Paul Ryan used “collectivist” system he rails against to go to college

To say Rep. Paul Ryan is fond of warning anyone who will listen that our country in in danger of becoming a “collectivist society overseen by a social-welfare state” would be an understatement. Rep. Ryan is no fan of Medicare and Social Security, a fact borne out by his proposed budget, which would slash and then privatize both Medicare and Social Security. However, what’s really curious about Rep. Ryan’s vehement opposition to Medicare and Social Security is the fact that Rep. Ryan was himself a beneficiary of the Social Security system as a teenager:

Ryan’s father died when Paul was only 16. Using the Social Security survivors benefits he received until his 18th birthday, he paid for his education at Miami University in Ohio, where he completed a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science in 1992.

Two things to note: it’s certainly tragic Rep. Ryan’s father died during his teenage years (something I can certainly relate to), and I don’t begrudge him at all for taking advantage of the opportunities offered to him by the safety net that is the Social Security system. However, it certainly strikes me as odd that the very same system Rep. Ryan decries as being part of a “social-welfare state” was good enough to send him to college but yet is not meaningful enough to fix without destroying it.

H/T to the Brew City Brawler.


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1 thought on “Paul Ryan used “collectivist” system he rails against to go to college

  1. I know this is a tall order, but actually reading Ryan’s plan might just be a good idea before criticizing it.

    If you set aside the partisan hackery of “he wants to kill Social Security”, (the boogyman politicians from both sides use to scare up votes from Seniors) and ponder for a second, that Social Security is not one monolithic program, the answer to this would become quite clear.

    The retirement component of Social Security the Survivor Benefits portion are two different things.

    Quoting directly from his plan:

    No Change for Survivors and the Disabled. Those receiving survivor and disability benefits will see no change.

    The retirement portion, which functions as a annuity-type investment is what’s driving the program overall into insolvency. The disability and survivor benefits, which functions as an insurance program, is not. I’ve not heard anyone call for ending that portion or even any major reform to it.

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