The Ryan Plan To Privatize Social Security

In 2005, Paul Ryan not only endorsed the Bush Administration's plan to privatize Social Security, he argued it did not go far enough.

In his 2010 "Roadmap," Ryan continued his advocacy for privatizing Social Security:

One of Rep. Paul Ryan’s many past proposals to remake the federal safety net included a sweeping plan to privatize Social Security[. . . .] The proposal was in Ryan’s 2010 “Roadmap For America’s Future,” a broad blueprint to remake the federal budget which elevated the little-known congressman into the Republican Party’s visionary. It involved shifting Social Security funds to private retirement accounts as well as reducing benefits and gradually raising the age of eligibility.

I assume we will find out how that proposal plays in Florida.

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    But he dropped that plan from his (5.00 / 6) (#1)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 08:54:01 AM EST
    2012 budget proposal.  See here.

    Doesn't mean he doesn't still want to do it, though.  Or that there aren't plenty of others of his ilk drooling over the prospect; I'm convinced that they will keep trying until they succeed, which is why Democrats HAVE TO stop making the argument one of agreement on the basics/disagreement on the details.  It needs to be an argument that is 100%, completely, utterly, totally about Ryan being wrong.  Not just wrong on the details, but wrong on the basics.  

    The more the argument is about the details, the more people are convinced there is a problem and all we're deciding is who can best resolve it.  And those kinds of arguments take us further in the wrong direction.

    As for Florida, as long as he keeps telling them that nothing will change for anyone currently 55 or older, I think he does better than people think.  Because, really, not only do most people only care about their own survival, but the media will not make any effort to expose the Ryan agenda and show people what it means in stark terms.

    Dems - Obama - needs to be delivering an argument that is the polar opposite of what is coming out of Romney/Ryan.  And they/he need to do it immediately.

    You make a good point about Ryan. (none / 0) (#56)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:05:23 PM EST
    Politics is the art of the possible, and by nature, successful politicians are also patient and pragmatic opportunists. Just because I don't have the votes today, well, that doesn't necessarily mean that I won't have them rounded up by this time next year.

    People should never infer that by deferring one's goals for the present, those goals are being altogether dropped. More often than not, it means that the one who's pursuing such goals has merely altered course, while still seeking to reach the same destination.


    It takes some very ballsy insanity... (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Dadler on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:00:33 AM EST
    ...to think the "free market" is going to do anything with retirees money but thieve it. We have just been shown clearly that the stock market and the financial industry as a whole are so corrupt as to be entirely rigged, from top to bottom.  And THIS is what we're supposed to entrust our retirement to?  Paul Ryan long ago announced himself as, literally, a self-induced mental deficient, and proud of it.

    Combine modern corruption with unfathomable stupidity and you get the American Political System of the 21st century.  Hooray!!

    Combine modern corruption... (1.50 / 4) (#11)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:32:00 AM EST
    ...with unfathomable stupidity and you still think "retiree's money" is sitting in a vault somewhere. Pot calling kettle.

    It's as good as a vault... (4.50 / 2) (#39)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:51:07 AM EST
    US Treasury Bonds, or so I've been told;)...we can always stiff investors first if it comes to that, SS ain't the only one holding iou's.

    But it need not come to that...Congress raided SS surpluses for 30 years to bring us to this point.  To pay for tax cuts, wars, prisons, and all kinda unnecessary sh*t.  We can always raise taxes/rescind tax cuts, raise the SS cap, end foreign occupation & war, cancel the drug war, close some prisons, cut other sh*t before even thinking about cuts/reforms to SS.


    You're right, in a funny way. (4.00 / 1) (#52)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:31:00 PM EST
    It is as good as being in a vault. Or, more exactly, as worthless as being in a vault. We have fiat money and the Treasury can always sell bonds to the Fed to get the dollars necessary to pay SS benefits (any other obligations) at any politically desired nominal level. Nobody is not going to get paid their dollars. It's just that they won't be worth much.

    The sh*t that got paid for over 30 years may have been unnecessary, but the dollars paid out were just as green as the ones spent on things you approved of, and you can't tell from a particular t-bill what it was wasted on. Nor are your cost and revenue priorities going to be enacted now. Inflation is the course of least resistance and hyper- or near-hyper inflation is inevitable. That's reality, and reality eventually can't be denied.


    I used to think that way... (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by kdog on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:49:17 PM EST
    dollars are dollars are dollars, 30 dollar loaf of bread here we come...now I'm not so sure.

    Is money real?  Medical treatment is real, food is real, the money we trade for these things?  May as well be seashells or wampum or hugs.  Dollars are just a thing we made up to facilitate the trading of goods and services, so ya didn't have to find a miller who wanted to barter with ya for lumber.

    What's to stop us from just starting our own new currency and leaving the mess of the dollar behind? Or having two currencies...one for the Mitt Romney's who value dollars most, and one for the rest of us who value food, shelter, medical care, a bag of reefer and to which dollars are just means to an end.


    With SS... (none / 0) (#22)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:14:07 AM EST
    ...that money is coming from me and you, no vault, but unless every abled body decides to quit, it will always be there.  No vault, just an income a guaranteed income stream.

    Every able body, working together, ... (3.00 / 4) (#31)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:40:02 AM EST
    ...can't produce enough taxes to both fill all the other government ratholes that have opened up and pay off the "special bonds" in Social Security's account at the Treasury. You do realize that SS has recently become cash flow negative, right?

    And it Will Be Postivie... (5.00 / 3) (#38)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:50:14 AM EST
    ...if we removed the cap, aka let people making over about $110k pay like the rest of us.

    Done, next alarmist problem.


    Social Security will be back on plan (3.67 / 3) (#45)
    by KeysDan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:36:04 PM EST
    with an improved economy.  Social security expenditures have exceed non-interest revenue in 2010 and 2011, and will probably do so in 2012.

    However, in keeping with those plans, the very real interest on the very real government bonds have been more than enough to pay all claims.  And, the temporary reduction in payroll taxes has reduced revenues, but transfers have been made from the general treasury.

    The decrease in non-interest revenues is due to declining payroll from higher unemployment, higher disability claims, and more early retirements, likely due to job loses and reduced hours.

    The plan for social security, when expenditures exceed interest and revenues, is to deploy the Trust Fund (accumulated surpluses--more revenue than expenditures, over the years).  

    The new and improved "reform" ideas seem to revolve around the  need to cut now so that we do not have to cut later, or we will only be able to pay 75-80 percent of benefits in 75 years and 100 percent for about the next 25 years.  In any event , social security is a relatively easy fix, if a fix is what is really wanted.  But, call me skeptical but that big old Trust fund is wanting except for Wall Street and its privatizing eye.  


    The "trust fund" isn't real... (2.33 / 3) (#55)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:57:52 PM EST
    ...and the "interest" isn't real. Taxes were paid and the same taxpayers elected politicians that spent all the money taxed, and more. Current benefits are paid out of current taxes (and more borrowing) and the SS tax no longer covers that, much less generates money for the other purposes it has been relied on to pay for. Maintaining SS benefits at their current real levels will require an increasing fraction of revenues/borrowing, and accounting fictions won't be terribly relevant to that struggle.

    The Trust Fund is as real (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by KeysDan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 03:46:12 PM EST
    as the US government.  The fact that full benefits are now  being paid (with the help of bond interest) seems to belie the argument that interest is not real, not to mention the  bonds.

    And, the Trust Fund was intended for future redemptions at the point that tax revenues plus interest does not meet expenditures.  It was not expected that the government would put the surpluses in a sock and hold on to it for future benefits, but that the proceeds from the  bonds would be used by the government and, in turn,  redeemed when needed.  

    As for accounting it could be maintained that no borrowing is needed  for social security with the funds owed from the general fund.  Borrowing that the general fund may need is related to  tax cuts for the rich and  defense--and these are places to economize.


    Nonsense. If it had any real... (2.00 / 3) (#73)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:21:03 PM EST
    ...existance the "Trust Fund", and any interest accruing to it, would be fully encumbered by future obligations. You can't, e.g., sacrifice the benefits of future retirees to maintain present benefits without violating their trust (hence the name). The underlying fact, I'll point out again, is that the current beneficiaries in their capacity as voters directed their government to spend their social security taxes immediately, not sequester them in any meaningful way. To the extent that current SS taxes don't pay for the expenditures it's made up by other taxes, borrowing from the real world, or stealing value from existing money by printing more. Failing to understand that is delusion. Knowing it but spreading misinformation is unconcionable.  

    Your tea is a little too hot. (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by KeysDan on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:37:51 PM EST
    Sometimes it is good to look to George Washington who is said to have told Jefferson that the framers had created the Senate to "cool" House legislation, just as the saucer is used to cool hot tea.

    We don't live in Washington's America. (1.25 / 4) (#77)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:50:23 PM EST
    Our government is more onerous than that he revolted against.

    How so? (5.00 / 2) (#81)
    by Yman on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 05:42:36 PM EST
    Let me guess ...



    Taxes at the top of the priority list?

    Tea party member or "independent" sympathizer?


    Yes. Yes. No. Somewhat. (none / 0) (#84)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 07:43:05 PM EST
    Liberty is the issue, not taxes. Spending is more important than taxes, and non-spending intrusiveness just as much. Considering the number of posts you've seen by me, not so good.

    So spending is more important ... (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by Yman on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 09:03:50 PM EST
    ... than taxes, but it is not true that taxes are a top priority?

    3 for 4, if you buy the taxes claim.

    Pretty easy for a white male to claim that "Our government is more onerous than that he (Washington) revolted against."

    Silly, ...

    ... but easy.


    Maintaining SS benefits... (4.20 / 5) (#58)
    by shoephone on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:13:39 PM EST
    Or we could simply raise the income cap above $104,000.

    Problem solved.


    We have a spending problem. (1.80 / 5) (#61)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:31:55 PM EST
    Trillions in deficits.

    Special-purpose tax increases don't address the problem.

    But the reason for the cap was because SS was supposed not to be welfare.

    Now you're conceeding it is?


    How absurd. (3.67 / 3) (#63)
    by shoephone on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:55:50 PM EST
    Any spending/deficit issues have nothing to do with SS, because SS is not part of the budget. And raising the income cap (something that's been considered and discussed seriously over the last two years) certainly doesn't make it into a welfare program. But your fabrications have been duly noted.

    Stericycle can handle the waste (none / 0) (#4)
    by observed on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:05:47 AM EST
    products from thieving of the elderly. No worries.

    I think this about sums it up: (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:18:01 AM EST
    How come (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by jbindc on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:27:56 AM EST
    When Marco Rubio said in 2010:

    "I support the Roadmap . . . it is the most serious public-policy proposal that's out there to deal with what this country is facing right now from a fiscal standpoint."

    That didn't seem to hurt him Florida?  While he had two challengers for the senate seat, he still got almost 50% of the vote?  Were seniors just not paying attention then?  Were the other two main candidates not good candidates worthy of votes?

    What makes this year different?

    the Roadmap was DOA in 2010 (none / 0) (#13)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:42:10 AM EST
    with a Dem pres and a Dem Senate. Supporting it was an easy way in with the Tea Party and since no one thought it would actually happen it had no cost with other voters.

    It is different when you are on a presidential ticket proposing the same thing.


    I am looking forward to seeing if the (none / 0) (#14)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:44:18 AM EST
    GOP candidate for Senate this year embraces the Roadmap. I bet not.

    We'll see how many times he gets R&R down here (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:45:40 AM EST
    to campaign with him.

    I think Sen. Bill Nelson is the happiest guy on earth this week.


    True, but (none / 0) (#17)
    by jbindc on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:50:02 AM EST
    Romney has already said that Ryan's plan will not be his plan.  Now, is Romney lying?  Probably (at least to some extent) - he's a politician, and of course, supporters of both stripes make excuses for broken campaign pledges, so I expect if he wins and does adopt the Ryan plan, conservatives will be the ones this time making the excuses / denying it, while liberals will have their heads exploding.

    But the VP nominee is not at the top of the ticket - even though the Obama people really do love to run against them.

    Me?  I'm still waiting for Gitmo to close....


    Agreed... (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:41:22 AM EST
    ...if anything this pick is pretty much shelved Ryan's budget.  He's not going to be running around as VP pushing his budget.  And it's not like Romney's budget is the gospel if he adopted it anyways, it does require Congressional support.

    The problem is, at least to me, the budget is so ridiculous, that the more power Ryan gets the closer we might get to actually adopting any of it.

    I will never understand why the majority of republicans, who this would effect negatively, love it.  They are down with removing the very net made for them.  It's insane to think they have been manipulated into championing their own demise to benefit the rich.

    Why can't D's manipulate people into championing their own flourishment.  It's a testament of how pathetic the Democratic Party has become, they can't even convince people to support programs that will benefit every working citizen that lives old enough to retire.


    IMHO it is because so many GOP voters (1.00 / 1) (#34)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:45:08 AM EST
    would rather not have a net than be rescued by the same net that rescues people they like to think are their inferiors. Simple as that.

    That Doesn't Explain... (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:53:42 AM EST
    ...Social Security and Medicare at all.  I don't buy that explanation, it's too simple and doesn't account for much of the budget they love.  they want austerity at their own expense and way too happy to support the rich people who enslave them.

    They want to associate themselves with (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:49:57 PM EST
    a) rich straight Christian white men (and increasingly women too, they are slowly evolving on that point)
    b) Super American power projected over the world of non-rich white men.

    They are willing to support austerity at their own expense if it lets them associate with the team that includes rich straight Christian white men.

    I honestly can't think of another explanation. I straight up do not believe they are concerned with budget deficits. I listen to too many of them to believe that, and it never comes up int he conversation. What does come up is 'by god, those people don't deserve my money', even if by 'my money' they basically mean insurance premiums paid to SS and Medicare. They would rather be on their own.


    That's My Point (none / 0) (#50)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:21:15 PM EST
    I can't think of a solid reason why.  Surely there are plenty of R's living on the brink who know they aren't ever going to be anything but poor.

    And surely there are also R's living on SS and using medicare who supports this plan.

    It makes no sense, but I guess if you can convince them tax reductions equal more revenue for the Fed you can convince them just about anything.  And it's not just that you get them to believe the idiocy, they will go out and promote it 'till their last breathe.


    It's about what they think God wants.. (5.00 / 3) (#48)
    by jondee on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:56:07 PM EST
    it's been my experienc, that when you talk to them long enough, you find that with a good 2/3s of Repubs, voting Republican is about saving "traditional" religion and baby's lives..

    The above provides the emotional-impassioned fuel for the support of all the other policies (that I'm convinced most Repubs don't spend alot of time thinking about.)


    I'm reminded of what ... (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:16:09 PM EST
    ... Susan B. Anthony once said about the Christianistas of her day:

    "I was born a heretic. I always distrusted people who know so much about what God wants them to do to their fellows, because I noticed that it always coincides with their own personal desires."

    And that also reminds me (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by Zorba on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 03:05:53 PM EST
    Of what  Mahatma Ghandi said when he was asked what he thought about Christianity:
    "I like your Christ.  I do not like your Christians.  Your Christians are so unlike your Christ."
    True then, true now.

    Then he said it would be (1.00 / 2) (#27)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:33:52 AM EST
    Any more Romney talking point for us today?

    Great, so we will have a Ryan v Romney debate (none / 0) (#18)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:56:46 AM EST
    about just how far to go?  I'm sure Romney will stand firm....

    It is not about promises this time, it is about ideology. Once Romney picked a running mate known for his ideology rather than any other management or government skills, he allowed the Dems to play the game on the ideological field. And no matter how far I believe they have strayed from true Dem ideology, they can still talk the game.


    You mean management skills are important??? (2.33 / 3) (#25)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:30:45 AM EST
    Funny, you folks told us they didn't matter when SENATOR Obama was running in 2008.

    Would you please make up your minds??



    hahaha - I never told you that (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:39:16 AM EST
    "You folks" (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by shoephone on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:08:10 PM EST
    Who would that be? Many of the people commenting here were not supporting Obama.

    But then, you already knew that. TROLL.


    "You folks"? (5.00 / 2) (#53)
    by Yman on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:36:37 PM EST
    Who said that Jim?  Was it the same people who said management skills aren't important when referring to SENATOR McCain?  Or, conversely, with GOVERNOR Bush?

    Pfffttttt ...


    And way to change the subject there Jim.... (5.00 / 2) (#79)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 05:00:54 PM EST
    Are you going to argue with my point that Ryan is known for his ideology, and not for his actual achievement in government or industry? Where did I say experience mattered? I just said it is not what he is known for.

    Is Romney lying? (none / 0) (#19)
    by Coral on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:05:51 AM EST
    Give me a break. All Romney does is lie. It's his trademark.

    Romney is the only one? (none / 0) (#43)
    by jbindc on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:18:04 PM EST
    Seems to me you can't believe anything either side says.

    Who believes anything Gov. Romney says? (none / 0) (#21)
    by Democratic Cat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:11:17 AM EST
    If I recall correctly, he's on record saying he approved of the Ryan budget and that he would sign it.  Why would we believe him now if he wants to shy away from it?  If Dems have any political savvy at all, they won't allow an inch of daylight between Gov. Romney and the Ryan budget.

    I also think the VP is more important on this ticket than would normally be the case.  Rep. Ryan has been touted as a man of ideas, while Gov. Romney deals in fuzzy generalities.  Dems would be stupid not to go after the Ryan ideas. Some support them, no doubt, but many find them anathema.


    LOL (none / 0) (#24)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:28:16 AM EST
    Me?  I'm still waiting for Gitmo to close....

    Romney is having a very hard time (none / 0) (#64)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 03:02:39 PM EST
    coming up with answers as to how his plan differs or will differ from Ryan's.  His own communications director is saying they're on the same page, which suggests that Romney's trying to thread a political needle more than anything else.

    The VP may not be the one at the top of the ticket, but this VP is the one with the detailed budget plan, and that seems to be all people are talking about - whether they like it or hate it, it's Topic A.  If Romney really hated the plan, there were other possible picks that would have come with similar conservative cred and maybe better demographics; that he went with Ryan suggests - to me at least - that he can live with the plan, and put its author in charge of shepherding it through the Congress.  If they win.  And I don't think they will.

    I suppose the Gitmo comment is supposed to remind us that what pols say isn't always what they do, but the difference here is that the drumbeat to drown government, most especially those parts of government that keep people from falling into the abyss, has been sounding for decades with Republicans.  They've made some progress getting the kinds of things they want, so I'd consider that before you dismiss the talk as just talk.


    Meeks and Crist (none / 0) (#26)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:32:19 AM EST
    were somewhere else on this.

    Unless you are positing that it will play well in Florida. I would strongly disagree with you, but that is just about true about everything these days.


    Well sometimes (none / 0) (#42)
    by jbindc on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:16:50 PM EST
    You are just contrarian to be contrarian without actually addressing the question.

    Shrug.  That's typical for you, lately. We all know it's actually much easier to call names and hear the echo of "ditto" than actually have a discussion of competing ideas and questions to your own position.  Too bad. I guess you're back wearing the short pleated skirt with the pom-poms today.

    And considering your premise was "How will those over 55 react to the Ryan plan?" my question was absolutely valid, considering that Rubio won those over age 45 by huge margins - the same people that would be affected by the Ryan plan (or will be soon). And since they didn't see it as a concern just 2 years ago, your dismissal of such things is trite.

    Will it work for Romney to win Florida?  I have no idea.  You don't either, but it's ok for you to speak in certainties.  I think an Obama offensive on this might work, but I don't think it will work near to the degree that you do. YMMV.


    Interestingly (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:43:30 PM EST
    I am spouting fairly conventional wisdom here.

    Younger people should worry about supporting aging (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by Coral on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:10:11 AM EST
    parents with the privatization (elimination, really) of Social Security and Medicare ... plus Medicaid which pays for much nursing home care for middle and lower-middle-class elderly.

    Younger people are already burdened with huge college debt. And those a bit older have suffered from the foreclosure crisis and bursting of the housing bubble.

    What the Ryan proposals envision is a pauperization of a large majority of people who now consider themselves middle class, regardless of age.

    They may consider themselves... (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:49:56 AM EST
    ..."middle class", but if they're relying on Social Security or Treasuries to stay there they are delusional.

    Not saying Romney or Ryan are going to fix this, but the Dems are flushing their middle class status down the toilet marginally faster and are marinally more insulting to my intelligence on this issue. Maybe that's the sweet spot in Florida. Or maybe the electorate isn't quite that dumb.


    Unemployment is 8.3% U3 and (2.60 / 5) (#29)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:37:38 AM EST
    around 12% U6 or around 20% - 21% and has been in
    that range for more than 3 years.

    Plus Medicare and Social Security are both in dire straights.

    Obama has had almost 4 years to fix the problem.

    He hasn't.

    And his plan to fix things is??????

    From what I can tell it is to pass a law that says you can't put your dog on top of your car or own a dancing horse.


    Come On Jim (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by ScottW714 on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:47:26 AM EST
    Anne clearly rebuffed you declaration about SS and Medicare with links with stuff like facts, and here you are today like you never even saw it.  Like she didn't prove that neither is in any sort of meaningful trouble.

    Gimme a break, you are one of these people I assume will be hurt financially with his plan, but you love it, can't vote quick enough to reduce your financial well being.  Facts be damned for the Fox News viewer where ideology trumps personal comfort 7 days a week.


    Anne linked to... (2.33 / 3) (#62)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 02:45:32 PM EST
    ...a poster, a cartoon, and a New Yorker bio of Paul Ryan. Didn't see anything there to rebut Jim's obseration that SS and Medicare are in trouble. What "stuff like facts" did you imagine were behind the links?

    This is not the first thread that (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 03:04:39 PM EST
    has discussed jim's constant misrepresentations of the state of the social safety net.

    I've already provided the links twice for jim; if you want them, search under my name for "Comments By" and you should find them there.


    Opportunity knocketh. (5.00 / 3) (#49)
    by lentinel on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:09:28 PM EST
    ... shifting Social Security funds to private retirement accounts as well as reducing benefits and gradually raising the age of eligibility.

    I don't think this plan would go over particularly well in Florida - or anyplace where American citizens had been led to believe that there is a social safety net, and are now facing the prospect of poverty and illness with rapidly diminishing resources.

    I know this plan doesn't go over very well with me either.

    What I would like to see is Obama come out forcefully for the alternative. Let him endorse a vigorous social security system that comforts the elderly and those in need instead of terrorizing them.

    And let him clearly outline what he will do to preserve and strengthen it  - and how hard he would fight for it. And that he would not settle for less.

    Let him quote FDR and say,

    The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.

    That would be interesting.

    A body can dream.... n/t (5.00 / 2) (#71)
    by sj on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:04:57 PM EST
    I may have to ... (5.00 / 3) (#68)
    by Yman on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 03:38:19 PM EST
    ... after reading that feeble attempt at a response.

    "FYI", I saw Ruffian's post.  My point was that Jim (as usual) was making another unfounded claim - that "you people" told us that management skills didn't matter when Obama was running for POTUS.  See if you can tell the difference between Jim's claim and yours ("Jim's observation that this was a strange claim to make in a group that never saw fit to notice Obama's deficiencies in the same area").

    Try really hard.

    I'll bet you a can of beans and a whoopee cushion that you can do it.

    Just go back to the archives (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:47:10 PM EST
    around 2008 primary time and you will find many such comments. I'm sure I participated.

    I did forget that Ryan is a committee chair, so he does has some government leadership experience.

    That's fair. Actually your original comment... (1.00 / 1) (#80)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 05:11:10 PM EST
    ...is not one I disagreed with IIRC and Jim's response was more to the atmospherics of what you you said than to your main point. It's the people responding to his basically valid observation that I'm responding to. And criticisms by Clintonistas of Obama don't count, I'm afraid. It's criticism of the shallowness of his record after he became the standardbearer that would indicate possible fairness in saying the same of Ryan (which you didn't, really).

    I'm not that crazy about Ryan (he voted for TARP, right? - automatically puts him low-ranked in his class; and he's never been anything but a pol) but he's not an undistinguished backbencher like Obama (or JFK). But LBJ was the worst president of my lifetime exactly because of how good he was at getting things done. So being good at "government" doesn't necessarily recommend someone to me.


    Sorry, Jim's observation would only (5.00 / 3) (#82)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 05:55:48 PM EST
    be valid in some alternative situation in which a) anyone had criticized Ryan's experience level, and b) no one had criticized Obama's. Neither of those conditions remotely exist.

    We are telling you that anyone who has read (5.00 / 3) (#78)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 04:57:15 PM EST
    this blog for more than 5 minutes will know that Obama's management credentials and general inexperience prior to and since election to POTUS have been roundly dissected and commented upon (negatively). So much so that I genuinely laughed when I read Jim's comment.

    Some of us who voted for Obama over McCain anyway felt that other issues outweighed that inexperience. Others felt that experience did not matter anyway. Voters who support Ryan  in this election will make similar judgements - my original point is that he is known for his ideology rather than, to give examples this time,  being an accomplished Governor of a state, or CEO. My point was not even that not having that experience disqualifies him in any way. It is his ideas that will make or break him as a successful running mate.

    I deleted the comment (none / 0) (#129)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 07:23:38 PM EST
    you are responding to

    "Our government is more onerous than (5.00 / 1) (#100)
    by KeysDan on Thu Aug 16, 2012 at 11:26:58 AM EST
    that he (Washington) revolted against"    There may be a some truth in that statement in the sense that some Republican/tea party legislators and candidates make Mad King George seem like the picture of mental health.

    The Madness of Social Security Privatization (5.00 / 1) (#118)
    by john horse on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 08:03:19 AM EST
    Privatizing Social Security will destroy the program as we know it.  The reason is this.  Our social security taxes that we pay are not going into an account.  They are being used to pay for current benefits.  So where is the money for private accounts going to come from? Anytime anyone argues for private accounts, ask them this question.  

    The answer is that the government is going to have to borrow from hundreds of billions to trillions of dollars in order to set up private accounts.  Note the irony here.  Republicans like Ryan and Bush argue that privatization is needed because the social security fund is going broke  but their solution would ensure that the system actually goes broke.    

    No, I don't think so. (none / 0) (#121)
    by Gandydancer on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 04:19:20 PM EST
    Frankly, I disremember the details of Bush's plan, but I assume individuals would have set up their own private accounts, taking their contributions to same as a credit against FICA due.

    So, to answer your question, the money for the private retirement accounts would come from the idividuals who will benefit from them.

    If SS benefits exceed FICA income then the difference will come from other revenues or printing money. As is true right now. How much subvention is required depends on how generous the politicians wish the benefits to be. As is true right now.


    Did You Read My Post? (5.00 / 3) (#122)
    by john horse on Sat Aug 18, 2012 at 06:47:19 PM EST
    If our contributions are going to pay current benefits that means they are not available to set up private accounts.  The only way that you can set up private accounts is if the government borrows those funds.  Its going to cost the government up to $2 trillion to privatize social security.        
    Senator John E. Sununu of New Hampshire and Representative Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin, both Republicans, have sponsored legislation that would allow workers to contribute more to their personal accounts than most other plans proposed by members of Congress and outside groups and would not require tax increases or benefit cuts. But by some estimates it would require nearly $2 trillion in borrowing - and, in the view of its critics, much more - and even then would rely on the idea that the new system would create so much more economic growth that it would partly pay for itself by generating additional tax revenues for the government.

    Apparently you didn't read... (none / 0) (#124)
    by Gandydancer on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 02:50:53 AM EST
    ...my answer carefully enough to understand it.

    Of course I read your post. But I pointed out that you are wrong.

    Current benefits are not paid for by current "contributions". Social Security no longer has a current accounts surplus. Current benefits are therefor, as I said, paid for by current taxes, current borrowing, and current printing of fiat money, in some proportion that is indeterminate, inasmuch as money is fungible.

    If current FICA taxes are diverted in part to private accounts and everything else remains the same then other taxes and/or borrowing would have to go up. But everything else will not remain the same. Such partial privatization schemes invariably reduce benefits to those who divert their "contributions" in proportion, so there need be no actuarial loss. And the eventual retirees will own actual assets in addition to bookeeping entries in the Ponzi scheme, which will NOT be the bonanza it was in the past, since it can no longer pretend to health.

    You apparently think the can can still be kicked down the road and nothing need change. Not so.


    You know, accuracy is something that needs (2.33 / 3) (#5)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:16:38 AM EST
    practice, even when you are trying to score political points. You write:

    In 2005,Paul Ryan not only endorsed the Bush Administration's plan to privatize Social Security...

    That is an over statement. Bush's plan allowed the employee to put up to 5% of the employee's contribution into a government approved investment plan. That would be 2.5% maximum.

    Bush called in "privatization" (5.00 / 3) (#7)
    by observed on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:19:50 AM EST
    before polling showed that term didn't work.

    Would that you would take your own advice. (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:28:02 AM EST
    It would mean the next time you show up here should be in, oh, about...never.

    The word "privatize" attaches to any portion or percentage of contribution that is allowed to leave the government's domain, regardless of how much or how little that amount is.

    And, let's not kid ourselves, jim; had the Bush plan been successful, it would not have ended there, but would only have been the first step.


    And that would have been a good thing. (2.33 / 3) (#12)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:38:57 AM EST
    But, no, only in political LaLaLand is diverting 2.5% of the taxes reasonably called, without further explanation, "privatizing Social Security".

    No. (2.33 / 3) (#23)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:26:12 AM EST
    Contributing a maximum of 2.5% to a government approved investment program is not privation.

    What you have here is an over statement in the furtherance of a political argument and implies  that Bush's plan would take social security 100% private.

    What would your bank say if you told them, "I'll pay you back the loan." When they knew you plan to pay back 2.5%????

    What would the SEC say if you announced plans to take your company private but only did 2.5%??

    What were Bush's long range plans? Well, you can assume, but whatever they were in 2005 it was 2.5%.


    Ryan plan is for 1/3 (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:35:15 AM EST
    Okay so it is 1/3 (none / 0) (#32)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:40:03 AM EST
    that may be bad.

    But it does not privatize Social Security.


    It is partial privatization (5.00 / 2) (#36)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 11:47:49 AM EST
    with an eye towards more.

    Sorry, but I feel very comfortable with my description.

    But you go and make your arguments as you wish.


    Yes (5.00 / 4) (#44)
    by jondee on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 12:35:58 PM EST
    lets act as if we're innocently, blissfully, unaware that the scortched earth libertarian crowd at Cato and Heritage have been drawing up battle plans for the privatization of SS for years..

    One really has to a powerful desire and capacity to deny and distort reality to be unaware of this..


    Actually I have no argument (2.33 / 3) (#51)
    by jimakaPPJ on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 01:22:35 PM EST
    I just pointed out that your statement re Bush was incorrect and implied something that is untrue.

    You could have easily said "partial" originally and been correct.

    On the larger stage we see these massive overstatements in the "Romney paid no taxes for 10 years" and "Romney killed my wife."

    The US is not Chicago and every time these statements are proved untrue a Repub voter is created.


    "Romney killed my wife"??? (5.00 / 2) (#86)
    by observed on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 09:46:45 PM EST
    Please give a direct link for that exact quote.
    I really dislike shameless liars---I think we can agree on that point. Here, have a mirror.

    If you are so uninformed (none / 0) (#90)
    by jimakaPPJ on Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 11:01:32 PM EST
    that you are unaware of the shameless lie told in the ad you don't need a mirror, you are living one.

    Ah, in other words, you were lying (none / 0) (#92)
    by observed on Thu Aug 16, 2012 at 12:37:17 AM EST
    I thought so.
    Are you feeling like Romney is being "Swiftboated"? Enjoy the feeling.
    There's going to be a lot more of that.
    In this election, however, Romney will be "Swiftboated" by the truth.
    PPS---did you see that Ann Romney admits the Romney's are afraid of what will be found in their tax returns?

    No, observed (none / 0) (#95)
    by jimakaPPJ on Thu Aug 16, 2012 at 07:06:43 AM EST
    if you claim to not have seen the ad in which a man claims his wife died of cancer because she worked for GST and had no insurance because her husband lost his job at GST it was closed down then you have either not been in the US, on the Internet or you are a liar.

    I hate to use such a harsh word but if you want to go to such pig sty level in your comments I will join you.

    Your choice

    The ad itself lies because she worked for two years after her husband was laid of and she had insurance.

    Of course you have nothing else to talk about because your hero has failed. Unemployment is U3 8.3 U6 is around 12 so the real number is Depression level.

    BTW - Have you seen the clip were Obama's Medicare cuts are outed??


    Want some more?

    You wouldn't know it from listening to the Obama campaign, but there's only one Presidential candidate in 2012 who has cut Medicare: Barack Obama, whose Affordable Care Act cuts Medicare by $716 billion fr
    om 2013-2022


    There's lots more where that comes from.... The Internet that, based on your claim about the ad....you never visit.



    Have YOU seen the numerous ... (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by Yman on Thu Aug 16, 2012 at 07:52:24 AM EST
    ... articles debunking the lies you're pushing about Obama cutting medicare?  Be happy to help you out:

    The Medicare savings in the ACA are not cuts, but rather a reduction in the expected rate of growth of the program. - CBO Report

    An attack ad by a conservative outside spending group blames Sen. Bill Nelson for cutting billions from Medicare by voting for the Affordable Care Act. The ad is getting plenty of airplay, despite PolitiFact repeatedly finding the ad's claims untrue. - Politifact

    As we have written many times, the law does not slash the current Medicare budget by $500 billion. Rather, that's a $500 billion reduction in the future growth of Medicare over 10 years, or about a 7 percent reduction in growth over the decade. In other words, Medicare spending would continue to rise, just not as much. The law stipulates that guaranteed Medicare benefits won't be reduced, and it adds some new benefits, such as improved coverage for pharmaceuticals.

    Most of those savings come from a reduction in the future growth of payments to hospitals and other providers (not physicians), and a reduction in payments to private Medicare Advantage plans to bring those payments in line with traditional Medicare. (MA plans have been paid more per beneficiary than traditional Medicare.) - Factcheck

    There's plenty more if you need them, Jim.

    But your link to an opinion piece written by a Romney campaign adviser was good for a laugh.


    From time to time (1.00 / 1) (#109)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Aug 17, 2012 at 08:29:46 AM EST
    I must remind everyone that as 1/1/2012 I quit responding to Yman because of his ill tempered comments, potty mouth use of the lie word, etc.

    So I just don't respond to his attacks. Even when proven wrong he will just scream lie and snark.

    Thanks for understanding.


    Psssstttt ... you just responded (none / 0) (#112)
    by Yman on Fri Aug 17, 2012 at 09:13:56 AM EST
    ... to me.  Guess it's time to start the clock over, Jim.

    BTW - You don't like the use of the word "lie", yet you accuse Harry Reid of doing just that - all without any evidence.


    BTW, Jim (none / 0) (#113)
    by Yman on Fri Aug 17, 2012 at 09:30:11 AM EST
    Why do you always resort to this cut-and-paste reminder when confronted with superior evidence that illustrates the falsity of your claims?  (i.e. three independent, factual sources versus your op-ed written by a Romney campaign adviser).

    You do realize how transparent it is, ...

    ... don't you?


    I'm sorry you don't know how to meet (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by observed on Fri Aug 17, 2012 at 09:51:16 AM EST
    basic standards of literacy, such as correct use of quotation marks, but I did not expect better from you.
    Keep on lying, Jim. You're helping Obama win another term.

    As Wolf Blitzer put it... (none / 0) (#93)
    by Gandydancer on Thu Aug 16, 2012 at 05:08:15 AM EST
    "...a new attack ad by a super PAC backing President Obama basically blames Mitt Romney for a woman's death from cancer..."

    Or, as his Chyron put it: "AD PINS WOMAN'S DEATH ON ROMNEY  Outrageous claim in pro-Obama super PAC spot". Link

    I take it that you are beyond embarassment, but others can judge from the following...

    Joe Soptic: "I don't think Mitt Romney understands what he's done to people's lives by closing the plant. I don't think he realizes that people's lives completely changed. When Mitt Romney and Bain closed the plant, I lost my healthcare, and my family lost their healthcare. And, a short time after that, my wife became ill. I don't know how long she was sick and I think maybe she didn't say anything because she knew that we couldn't afford the insurance. And then one day she became ill and I took her up to the Jackson County Hospital and admitted her for pneumonia and that's when they found the cancer and by then it was stage four. There was nothing they could do for her. And she passed away in 22 days. I do not think Mitt Romney realizes what he's done to anyone, and furthermore I do not think Mitt Romney is concerned."

    Which I'll summarize as, "My wife didn't get treated for cancer in time because Romney cut off my insurance", or as my source for the transcript, Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune put it in the title of his piece,it was "The 'Mitt Romney killed my wife' ad".

    Then there's the fact that Soptic's wife died seven years after Romney stopped running Bain, five years after Soptic lost his job, and three years after his wife lost her own medical insuance from a different job. Apparently he's as shameless as you are.


    Florida already gets SS (1.00 / 2) (#83)
    by diogenes on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 06:59:19 PM EST
    The folks in Florida already get social security.  Privatizing would turn it into a defined benefit scheme for the younger folks from other states.  Of course, if you want to remove the income limit and tax everyone FICA on all income, then maybe we can finally eliminate the illusion that social security is a pension program and define it for what it is, a welfare program.

    How the hell would privatizing make it (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by observed on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 09:47:51 PM EST
    a defined benefit program, compared to what exists now?

    Because (none / 0) (#88)
    by sj on Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 09:46:22 AM EST
    privatizing, by definition, would mean the private sector oligarchs would benefit from the incremental dismantling of this program.

    I'm pretty sure that's it.


    Or the defined benefit does exist--- (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by observed on Wed Aug 15, 2012 at 09:51:48 AM EST
    for the brokers.

    Highway Robbery (none / 0) (#2)
    by koshembos on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 09:29:36 AM EST
    A large portion of the population views SS as a giveaway. Kind of charity by the government we all have to pay for.

    Despite paying more than 8 percent of your taxable take home to SS and your employer doing the same, people fail to see the the hundreds of thousands of dollars we contributed.

    What Ryan and his friends in the media want to do is to rob us of all this money. It's not entitlement; it's our money!

    It's not your money. (2.33 / 3) (#8)
    by Gandydancer on Tue Aug 14, 2012 at 10:27:45 AM EST
    It was taxed from you and, collectively, spent on you. Nobody owes you nuthin'. Dunno if the truth would play well in Florida, but since Ryan is only telling slightly more of the truth than the Dems, and is promising to exempt the geezers, he may be closer to the middle than they are. It's not like it's not obvious that the Ponzi scheme is on its last legs.

    The truth is that SS benefits will be inflated away. Hopefully apres moi, but it's a faint hope. I'm an incipient geezer, and not all that healthy, but it's still a faint hope.


    Perhaps the blogs and forums you normally (none / 0) (#127)
    by Anne on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 09:33:48 AM EST
    frequent consider calling someone a name that combines "liberal," with an outdated label for someone with developmental challenges, an acceptable form of civil discourse and debate, but Jeralyn has made it quite clear that it isn't acceptable here.

    If that's where your arguments have to go, I'm thinking you don't have much of an argument.

    I deleted GandyDancer's comment (none / 0) (#128)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Aug 20, 2012 at 07:11:04 PM EST
    if he continues to insult other commenters or call people "libt*rds" or anything similar, he will be banned.