Meanwhile, in North Carolina, a local man robs a bank.
Mr Verone, who did not use a weapon during his robbery, said he hopes he is sentenced to three years in prison so he continues receiving healthcare.
“If it is called manipulation, then out of necessity because I need medical care, I guess I am manipulating the courts to get medical care.”
This (fairly typical) analysis comes from Al Kamen at the Washington Post. According to Al, Simpson’s letter is not insulting or misleading, it’s just Vintage Simpson!
This is how this coverage makes me feel:
The Huffington Post does a pretty solid takedown of the media coverage of Alan Simpson’s comments to the California Alliance for Retired Americans. Instead of reporting on how this was completely over-the-top response to a very reasonable flyer by CARA, outlets like Morning Joe gives Alan Simpson the benefit of the doubt because he’s old and still curses and uses old-timey colloquialisms.
Simpson said the the California Alliance for Retired Americans, should “read the damn report” — recommendations from Simpson and deficit commission co-chair Erskine Bowles. But if Simpson were honest, he would have to admit that the group has obviously read his report. On the second page of its flyer,CARA offered a detailed list of criticisms for Simpson to address.
“If today’s 25 year old retired at age 65 in 2050, having earned an average salary of today’s $64,000, he or she would retire with 24.5% less Social Security benefits under your plan. How can you justify that cut if, as you admit, Social Security does not add to the deficit?”
The whole flyer is like that, actually, clearly written by people who have a detailed awareness of Simpson’s “damn report,” referring to — one assumes — the commission’s non-binding, never-approved “chairman’s mark,” which is the only thing that Simpson or Bowles produced in the course of the commission’s work.
Of course, this whole mini-segment on Morning Joe, in which CARA gets derided for polluting the discourse (by raising well-informed concerns that everyone flees from answering), just exemplifies the absurdity of Alan Simpson. He doesn’t make news for having anything particularly insightful to say about our country’s fiscal situation. He gets attention because, “LOOKIT OL’ COOTER HAVIN’ HISSELF A COOT ATTACK, Y’ALL.” And he uses the word “bullshit,” which is, to the Morning Joe gang, like, TOTAL LOLS.
This is taken from the Iowa Republican Party’s official platform:
1.1 1.4. We support a mandate for drug testing all people on public assistance.
1.5 We believe, with the imminent bankruptcy of Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security, Republicans should take the lead in replacing these programs, over time, with private solutions.
1.6 We demand that participation in the Social Security system be optional until it is eliminated, and that every citizen has the right to opt out and be responsible for their own retirement.
1.7 We believe that the Social Security Trust Fund/taxes should not be used for general government expenses and the trust fund should be reinstated as an independent fund until it is abolished.
1.8 We believe that in order to receive Social Security benefits, including SSI, one must have paid in for a minimum of 40 quarters and must be a citizen of the United States, a legal resident, or beneficiary thereof.
1.9 We propose that government employees should participate in Social Security until it is eliminated.
As Ed Kilgore writes,
“It’s true, of course, that these documents don’t mean all that much, and it’s also true the specific Iowa draft platform was prepared under the influence of the recent takeover of much of the state party apparatus by Ron Paul supporters. But you better believe if any group of two or more Democrats wrote up anything remotely this extreme, alarms would go up from coast to coast.”
Maybe if we drug tested our seniors, they could keep their Social Security benefits?
What a charmer.
After Esquire’s abysmal article about “generational warfare,” it’s refreshing to catch them defending Social Security. Charles P. Pierce called out Paul Ryan (or in Pierce’s words “the zombie-eyed granny starver”) for saying, among other things, “The whole premise of our budget is to preempt austerity by getting our borrowing under control, having tax reform for economic growth, and preventing Medicare and Social Security and Medicaid from going bankrupt.
(Social Security, by the way, is not “going bankrupt.” He’s just lying about that.)
I want those parentheses to magically appear every time someone says that Social Security is going bankrupt.
National Journal comments on Gallup’s poll:
It seems likely that the workforce participation rate will remain high if many Americans, particularly baby boomers, continue to work past traditional retirement age, potentially increasing the overall unemployment rate as the economy improves.This is just the reverse of the idea that the workforce participation rate will continue to decline, and the unemployment rate along with it, as baby boomers reach traditional retirement age.
The poll is a reminder of how far-reaching the effects of the recession may be - not just for individuals and families, but for government budgets, too.
The dialogue around these policies tends to overlook their interaction with the economy or other social programs. Raising the retirement age does not occur in a bubble—as more elderly are unemployed, they might turn to the unemployment rolls, they can keep younger workers out of their positions, and they can rely more on Disability Insurance. The costs are simply shifted from Social Security to the economy, to individuals, and to other government programs.
A Senate committee approved legislation Wednesday allowing same-sex partners of federal employees to receive employment benefits.
The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee passed the Domestic Partnership Benefits and Obligations Act with a bipartisan voice vote. It must be approved by the full Senate and the House before enactment.
While LGBT couples still face significant barriers to equitable benefits, some groups are trying to change the language of the Social Security Act as a way to incorporate same sex marriage, domestic partnerships, and civil unions.
A coalition of advocacy groups has proposed the Social Security Equality Act, which would let couples in relationships recognized by their state of residence to receive the same Social Security benefits as heterosexual married couples. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Linda Sanchez, a Democrat from California, would recognize domestic partnership, civil union and marriage.
Last week, the National Committee to Protect Social Security and Medicare proposed removing gender-specific definitions of the words “husband” and “wife” in the Act as part of a broader proposal to enhance and reform Social Security benefits.
The full article is here.