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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:41 AM
Original message
Obama Single-Handedly Destroyed Social Security
Edited on Wed Dec-08-10 08:34 PM by proud patriot
edited for copyright purposes-proud patriot Moderator Democratic Underground)

Fire Dog Lake
The End of Social Security
By: Nancy Altman Tuesday December 7, 2010 5:44 am


President Obama and the Republicans will say that the payroll tax holiday is all about stimulating the economy. But dont be fooled. According to the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities,extending the Making Work Pay Tax Credit, is a much better, more targeted stimulus. See Payroll Tax Holiday a Poor Stimulus Idea, available at this link.

And the Making Work Pay Tax Credit poses no threat to Social Security. The innocent-sounding payroll tax holiday, on the other hand, will lead inexorably to killing Social Security. Let me explain:

Sixty members of the Senate are unwilling to raise taxes by 3 percent on the $250,000 and first dollar (and all those dollars earned above $250.001) of those making over $250,000 and by 1.6 percent more (for a total of 4.6 percent) on the $384,860 and first dollar {and all those dollars earned above $384,861) of those making over $384,860. They are even unwilling to spare everyone making less that one million dollars any increased taxes and simply raise taxes by 4.6 percent on the $1 million and first dollar (and all those dollars earned above $1,000,001 of the nations multimillionaires and billionaires. (I say multimillionaires because anyone with a net worth of a few million dollars is not making an annual income of over one million dollars.)

Given that unwillingness to raise taxes by less than a nickel on every dollar earned over $1 million, I find it unfathomable that a more conservative Congress, in two years, in an election year, will increase the payroll tax by 2 percent on the very first dollar, and every other dollar up to the cap, earned by virtually every single worker in the country. Consequently, I think we have to assume that the payroll tax holiday will be extended beyond the two years the president is proposing and quite likely could become permanent.

http://my.firedoglake.com/nancyaltman/2010/12/07/the-en...
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Mimosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:44 AM
Response to Original message
1. Solid facts. K&R
Especially appreciated this (and I'm not old enough for Social Security):

A permanent two percent cut in Social Security contributions doubles the 75 year projected shortfall. Scrapping the cap (eliminating the $106,800 maximum on earnings), tonally eliminates the shortfall today. If FICA is cut by 2 percent, scrapping the cap gets Social Security only halfway there.

The pressure to cut Social Security in a slow, gradual way for younger workers will be enormous. Progressives will not want to cut benefits for the low-income and they shouldnt be cut; they should be increased. Despite the fact that there are few beneficiaries who do not desperately need their Social Security 2/3rds of the elderly and 70 percent of people receiving disability benefits rely on Social Security for half or more of their income and most people think even more people will be dependent on it in the future nonetheless, means-testing Social Security will become a viable option. (Eliminating the benefits of those who dont need them will make no difference to the solvency of Social Security, but will introduce administrative complexity, because it will require everyone claiming benefits to reveal their income and assets, to show they are of insufficient means to get by without it, and will destroy the universal, insurance nature of Social Security.) Changing the benefit formula in the manner proposed by a majority of the Catfood Commission, will appear attractive, even though it would gradually and inexorably eviscerate the benefits of the middle class, and with it, their support for the program.

Conservatives, from the moment Social Security was introduced in 1935, resisted a highly redistributive middle-class program, based on insurance principles. Throughout the past 75 years, they pushed for a program that mainly helped only the very poorest Americans by providing either a means-tested program or a low level of benefits for everyone, if they had to, paid from general revenue, but Democratic politicians were too smart to fall for that. They recognized that, not only did the middle class, not just the very poor, need economic protection in a capitalist system, but also that only programs that had broad based support, which provided meaningful benefits to the middle class, could offer meaningful benefits to the poor, as well. They understood the adage that programs exclusively for the poor made poor programs. One Democrat who understood this all very clearly was the one who created Social Security: President Franklin Roosevelt.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. I am in my 20s so it looks like Social Security REALLY won't "be there for me"
What a load of shit. This is fucking unbelievable. A Democratic President destroys Social Security (not that I am entirely surprised but I expected a raise in the retirement age or a more blatant cut).
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #3
12. I'm 49 and have been working for over 30 years --and I feel the same way as you
There will be some dirty tricks and some manufactured crisis, and --POOF-- there goes my social security that I've been paying into for over 30 years so far. They've raised the retirement age for me already, now they're talking about reducing benefits for everyone under 55. So the thirty years I've been busting my ass means absolutely zero.
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Celtic Raven Donating Member (415 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 11:00 AM
Response to Reply #12
86. And we were double dipped
to pay not only for our SS, but our parents generation as well.

:grr:
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sasha031 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #1
7. the democrat party and American people are being undermined
in every way.
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JamesA1102 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #7
13. It's the Democratic party
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 07:11 AM
Response to Reply #7
83. only republicans say "democrat party"
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:50 AM
Response to Original message
2. I don't believe it wi be there for me anyway funded for now or not.
Sorry but I've got no faith in this deficit ridden country.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:05 AM
Response to Reply #2
10. Social Security was the only program that was working until this abomination was proposed.
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #10
14. True. The only government program that was in the black -- gotta cut THAT
It makes absolutely no sense.
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dkf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:21 AM
Response to Reply #10
17. The general fund owes the trust fund trillions along with the trillion plus we are borrowing
Every year added to the trillions we have already borrowed.

As long as this country's fiscal situation is messed up so is social security.

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Still a Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:50 AM
Response to Original message
4. The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities doesn't have to negotiate deals
Theory is easy.
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Hello_Kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #4
11. Care to address the substance of the post? eom
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Autumn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:51 AM
Response to Original message
5. That's my concern, and the fact that Obama
willingly went along with it. It's clear to see what is coming, they can frame it all they want as a necessary thing that people will get unemployment checks. But where will they be in 13 months? K/R
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TBF Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:52 AM
Response to Original message
6. This has been in the works awhile - not just Obama - but there are DLC handprints
all over it.

Here is the OP I did on it this morning (only providing it because you might find the historical cites interesting): http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:57 AM
Response to Original message
8.  writing needs improvement. Too long... Too complex
Edited on Tue Dec-07-10 10:09 AM by billlll
Love the attitude though. Just needs to write differently

OR, add a

Summary

at the top.

Experts and the LW in general have these two flaws.

The RW uses soundbites.... and wins.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Yeah, well I am pretty sure she wrote this pretty quick. This needs to get out ASAP.
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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:24 AM
Response to Reply #9
18. agreed. we are both right. I urge someone (Altman?) with some time now
Edited on Tue Dec-07-10 10:28 AM by billlll
To write a

Summary

And put it at the top.

The facts won't get out to very many if they are in a looooooong complicated essay.
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Shandris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:25 AM
Response to Reply #8
19. That has always been our biggest problem though.
Progressive ideology does not lend itself to soundbites and TL;DR's. It is the path of the thinking man, and isn't readily accessible to cutesy phrases. Even our most successful soundbite, Its the Economy Stupid, doesn't actually address anything and I wonder if it really had as much effect as we seem to give it credit for.

But by the same token, you're right, there does have to be some better way of presenting this. We're sure as hell not going to succeed by hoping the electorate suddenly becomes more interested in reading and thinking.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:29 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. You're right. This is way too complicated to explain. The simplest
explanation is that this payroll tax cut holiday defunds Social Security and makes cuts inevitable. Not sure how to make that sound cutesy Palinesque.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:19 AM
Response to Original message
15. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator.
 
ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:38 AM
Response to Reply #15
22. You would have lost most of it in 2001.

I had all of my 401(k) in the safest possible fund, and still lost 50% of it.

The whole point was that it was guaranteed money. But then, you knew that.


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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #15
23. Chile did that... now trying to return to our ss plan
The Chile stocks went flat, so their ss failed too.
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jaxx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
16. Unrec for unsubstantiated rumors.
More hair on fire rhetoric from FDL.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:27 AM
Response to Reply #16
20. Are you serious? Altman is an SS expert. How is De-Funding Social Security in this new
compromise with Republicans an unsubstantiated rumor? This is in the new tax cut deal:FACT. Republicans will never allow this to expire in the future. See what happened with the Bush tax cuts? How about this article from former Treasury Department Economist while we're at it: http://www.forbes.com/2009/10/15/payroll-tax-social-sec...

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jaxx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #20
27. It seems you answered your own question.
The facts don't have anything but rumors to back them up.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:54 AM
Response to Reply #27
31. What rumor are you referring to?
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jaxx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:05 AM
Response to Reply #31
34. The title of the piece is "The End of Social Security"
It's attention grabbing and of no substance. There are others too, but as always, pundit predictions are given 'fact' status. Then we argue about these rumors, even though they're only rumors, until the next one comes along. It's tiresome.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:18 AM
Response to Reply #34
40. Your suggestion is to use boring titles to get people aware of serious threats to a popular program?
I suggest you read the article to find the substance. Altman is an SS expert and many other economists i.e. Krugman, Dean Baker, who have a track record of accurately predicting economic tsunamis like the current recession and housing bubble have all said the same thing about Social Security. This payroll tax holiday, which is highly likely to pass along with the great tax cut compromise, will likely keep being renewed until the program is in crisis because of the shortfall, which will be doubled because of this. Politicians are unwilling to ever raise taxes, so they will have to CUT Social Security because of lack of funds. Not really sure what is so sensationalist about that.
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NorthCarolina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:43 AM
Response to Reply #16
26. Sure, like they were so wrong when they predicted Obama would cave on tax cuts. Rec'd for truth. nt
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jaxx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:48 AM
Response to Reply #26
28. He didn't cave.
He got good things for the compromise. It's called politics, each side gets some good and gives back something. Politicians have been doing it since the beginning.
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closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #28
30. You're quite a busy bee today.
:hi:
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jaxx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:06 AM
Response to Reply #30
35. How nice of you to single me out.
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NorthCarolina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #28
33. Sure thing...whatever you say. nt
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Individualist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:10 AM
Response to Reply #28
36. He collaborated.
Fuck DLC!
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:20 AM
Response to Reply #28
41. He didn't get many good things. Just extension on unemployment benefits
which could have been done in many other ways without giving tax breaks to millionaires and going along with this asinine payroll tax holiday.
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:39 AM
Response to Original message
24. Remember: Reagan, both Bushes and Clinton raided the Social Security Trust Fund
For the past 25 years, crooked politicians from both political parties, have systematically, and deliberately, diverted all Social Security revenue, not needed to pay benefits to current retirees, into the general fund and used it to finance tax cuts, wars, and other government programs. There is no way that Bernanke could raid the $2.54 trillion in surplus revenue, generated by the 1983 payroll tax hike, today, because it has all been raided in increments over the past 25 years. This is an irrefutable fact. What Bernanke and his cohorts are trying to do is let the federal government off the hook for that money so it will not have to be repaid. Social Security doesn't need to be fixed. The government is what needs to be fixed. If the trust fund money had not been raided, Social Security would be able to pay full benefits until at least 2037. It the government repays the $2.54 trillion of looted money, Social Security will still be able to pay the full benefits. But, if the money is not repaid, Social Security will be unable to pay full benefits in just six years.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/allenwsmith/ben-be...


Reagan was the first President to raid Social Security to hide his abysmal governing skills and giveaways to the rich and the oil companies:
OK, lets get realistic. If by raid we simply mean that Washington has been able to use our payroll taxes for something other than supporting Social Security, then there might be a case to be made. The Reagan administration famously used the hike in payroll tax receipts in the 1980s which was already scheduled in the 1977 Amendments, Reagan and Congress just moved the dates up to compensate for the tax cuts hed pushed through in 1981, and which had ballooned the deficit. Since then, ordinary workers payroll taxes have essentially be used to pay for tax cuts for the affluent.

http://peoplespension.infoshop.org/blogs-mu/2010/09/20/... /



Here's another article that exposes the theft:
The previous raiding of the trust fund by Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton was despicable. However, at that time, the issue had never been subjected to a public debate where the American people could speak out on it. That all changed as a result of the 2000 campaign and election.
Every American who cast a vote for either Bush or Gore had a right to expect that the era of raiding the Social Security trust fund was over. They had entered into a new covenant with the would-be future President of the United States, in which it was mutually agreed that all future surplus Social Security revenue would be untouchable for any purpose other than the payment of Social Security benefits.

Bush continued to sing the same tune once he became President. He continued to insist that Social Security revenue would be used only for Social Security. In his first State of the Union address on February 3, 2001, Bush said, "To make sure the retirement savings of America's seniors are not diverted in any other program, my budget protects all $2.6 trillion of the Social Security surplus for Social Security, and for Social Security alone." Four days later, Bush said, "We're going to keep the promise of Social Security and keep the government from raiding the Social Security surplus."

Because of all the rhetoric and news coverage of the Social Security trust fund issue during the campaign, and in the early months of the George W. Bush presidency, the American people came to believe that the Social Security trust fund was no longer being raided. But nothing changed with the inauguration of George W. Bush. Despite his pledge to protect the Social Security money, Bush spent every dime of Social Security surplus revenue that came in during his presidency. He used it to fund his big tax cuts for the rich, and much of it was spent on wars.

The news media had given extensive coverage to the Social Security debate in the 2000 election campaign, and to President Bush's early promises to not raid the trust fund. However, Bush's failure to honor his promises, with regard to Social Security, just never seemed to get much news coverage, leaving most Americans to believe that the raiding of the trust fund ended after George W. Bush took office. On the contrary, Bush raided and spent a total of $1.37 trillion of Social Security surplus during his eight years as president. In his last year, he spent $192.2 billion, which averages out to more than $526 million per day.

During a speech on April 5, 2005 in Parkersburg, West Virginia, Bush openly admitted to the fact that all of the Social Security surplus revenue had been spent. He said, "There is no trust fund, just IOUs that I saw firsthand that future generations will paywill pay for either in higher taxes, or reduced benefits, or cuts to other critical government programs." Bush's words in this speech bore little resemblance to what he had said about Social Security during the 2000 campaign. But his motives were different in 2005. He was trying to sell his privatization plan, and he thought that by spilling the truth he might further his effort to privatize Social Security.

http://www.fedsmith.com/article/2328/no-money-social-se...


http://dissidentvoice.org/2010/12/social-security-a-dec... /

Here is the best explanation of just how they raid social security I've ever read:
http://www.nysun.com/opinion/stopping-the-social-securi... /

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Mimosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:51 AM
Response to Reply #24
50. True. No matter who does it it's wrong.
Interesting how there is always enough money for Wars, not enough for health care or education.
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txlibdem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #50
60. You said it
:-(

I need a big, tall one of you (mimosa that is). (but I can't because it would play hob with my meds) :-(
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Foo Fighter Donating Member (621 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:19 PM
Response to Reply #50
66. Oh c'mon now. Where are your priorities?
Wars are necessary to protect corporate interests for reasons of national security. If people want health care and education, they can pay for it themselves. You know, pull themselves up by their bootstraps and all that.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 07:15 AM
Response to Reply #24
84. nobody "raided" the trust fund. this is a widespread but false belief.
by the terms of the original social security legislation, all excess SS collections MUST BE borrowed into the general budget in exchange for US securities.

what reagan did is jack up SS taxes to create surpluses that grew for 25 years. this was unprecedented.

the bigger the surpluses, the more money the government could borrow (was obliged to borrow) into the general budget.

it's not "raiding" when you're following the law.

but what reagan did (with the support of a bipartisan congress) was a scam, & IMO, a planned scam.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:40 AM
Response to Original message
25. SUMMARY
1. In the new Obama/Republican Tax Cut Compromise, a 2-year payroll tax holiday (which funds Social Security) is included which would decrease FICA contributions by on the employee side.
2. 60 members of the Senate are UNWILLING to raise taxes. Considering the recent elections, a majority of the House will not want to raise taxes either. It is also likely we will have a Republican president in 2 years, or Obama will continue to cave to Republican demands, so, same thing.
3. The Payroll tax Holiday will then likely become permanent because pols are unwilling to "increase taxes" (like the Bush Tax Cuts) which will double the Social Security shortfall.
4. We end up with a "starve the beast" scenario. This funding shortfall will cause a crisis in Social Security which will eventually lead to cuts across the board (severe means testing where only the really indigent will receive SS) therefore obliterating widespread support.
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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:56 AM
Response to Reply #25
32. EXCELLENT! thanks
Now I see a short way to convey the skeletal dynamic:

The P.tax Holiday will cause a lack of funds to ss.

Then "We have to cut ss because there isn't enough in the Budget"

----------------------------
Simple dynamic really. Same dynamic as

Tax cuts for the rich.. Then
"We have to cut welfare, Food stamps et et et et because there isn't enough in the Budget"

The dynamic was not visible to me because of all the details in all of the essays so far.

I repeat ..."Dear LW, simplify if you wish to win"

I believe Lakoff said it before I did.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:10 AM
Response to Reply #32
38. Yes, that's exactly it. A simplified explanation but easier to understand :)
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RobinA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:38 AM
Response to Reply #25
43. You Just Repeated
the first 4 thoughts that went through my groggy, but not THAT groggy, head this morning when my clock radio woke me up with the wonderful news. Now I am scared. They did this with my state pension - "Oh, we can't meet our funding obligations THIS year but we'll make up for it next year." Repeat for years. Five years later, "The state owes zillions to the greedy state employees and their unions who insist on million dollar a year pensions, we have to cut the pensions of these highway robber workers or the innocent taxpayers will be paying for their mansions by the sea." Thing has to give, or we are truly in trouble. Deep trouble.
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Celtic Raven Donating Member (415 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 11:08 AM
Response to Reply #43
87. Wash. Rinse.Repeat.
Until no one is left with any safety net & we're all fighting each other over 50 cent a day jobs.

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Poll_Blind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:36 PM
Response to Reply #25
71. THANK YOU for that summary. n/t
PB
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closeupready Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 10:48 AM
Response to Original message
29. Hey, look, people, be reasonable. War is expensive.
:sarcasm:
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Poboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:10 AM
Response to Original message
37. recommend
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Individualist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:14 AM
Response to Original message
39. Obama's unspoken message to struggling seniors: Hurry up and die.
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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:26 AM
Response to Original message
42. "liberals must support linguistic think tanks in the same way that conservatives do
Edited on Tue Dec-07-10 11:28 AM by billlll
if they are going to succeed in appealing to those in the country who share their..." ideas.

--Lakoff fm wiki.

Those tanks boil down complex ideas to short metaphors which win elections.

Our job is easier than the RW job because we don't need a cloud of details to hide theft - the RW does.

PS the OP has superb facts.. Would benefit from breaking long paragraphs into shorter paragraphs... and some sub-headings. I want it to be highly effective in reaching folks.
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billlll Donating Member (434 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #42
46. progressive message CAN be put into soundbites as easily as RW ideas
Edited on Tue Dec-07-10 11:50 AM by billlll
But our "culture" has been to write like a longwinded prof lecturing for fifty minutes to a captive audience.

Our LW culture is the only impediment to boiling down our ideas. True, it does require time and thought to simplify. But no more time than what the RW puts into their soundbites.

"Genius is the ability to cut into a mass of data and find the few simple core dynamics".... "to find the one inch formula that explains the cosmos"
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Poboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 12:34 PM
Response to Reply #46
53. I agree w/you billll. -nt
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AzDar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:41 AM
Response to Original message
44. K & R
:kick:
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blindpig Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:44 AM
Response to Original message
45. Unwittingly my ass

The entire political class is on board, the electoral system is incapable of responding to our needs, the working class can now clearly see that we are on our own.
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:45 AM
Response to Original message
47. oh, bullshit. A payroll tax reduction is a precursor to the end of Social Security?
what a joke.
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jtown1123 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:49 AM
Response to Reply #47
48. Not a joke. Here's why:
1. In the new Obama/Republican Tax Cut Compromise, a 2-year payroll tax holiday (which funds Social Security) is included which would decrease FICA contributions by on the employee side.
2. 60 members of the Senate are UNWILLING to raise taxes. Considering the recent elections, a majority of the House will not want to raise taxes either. It is also likely we will have a Republican president in 2 years, or Obama will continue to cave to Republican demands, so, same thing.
3. The Payroll tax Holiday will then become permanent because politicians are unwilling to "increase taxes" (like the Bush Tax Cuts) which will double the Social Security shortfall.
4. We end up with a "starve the beast" scenario. This funding shortfall will cause a crisis in Social Security which will eventually lead to cuts across the board (severe means testing where only the really indigent will receive SS) therefore obliterating widespread support.
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:52 AM
Response to Reply #48
51. that assumes revenue can't be obtained from other sources
. . . from a lessening or elimination of other priorities. Just because there's pressure on the budget doesn't automatically lead to the scenario you've outlined. This is just amazingly speculative.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:18 PM
Response to Reply #51
64. One of the strengths of Social Security has been that it is not pulled out of the general fund.
This left it off the table during discussion of the general fund's deficit. Now it will be on the table and will be attacked.
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 01:23 AM
Response to Reply #64
77. It will be on the table in 6 years anyways.
Starting in 2016 SS will require more expenditures than in pulls in current year revenue. To cover the shortfall SSA will need to redeem bonds to receive cash from Congress.

It is happening in 2016 anyways. I don't think 2011 vs 2016 is going to make a hill of beans difference.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:19 PM
Response to Reply #51
65. One of the strengths of Social Security has been that it is not pulled out of the general fund.
This left it off the table during discussion of the general fund's deficit. Now it will be on the table and will be attacked.
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lildreamer316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 12:51 AM
Response to Reply #51
74. ...and once it's funded from other sources,it is vulnerable to politically-motivated cuts.
As it is now,it's semi-isolated.
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SidDithers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:49 AM
Response to Original message
49. ...


Sid
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #49
54. Yup. Since the President's statement said nothing about Social Security, it is natural to ask
whose objectives are served by pushing this bizarre "Social Security is dead, and Barack Obama killed it" interpretation of the statement -- the interpretation serves rightwing objectives by reducing confidence in social security and it drives wedges by claiming the President is out to destroy social security. Since Hamsher was dancing with Norquist last year, it's natural to suspect FDL is advancing rightwing objectives deliberately

December 06, 2010
Statement by the President on Tax Cuts and Unemployment Benefits
Room 430
Eisenhower Executive Office Building
6:32 P.M. EST
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2010/12/06/s...
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treestar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 12:16 PM
Response to Original message
52. Please read the constitution
You're having this fantasy about Presidents having "single handed" power again, in US government.

No President, even yourself, would have the power to single handedly do anything.
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tomp Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 05:29 AM
Response to Reply #52
78. you're right, it's definitely a collaboration. nt
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 01:23 PM
Response to Original message
55. K&R
1)Cut funding for Social Security this year, and package it up like this is a GOOD thing for the Working Class.

2)Increase the constant media barrage that Social Security is broke.

3)Cut SS benefits.

Not too terribly difficult to read these tea leaves.
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bvar22 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 01:23 PM
Response to Original message
56. K&R
1)Cut funding for Social Security this year, and package it up like this is a GOOD thing for the Working Class.

2)Increase the constant media barrage that Social Security is broke.

3)Cut SS benefits.

Not too terribly difficult to read these tea leaves.
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PBS Poll-435 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 01:26 PM
Response to Original message
57. ROFL!
Good Grief!
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AndrewP Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 01:26 PM
Response to Original message
58. K&R
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pipi_k Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 02:13 PM
Response to Original message
59. Lots of numbers and speculation there...
Sounds like it's a whole bunch of "here is my 'expert' opinion"....


Given that unwillingness to raise taxes by less than a nickel on every dollar earned over $1 million, I find it unfathomable that a more conservative Congress... (Her opinion).


Consequently, I think we have to assume that the payroll tax holiday will be extended... (Her opinion coupled with an assumption on something that hasn't happened).




...starting fifteen years from now, assuming Congress even continues to make the $120 billion every year before that point. (More assumption based on something that hasn't happened).




"...70 percent of people receiving disability benefits rely on Social Security for half or more of their income and most people think even more people will be dependent on it in the future..." (Now we're getting into what MOST people THINK. No real numbers...just "most")


Apparently, the President is ready to pull the plug on you, if not on Grandma herself. (Apparently. Not that he IS ready to pull the plug. It only LOOKS like it)



Seriously...people are getting their panties in a wad over this? Opinion. Speculation. Assumptions.

:eyes:

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Poboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 08:51 PM
Response to Original message
61. .
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Octafish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 09:06 PM
Response to Original message
62. They aren't 'hapless' and 'clueless.'
They are active participants.
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Faryn Balyncd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:08 PM
Response to Original message
63. The damage to Social Security is even WORSE than the giveaway to the wealthy.
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ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:20 PM
Response to Original message
67. "Apparently, the President is ready to pull the plug on you, if not on Grandma herself."
Death Panels!!!

Run for the hills.

Where am I?

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sasha031 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:21 PM
Response to Original message
68. Brilliant move, destroy SS when you have millions of aging baby boomer's
I called my Congressman's office today about this, he has always promised to protect SS.

I suggest everyone else do the same.

Sure feels like the Bush years all over again...
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Statistical Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:26 PM
Response to Original message
69. Unrec for misinformation. The 2% is replaced by funding form general fund.
It does nothing to long term stability of SS.

Did nobody on DU happen to notice the "cost" to deficit of the payroll tax holiday is $120B. If we were simply not putting that money into trust fund the cost would be $0.

The reality is reducing contribution by 2% will result in $120B less being put into SS trust fund. As a result to keep funding balance the general fund (i.e. paid for by income taxes & deficit spending) will contribute $120B.

Net-net. Absolutely no change to SS funding. $120B in "cost" to general fund.

Regressive flat tax replaced with progressive income tax (and other forms of taxation).
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inna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 12:41 AM
Response to Reply #69
72. "Misinformation" - apparently, a projection on your part.

What you wrote makes no sense whatsoever.

And LOL, what *gall* to accuse one of the most respected experts/scholars on the subject of Social Security of "misinformation".


What an ridiculous post.
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lildreamer316 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 12:53 AM
Response to Reply #69
75. Please see my comment above. n/t
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 05:42 AM
Response to Reply #69
80. Explain for us how general funds get plugged into that $120 billion hole in SS, please?
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somone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-07-10 11:30 PM
Response to Original message
70. Recommend
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amborin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 12:47 AM
Response to Original message
73. K&R
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Starry Messenger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 12:56 AM
Response to Original message
76. k&r
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 05:38 AM
Response to Original message
79. Not exactly single-handedly - it was a GOP idea, after all, which Obama now embraces.
What did he say Monday, "It's a good deal for Americans."

He's fired.
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quaker bill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 06:36 AM
Response to Original message
81. The basic problem with this concept
is the notion that the payroll tax only pays for benefits. Since Reagan, the payroll tax has been used as part of the general fund to offset tax cuts for the rich. This bill will expand the deficit, unless it results in solid economic growth. Since this is generally a regressive tax cut, it will have a bigger impact on economic growth than the rest of the package. It will not offset itself as tax cuts never do, but as long as it sunsets, then it will take 60 votes to extend it.
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 07:08 AM
Response to Original message
82. kr
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Arkana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 08:21 AM
Response to Original message
85. Oh has he now? I was unaware of any legislation that wrote any changes to Social Security.
Or perhaps you're just talking out of your ass like the rest of the Angry Brigade.
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pipi_k Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-08-10 11:24 AM
Response to Reply #85
88. No legislation? That doesn't matter!!!!!
We all know it's already happened...we just don't know it yet.

:eyes:



It must be fun for people to speculate...sort of like someone standing behind a guy in the checkout line with certain items in his cart and concluding that he has single-handedly BLOWN UP six banks, two gas stations, and City Hall.






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