Tuesday, April 12, 2011

House Dems To Obama: Whack Social Security? Fuggedaboutit!

Brian Beutler of TPM:

House Democrats just sent a letter to President Obama warning him not to cut Social Security as part of the deficit reduction program he'll outline Wednesday, or risk losing their support.

"As you know, 137 members of the United States Congress signed a letter last year opposing any cuts to Social Security Benefits, including raising the retirement age," write Reps. John Conyers (D-MI) and Raul Grijalva (D-AZ), in a letter obtained by TPM. 

"The signatories also stated their opposition to any effort to privatize Social Security, in whole or in part... we believe that any discussion of long-term debt issues must consider the strong fiscal integrity of Social Security--which is prohibited by law from adding to the national budget deficit and will have built a $4.3 trillion surplus by 2023."

And then the clincher:

[W]e remain concerned that the Bowles-Simpson proposal may serve as a starting point for budget negotiations. We consider this plan to be flawed in several key areas, especially with respect to its proposed cuts to Social Security Benefits. We believe that any proposal that includes cuts to a popular, fiscally sound program lacks credibility and does not reflect the political center.

I still have one question: why was this letter delivered on the eve of the president's speech? Why were these House members not talking up saving Social Security months ago, in hopes of counterbalancing all the deficit-cutting bullshit flung by Obama, Bowles, Simpson and the whole GOP for months, to the point at which most of what the public has heard is a massive, well-contrived and well-delivered LIE about how these cuts are necessary to save the economy? (In fairness, a few Representatives have been vociferous on the matter from the beginning.)

I think if I hear another public figure... especially a Democrat... ranting on about how our national budget is like a family budget (it fucking well isn't) and how in tough times that government must cut back on all spending (it damned surely must not, unless it wants to drive recession into depression, possibly worldwide), I shall throw up on the person who says it. My patience is truly wearing thin.

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