Ryan's Medicare Plan Screws the Young

Current program a giant 'welfare' program for boomers
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 6, 2011 12:47 PM CDT
House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis. touts his 2012 federal budget during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 5, 2011.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – Paul Ryan’s ambitious Medicare overhaul proposal might be a good idea, if not for one glaring flaw: “It asks for a whole lot of sacrifice from everyone under the age of 55 and little from everyone 55 and over,” complains David Leonhardt of the New York Times. Ryan wants to force everyone under 55 into a separate program, in which they get a subsidy toward buying private health insurance, while exempting more than a third of adults from doing the same.

Washington seems to labor under the mistaken belief “that older people have already paid for their Medicare benefits. They haven’t.” Instead, most receive hundreds of thousands more in benefits than they paid in Medicare taxes—money the government borrows and promises to payback later. “Who are these future taxpayers who will kindly cover Medicare’s shortfall? The same ones who, under the Ryan plan, won’t have Medicare for themselves.”

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