The Washington Post has this article listed as an “analysis”. It is fair and balanced analysis in the same sense Fox does fair and balanced. With the exception of a couple of columnists, they are well on their to becoming the Fox News of print media. In weekly address, Obama returns to campaign chestnut: Warning of threat to Social Security. This analysis of Nevada ultra right-wing senatorial candidate Sharron Angle’s position – flip-flopping – on Social Security stood out,
The issue of Social Security is already playing out in races across the country. In Nevada, Senate candidate Sharron Angle (R) has a new television ad in which she pledges to “save” the program and accuses her opponent, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D), of “raiding” the retirement trust fund.
“We have a contract with our seniors who have put into Social Security in good faith,” Angle says in the ad. “I’d like to save Social Security by locking the lock box, putting the money back into the trust fund so the government can no longer raid our retirement.”
Angle’s ad comes after weeks of taking on water over the issue as Reid has repeatedly slammed her for past comments on Social Security. One Reid ad featured Angle saying, “We need to phase Medicare and Social Security out.”
Such back and forth is a microcosm of what Democrats hope will be a similar debate in races around the country about what to do next on Social Security.
To commemorate Sunday’s 75th anniversary of Social Security becoming law, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has released a list of 13 Republican Senate candidates expressing support for some form of privatization of the retirement system.
Michael Steel, a Boehner spokesman, accused Obama and the Democrats of dredging up old issues that are no longer valid.
Readers are lead to believe Senator Reid (D-NV) and Angle are just tossing a “campaign chestnut” around. Angle is on video calling for the privatization of Social Security and Medicare. NV-Sen: Sharron Angle hits a grand slam for right-wing extremism. What does the article end with. The rest of RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s unchallenged lies about Social Security and Medicare. Rep. Paul Ryan’s infamous right-wing conservative Road Map – which includes dismantling Medicare as we know it and handing over a large swath of Social Security to the looters on Wall St – isn’t a “valid” campaign issue? Apparently not since the WaPo’s Michael D. Shear and Lori Montgomery did not deem it worthy of mention – GOP’s Paul Ryan Doubles Down on Medicare Rationing
When Ryan unveiled his Roadmap back in February, as Ezra Klein, Matthew Yglesias and TPM all noted, privatization of Medicare was the centerpiece. But because the value of Ryan’s vouchers fails to keep up with the out-of-control rise in premiums in the private health insurance market, America’s elderly would be forced to pay more out of pocket or accept less coverage.
[ ]…But the Republican plan to “slash and privatize” hardly ends there. Despite insistence by the Republican leadership that the party is not officially advocating it, the Ryan alternative budget follows Rep. Jeb Hensarling’s announced desire to privatize Medicare. As TPM documented:
Rep. Paul Ryan, (R-WI) the ranking Republican on the budget committee, recently detailed the Republican plan for Social Security that preserves the existing program for those 55 or older. For younger people the plan “offers the option of investing over one-third of their current Social Security taxes into personal retirement accounts, similar to the Thrift Savings Plan available to federal employees.”
If that sounds vaguely familiar, it should. After all, George W. Bush’s disastrous drive to privatize Social Security helped undermine his presidency. Now, in the wake of a Wall Street meltdown that evaporated the retirement savings for countless thousands of Americans, the Republican wunderkind Ryan is calling for an encore.
It is all chestnuts according to the wizbang analysts with the librul media.
Some dweeb conservative out in Denver – apparently hoping to be the next Sean Hannity of Republican Pravda joins the WaPo in hoping Americans don’t believe their lying eyes and ears – Who’s the radical?
And by radical, offbeat, wacky, crazy, insane and extreme, I mean candidates who aren’t even smart enough to understand that liberal sacred cows are off-limits.
Sure, you freaks are free to chatter on your blogs or at your Klan meetings about “privatizing” Social Security, or extending tax breaks for the “rich” (sorry, the super rich), or shutting down green energy boondoggles, or repealing “Obamacare” — but serious people simply don’t engage in extremist talk publicly unless they want to be ridiculed.
Democrats, fortunately, have a strategy in place to alert the citizenry to the . . . well, let’s just call it the “Rand Paul Menace.”
“The Republican Party agenda has become the Tea Party agenda, and vice versa,” Democratic Party chairman Tim Kaine recently explained.
The Dems have pulled together a helpful guide called “Tea Party Contract with America,” which, despite its various chilling exaggerations, is actually not an altogether awful agenda compared to the one being implemented in Washington.
The Klan crack – what passes for humor among the Villagers of Wingnuttia – is yet another denial that racism is not to be found at all in the Tea Smoker’s Club – Tea Party Supporters Harbor More Racial Resentment Than Other Conservatives. Extending the top-tier of the Bush tax cuts would increase the deficit by almost $700 billion dollars. The only people who don’t think that matters are the deficit peacocks like the Denver Hannity. Whether one looks at the Affordable Care Act (Health Insurance Reform) from a moral point of view or a dry economic POV, it is flirting with clown shoe insanity to talk about repealing it. The ACA will help bring down the deficit in real dollars faster and with less pain than any proposal put forth by Republicans. If some Republicans pundits think it’s “radical, offbeat, wacky, crazy, insane and extreme” to point out that inconvenient fact, that’s just another reason modern era conservative pundits are headed for the memory hole of history. The Denver writer dismisses the Democrat’s The Conservative Tea Party Contract on America because he claims it has no merit, as in no Republican is talking about doing the things listed on the Contract. One assumes he couldn’t be bothered to read the documentation at the bottom of the page – The Conservative Tea Party Contract on America
1. Repeal the Affordable Care Act (Health Insurance Reform)
Put insurance companies back in charge, repeal tax credits for small businesses, allow insurance companies to deny coverage based on preexisting conditions and to drop coverage when a person gets too sick and make prescription drugs for seniors less affordable.
2. Privatize Social Security or phase it out altogether
Turn the guaranteed retirement benefits of America’s seniors over to Wall Street CEOs by putting Social Security at risk in the stock market or, as some Republicans have called for, phase out Social Security altogether and end a program millions of American seniors rely on for their survival.
3. End Medicare as it presently exists
Phase out and end Medicare as it presently exists for future generations of seniors — ending Medicare’s guaranteed healthcare benefits for more than 40 million American seniors — and replace it with a voucher system which will result in higher premiums and fewer services for seniors.
4. Extend the Bush tax breaks for the wealthy and big oil
At a cost of nearly $700 billion, extend the Bush tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans and big oil, which are set to expire and which have and will continue to explode the federal budget deficit.
5. Repeal Wall Street Reform
Roll back the toughest consumer protections ever enacted, allow banks to continue to grow too big to fail, and ensure that predatory lenders continue to utilize their most abusive practices.
6. Protect those responsible for the oil spill and future environmental catastrophes
Cap liabilities for those responsible for environmental disasters like the Gulf oil spill and let companies like BP decide which victims deserve compensation for the disaster and what the timeline for relief should be.
7. Abolish the Department of Education
1) Position taken by: House Republican Leader John Boehner [The Hill, 4/12/10], Rep. Paul Ryan [The Hill, 1/14/09], Rep. Mike Pence [Politico, 4/14/10], Rep. Steve King [Boston Globe, 3/22/10], FL Senate Candidate Marco Rubio[Marco Rubio release, 1/14/10], Sen. Jim DeMint and Rep. Jeff Flake [Politico, 1/14/09]
2) Position taken by: Rep. Paul Ryan [Wall Street Journal, 1/26/10], Indiana Senate Candidate Dan Coats [Weekly Standard, 5/12/10], Rep. Jeb Hensarling [Politico, 2/2/10], Rep. Michele Bachmann[TPM, 2/9/10], Rep. Roscoe Bartlett and Rep. Rep. Marsha Blackburn [TPM, 2/9/10]
3) Position taken by: Rep. Paul Ryan [Rep. Paul Ryan op-ed, WSJ, 4/1/09], Rep. Bob Inglis And Rep. Jeff Flake [TPM, 3/3/10], Rep. Roscoe Bartlett and Rep. Rep. Marsha Blackburn [TPM, 2/9/10], Rep. Jeb Hensarling [Politico, 2/2/10], 2009 House Republican Budget [AP, 4/1/09]
4) Position taken by: Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell [TPM, 7/13/10], Sen. John Kyl [The Hill, 6/27/10], FL Senate candidate Marco Rubio [Fox News, 6/28/10], Sen. Tom Coburn [C-SPAN, 7/14/10], Sen. Judd Gregg [TPM, 7/13/10], Sen. Chuck Grassley [McClatchy, 7/14/10], CA Senate candidate Carly Fiorina [Calitics, 7/12/10]
5) Position taken by: House Republican Leader John Boehner [CNN, 7/15/10], Rep. Mike Pence [Politico, 7/21/10], Sen. Lamar Alexander [TPM, 7/15/10], Sen. Saxby Chambliss [Fox News, 7/16/10], Sen. Richard Shelby [ABC News, 7/16/10], Senate Candidate Dino Rossi [The Hill, 7/27/10]
6) Position taken by: Sen. Judd Gregg and Sen. David Vitter [McClatchy, 6/9/10], House Republican Leader John Boehner [Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 6/29/10], Rep. Joe Barton [TPM, 6/17/10], Sen. John Cornyn [TPM, 6/17/10], Rep. Roy Blunt [News Leader, 6/22/10], Rep. Trent Franks [Rep Franks release, 6/18/10], Rep. Steve King [The Hill, 6/21/10], Rep. Ralph Hall [Dallas Morning News, 6/19/10], Rep. Michele Bachmann [Fox News, 6/16/10], 114-Member Republican Study Committee [TPM, 6/16/10]
7) Position taken by: KY Senate candidate Rand Paul [Lexington Herald-Leader, 4/6/10] [Bowling Green Daily News, 4/14/2010], NV Senate candidate Sharron Angle [Nevada News and Views, 3/22/10], Colorado Senate Candidate Jane Norton [Colorado Independent, 12/15/09], Maine Republican Party Platform [Maine Politics, 5/10/10]
The other issues and documentation are at the link. Neither the ones I have posted or the others are anywhere close to mainstream positions. Ezra Klein takes a look at the consequences of the radical conservative attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, A Prescription for Ruin – If the least-popular parts of health-care reform are repealed, we could end up with its cost controls wrecked but its spending intact
I’ve got some good news for deficit hawks: earlier this year, Congress passed legislation reducing the deficit by about $125 billion over the next 10 years. But, as they say on the infomercials, that’s not all! The bill cuts the deficit by $1.3 trillion in the second decade. That more than pays for every dollar we’ve spent on stimulus since 2008. The bill also sets up a new—and actually credible—system to keep Medicare’s costs under control. So hear that, fiscal conservatives? Hear that, bond markets? This is progress, baby. We’ll lick our deficit problem, yet.
The bill in question is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, better known as health-care reform. The numbers come from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. But as always, there’s a catch: the savings arrive only if the policies behind the savings are allowed to do their jobs. And in the GOP’s zeal to repeal a bill it considers a deficit-busting nightmare, Republicans are focusing their fire on the parts they should like: the cost controls.
On July 27, Sen. Jon Cornyn (R-Texas) introduced the Health Care Bureaucrats Elimination Act, cosponsored by Sens. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.), Pat Roberts (R-Kans.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.). The legislation doesn’t seek to repeal health-care reform (though many Republicans would also like to do that). Instead, it takes aim at perhaps its most promising cost control: the Independent Payment Advisory Board.
What many Americans have begun to realize – since the dust has settled from the tea nut freak-out last year – is there is a lot of good reforms in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: tax credits for small businesses, stopping the insurance company death panels from denying coverage based on preexisting conditions, making prescription drugs for seniors less affordable and in this tough times letting the kids stay on their parents insurance until they are 26. Some pollster at the RNC has to be aware of these popular reforms and the positive effects on the long term deficit. So how to tear down health care reform without appearing to? A sidewinder attack on the measures that do control costs; sabotage the creation of the IPAB.
Right-wing conservatives continue to give religion a bad name – In Brief: Conservative Columnist Cal Thomas Says the Terrorists Are Right
…The entirely straight Thomas writes, regarding the Proposition 8 decision in California, “A nation that loses its moral sense is a nation without any sense at all. Muslim fanatics who wish to destroy us are correct in their diagnosis of our moral rot: loss of a fear of God, immodesty, especially among women, materialism and much more.”
You got that? The Muslim terrorists are right. Even though he follows it up with “their solution — Sharia law — is wrong,” he adds, “they are not wrong about what ails us.” ( emphasis mine)
I wonder if Cal has a garage full of stones at the ready to help America get on with his and Islamic fundamentalist’s idea of the high moral road. It is also always entertaining to hear a conservative – the religion of materialists – attack materialism.