Earlier this week, Democrat Kirsten Powers engaged in this absurd exchange on Fox during a discussion of the Paul Ryan entitlement reform plan.
POWERS: It will affect old people, just they’re not old right now. So they will eventually be old.
KRAUTHAMMER: They’re called young people.
BAIER: Currently they’re young people.
POWERS: Yes, but I will eventually be an old person who will need Medicare.
BAIER: You understand how silly that sounds?
POWERS: No it’s not silly, actually.
BAIER: But it’s only for people under 55.
POWERS: But the point is it’s a political point because it’s the old people who are voting right now that they’re concerned about.
BAIER: Of course!
POWERS: Right, but I’m saying like to pretend it’s never going to affect old people, it will affect old people.
Powers was doing her Democrat best to make Paul Ryan into a scary, scary man. She instead turned herself into a caricature of the dishonest politician who grins while telling you things that both of you know are equal parts sleights of hand and tomfoolery.
Writing today in the Daily Beast, Powers has done a 180 and now says the young — future old people who should fear Ryan, earlier in the week — comprise the “screwed generation” and are flocking to Paul Ryan. The same person who advanced the argument above, wrote this. In the same week.
Unfortunately, the future looks as bleak for today’s young people. No amount of coddling by their well-provided-for Boomer parents can save Generation Y and the Millennials from the dire economic conditions they face, including criminal levels of educational debt. Pensions have gone the way of the horse and buggy. You want to retire with health-care benefits, as both my professor parents did? Good luck. As the 1994 movie turned Gen-X mantra has it: Reality Bites.
Generation X chronicler Jeff Gordiner, has written that Gen-Xers suffer from “athazagoraphobia”—“an abnormal and persistent fear of being forgotten or ignored.” Except it’s not really a phobia; it’s been reality for a long time. Maybe that is about to change.
Enter Ryan. While Democrats attack his Medicare plan as “radical” and portray him as pushing granny off the cliff, young people don’t seem to be buying this caricature. Or maybe “radical” is what they want.
But Ryan is young and is poised to be the intellectual leader of the conservative movement for the next generation. He will be a force to be reckoned with. Name-calling and distortions of his plan by Democrats is not an effective long-term strategy, nor is it good for the country.
But it was fine when Democrat Kirsten Powers assailed Paul Ryan and tried to make future old people fear him, just a couple of days ago.
There’s a whiff of a certain tragic Batman villain about all this, but I unlocked Powers’ power a few months ago.
Here’s the game: Powers says just enough to earn a little cred with the right, but keeps on advancing the liberal cause. So I’m not impressed. Maybe with her cleverness, but not with her authenticity.
Takeaway: Paul Ryan has Democrats worried. Very worried. They do not know how to respond to him. But they’re working on that. Kirsten Powers would not have written nice things about him if there wasn’t a plan to chop him down the first chance that comes along. Perhaps a switch from Joe Biden to Powers’ former boss, Hillary Clinton, really is in the wings. That would also be an obvious sign of deep worry among the Democrats. Clinton is a terrible campaigner but she is at least aware what century we’re in, and can be expected to deliver attacks on Republicans without embarrassing the Democrats.
Against a president who promised to undertake entitlement reform only to demagogue any serious effort, against a president who once said that it would be unwise to cast aspersions on Ryan’s plan only to have his henchman Axelrod call Ryan “radical,” Paul Ryan is a serious intellectual with a serious plan to tackle the greatest threat to America’s long-term economic future. Paul Ryan cannot be Palinized and it’s impossible to keep fooling people into thinking that Obama has any plan at all, save taxing the economy to death and then spending the proceeds on his “redistributive justice” schemes.We can already see the fruits of that plan, which Obama claims worked: High unemployment and a stagnant economy keeping much hiring and economic activity on the sidelines.
The “screwed generation,” which is also the “stay out of my business” generation, is my generation too. Our generation is up for grabs, and Obama sounds more and more like the throwback to the almighty power of the state, pre-libertarian era that he is. And he looks more and more like a loser every day.