Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – I understand that Obama and Biden have got to go, I want them to go too, just as bad as you do, probably more than you do and for different reasons. I don’t understand and I can’t get on board with what is a scam. They’re basically saying to me that Bernie Madoff is currently in the White House and we don’t like Bernie Madoff, we want to get rid of him; however, we got this guy Mitt Romney and he is not Bernie Madoff but he is close to being Bernie Madoff. You see, Bernie Madoff didn’t run the Ponzi scheme the way it should have been run. When Romney and Ryan get in there, they’re going to run the Ponzi scheme the way it ought to be run. Check out today’s transcript for more…
Begin Mike Church Show Transcript
Mike: I’m watching this and I’m not believing what I’m hearing. I’m also not believing the cheering throngs of, I guess, conservative activists and Tea Party activists that had gathered for the Romney-Ryan speech. The loudest applause line that Ryan went through in his speech, Paul Ryan, Congressman from Wisconsin, the loudest applause line was when he pledged that Romney and Ryan were not going to allow President Obama to cut those hundreds of billions of dollars out of the Medicare fund, and that they were going to restore that money into Medicare and fix Medicare and make sure it was available to every generation that comes after this. The crowd stood up as though the budget had been balanced, the income tax, 16th Amendment, repealed, the 17th Amendment cast asunder and the republic reorganized as it once was with freedom and liberty.
I’m watching this and thinking to myself, “So this is what it’s all about this year.” This is what they’re going to take to the post. If you’re in the racehorse business or you’ve ever been in the racehorse business, you probably know the term taking it to the post or that’s the horse I’m going to take to the post, the post meaning the starting line. This is what you’re going to take to the post here. It is now the position of the other party that the grandest, most ineffective Ponzi scheme in the history of governmental Ponzi schemes, which is Medicare, that it can and must survive and be a curse hung around the neck of every American to be born for the rest of all eternity.
You can say whatever you’d like to me about beating Obama and Biden and that’s something that has to be said. I understand that; I get that. I understand that Obama and Biden have got to go, I want them to go too, just as bad as you do, probably more than you do and for different reasons. I don’t understand and I can’t get on board with what is a scam. They’re basically saying to me that Bernie Madoff is currently in the White House and we don’t like Bernie Madoff, we want to get rid of him; however, we got this guy Mitt Romney and he is not Bernie Madoff but he is close to being Bernie Madoff. You see, Bernie Madoff didn’t run the Ponzi scheme the way it should have been run. When Romney and Ryan get in there, they’re going to run the Ponzi scheme the way it ought to be run.
I take you back now to June the 4th, 2011. We actually had Andy McCarthy, who wrote this piece, on the program. Andy McCarthy is one of the associate editors of National Review Online. He is a former U.S. attorney. He prosecuted the blind sheik. Mr. McCarthy, I take him to be a very serious man and a serious writer because he is. Andy and I have had numerous email correspondence over the years about this issue. After the second round of the Ryan Roadmap to restoring — where does it go? Where does the roadmap go? I don’t have it here in front of me. After the second round of it came out in 2011, this is what McCarthy wrote in part. This is where I get the Bernie Madoff comparison from.
Would you vote to save the Bernie Madoff scheme? Me neither. And when you get down to it, that’s why you can mark me down as a failure when it comes to the latest Beltway-conservative litmus test for commentary deemed worthy of adults. No, I won’t be gushing praise for the Ryan plan to save Medicare, nor reserving a seat at the coronation of its author as the most courageous, fiscally responsible Washington politician ever—or, at least, ever to vote for the prescription-drug entitlement, TARP, Keynesian “stimulus” spending, and the auto-company bailout.
Concededly, as creatures of Washington go, Rep. Paul Ryan is among the most admirable. I daresay that of all the Beltway pols who want to add trillions to the already unfathomable national debt, Mr. Ryan is among the best—his proposal is a veritable bargain at “only” $5.1 trillion more over the next decade. (And, putting aside the funny Washington math that discounts tens of trillions in unfunded liabilities, would someone please explain to me how House Republicans rationalize their admirable opposition to raising the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling with their votes in favor of the Ryan plan, which would increase the debt to over $15 trillion next year [Mike: That’s this year, the one we’re in now, and that prophecy has come true.] and nearly $20 trillion by 2021?)
We’re all sinners, and Congressman Ryan’s past walks on the wild side do not render hollow his earnest plea that we deal with the entitlement cancer metastasizing in our body politic. But his prescription is not a cure. It’s an aggressive treatment of symptoms that leaves the cancer in place, under the delusion that Dr. Government can be trusted to manage it.
Representative Ryan buys the foundational premise of Medicare: to wit, health care is a corporate asset—not a commodity subject to the assumptions of ordinary commerce (i.e., individual choice, controlled by one’s personal resources and priorities), but a fundamental right to which the central government must ensure access. This is the plinth of the entitlement edifice—the “second Bill of Rights”—that began construction in the New Deal, under the direction of designers who knew full well that it was financially unsustainable.
Mike: I’m reading from Andrew C. McCarthy, associate editor of the National Review Online from the 4th of June, 2011. And now, ladies and gentlemen, it is the position of the entire party. We’re going to save this Ponzi scheme and we’re going to save it from attacks that are being visited upon it by the evil, dark lord Obama, no pun intended.
Sadly, this is the standard Beltway conservative position, too, as evidence by the ablest of Ryan’s defenders, James Capretta of the Ethics and Public Policy Center. Writing in the May 2 issue of National Review, Jim explains, “The government plays an important oversight role in Ryan’s Medicare-reform plan, as it should.” That is to say, rest assured that we would never suggest scrapping Medicare, or that the government doesn’t have an essential supervisory role to play in the market for medical services . . .
Mike: Andy, it’s not a medical services industry any longer. It has now been fully nationalized because both parties have now basically advocated and are now competing for the right to nationalize and run the healthcare system. This is disturbing. I don’t care what you tell me about Obama-Biden, this is disturbing. So both major political parties, just to recap, now are for the full preservation of and the full implementation of a national, socialist, medical services scheme. You can call it what you want. [mocking] “We have market incentives in ours.” Bull you-know-what. There is no mixing of the private and public. It never works. The public always winds up taking over or screwing up the private. Now we are faced with this dilemma.
It appears as though even though all the evidence and common sense to the contraire tells you, and every fiber of your being should be screaming we ought to have that little thing ticking in the back. Here’s what I would go along with: we need to preserve this for the people who are contracted to it and already are counting on it. For everyone else, we need to work out way out of this. This is not a business of the central, general, federal government. It is an awful discharger of this type of duty. It’s probably the worst discharger of this type of duty in the history of dischargers of duty. Therefore, it should be a political positive that people, by and large, would see this. You can’t see this when you’ve had Republican and Democrat scales placed upon your eyelids and you’re told that all is right with the world, we just need to pass some tax cuts and tread a little water and all will be fine.
Folks, this is serious stuff here. Now both parties are competing to socialize medicine, just with different ideas on how to do it. This is why the McCarthy piece is important and why I pulled it up. I’d be interested to see, and I should send Andy a note and see if he’s going to back off of this. Let me cut to the end of McCarthy’s piece because this is where it gets really, really poignant, I think, and to the point that we all ought to take notice of.
The second and perhaps more obvious political flaw is manifested by the new commercial that depicts a Ryan lookalike pushing granny (in a wheelchair, of course) off a cliff. It does not matter how modestly conservative reformers would modify Medicare, “bend the cost-curve,” or whatever unthreatening descriptor is applied to their good-government proposals. It does not matter that Paul Ryan actually tries to save Medicare, which will soon implode if nothing is done. Conservatives will still be demagogued. They will still be accused of trying to destroy Medicare and kill old people.
Medicare deserves to be destroyed, and destroying it would be better for current and future generations, young and old. So why not make that case? Other than a committed socialist ideologue, no one in his right mind would vote to implement Medicare today [Mike: I think that’s the great litmus test. Would you do it again? Knowing what you know now, would you vote for the Medicare Act of 1966? Would you vote for it? I believe that the answer would be an unyielding, super majority no.] —not if we were on a clean slate and knew what we know now about its ruinous operation. Ryan’s essential point is that health care is increasingly expensive because it is not permitted to function as a regular market commodity—one with sentient consumers shopping carefully, spurring competition, driving down prices, and encouraging innovation. That kind of market can never happen with the government as a central player. And we can provide some sensible measure of assistance to the truly needy without giving everyone else an unsustainable “entitlement” that will destroy the economy [Mike: And by proxy, the country.].
Medicare is a scam. The people who designed and perpetuated it would be serving more jail time than Bernie Madoff if they pulled a fraud like it in the private sector. As it is for the victims Madoff swindled, so it is for we who’ve been swindled by Washington: The money is gone. We can make provisions for the needy elderly who are about to hit eligibility and have relied on Medicare in their assumptions. But the party is over—and the sooner we grasp that, the fewer victims there will be. Preserving a scam in the vain hope of making it less offensive may be well-meaning, but it’s not right, and it’s not courageous.
Mike: What has changed from June the 4th, 2011 to August the 21st, 2012?
End Mike Church Show Transcript