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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 02:01 AM
Original message
"No Senior Left Behind" contest
Frank Luntz, the fake-namer-in-chief for the * administration, is re-naming privatization.

This is the same guy who taught Republicans that they could avoid actually giving money to programs for the children, by simply inserting the words "for the children" into speeches as frequently as possible.

Who can predict what Orwellian name Luntz will give Social Security privatization?

My guess is "No Senior Left Behind".
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proudbluestater Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 04:36 AM
Response to Original message
1. "Protecting Seniors' Futures" sounds about right...
Edited on Sat Jan-29-05 04:37 AM by proudbluestater
because, as always happens, the plan will do exactly the opposite.
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 05:46 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Right, it's always the inverse of reality, isn't it?
War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength...
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Sugarbleus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #2
14. Exactly. Washington has become NEW SPEAK central!
Edited on Sat Jan-29-05 09:47 PM by Sugarbleus
I'd love to run their words backwards to see what hidden, subliminal messages might be there, then broadcast THEM to the nation. :evilgrin:

*where's Art Bell when ya need him* lol :tinfoilhat:
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-30-05 04:32 PM
Response to Reply #14
17. Did Art retire? Or was he abducted...
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Sugarbleus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 12:36 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. LOL
Edited on Mon Jan-31-05 12:39 AM by Sugarbleus
He may have been abducted "for awhile"...then they brought him back. :crazy:

I heard him doing some weekend shows recently (when conservatives were hogging all my radio stations, I flipped over to Art...at least he is "entertaining")
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rodeodance Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 06:16 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. Maureen Dowd wrote an editorial about the juxtapositioning-What the

WH says and the WH actually does!!
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 06:34 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. Like: No Child Left Behind, Healthy Forest Initiative, Clear Skies Act
Luntz writes the script for the conning of the American people.

Note how "privatization" has become the more enticing "private accounts" in the MSM.

It's as if this administration is the sequel to "1984".
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imaginary girl Donating Member (345 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-04-05 02:00 AM
Response to Reply #5
36. I thought it was now "personal" accounts? n/t
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zann725 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-05 02:52 AM
Response to Reply #4
30. Could you give a site on that? I'd like to read it.
n/t
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-05 10:05 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. Can't find it in the New York Times archives, but I'll keep looking
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-30-05 09:00 PM
Response to Reply #1
18. lol
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Skidmore Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 05:51 AM
Response to Original message
3. I wonder what his sources of income looked like when he was doing
focus groups for MSNBC and Tweety during the 2004 campaign season.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 06:55 AM
Response to Original message
6. It's always equal and opposite to the intention.
They want to dismantle Social Security so its gotta be The Social Security "Protection" Act or "Reorganization" Act.

"Secure Golden Years" Act. It's better if you put children in it -- that's how it's being sold. (Bush keeps saying he wants the twins to be able to draw their SS.) "Safe Family Futures" ("So flamboyantly fraudulent".)

I mean, no one would vote for "Wallets for Wall Street", would they?

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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Think the twins have to worry about having $ to pay their heating bill...
...when they're 65?

How crass and manipulative.

Luntz tutors Repubs to insert "children" whenever possible, so in addition to this fake concern for the twins' financial future...

...at *'s press conference, he feigned concern for a Fox reporter's 14-year-old being covered by Social Security.

According to Paul Krugman, the whole SS "crisis" is a fake.

This is worthy of Potter in "It's a Wonderful Life".
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 12:38 AM
Response to Reply #7
20. Wow, that's who cheney reminds me of!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! lol
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-01-05 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #20
26. Watching "It's a Wonderful Life" this Christmas...
...I thought, Potter's so old and rich, why doesn't he just act kind and care about his fellow Bedford Falls neighbors, and then I thought...

Potter was the original neocon!
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 08:09 AM
Response to Original message
8. And don't forget the "ownership" society is really...
...the "owe-money" society.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 08:13 AM
Response to Original message
9. Employment for Senior Adults Act or Partial-Death Euthanasia. nt
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #9
23. lol
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elehhhhna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 08:35 AM
Response to Original message
10. "No Senior Left Alive"
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 11:42 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. No Senior Left Unemployed
(at Wal-Mart, McDonald's, picking grapes, etc.)
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elehhhhna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. WRONG! The BA gutted Green Thumb, the employment program
for indigent seniors.

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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 08:15 PM
Response to Reply #10
24. Good horror movie title
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 09:31 PM
Response to Original message
13. Or maybe they'll just change the definition of "senior" to...
...centenarian.
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itzamirakul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 10:08 PM
Response to Original message
15. I read that "private" accounts will now be called "personal" accounts..
Seems that BushCo did a survey and found the latter term more acceptable to seniors.
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-29-05 10:38 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. Just went shopping and prunes are now called plums....
Madison Avenue mindgames are being used to sell public policy.

At least prunes/plums actually benefit seniors!
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 12:39 AM
Response to Reply #15
21. "And underwear will be worn on the outside, so we can check." --
-- Bananas
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-31-05 04:29 AM
Response to Reply #21
22. Woody Allen or Chiquita?
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-05 01:22 AM
Response to Reply #22
28. W.A. I watch too many movies! n/t
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Feb-01-05 01:21 AM
Response to Original message
25. Krugman does great job explaining why privatization is ludicrous
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-05 12:56 AM
Response to Original message
27. * will use State of the Union to lobby for dismantling SS!!
According to today's NYT.
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Liberty Belle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-02-05 01:26 AM
Response to Original message
29. Secure Delusions? Golden Fears?
Those would seem appropriate.
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-03-05 05:03 AM
Response to Reply #29
32. How about Social Insecurity?
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Liberty Belle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-03-05 08:27 PM
Response to Reply #32
34. Great minds think alike. That's the title I used on an article
I wrote on Bush's proposal. It ran on the front page of today's East County Californian. They don't have a website, unfortunately.
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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-04-05 01:38 AM
Response to Reply #34
35. What's the gist?
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Liberty Belle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-04-05 11:20 AM
Response to Reply #35
37. Here's the story--written before the SOS speech.
East County Californian (2/3/2005)




SOCIAL INSECURITY?
OPPOSITION GROWS TO PRESIDENTS
PROPOSED CHANGES FOR RETIREES

By Miriam Raftery

The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the nations largest senior citizens lobbying group, has announced its opposition to President Bushs plan for privatizing a portion of Social Security.

We are dead set against carving private accounts out of Social Security taxes, William Novelli, CEO of AARP, said. We can fix Social Security without dismantling it, which is what private accounts carved out of Social Security do.

The AARP joins a growing chorus of concerns voiced over the Presidents proposal, including objections from several prominent Republicans, leading Democrats, labor unions and other groups.

The President plans to unveil proposed legislation that would allow workers to divert some of their Social Security payroll taxes into private accounts. (The White House prefers the term personal accounts, according to a 104-page Republican blueprint on marketing Social Security, which was leaked to the media. That blueprint urges GOP lawmakers to tout personalization through ownership and to avoid the term privatization because it connotes the total corporate takeover of Social Security.")

Supporters of the ownership society concept maintain that younger workers would have the opportunity to achieve higher returns on their investments over time.

But critics argue that the proposal amounts to gambling with retirees futures. What happens if individual make bad investments, such as stock market losses or investing stock options in Enron or another company that goes bankrupt?

Taking some of the money that workers pay into the system and diverting it into newly created private accounts would weaken Social Security and put benefits for future generations at risk, a letter to AARP members signed by Novelli stated.

The normally conservative Wall Street Journal agreed. Less well advertised is that, in return, workers would forfeit some traditional benefits when they retire, a January 30th article in the WSJ stated. The article concluded, Private accounts not only wouldnt restore Social Securitys 75-year solvency, they would add to its immediate shortfall: Taxes diverted to workers own accounts would have to be made up somehow, to pay todays retirees.

To cover that shortfall, the White House has suggested borrowing up to $2 trillion, adding to the national debt. Im certainly not going to support diverting $2 trillion from Social Security into personal savings accounts, Republican Senator Olympia Snowe (R-Maine), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, told CNN.
In a Democratic radio address on January 15th, Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) pledged that Democrats would fight to keep the security in Social Security. Stabenow warned that privatization could lead to benefit cuts of up to 25% for some current workers and up to 45% for retirees in the future. Workers retiring in 2075 would receive monthy Social Security benefits 46% lower than under the current structure, a recent Washington Post article estimated.

Details of the Presidents proposal have not yet been disclosed, but insiders suggest the plan may initially allow private investment in only a handful of specific funds to lessen risk.
Some have raised concerns over how privatization would impact the disabled. Currently, workers who become too ill or injured to work may retire early and draw full Social Security benefits. Under the Presidents plan, critics fear, workers who are disabled early in life may face shortfalls if they havent earned enough through private accounts.

While supporters and opponents of Social Security privatization dispute the impact, both sides agree that some changes will ultimately be needed. Thats because the the baby boomers will draw Social Security benefits as they reach retirement age, outnumbering younger workers paying into the system. But proponents and critics disagree on the severity of that problemand how it should be solved.

President Bush maintains that allowing personal investment is necessary to save Social Security. By the time todays workers who are in their mid-20s begin to retire, the system will be bankrupt, the President stated in a speech on January 11th in Washington, D.C.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, however, reports that Social Security could fully fund 100% of retirement benefits for nearly 50 years (through 2052) even if no changes were made, and could continue funding retirement benefits at 70% for decades more.
I dont believe theres a financial crisis, California Senator Diane Feinstein said. I think to put this out as a financial crisis is misleading.

Senator Barbara Boxer (D-California) expressed concern over the Bush privatization plan in a letter to a constituent, noting we cannot afford to divert needed funds away from an already stressed Social Security system. While pledging support for ensuring the short- and long-term health of Social Security, Boxer added, Benefit cuts or reductions in the standard of living for seniors are not the answer.

The Cato Institute, a conservative think tank, reports that Congressman Duncan Hunter, who represents East County, supports privatization. Hunter responded Yes when asked in a Cato Institute poll, Do you favor or oppose Social Security reform that would allow workers to save a portion of their payroll taxes n a personal retirement account?

Another Cato poll found that just 14% of voters agreed that Social Security is in crisis, but most feel that some changes are needed. Cato found 55% of seniors oppose allowing younger workers to invest in private accounts, while 61% of younger workers support the proposal.

An AARP poll, however, showed dramatically different results. AARP found that while 43% initially favored private accounts, support dropped sharply in all age groups when people polled were told that consequences of the change might include reduced benefits at retirement, a ban on early retirement, and creation of a new government agency to administer the program at a $1 trillion cost.

A whopping 83% favor strengthening Social Securityand 60% think private accounts would hurt Social Security, according to AARP. A poll by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News revealed that an overwhelming 95% of Americans oppose cutting Social Security benefits, making the presidents plan a tough sell.

To prevent benefit cuts, some are calling for other options to be considered. Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona told CBSs Face the Nation that a hike in payroll taxes has got to be on the table along with other financing options. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas, also a Republican, has said that Congress should consider a value-added tax or other changes to fund Social Security.

Democrats argue that the current system amounts to a regressive tax, since Social Security is withheld only from the first $90,000 in income, so lower income people pay a disproportionately high share in relation to what they earn. Raising that level to $140,000 or increasing the retirement age gradually to 70 would be better solutions than diverting funds to private accounts, many suggest.
Who benefits from privatization?

Diverting just 4% of Social Security into private accounts would generate windfall profits of $75 billion a year for financial service firms, analyst with CIBC World Markets in New York, reports. Privatization would also benefit stock brokerage firms and mutual fund managers.

According to OpenSecrets.org, the largest contributions to the Bush reelection campaign in 2004 came from the financial/insurance/real estate sector, which donated over $33 million. The two top contributors to the Bush campaign, Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch, both stand to reap hefty profits if workers are allowed to divert SSI withholdings into private investment in the stock market.

Most would agree that Social Security represents a social improvement over Colonial American era Poor Laws (which forced some impoverished seniors to wear a P on their foreheads), or almshouses to which some elderly poor were relegated in 19th Century England.

Social Security began in 1934 as part of the New Deal signed into law by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt during the Depression. Before Social Security, 50% of Americas senior citizens were living in poverty, including some who lost savings in the 1929 stock market crash.

Today, less than 10% of senior citizens in the U.S. live below the poverty line, thanks to Social Security. The program was hailed as modernization by progressives and criticized as big government intervention by others.

President Roosevelts grandson, James Roosevelt Jr., has become a vocal critic of the Bush planand of the Presidents inaugural speech reference to FDR. The implication that FDR would support privatization of America's greatest national program is an attempt to deceive the American people and an outrage, Roosevelt wrote in a Boston Globe editorial. Roosevelt also sent a letter asking Progress for America, a conservative organization, to cease using FDRs name in its advertising campaign.

Senate Democrats are calling on the Government Accountability Office to investigate alleged illegal use of taxpayer funds by the White House to promote the Presidents plan for partial privatization of Social Security. At a hearing Friday, Democratic Policy Committee Senators heard testimony from two Social Security Administration employees who said the agencys marketing plan inappropriately requires workers to publicly promote the Bush plan, which the workers view as a partisan political message.

I do not believe it is proper for public funds or public employees to be used to stir up fear, testified Steve Kofahl, a Social Security claims representative.

The president cannot turn the Social Security Administration into his own lobby shop, said Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.). Democrats liken the effort to recent revelations that federal agencies have paid newspaper columnists and TV commentators to promote White House policiesa tactic that violates federal prohibitions on covert propaganda, undermining credibility of the media and the Administration.

Republican National Committee spokesman Brian Jones dismissed the Democrats concerns as partisan politics, adding that the hearings deserve an A for stagecraft and an F for honesty.

The latest twist is a debate over whether changes should be made to Social Security based on race. Bush has observed that African-Americans are more likely than whites to die before receiving their fair share of benefits.

But an Associated Press article on January 29th points out that statistically, African-Americans actually benefit more from Social Security under the present system than whites. Lower-income workers receive more benefits than higher-income workers in relation to amounts paid in. In addition, more African-Americans that whites receive benefits from payments made to the disabled and to the spouses and children of deceased workers.

Support for private accounts is a reversal of Bushs statement in the debates that he did not support privatization of Social Security. He now maintains that voluntary personal accounts will provide ownership benefits to workers, along with an opportunity to build retirement nest eggs that can be passed on to their heirs. The program will strengthen and save Social Security for generations to come, Bush says.

Workers representatives draw a different conclusion. The AFL-CIO website has action plan for labor union members and others, along with this statement: President Bushs plan to replace Social Securitys guaranteed benefits with risky private accounts would hurt working families. It would force drastic cuts in benefits and saddle our children with $2 trill in debt, most of which we would owe to foreign countries such as China and Japan.

Citizens interested in voicing their opinions on Social Security legislation can obtain contact information for Senate and Congressional members at www.congress.gov .



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wakemewhenitsover Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Feb-04-05 05:24 PM
Response to Reply #37
38. Wow, when you have the WSJ making your case...
:dem:
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Katidid Donating Member (310 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-03-05 06:40 AM
Response to Original message
33. Wasn't he making some noise
about "up-ing" the retirement age to 70... I do recall something like this, but, at any rate, none of us will probably be alive to collect our SS.
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