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(Talking Points Memo)   Obama: "My SS cuts are not my 'ideal' plan" So what? You want to cut all entitlements or you want to make everyone a welfare queen? In this country, it's either/or, there is no third option   (talkingpointsmemo.com) divider line 172
    More: Interesting, obama, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, Cost of Living Allowance, Sam Brownback, entitlements, social security  
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1722 clicks; posted to Politics » on 08 Apr 2013 at 10:40 AM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-04-08 06:12:11 PM  
To argue that Chained CPI isn't "gutting" the program is stand by the assumption that Social Security as it stands now is overly generous to those recieving it.

If you're one of us who believe that the benefits are barely livable even before compounding lower COLAs over time then you're probably going to agree that Chained CPI will leave folks worse off in the long run.

However much Chained CPI "saves" in billions of dollars, it's by taking money out of the hands of folks who will need it for things like food or medical care.
 
2013-04-08 06:38:31 PM  
http://www.fark.com/comments/7687916/83494877#c83494877" target="_blank" data-cke-saved-href="http://www.fark.com/comments/7687916/83494877#c8 3494877">LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: despite being very close to retirement age

They weren't. My father was hit with this form of cancer incredibly early for it's particular form, and took several years to die. The house went under in the following ten or so years, followed by several more years of sliding. The savings accumulated by both earners were eaten by my father's cancer treatment first (health insurance denied a bone-marrow transplant and he fought them in court), then later by my mother's COBRA payments and having to cover her living expenses while getting no unemployment. In addition, money was spent to fight the unemployment denial which also required legal council. It's been about 12-15 years of trudging toward homelessness/suicide, with every year worse than the year that came before it. Try to imagine how much it costs to fight cancer - I guarantee you that you won't even come close to the actual figure.


Sorry, I misunderstood when you said your mom couldn't get a job because she's almost 60 that it was an obstacle when everything else was going on.  And I could give you several guesses how much it costs to fight cancer, based on my family's experiences.

LouDobbsAwaaaay: It's the idea that you are actually prepared for anything that I see as a product of soft living. At best, you're prepared for retirement so long as everything goes according to plan.


I'd argue that being prepared includes being ready for when things don't go according to plan.  If you're only prepared for your best case scenario, you aren't prepared at all.
 
2013-04-08 06:48:26 PM  
Do these people REALLY think that anyone except their stupid base (who need no further selling to hate the scary black man) are going to ever accept the idea that Obama, rather than the republicans, wants to cut SS or medicare. GIVE IT UP ALREADY it is never going to work, however often you repeat it or twist it.
 
2013-04-08 06:52:27 PM  
AntiNerd
// voted for O -- not deluded.

Okay, so what are you doing to bring about change that would actually be remotely sufficient?


LouDobbsAwaaaay
I think if Hillary were elected instead of Obama, things would be better.

Holy farking shiat, how many times does this have to happen before you figure it out? No politician is going to change shiat. The only time things get better is when we organize to do it ourselves.
 
2013-04-08 08:47:47 PM  

RanDomino: Holy farking shiat, how many times does this have to happen before you figure it out? No politician is going to change shiat. The only time things get better is when we organize to do it ourselves.


Well get on it, Robin Hood.
 
2013-04-08 08:52:35 PM  

Splish: I'd argue that being prepared includes being ready for when things don't go according to plan.  If you're only prepared for your best case scenario, you aren't prepared at all.


You can't prepare for the bottom to completely drop out of your life.  If you get through your retirement without having to rely on SS, patting yourself on the back for a job well done preparing for your retirement is only part of the story.  The part you're leaving out is that you also had the fortune of not being utterly ruined by a relentless streak of terrible luck.  You can do all you like with the former, but the latter can still detonate those plans and put you in free-fall.  That's what SS is for, and if you don't need it then consider yourself lucky.
 
2013-04-08 09:20:44 PM  

Grand_Moff_Joseph: Social Security can be fixed forever in one simple move:  Remove the payroll cap on SS contributions.

/wipe hands on pants
//repeat


Translation:

"Gimme!"
 
2013-04-08 09:25:52 PM  

Blathering Idjut: To argue that Chained CPI isn't "gutting" the program is stand by the assumption that Social Security as it stands now is overly generous to those recieving it.

If you're one of us who believe that the benefits are barely livable even before compounding lower COLAs over time then you're probably going to agree that Chained CPI will leave folks worse off in the long run.

However much Chained CPI "saves" in billions of dollars, it's by taking money out of the hands of folks who will need it for things like food or medical care.


It IS overly generous. SS will be insolvent without changes in 25 years. Today's retirees, and those retiring in the near future, simply havent paid in enough to warrant the benefits they are expecting. If they had (and we were), we'd have enough revenuse to support SS and keep in going perpetually.

But we haven't adequately adjusted the rate/ age/ benefit to compensate for demographic changes and improvement in longevity.
 
2013-04-08 09:37:58 PM  

LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: I'd argue that being prepared includes being ready for when things don't go according to plan.  If you're only prepared for your best case scenario, you aren't prepared at all.

You can't prepare for the bottom to completely drop out of your life.  If you get through your retirement without having to rely on SS, patting yourself on the back for a job well done preparing for your retirement is only part of the story.  The part you're leaving out is that you also had the fortune of not being utterly ruined by a relentless streak of terrible luck.  You can do all you like with the former, but the latter can still detonate those plans and put you in free-fall.  That's what SS is for, and if you don't need it then consider yourself lucky.


You keep talking about free-fall.  It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute.  If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.
 
2013-04-08 09:50:51 PM  
Social Security isn't an entitlement, asshole. I pay into SS every goddamn paycheck.

KMA
 
2013-04-08 10:12:48 PM  

theknuckler_33: Aarontology: Obama proposes spending cuts and revenue increases that would result in $1.8 trillion in deficit reductions over 10 years, replacing $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts that are otherwise poised to take effect over the next 10 years.

Translation: Because the poor, the elderly, the veterans and everyone who has contributed to Social Security and Medicare should have to bear the brunt of the cuts, not the well connected businesses who depend on Federal dollars to keep going.

In other words, the continuation of wealth redistribution upwards cannot be interrupted, citizen. now grit and bear it while the programs you've paid into your entire life are gutted to make sure a defense contractor can keep making useless toys so that Congressmen and Senators can brag about bringing jobs to their districts and states.

" a new inflation formula, rejected by many liberals, that would reduce the annual cost of living adjustments for a broad swath of government programs, including Social Security and benefits for veterans. "

I'm pretty liberal, but I'm having a hard time considering tying COLAs to the CPI as "gutting" those programs.


It already is tied to CPI - the proposal is to change how CPI is computed.  This just about covers the benefit gap after the SS trust fund runs out.  The "cut" everyone is talking about is a reduction in future increases.  It's the kind of tweak that is not very painful once enacted, but will be blown out of proportion by the chicken littles.

And by changing the official way to compute CPI, it also has direct reduction of TIPS debt.  So there is a tiny haircut to entitlements, and a tiny haircut to debt growth.  That it becomes serious money 25-30 years out is a good thing, as the decrease in growth of benefits will barely be felt, and in fact, won't even be remembered in 10 years.

Personally I'm very happy about this proposed change.  I am slated to retire in 2034 (I won't make it that far - I have lots of money that becomes available when I'm 59 1/2), and I'd prefer not to have 2 years of higher benefits followed by a cliff as the funding comes in around 70% of granted benefits.  With the change to CPI calculation I won't see such a drop off.

So yeah, you guys on SS now (sorry dad, mom) take a little cut now, I give up some entitlements later, but not as much as I would have under the current law.  I was facing carrying everyone right till I retired, then be told "tough shiat - not so much for you".

So I have no hope this will pass.  The money grabbing seniors today don't want to understand that SS is a pay as you go system - that there isn't an "account" with a balance like a savings account (I would seriously like to punch the PR guy who explained the SS system that way back in the day - my grandparents to their dying day didn't understand how SS worked, even though it was their primary source of retirement income - they always thought it was "their" money, not something society had decided to transfer from workers to retirees).  And the Republicans can't accept a cut to SS that was proposed by the "blah" man.

The only point is that serious proposals are dead on arrival in DC - for any number of reasons.
 
2013-04-08 10:29:43 PM  

Serious Black: theknuckler_33: Serious Black: theknuckler_33: " a new inflation formula, rejected by many liberals, that would reduce the annual cost of living adjustments for a broad swath of government programs, including Social Security and benefits for veterans. "

I'm pretty liberal, but I'm having a hard time considering tying COLAs to the CPI as "gutting" those programs.

Except there's no single thing we call CPI. There's a whole host of CPI formulas that try to estimate inflation based on different assumptions. No single one of those formulas is "correct" because inflation affects each individual differently.

That's a fair enough point, and maybe I'm not entirely familiar with the details, but aren't we talking about a plan that will reduce the increases in future benefits? Don't you think it's a bit over-the-top to call that 'gutting' the program?  That's all I'm saying. I'm a little fed up with hyperbole of all stripes.

I wouldn't call it a gutting either personally. Switching to a chained CPI formula would do somewhere between jack and squat for bringing Social Security into sustainable solvency. I'd also say it's hard to complain about a policy when liberal think tanks like CAP and CBPP both endorse it with the caveat that benefits be boosted for those with the lowest incomes.


You should check your math again.  It covers about 85% of the projected 2036 SS funding gap.  And since the depletion of the SS trust fund happens over a longer time, it can still cover that gap in 2036, and much further into the future.  Under the current law available funds for benefits drops to 70% of COLA adjusted program costs in 2036.  So instead of a 30% gap in benefits in 2036, you are looking at a 0% gap.  To me, that sounds just fine, since I'm eligible for full SS benefits in 2034.  Instead of major increases in funding required to meet program requirements, only relatively minor changes need to be made to make it long term solvent.  Although paid out benefits under the new plan would be 5% below current law, that's a hell of a lot better than the 30% haircut I'd be looking at when the trust fund got to zero.  That's a sight bit more that being between "jack and squat".
 
2013-04-08 10:34:53 PM  

Aarontology: Obama proposes spending cuts and revenue increases that would result in $1.8 trillion in deficit reductions over 10 years, replacing $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts that are otherwise poised to take effect over the next 10 years.

Translation: Because the poor, the elderly, the veterans and everyone who has contributed to Social Security and Medicare should have to bear the brunt of the cuts, not the well connected businesses who depend on Federal dollars to keep going.

In other words, the continuation of wealth redistribution upwards cannot be interrupted, citizen. now grit and bear it while the programs you've paid into your entire life are gutted to make sure a defense contractor can keep making useless toys so that Congressmen and Senators can brag about bringing jobs to their districts and states.


They will agree to cut SS only if they can slip in another Freedom Amendment that helps Freedom Monsanto Freedom Corp. provide tasty Freedom.
 
2013-04-08 11:02:17 PM  

Blathering Idjut: To argue that Chained CPI isn't "gutting" the program is stand by the assumption that Social Security as it stands now is overly generous to those recieving it.

If you're one of us who believe that the benefits are barely livable even before compounding lower COLAs over time then you're probably going to agree that Chained CPI will leave folks worse off in the long run.

However much Chained CPI "saves" in billions of dollars, it's by taking money out of the hands of folks who will need it for things like food or medical care.


Did SS retirement cover medical?  I don't recall that.  Medicare does.  And Medicaid.  Yup, there is a medicare part B premium, but that is optional.  No, the cuts proposed are reasonable - about 5% for me when I retire.  The cuts I'm facing under current law is unreasonable - 30% of benefits will go unpaid in 2036 because the trust fund will no longer be in place to recover the excess FICA collected and passed to general revenues.  I'm eligible for benefits in 2034, so this is something of an issue for me.  That SS will pay out $150 less next year to a retiree receiving full benefits than under current CPI computation doesn't faze me at all.  Mom and Dad and grandma will just have to deal.  I'd have liked to have had a higher raise this year too.

And CPI computed in a particular way is neither a god given nor constitutionally protected right.  It's a formula cooked up by economists with an agenda - ie. politicians.  This one's too expensive - try another one.  Instead of biatching about reducing the increase in benefits over time, everyone should be damn thankful that extreme reductions in benefits from one year to another won't be necessary.  SS is not a vehicle to make you comfortable - it's to keep you from being homeless and starving.

Now for my worthless anecdotal data points:

I generally notice that the people biatching the most about SS not keeping up are people who haven't downsized their life after they retired.  Still sitting in the 4 bedroom house, still in a high cost of living area of the country (have to be - if they weren't in NJ I wouldn't know them), still expecting to be able to spend money like they did when they were working.  I put on a concerned face and say "Awww that so horrible" while thinking "What a stupid idiot".  Of 20 or so people I know who have complained in one form or another, only 1 is actually in a marginal state.  And I don't have much sympathy for him either because he stupidly kept his entire 401k in Lucent stock and rode that sucker into the ground, despite every person who knew him at all telling him to god damn diversify.  And he's only marginal - he does have a pension, though not a huge one.  SS does take him from borderline starving to getting by, but not living large.
 
2013-04-09 12:53:19 AM  
Social security seems like a scam to me. Why not just convert it into an added income tax and use the money to reduce the debt?
 
2013-04-09 01:51:57 AM  

Debeo Summa Credo: Grand_Moff_Joseph: Social Security can be fixed forever in one simple move:  Remove the payroll cap on SS contributions.

/wipe hands on pants
//repeat

Translation:

"Gimme!"


You know, for someone that claims to have an MBA and a CFA, and thus should understand macro vs micro econ, you sound a lot like this guy.

3.bp.blogspot.com
 
2013-04-09 10:38:08 AM  

Splish: You keep talking about free-fall. It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute. If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.


Prayers from the Church of Soft Living.
 
2013-04-09 11:49:28 AM  

LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: You keep talking about free-fall. It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute. If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.

Prayers from the Church of Soft Living.


Yeah, I let it go once.  This time, screw you and your "soft living." You know nothing about me or my life.  You want to know what my definition of soft living is?  It's when you go through life assuming that every thing is going to go your way, not making any plans or preparations for the unexpected, right up until the point where reality kicks you in the face.
 
2013-04-09 12:06:23 PM  

Splish: LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: I'd argue that being prepared includes being ready for when things don't go according to plan.  If you're only prepared for your best case scenario, you aren't prepared at all.

You can't prepare for the bottom to completely drop out of your life.  If you get through your retirement without having to rely on SS, patting yourself on the back for a job well done preparing for your retirement is only part of the story.  The part you're leaving out is that you also had the fortune of not being utterly ruined by a relentless streak of terrible luck.  You can do all you like with the former, but the latter can still detonate those plans and put you in free-fall.  That's what SS is for, and if you don't need it then consider yourself lucky.

You keep talking about free-fall.  It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute.  If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.


And frankly, social security should not exist. Why not take all the SS money and use it to pay off our debt?
 
2013-04-09 01:19:01 PM  

Debeo Summa Credo: Blathering Idjut: To argue that Chained CPI isn't "gutting" the program is stand by the assumption that Social Security as it stands now is overly generous to those recieving it.

If you're one of us who believe that the benefits are barely livable even before compounding lower COLAs over time then you're probably going to agree that Chained CPI will leave folks worse off in the long run.

However much Chained CPI "saves" in billions of dollars, it's by taking money out of the hands of folks who will need it for things like food or medical care.

It IS overly generous. SS will be insolvent without changes in 25 years. Today's retirees, and those retiring in the near future, simply havent paid in enough to warrant the benefits they are expecting. If they had (and we were), we'd have enough revenuse to support SS and keep in going perpetually.

But we haven't adequately adjusted the rate/ age/ benefit to compensate for demographic changes and improvement in longevity.


It will not be *insolvent*, you ass. It just won't be able to keep up 100% of present coverage, *if unchanged*.

Of course, if people has stopped DICKING WITH IT then it would have been fine, because the administrators of the plan had planned for the large bump in baby-boomer retirees and had plans in place to adjust the system to handle it. That, and if a couple administrations worth of asshats had left the goddamn trust fund alone...

But then you wouldn't have a reason to whine, would you?

\constantly amazed why people *watch* Conservatives f*ck up a working system, then point at it and say "Look at that! It's all f*cked up - it has to GO" and people fall for it every goddamn time
 
2013-04-09 01:29:12 PM  

Splish: LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: You keep talking about free-fall. It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute. If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.

Prayers from the Church of Soft Living.

Yeah, I let it go once.  This time, screw you and your "soft living." You know nothing about me or my life.  You want to know what my definition of soft living is?  It's when you go through life assuming that every thing is going to go your way, not making any plans or preparations for the unexpected, right up until the point where reality kicks you in the face.


I believe the issue here is that you don't seem to have the slightest stick of f'ing empathy for any other human. That may be the reason why your "F*ck you, I planned ahead, you're a lazy shiftless bastard" attitude grates on the rest of us. Your assumption that anyone else who doesn't have a full and total backup for their life is a negligent 'tard isn't in any way accurate, realistic, or even slightly charitable.

Personally, I'm gonna assume you don't realize how much of an ass you appear here, but I'm not sure you'd appreciate or understand the empathy.

\besides, this is Fark

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2013-04-09 02:06:01 PM  

CheapEngineer: Splish: LouDobbsAwaaaay: Splish: You keep talking about free-fall. It's only a problem if you haven't had the foresight to pack a parachute. If your back up plan is "go on Social Security," I guess that's fine, but you really have no right to complain when it's exactly what you'd expect from a last resort.

Prayers from the Church of Soft Living.

Yeah, I let it go once.  This time, screw you and your "soft living." You know nothing about me or my life.  You want to know what my definition of soft living is?  It's when you go through life assuming that every thing is going to go your way, not making any plans or preparations for the unexpected, right up until the point where reality kicks you in the face.

I believe the issue here is that you don't seem to have the slightest stick of f'ing empathy for any other human. That may be the reason why your "F*ck you, I planned ahead, you're a lazy shiftless bastard" attitude grates on the rest of us. Your assumption that anyone else who doesn't have a full and total backup for their life is a negligent 'tard isn't in any way accurate, realistic, or even slightly charitable.

Personally, I'm gonna assume you don't realize how much of an ass you appear here, but I'm not sure you'd appreciate or understand the empathy.

\besides, this is Fark

[upload.wikimedia.org image 380x366]


No, I have plenty of empathy and sympathy, but it wears thin when the story hinges on "I never thought it could happen to me" and "There's nothing we could have done differently," and somehow that's an indication that the system is broken.  "This safety net isn't as comfortable as I expected" isn't a very valid complaint in my opinion.  But I could let that all go, if not for the repetitive "soft living" comments.  Unless he knows me personally, he has no idea who I am or what I've been through, just like I don't know what he's been through outside of what he's posted here.
 
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