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Fri Jan 11, 2013, 09:52 AM

FDR's grandson supports Social Security cuts -- is nothing sacred?

And he's being floated as a possible nominee to head the Social Security Administration.

The Boston Globe reports this morning that Tufts Health Plan chief executive James Roosevelt Jr. is being considered for the Obama administration’s nomination to head the Social Security Administration.

Last May, he wrote an op-ed with Robert L. Reynolds, a Republican and CEO of Putnam Investments, where he advocates for raising the Social Security retirement age at a brisker pace as well as cutting back the growth of benefits with a different Consumer Price Index (CPI):

On the benefits side, we should change the way we calculate the cost-of-living adjustment for all beneficiaries, by utilizing a revised Consumer Price Index which most economists agree more accurately reflects the rate of inflation for the expenses most seniors incur. Such a change would curb the rate of increase in benefits for future generations of retirees

Lastly, we should accelerate the rise in Social Security’s full-benefit retirement age from age 67 to 68 by 2030 and then index the full benefit age for future generations to gains in longevity. Life expectancy past age 65 has risen nearly 50 percent since 1940, when Social Security first began regular monthly payments. That said, we should improve disability options for those engaged in physically demanding jobs. No one expects coal miners or telephone line crews to work into their late 60s.

Read more: http://boldprogressives.org/possible-nominee-to-head-social-security-administration-supports-benefit-cuts/

31 replies, 1913 views

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Arrow 31 replies Author Time Post
Reply FDR's grandson supports Social Security cuts -- is nothing sacred? (Original post)
Report1212 Jan 2013 OP
JaneyVee Jan 2013 #1
Report1212 Jan 2013 #4
sabbat hunter Jan 2013 #14
WI_DEM Jan 2013 #2
grantcart Jan 2013 #28
closeupready Jan 2013 #3
Report1212 Jan 2013 #5
ProSense Jan 2013 #8
Report1212 Jan 2013 #9
jwirr Jan 2013 #25
closeupready Jan 2013 #10
1StrongBlackMan Jan 2013 #15
closeupready Jan 2013 #20
1StrongBlackMan Jan 2013 #21
Jennicut Jan 2013 #7
closeupready Jan 2013 #12
NYC Liberal Jan 2013 #24
ProSense Jan 2013 #6
Report1212 Jan 2013 #11
grantcart Jan 2013 #29
closeupready Jan 2013 #13
GeorgeGist Jan 2013 #27
Recursion Jan 2013 #16
Freddie Stubbs Jan 2013 #30
Bluenorthwest Jan 2013 #17
librabear Jan 2013 #18
Report1212 Jan 2013 #19
librabear Jan 2013 #22
WhoIsNumberNone Jan 2013 #23
Follow The Money Jan 2013 #26
0rganism Jan 2013 #31

Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 09:55 AM

1. Let me guess, they're both millionaires.

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:02 AM

4. He's a health insurance executive actually

He's the CEO of Tufts.

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:31 AM

14. FDR was a millionare

so is his whole family/descendents.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 09:57 AM

2. good grief! By the time I get to retirement age it will be 70!

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Response to WI_DEM (Reply #2)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 03:33 PM

28. That would be for full benefit SS.


Most people should not take the full benefit option but the early option at 62 (which I believe is not to be changed).

Full benefit SS is a better fit for people like myself that don't have physically demanding jobs and intend to continue to earn a substantial income past 62. For people like us (largely professionals and small business owners) taking early retirement would result in paying taxes on your additional income.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 09:59 AM

3. So what? You aren't your parents or grandparents - you are you.

And he is wrong here. EOS.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:03 AM

5. Yeah but it has symbolic value

Republicans can look at this and say even the Roosevelts think we're right!

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Response to Report1212 (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:12 AM

8. "Republicans can look at this and say even the Roosevelts think we're right!"

Was that your goal?

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Response to ProSense (Reply #8)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:18 AM

9. Yeah I made a topic about how this Roosevelt is wrong

To make other people think Roosevelts are right.

All reverse psychology.

I'm very sneaky.

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Response to Report1212 (Reply #9)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:27 AM

25. Obviously you do not know the Roosevelt family history. FDR was right and would be again today.

The second generation was not part of creating the new deal as they were children at the time. Nor were they by any means perfect.

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Response to Report1212 (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:20 AM

10. Yes, of course, and you know they WILL do that.

On the Sunday morning shows and what have you.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:31 AM

15. Well ...

the Left does make hay with Ray-gun's son(?), when he says stuff.

But only the most intellectually dishonest will give any credence to trying to align anything the off-spring say that is contrary to the parent.

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Response to 1StrongBlackMan (Reply #15)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:08 AM

20. While true, I'm unfair, in that I'm fine with Democrats

and liberals making hay of this when it's Ron Reagan, Jr. but when Republicans do it with Roosevelt, I'd make a stink. And I know that's a double standard, but I support my side without apology.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #20)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:12 AM

21. LOL ...

No worries. I'm guilty of the same.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:09 AM

7. So true. My father is extremely conservative.

I am about as different from my father as I can get. And the Bush's daughter Barbara supports gay rights. Your last name is not really indicative of your views.

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Response to Jennicut (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:20 AM

12. Exactly.

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Response to Jennicut (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:16 AM

24. Actually, re: the Bush daughters

There was an article last year about both of them being "big supporters" of Obama.

So it actually goes further than just lgbt rights.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:09 AM

6. Testimony of James Roosevelt, Jr...Before the United States Senate Committee on Finance

Testimony of James Roosevelt, Jr.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Tufts Associated Health Plans, Inc.
Before the United States Senate Committee on Finance
“Perspectives on Deficit Reduction: Social Security”
Tuesday, May 10, 2011, 10:00 am


<…>

What are the policy equivalents of oil changes that will keep the program running? There are a range of options, which alone or in combination can keep Social Security completely solvent almost into the next century. For example, increasing employee and employer contribution rates by 1.1 percent - from the current 6.2 percent to 7.3 percent - would eliminate the entire projected shortfall (i.e., provide 100 percent of benefits after the year 2037 through 2085).

We could eliminate the cap on wages subject to Social Security contributions. In 2010, only earnings up to $106,800 are subject to FICA. In creating the cap, Congress intended to cover 90 percent of the aggregate wages of all workers. Today, because wages have been increasing faster than the cap - especially for the top five percent of wage earners - FICA is assessed on only 83 percent of aggregate wages. If we eliminated the cap, even if we counted all the increased earnings toward benefits, we would eliminate an estimated 95 percent of the shortfall. And, this change would impact only the top six percent of wage earners in this country.

- more -

http://www.finance.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/051011jrtest.pdf

I like those proposals.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:20 AM

11. He changed his views a lot in a year

"Second, we should not contemplate raising the retirement age at which workers can
collect benefits"

Then in 2012 he's saying we should accelerate the rate at which the age requirement rises, in an op-ed written with a Republican who runs a mutual fund.

What happened?

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Response to Report1212 (Reply #11)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 03:35 PM

29. I believe that he was referring to people who want to take full retirement.


Most people take it at 62. Those who take it later are almost all professionals and small business owners who delay starting SS for tax reasons.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:21 AM

13. Yes, I like both of those, too.

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Response to ProSense (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 03:25 PM

27. and more from the same source ...

There are some ideas which we should oppose. First, we should absolutely oppose any
cut in payment levels. Social Security pays only modest amounts to begin with. The
average benefit check is around $1,100. Cutting benefits would expose millions of
Americans to financial distress – especially the 1/3 of elderly retirees who depend on
Social Security for 90 percent or more of their income.

Second, we should not contemplate raising the retirement age at which workers can
collect benefits, as many are proposing, unless we revamp the disability system under
Social Security. Any change must account for occupational differences and requires
more nuanced, analytical judgments about which people can reasonably be expected to
work to a later age before collecting.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:32 AM

16. So, why are "most economists" wrong?

I'm not saying "most economists" are always right, but I'm generally used to having "most economists" on my side, and when I don't I want to take a step back for a minute.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #16)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 04:16 PM

30. People don't want an accurate formula for COLAs, they want more money

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:32 AM

17. So what? My Grandfather voted for FDR and I don't support cuts.

Of course I'm not an Insurance executive like Franklin's grandson, so that might have something to do with it.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:37 AM

18. What's your solution?

 

The options are:

1) Raise the retirement age
2) Raise the withholdings
3) remove the cap on payments
4) Means testing

I think you're going to have a hell of a time with the last one. I think there's lots of people that will be upset about the government taking more of their money than most of them are contributing to their retirement and giving them nothing in return.

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Response to librabear (Reply #18)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 10:58 AM

19. Number 3 is all you have to do

It raises enough money by itself

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Response to Report1212 (Reply #19)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:12 AM

22. I don't think so

 

I think higher FICA contributions in the higher tax brackets will cause a lot of small business owners to pull money out of a business differently. Earned income is already one of the highest taxes sources of income there are, followed by paying taxes on earnings in a C corp and then paying them as dividends.

Let's face it, the tax system is a mess.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:13 AM

23. I can believe it

FDR was considered something of a class traitor by his peers. Kind of like George Soros is today. Nothing rich right wingers hate more than a rich person who is sympathetic to poor people. I guess they got James Jr back in the fold.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 11:46 AM

26. Nepotism much? He is not qualified for this job, he works for a health insurance company

 

that said, FDR is rolling in his grave.

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Response to Report1212 (Original post)

Fri Jan 11, 2013, 05:14 PM

31. for some reason, raising the cap is never an option for these rich pundits

Millionaires paying FICA on a larger portion of their incomes? Heresy! Obviously, the old and infirm are sucking us dry, so it's time to tighten the screws.

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