Here are today’s top editorial and opinion pages.
WHY PAUL RYAN IS LOSING THE MEDICARE ARGUMENT BY E.J. DIONNE
Our choice: Government can keep its current promises, undertake the complicated and often frustrating work of bringing health costs under control, and work for the day when everyone has health insurance. Or it can ask individuals to carry an ever-heavier load, expect invisible hands to perform miracles and leave Americans to take their chances with the insurance companies. I think I know how this debate will come out.
OBAMA’S CLOUD ECONOMY BY DANIEL HENNINGER
WALL STREET JOURNAL
It is sometimes unfair to tag presidents with blame for an underperforming economy. Not this time. This president made conscious policy choices during a deep recession to reorder vast swaths of American industry. Strong-performing economies need clarity. Barack Obama has given ours indecision stretching to the horizon. And economic growth, like a long gray day, sits still below 3%.
WHEN THE NILE RUNS DRY BY LESTER BROWN
NEW YORK TIMES
Finally, for the sake of peace and future development cooperation, the nations of the Nile River Basin should come together to ban land grabs by foreign governments and agribusiness firms. Since there is no precedent for this, international help in negotiating such a ban, similar to the World Bank’s role in facilitating the 1960 Indus Waters Treaty between India and Pakistan, would likely be necessary to make it a reality.
PLAYING WITH MATCHES ON THE DEBT EDITORIAL
NEW YORK TIMES
What Republicans seem unwilling to acknowledge is that the debt-limit debate is not about future spending. It is about paying for a deficit already incurred because of two wars and tax cuts approved by both Republicans and Democrats at the behest of a Republican president. Tuesday’s vote was a chance to do the right thing and educate the public on why it was necessary. Instead, too many lawmakers walked away from the truth.
@REPWEINER BEATS A HASTY RETWEET BY DANA MILBANK
Weiner said he would not ask federal authorities to investigate, choosing instead to hire a private security firm. “I’m not sure I want to put national, federal resources into trying to figure out who posted a picture,” he reasoned. “I’m not really sure it rises – no pun intended – to that level.” It should not have risen beyond minor amusement. But Weiner’s handling of the situation, a textbook case of bad PR, swelled it into a summer scandal.
THE BLURRING OF CIA AND MILITARY BY DAVID IGNATIUS
By the time Gen. Mike Hayden was nominated to be CIA director in 2006, it was clear that better coordination was needed. The head of the CIA’s operations directorate advised Hayden: “We welcome more players on the field. We just need to be sure we’re synchronized.”
JON HUNTSMAN’S THORNY PATH TO THE GOP NOMINATION BY GEORGE WILL
It is difficult to chart Huntsman’s path to the Republicans’ Tampa convention through a nominating electorate that is understandably furious about Obama’s demonstrably imprudent and constitutionally dubious domestic policies. Even if that electorate approves Huntsman’s un-Obamalike health-care reforms in Utah and forgives his flirtation with a fanciful climate-change regime among Western states, he faces the worthy but daunting challenge of bringing Tea Party Republicans — disproportionately important in the nominating process — to a boil about foreign policy.