You would have to be in deep denial to listen to the President’s speech this morning and not realize, with crystal clarity, that Social Security and Medicare are on the chopping block.
It’s not a matter of “if” but “when.”
Right now as Dave Dayen says, the only game in town is the McConnell/Reid plan, which calls for the creation of a Catfood II commission to recommend cuts that would get and up-or-down vote in Congress. It’s a prospect that the Social Security looters have been salivating over for years. No amendments, no discussion. A tried and true way to pass the wildly unpopular “shared sacrifice” cuts to Medicare and Social Security which have appeared in every plan so far.
In fact, the only quibble Obama expressed this morning with the Simpson-Bowles plan is that they cut too much from defense spending. “Shared sacrifice” means it’s okay for senior citizens to be plunged into poverty, but we apparently draw the line at Lockheed Martin and Raytheon.
President Obama supports raising the retirement age to 67 according to the Huffington Post, which as Jon Walker points out effectively voucherizes the program for people ages 65-66. That’s exactly what Paul Ryan wanted to do. Obama is publicly supporting means testing, which threatens to turn these programs into welfare programs — one of the ways that the GOP has been trying to get a foothold into Social Security and Medicare, with the hope of destroying them, for decades.
President Obama tried to lecture progressives this morning, to tell us what we “should” be thinking and feeling right now, which is apparently to adopt his neoliberal policies. No thanks.
Real progressives — over 2000 of them — have pledged to visit the local office of their Senator or Representative on Tuesday July 19 (as one wag put it, “Give Peas a Chance” day). We will be letting these officials know, in no uncertain terms, that we will not support any elected official in 2012 who takes part in cutting Social Security and Medicare benefits.
The problem is, the media coverage has been so bizarre and skewed that the people who be hardest hit have little idea they are in the fight of their lives right now. So we need to find a way to get the message to senior citizens — especially the ones that the President has to care about in 2012.
Florida is a key swing state in the 2012 presidential election, and Obama is already struggling there. It also has the highest percentage of senior citizens of any state in the union.
We will be targeting online ads to senior citizens in Florida on Google and Facebook, letting them know that their Social Security and Medicare benefits are at risk .
There isn’t much time. We need to get the word out to people who will be affected by these cuts, whose votes will matter in 2012. Because by the time 2012 rolls around, it will be too late.
Can you chip in $10 to help us run these online ads targeted to seniors and future retirees? With your help, we can spread our pledge not to vote for anyone participating in benefit cuts, including President Obama.