11 Apr 2013

Obama’s “mess of pottage”

Barak Obama is the first Democratic president to advocate cutting Social Security benefits. Whatever happens next, this is a historic change of direction for his party and an ominous turning point for the American social/economic compact. In the Bible—Book of Genesis, to be precise—Esau returns, exhausted and famished, from working

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30 Apr 2012

ALEC’s bigger target: Social Security

The low-key “legislative exchange” group has been in the news a lot, promoting right-wing bills in state governments. But it seeks a role on the national level as well. One of its longtime targets is one of the biggest: Social Security. The American Legislative Exchange Council is taking some flack

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15 Feb 2012

What’s the Matter with Chisago County?

The solid middle class citizens of our economically beset nation are sorry that their growing dependence on government handouts is bankrupting the federal government. If they could possibly send the money back, they would. But they can’t, and so the poor get less. That seems to be the message of

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09 Feb 2012

Demanding the Possible from Social Security

The dead-end debate over Social Security’s solvency has long stymied any discussion of how to improve the program for its participants. Now may be the time to break that logjam. Here’s a way that progressive lawmakers can help to do so. Hard as it is to conceive, the last time

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25 Jan 2012

Newt Gingrich Can’t Get With the Program

Why is the Republican Party leadership so scared of Newt Gingrich? Putting aside his generally abrasive personality, his loud streak of megalomania, and his tendency to self-destruct – OK, that’s a lot! – it’s hard to think of much in the way of substantive policy matters that sets the former

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15 Mar 2011

How Much Do We Care About the Elderly?

That’s the real issue behind the Social Security debate – and the deficit fight as well. But it’s almost impossible to have a constructive public discussion about the elderly and the share of the economy they occupy so long as deficit hysteria continues. Don’t go to Pete Peterson’s Fiscal Times

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21 Feb 2011

Fixing Social Security: Ted Nugent Speaks Truth to Power

Ted Nugent, the “Motor City Madman” of ’70s hard rock, has a plan to fix Social Security: Eliminate it. And make workers under 45 pay to wind it up. With enemies like this, does Social Security even need friends? At this point in his demented career, The Nuge – Tedly,

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13 Feb 2011

Social Security: It’s All in the Adjectives

People who want to cut Social Security benefits to lower future budget deficits are “reasonable” and “serious.” Moreover, economists have reached a “consensus” that this should be done. People who oppose balancing the budget on the back of Social Security recipients are “denialists” whose views are “maddening,” “crackpot,” “strident.”

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28 Jan 2011

Social Security: What’s in It for Wall Street?

What do Wall Street financial advisers tell their clients about Social Security? That they shouldn’t count on it. In fact, ex it out of your planning altogether. But behind the scenes, brokers and advisers eagerly use Social Security as a marketing opportunity – even bringing in experts from the Social Security Administration itself to educate them on the ins and outs of the program.

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27 Jan 2011

Paul Ryan’s Hammock

How stands the Social Security discussion in Washington following State-of-the-Union night? More or less where it was before. Which, for defenders of the program is mostly not good.

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