside of defense.

Tom Marino proudly trumpets his support for this joke of a budget.  On his website, Rep Marino says: “The budget blueprint I supported today keeps that promise and boldly confronts the challenges we face.”

That is very bold of you.  To balance the budget in 50 years.  That is like boldly putting out a fire by studying the farmer’s almanac for the next rain day.”


Sources, fwiw.

Marino: http://votesmart.org/candidate/119478/tom-marino?categoryId=10

Budget estimates from Matt Miller (former OMB guy) : http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/mar/03/matt-miller/matt-miller-blasts-deficit-debt-implications-paul-/

Another former OMB guy: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/14/opinion/paul-ryans-fairy-tale-budget-plan.html

Oh yeah, Paul Ryan gives out party favors.  Donations to Marino: http://campaignmoney.org/blog/2012/08/15/paul-ryans-donations-members-congress


Schneider Letter to DI

Here is the link and text of Geoff Schneider’s letter critiquing their coverage of Marino.



Daily Item

On Aug. 9, The Daily Item featured yet another lengthy story on Congressman Tom Marino on the front page. You reported his statements as if they were facts, and you did not ask for other opinions or assessments of his views. Let me offer the following points to provide some balance: Congressman Marino supports tax cuts for the super rich and cuts in programs that benefit working people. He continues to argue that tax increases hurt the economy in a recession while spending cuts do not. The reality is that both tax increases and spending cuts hurt the economy in a recession. Finally, it is quite clear from statements by Standard and Poor’s and Wall Street analysts that the unwillingness of Congressman Marino and other extremists to compromise on budget matters is a major factor driving the financial losses that global markets experienced in the last week. This panic will damage the economy and cause job losses. Congressman Marino should be ashamed of the role he has played in damaging the economy.

Geoff Schneider,



Tucson and the gun control debate

The Bucknellian has a gun control column. It apparently is not yet online so I cannot yet give you the link to it. However the folowing is a reply I wrote to the paper:

In Amanda Ayers’ pathetic and pedantic column on the Tucson tragedy and the gun control debate she suggests we should read the Founding Fathers on the issue. She obviously has not, for both her Jefferson quotes are bogus. The first quote is unknown in the Jefferson archives and only appeared in print in 1993. The second quote is from an Italian author that Jefferson quoted in his Commonplace Book without expressing approval. We may presume that he found it interesting. I suspect Ms. Ayers reads right-wing opinion instead of the Founding Fathers.

She claims that gun control laws would not have prevented the shooting without mentioning that a ban on 30 round clips might have decreased the casualty count. In fact an extensive background check might have prevented him from buying the gun. She mentions the 5-4 Supreme Court decision and quotes Scalia’s opinion that a “complete ban” is unconstitutional without considering if a ban on some types of guns or ammunition might be beneficial. Nor does she point out that if Scalia applied his beloved “original intent” doctrine to the second amendment, he might conclude that only single shot muzzle loaders are constiutionally protected.

She blithely states gun control will not prevent gun violence, but does not consider that a comprehensive system of sales regulation, gun ID, and gun tracking could decrease gun violence. The one truth that seems clear in her column is not that gun control cannot decrease gun violence, but that Ms. Ayers has no interest in decreasing gun violence.

Chris Schell