Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:48 PM
limpyhobbler (8,244 posts)
Obama’s Historic Assault on Social Security: He can accomplish what Republicans only dream about.
Tue, 12/18/2012 - 19:20 — Glen Ford
President Obama and his Republican partners in austerity have choreographed a kind of bi-partisan ballet, in which the dancers reach out to each other in slow motion, their fingers almost touching, teasing the audience. These cheap and transparent theatrics are designed to transmit a soap opera-like sense of drama: “Can the two parties come to a compromise for the sake of the country?” But, the fact is, Obama and the Republicans reached most of their grand bargain more than a year ago, when they slashed $1.7 trillion out of domestic spending over a decade. As liberal Obamite Robert Kuttner, of Demos, points out, there’s very little left to cut except Medicare and Social Security.
Social Security has always been Obama’s Great White Whale; he’s conspired with Republicans and right-wing Democrats to harpoon the mother of all New Deal programs since the very start of his presidency. But Social Security is not an easy mark. George Bush found that out in his second term, when he suffered his worst domestic defeat in attempting to privatize the program.
It would take a Black Democrat, fresh from a near-landslide election, to put Social Security on the chopping block, as Obama did in January of 2009. But before he could move in for the kill, Obama and his allies had to convince the public that Social Security is a major contributor to the federal budget deficit – which is a lie. Social Security runs on its own stream of revenues that go into the Social Security Trust Fund, totally separate from general taxation and debt. However, by endless repetition of the Big Lie – that Social Security adds to the federal deficit – Obama and other corporate Democrats and Republicans succeeded in maneuvering the program into the austerity debate, where it does not belong.
At this point it must be said that Obama’s insistence on making Social Security a budget deficit issue shows that he has always intended to make drastic cuts to the program. One of the reasons Social Security has long been thought of as “untouchable” is because President Franklin Roosevelt and his New Deal Democrats purposely insulated it from the conventional budget process. However, President Obama has largely neutered Social Security’s traditional congressional defenders, who know perfectly well what their president is up to, but will not directly oppose him. That’s why we at Black Agenda Report call Obama “the more effective evil”; he can accomplish what Republicans only dream about.
7 replies, 1259 views
Obama’s Historic Assault on Social Security: He can accomplish what Republicans only dream about. (Original post)
|Sherman A1||Dec 2012||#1|
Response to limpyhobbler (Original post)
Thu Dec 20, 2012, 03:29 PM
yurbud (35,525 posts)
4. Obama buys into so many Republican positions,we're just lucky Repubs don't vote for them
out of spite because they couldn't enact them themselves.
Response to Forrestted (Reply #5)
Thu Dec 20, 2012, 06:23 PM
NorthCarolina (7,958 posts)
6. Well, he personally likens himself to a 80's era Republican...
No Republicans of any generation would have ever enacted programs such as Social Security or Medicare, so if he was never a Democrat to begin with, what is there to remember.
He ran as a Democrat, but in DC party affiliation is pretty interchangeable of late. Alan Specter GOP -> DEM, Chris Christie GOP -> DEM, Joe Lieberman GOP/DEM -> GOP/Independent, etc.
It's all a ruse to assist the public in believing they are making a "choice" when they select a candidate/party, when in reality they are simply making a choice between two candidates that have been pre-selected as "safe" for the status quo. Nobody else is allowed to play.