Tuesday, October 23, 2012

What is a Wonk?

A Los Angeles radio host recently referred to Paul Ryan as a "wonk of wonks", but immediately added that "his numbers don't add up". To which I say, how can you be a wonk, let alone a wonk of wonks, if you're numbers don't add up? A wonk is someone who is an expert in their field. Someone who knows the details. Someone who can do the math. Ryan is not a wonk. He pretends to be a wonk, but Ryan is a fraud.

Biden pushed this angle in the debate by asking for details on which tax credits Romney/Ryan would eliminate to offset their 20% across-the-board tax cut...mortgage interest rate deductions? child tax credits? charitable deductions? Ryan responded that those details would have to be worked out with congress. Those are the words of a weasel, not a wonk. Of course, the details will have to be worked out, but Ryan must at least provide an existence proof. Give us some scenarios congress could consider to make the numbers add up.

Scenario 1. Cut A by X%, B by Y%, and C by Z%
Scenario 2. Cut A by I%, B by J%, and C by K%
Scenario 3. Cut A by P%, B by Q%, and C by R%

Ryan doesn't do this because any scenario where the numbers add up would be rejected by voters impacted by cuts to A, B, and/or C. Hand waving on the details is an evasive and fraudulent strategy--exactly what we should expect from Ryan and Romney.

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