The Ryan Plan is Unserious

Yet Emmett Tyrell tries to defend it anyway:

Ryan is a supply-sider. He advocates one of the few economic innovations in years. He realizes that the budget cannot be balanced without faster economic growth. Sure, it would be nice to balance the budget in five years, but not with tax increases. Tax increases would only slow down growth. So his budget balances out in 2039, though possibly sooner. Some of the Republicans think that future Congresses cannot be trusted to carry out the cuts that Ryan proposes, certainly not through all the vagaries leading up to 2039. Well, for my part, I think they can. The country has changed dramatically. A new majority of Americans composed of conservatives and independents understands that we have been spending ourselves into the poor house.

I would generally agree that there is no practical way to sufficiently raise tax rates as a way of balancing the budget, and I would also agree that taxes cause economic damage in direct proportion to their nominal rate. I even agree that the fundamental assumption of the Laffer curve—that there is a revenue-optimal tax rate—is correct. I would thus theorize that a lower nominal rate, coupled with fewer loopholes as part of a simpler tax code, constitutes the best course of action. The fewer the taxes and (generally) the lower the rates, the better the results will be.
However, there is no tax rate low enough to achieve Ryan’s projected economic growth rate, and thus there is no way his economic plan is attainable, or even possible. It’s not even conservative, at least in the sense of being fiscally responsible. Quite simply, the way out of this mess won’t be a simplified tax system coupled with minor spending cuts; it will require a revenue-optimized ax plan with massive spending cuts. Since Ryan’s economic plan more closely resembles the former, it is doomed to fail, and is therefore unworthy of serious consideration.
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