if Obama’s guys have their way:
Obama has appointed The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, a.k.a. The Social Security Commission, a.k.a. The Cat Food Commission, to solve the dire problem of Social Security going broke. Of course, the very premise of this game – that Social Security is going broke – is just crap made up by Republican lunatics. As Paul Krugman explains:
OK, the immediate problem is the statements of Alan Simpson, the commission’s co-chairman. And what got reporters’ attention was the combination of incredible insensitivity – the “lesser people”??? – and flat errors of fact.
But it’s actually much worse than that. On Social Security, Simpson is repeating a zombie lie – that is, one of those misstatements that keeps being debunked, but keeps coming back.
Specifically, Simpson has resurrected the old nonsense about how Social Security will be bankrupt as soon as payroll tax revenues fall short of benefit payments, never mind the quarter century of surpluses that came first.
So what does it mean that the co-chair of the commission is resurrecting this zombie lie? It means that at even the most basic level of discussion, either (a) he isn’t willing to deal in good faith or (b) the zombies have eaten his brain. And in either case, there’s no point going on with this farce.
And when one starts with a (fraudulent) premise that “Social Security doesn’t have enough money”, the only way to go is to cut benefits. My favorite mealy-mouthed quote from Simpson on this:
We’re not going to cut Social Security-we’re going to stabilize it. None of the ideas that have been presented will affect anyone over age 58. But we’re going to make the system work. As it is, it can’t sustain itself.
So, if you’re 58 or under, you’re about to get screwed.
For a fun (albeit marginally-audible) video of Simpson prevaricating as fast as he can, check out: