Obama’s “Jobs Plan” Endangers Social Security and MedicarePosted: September 9, 2011 | |
Via Naked Capitalism, The Real News Network interviewed an actual economist, Robert Pollen of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, about Obama’s “Jobs Plan” as describe in last night’s speech. It’s well worth a listen.
According to Zach Carter at HuffPo, next week Obama plans to propose a deficit reduction package that will include increasing the eligibility age of both Social Security and Medicare.
Jon Walker at FDL also has a couple of posts about the Villagers’ plans for Medicare:
The threat to Medicare is very real and pressing. Over the past several months more and more political forces in Washington have being slowly lining up behind a campaign to raise the Medicare eligibility age. This most recent effort really got started when Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Tom Coburn (R-OK) put forward a bill to raise the Medicare retirement age in late May.
It got a major push in July when Obama privately offered it up as part of a “grand bargain” on the debt ceiling with Speaker John Boehner. It probably got another push in Obama’s jobs speech last night when the president suggested he still wants to change Medicare in a way “some in his party” won’t like.
The campaign also got a behind-the-scenes boost this week. First, the Democratic members of the House Ways and Means committee included raising the Medicare retirement age in a memo to the Super Committee outlining possible deficit reduction options. But more importantly, the powerful Obama is coming to cut Medicare Walker points out the part of Obama’s speech in which he suggested that Democrats are rigid and unreasonable in opposing changes to Medicare. Walker counters:
Progressives support ways to reduce Medicare spending by methods such as allowing Medicare to directly negotiate for drug prices. Progressives just do not support shifting costs onto old people. Obama saying he supports Medicare changes “some in his party” won’t like is code for saying he will support cutting benefits.
Most of the jobs parts of the speech are unlikely to pass, so on the policy front they won’t really matter much. On the other hand, there is a Super Committee currently empowered to make large deficit reductions, so this part of the speech about cutting Medicare benefits could be the only policy from the speech that is enacted.
I fear all that may result from this speech is that Obama gets a campaign message about how the Republicans don’t care about jobs, and Obama helps the Super Committee raise the Medicare retirement age.
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