Everybody acknowledges that Republicans are playing a high stakes game that could wipe them out politically by embracing the budget cooked up by Paul Ryan. Take a look at this video and ask yourself whether Democrats are returning the favor:
I know that Ryan Republicans are making a pitch to voters about taking on entitlements that’s fallen flat before. Evidently, they’re betting nearly all their electoral chips that times have changed because the prospect of public insolvency has never been less remote. They're hoping that puts them in a position like that of an investor shorting mortgage-backed securities in late 2007 on the theory that a situation that can't go on indefinitely won't go on very much longer because a critical mass of people are bound to figure out that it can't go on indefinitely.
If this video is any indication of how Democrats are going to respond, they’re taking the other side of the same bet hoping that they aren't another Lehman Brothers. I don’t know of any way to arrive at a reliable estimate of the odds. And I suspect that neither do the bettors because their trusty risk-management models might not be any more applicable to the political situation than Lehman's were to the housing market in the summer of 2008.