Paul Ryan gave away the current GOP game back in 2005, for instance, at arguably the most important and telling speech of his political career: the Atlas Society’s “Celebration of Ayn Rand.” The audio of the speech is still up at the Atlas Society's website.
But when you look at the fight that we’re in here in Capital Hill, it’s a tough fight. It’s a very important fight. But we need more people on our side to fight this fight. That is why there is no more fight that is more obvious between the differences of these two conflicts than Social Security. Social Security right now is a collectivist system, it’s a welfare transfer system…..
And what’s important is if we actually accomplish this goal of personalizing social security … [Ryan laughs. Ed Hudgins overheard “personalizing”] personalizing social security … [laughter, applause] think of what we will accomplish. Every worker, every laborer in America will not only be a laborer but a capitalist. They will be an owner of society, they will be an owner and a participant of our free enterprise system, of our capitalist system. I would like to have more people on our team who are owners and believers in the individualist capitalist system than on the other side, and if every worker in this country becomes an owner of real wealth, of seeing the fruits of their labor come and materialize for their benefit, then that’s that many more people in America who are not going to listen to likes of Dick Gephardt and Nancy Pelosi, Ted Kennedy, the collectivist, class warfare-breathing demagogues.
Now let's pause for a second here. Ryan is saying that by privatizing...I mean, "personalizing" Social Security...by putting it in the hands of corporate America, American workers will then work harder because they are an "owner of society" at that point. Social Security is a collectivist, welfare transfer system.
And here's the thing: If what Ryan was actually proposing was that the American worker received the benefits of corporate ownership commensurate to the risk they are taking by handing over the equivalent of 15 or 20% of their current gross for 50 years to a company to invest, that would be great. There's no way this happens, of course. The opposite is true: corporations see the benefits and profits, while individuals assume most of the risk. See the current paycheck of any CEO compared to their lowest paid worker. He continues:
So you have to understand that all they have to do is stop us from succeeding. Autopilot will get them where they want to go. Autopilot will bring more government, more collectivism, more centralized government. If we do not succeed in switching these programs, in reforming these programs from what some people call a defined benefit system, to a defined contribution system– from switching these programs—and this is where I’m talking about health care, as well—from a third party or socialist based system to an individually owned, individually prefunded, individually directed system.
We can do this. We are on offence on a lot of these ideas. I was the principle author of the Health Savings Account law, which was an amendment I brought to the floor and passed in the Medicare bill in the last session of congress. Health Savings Accounts, personal accounts for Social Securities, these are the things that put us on offence, that get the– the individual back in the game and break the back of this collectivist philosophy that really pervades, you know, ninety percent of the thinking around here in this town.
In other words, health care, Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare? They have to be run like a business, in order to make a profit, not to provide care. That's what "defined benefit system to a defined contribution system" means. You are not guaranteed benefits. You will however, be guaranteed to have to pay into the system.
This is why running these programs like a business is a horrible idea.
Businesses fail. It happens all the time. Oh well. So much for your retirement. You get nothing.
This is Paul Ryan's America. And in it, somebody has to lose.