Paul Ryan has indicated that "entitlement reform" will be at the top of his agenda. Committee members should listen carefully to what he has to say and encourage him to provide more details than he has so far offered on how his proposed savings would be accomplished.
What the Chicago conservatives in 1932 said the government should do was spend aggressively on useful public works and infrastructure. There were then and are now plenty of liberal ideas that deserve harsh criticism.
It is the GOP's extreme vision of what they think our country should be -- with a weak government and a free ride to corporations and the rich at the expense of the rest of us -- that has put them at odds with the electorate, which is made up of primarily hard-working and struggling Americans.