Lies My Politician Told Me About Medicare
"It's the season of political misinterpretations and outright lies. Websites like Politifact try to sort things out. But people still seem willing to believe the most negative things about two of our most durable social programs -- Social Security and Medicare. Are they really in terrible trouble and will disappear soon?"
Linda Bergthold clears up six myths:
>> Myth #1 - Social Security is in grave financial condition and must be reformed now!
>> Myth #2 - Medicare is in grave financial condition and must be reformed now.
>> Myth #3 - We can't change either Social Security or Medicare because they are sacred and inviolable contracts with the American people.
>> Myth #4 - We will have to pay higher taxes to fix Medicare and Social Security.
>> Myth #5 - Medicare is a Socialist program and must be privatized.
>> Myth #6 - President Obama "stole" $500 billion from Medicare to pay for health reform.
Easy and clear reading. Simply reading this should be mandatory for every Republican Presidential candidate. They would be better informed immediately -- and with little effort on their part. Too bad it is out of compliance with their strict Conservative ideology -- as is Medicare's success. The locked-in, Conservative Republicans simply do not believe in pre-paid public benefits. And that's why Medicare and Social Security are the targets of destruction.
Social Security and Poverty
"Gov. Rick Perry, the GOP presidential candidate who calls Social Security a 'monstrous lie' and a 'Ponzi scheme' has implied that future retirees can’t rely upon receiving benefits from the system. Not only is Perry shooting wildly from the hip on these statements -- a strategy cynically designed to attract angry, younger independent voters -- he’s spewing some layered falsehoods that need to be addressed."
"Social Security can not only be preserved for future generations, its coming fiscal shortfalls can be fixed relatively simply. What Perry also neglects to mention is that it’s one of the most successful anti-poverty programs in U.S. history. The before-and-after Social Security picture is dramatic. Before Social Security, almost half of elderly Americans had income below the poverty line." MORE: Social Security Reduces Proportion of Elderly Who Are Poor From Nearly One In Two To Less Than One In Eight
Truly perhaps, the most successful of American programs. Would anyone advocate that poverty is good? How could poverty be good for people and society or for business and the economy? The success in drastically reducing poverty cannot be attributed to those fat pensions that workers get when they retire. Or to the skills of workers and their financial advisors in navigating the investment markets. Does business want to pick up the retirement income slack? Maybe the Social Security system is just like corporate welfare; it's just a transfer of funds from the public sector to the private, except that the American people benefit as it passes through them before it goes into the pockets of businesses and the economy. What's the beef?
Older Arizonans Unconcerned About Perry's Comments
"Texas Gov. Rick Perry says America is ready for some blunt talk on Social Security. Mitt Romney, Perry’s top rival for the Republican presidential nomination, says talk is good, just not so blunt. But the seniors both are trying to reach don’t seem particularly interested -- or worried -- about what either has to say. In Sun Lakes, a sprawling retirement community near Phoenix where Romney addressed an older crowd of more than 600 this week, residents care about Social Security and depend on it."
"But none of more than a dozen interviewed thought they were at any risk of losing their benefits, or were particularly focused on a debate that has dominated the presidential race for the past two weeks."
Clearly, the attack on Social Security also is an attack on working Americans of all ages, as well as retirees and the disabled. Someone, please help me understand how he thinks he could be elected President. If people think, "Oh, he won't do that," and then elect him, they will be in for a shock. Best bet: don't vote for any Medicare radical who would repeal Medicare.
Republicans Don't Mind
"Texas Governor Rick Perry's characterization of Social Security as a 'Ponzi scheme' doesn't appear to be a problem for most Republicans, according to a new Gallup poll. The survey, released on Friday, finds that the harsh words repeatedly used by Perry to define his stance on the program are largely non-issue for members of his party."
Apparently, Republicans don't really care what Rick Perry says. They either will . . . or won't . . . vote for him regardless of what he says. Their minds already are made up. As Smokey said, "I don't care what they think about me. I don't care what they say."
Joint Committee - "Go Big"
"The new mantra in Washington is 'Go Big!' It started with Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles -- the co-chairs of President Obama's fiscal commission -- and is now on the lips of scores of members of Congress in both parties. Joining about two dozen other senators Thursday, Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad (D-ND) urged the new deficit Super Committee 'We're with you! Be brave! Be bold! Go Big!'"
For Your Information
Jimmy Carter Talks 2012 Elections, Calls Supreme Court 'Citizens United' Decision One Of The 'Stupidest' Ever
The Republican Reality-Free Zone: Vomit Edition
Report: What Happens If The Tea Party Wins (lite version)
MORE: What If the Tea Party Wins? They Have a Plan for the Constitution, and It Isn’t Pretty (more meat)