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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Now that Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has admitted what Republicans want in order to avoid the “fiscal cliff,” James and I propose a deal: Democrats will no longer talk about “revenue enhancements” and will instead call them “tax increases.” In exchange, Republicans can no longer talk about “entitlement reforms,” but must admit that they want to cut Medicare and Social Security. If we all start speaking honestly, the 2012 elections sent a very clear message about which side the American people prefer.

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Copyright 2012 The National Memo
  • donkeyschool

    Let’s start by not having _Democrats_ refer to “entitlements.” They’re not entitlements if we pay for them with each paycheck–they are public insurance policies. And there is no question of “entitlement reform”–only of welching on paid-up insurance!

    • dejagirl

      That’s true, and we continue paying for Medicare monthly after we retire. If you receive Social Security, Medicare is deducted from your Social Security. It you don’t, you have to send Medicare a check or have it deducted from your checking account every month. Medicare is never free. We pay for it.

    • Lovefacts

      And once we get Medicare, there is a deduction from each Social Security check for Medicare–it’s treated like insurance.

  • SueBumblebee

    This is a personal deal between individual workers and the government. You borrow some of my paycheck and you pay me back when I stop working. What do they think? Or is that assuming they do? Social security shouldn’t be on the table. Working people should expect to have all their social security refunded then, if republican deal makers think it is an entitlement. This touching social security is like sticking their hands in pockets of people that can’t afford to lose more. They want to play hardball? Stop letting the very wealthy hide their assets offshore, tax the excesses they don’t need to survive paycheck to paycheck at 35%, [like the pay check to paycheck workers are taxed], and then perhaps in return Democrats will compromise by allowing “wasted spending” on things like – well you know, infrastructure, defense, environmental concerns.
    @donkeyschool: Are you saying Democrats are calling social security an entitlement? The whole article here says the opposite.

    • Allan Richardson

      Technically, they are “entitlements” but not in the pejorative connotation Republicans use to describe “welfare” benefits. Entitlement spending is any spending that is correlated to the number of people qualifying according to preset rules, and the amount for which they qualify under preset rules, as opposed to spending for which a specific amount has been preallocated, such as running national parks or running a state DMV agency, which are called “discretionary” spending. A case could be made for distinguishing between “pay-in” entitlements such as Medicare and Social Security (also unemployment), and “need-based” entitlements such as TANF (the legal term for “welfare”), Pell grants, disaster relief, etc. However, it would be good to recognize that these are, in fact, a form of “universal insurance” which could benefit ANYONE, including a very unlucky former hedge fund manager, not just the “lazy people” stereotyped by the right.

      So you are right, Medicare and Social Security should not be included in the conservative disapproval reserved for the “lazy” people; but then, the vast majority of the “lazy” are actually just unlucky (or victimized by others), only a few are consciously lazy. And of course, some of the wealthy are not hard working, just lucky enough to have hard working PARENTS who left them lots of money (did someone mention Paris Hilton?) and have yet to decide to do something meaningful with their lives. They are also lucky enough not to have to walk into a welfare office and ask for money.

      • Replying to Allan Richardson –

        And of course, some of the wealthy are not hard working, just lucky enough to have hard working PARENTS who left them lots of money (did someone mention GEORGE W BUSH?)

      • i think u are wright allan , best explained yet thanks

      • dangrant27

        You hit the nail on the head, if W was never born the world would be better off. He is the worst thing to ever happen , not to just America but the whole world, he has to be bad that he as a former Republican President was not invited to the Republican National Convention in Tampa

    • Sue, Social Security and MEDICARE are entitlements because after paying FICA all our lives we are ENTITLED to receive the benefits we paid for. Think of it, as an insurance, we pay insurance premiums for a specific service or amount of money and, consequently, we are ENTITLED to get those services.

      • As one of the posters mentioned, the word “entitlement” is not being used as a positive description — instead it’s just a way of saying folks are lazy. In that regard, I understand Sue being pissed off about the context of the word.

        • Yes, the Tea Party uses the term entitlement as synonymous to a handout, it is actually the exact opposite. I don’t mind their little game because anyone with minimal intelligence can see through it, and because it helps seniors understand who is defending their interests and who is trying to undermine them and demonize them.

      • SueBumblebee

        I see the difference now = ]

      • Dol5

        Very simply stated Dominick! Thank you again for reducing a lot of words into something we can understand. Keep it up!

    • Your Statement is Right on the Money. The Wealthy and Uber Rich Corps. Get More welfare handouts in the billions….time for ALL of Them to Pay the Taxpayers Back.

    • ralphkr

      Actually, it was a Democrat who first referred to Social Security as an entitlement long before Medicare came into being.

  • trell8


    • These people (Republicans) understand things a lot better than we give them credit for. That’s why they are proposing a $200B savings by adjusting the Consumer Price Index. The CPI is used to determine whether or not seniors should get a 3% annual increase. Guess what? The people that are fighting tooth and nail to protect the wealthiest Americans from getting a 3% increase in their tax rate are willing to deny seniors trying to survive on a $900 a month SS check a 3% annual increase to keep up with inflation. Their proposal should be published in every newspaper and broadcast in every TV and radio station to ensure every American knows where Tea Party Republicans stand and whose interests they protect.

  • Macaroni12

    The southern states are citizen voters who act like the Indian Gherkas who fought with the British troops to keep their citizens dominated by British Financial Rule……Stupid….they vote and fight against their own self interests…That is changing….The truth of the majority will ultimately win this historical political battle….Texas will be the next state to join the union….the minority (old white landowners) will ultimately lose….the majority will ultimately realize their stupid mentality……and vote their self interests……Politics will cease to be racial, class, and money dominated interests controlling the electorate…..The younger more educated electorate will prevail……..maybe in 2016……Hillary is white….they will vote for her….

  • OakenTruncheon

    Cliffhangers, fiscal, or otherwise are cheap theatrical devices designed to generate drama, and hold the fading attention of a audience grown disenchanted with the same old crap.

  • The wealthy paid good money for the GOP and they are hell bent and determined to get their money’s worth

  • Thank you SueBumblebee – I am in complete agreement with you. I’ve worked, and continue to work and PAY into Social Security and Medicare, so it’s a RIGHT to MY MONEY,not an entitlement to anyone else’s money. Stop the lie and people will understand the reality of what’s going on.

  • Please read my comments below – SueBumblebee and I are in complete agreement relative to this “entitlement” mantra the right keeps using –

  • geezgetagrip

    Okay; when will we start identifying the real “entitlements”-those pay outs to rescue poorly run banks and credit institutions, the tax reductions given to oil companies and factory farms and the like? We need to make a change in the language mangling we have permitted to become part of the accepted common lexicon.

  • Lovefacts

    Let’s stop calling Social Security & Medicare entitlements. As geezgetagrip said, the true entitlements are subsidies to oil companies and agri business and the like. It’s also the bennies in the tax code like defered interest and capital gains–I suggest that the first $30K in capital gains & interest, combined, kept as is and anything above that be treated as earned income. I also suggest the rich be treated like the rest of us, no special entitlements through the tax code for them.

  • The whole ‘science’ of economics is one big euphemism. Have you noticed that there is never bad news from economists? The prolonged recession is just temporary and we will be back to growth if we are punitive enough towards the 99%. Crazy or what?
    NOTHING GROWS FOREVER, and anyone who thinks it can believes in fairies, goblins and witches. Japan hit it’s debt ceiling a decade ago and now the USA has done the same. The big difference is Japan has accepted it and started down a new path but Americans still look for the end of the rainbow (which also doesn’t exist).
    Wake up, life is hard and there are no free lunches, unless you are among the plutocratic 1% of course.

  • TSB

    The only way social security should be reformed is by getting 100% of the people to pay into it on 100% of their pay like the people who pay into it on 100% their pay up to $110,000. Then change the name to OARS, Old Age Retirement Supplement so the word social, which seems to offend so many anti-social people, is no longer visible.

  • hermanrw

    Social security is not an entitlement,it is a trust fund, funded seperately and is not to be used except for the retirement and other needs of the citizens.The gop and rep bonehead want to steal the American Dream.The Robin Hood in reverse party.Steal from the poor why not just shoot us that will be next.

    • metrognome3830

      I’m OK with the Tea Partiers calling Social Security and Medicare entitlements as long as they don’t mind us calling what they want to do with it by what it is. Thievery.

  • headhunter56

    READ OUR LIPS!!!!!

  • headhunter56

    READ OUR LIPS!!!! Mr. President attempting to save some face for Bohner and his criminal empire is the last thing we need so what if they loose their criminal corporation money in my veiw they should be in jail for what they have been doing to our country enabiling the fall of our economy creating and passing laws to throw us to the corporate wolfs and deregulating everything designed to protect us from them! If I was a judge I’d throw the book at them!

  • dominck right Rooseveldt said ” Social Security is not a tax it is a insurance plan for the working people, For people injured on the job, retiries, children who loose their father or means of support.” Franklin won, and they have tried hard to annihilate and uproot the basic program.

  • Raising the retirement age to 69, is doable if you have spent your life sitting at a desk, but if you have spent your life as a blue collar worker, by age 69 your body is broken, you are all used up. I challenge any white collar worker to spend 1 week as a sanitation worker or keeping up with an assembly line. Then let’s hear you talk!

    • SueTX

      Doable perhaps, but it doesn’t make good fiscal sense. Medicare is insurance- government insurance, yes – but insurance nonetheless. Insurance works by a group pooling their resources. Raising the age limit means you limit the risk pool even more, making payouts per person more costly. The sensible thing to do is Medicare for All – making the resources as wide as possible.

  • I have a idea take all the repub politicians retirement away? see how they feel you start cutting there obama they will raise taxes on the wealthy.

  • social security is the same as an ira…you pay into it…….you get a return when you retire……….pay…beyotches…you want to cut entitlements…..cut congress and senator pensions……..and health care………..if you can’t stay in office for 40 years……you get squat……………

  • are boner and mcconnell going to cut their pensions and healthcare……….please…..someone have the cahoneys to ask them outright…….will they do that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! if they would answer me i would ask myself……….but i am just a tax paying citizen of this country who hates the teabaggers so they won’t answer me.

  • Medicare is an entitlement program….many many seniors have never even paid into the programs and did not pay enough to get the care they are receiving. Many women (Seniors) have never paid into either programs….hence entitlement program. For the younger generation it will NOT be entitlement programs as they have been paying all of their lives. IMO

  • Sure the Rep Party wants to save the tax breaks for the rich on the backs of the middle class. they have been trying to get rid of SS since it started, that way they won’t have to pay back the money they have taken from it. Clinton tried to put it in a lock box so this wouldn’t happen but the Rep Party controlled congress, need I say more.

    • Replying to William –

      Actually, it was Santorum who stood up and said, “WHERE’S BILL?”. He was, of course talking about President Clinton.

      The reference was to the Social Security lock box, WHICH WAS A REPUBLICAN INITIATIVE!!!!

  • davefleeger

    If Mitt Romney had not been left a lot of money by his father so he could invest it in Bain Capital he might be one of those lazy people that need some help from time to time. It is a lot easier to make money based on the fact of inherited money. The rest of us just use the money we have to live.

  • Makes a lot of sense. Why not call it what it is. If it is good enough for the democrats, then it should be good enough for the republicans. Let’s do it.

  • irvingsilveerman

    From Irving Silverman
    First…The Republicans must realize that any tax increases imposed on the 1% and 2% is just a trifle of what was earned during Obama’s first term. They made out like bandits compared to what the midddle class reaped.
    Second… Where is the compassion, caring and helping spirit which is a basic elementf of America?
    Third…let’s give the tax increases a one or a two year trial, that willprove this effort will not set back the American economy.

  • you butt holes enough is enough…….president barack obama should enstate his OWN schedule for which the americans chose him over mitt romney…raise taxes on the rich and we dont what anymore deals from the GOP

  • Just got my statement from social security…..1.7% raise! They should be embarrassed…both parties!!

  • Just got the amount of this years social security increase! 1.7%! They should be embarrassed! We did without a raise for three years while the borrowed our money and thid is the ko9nd of interest they pay us! For shame!

  • Social security to persons who have worked and contributed to the fund is not an entitlement, SSI to people who have never worked, but figured out the very popular scheme of claiming mental issues such as depression and bipolar illness in order to get a monthly check, free healthcare and foodstamps, is an entitlement. And it is completely abused by losers and the losers are many. As a nurse I have heard individuals instruct other individuals on how to go see a psychiatrist and claim to be depressed or to hear voices, get started on meds, get self admitted to a psych ward, and ultimately get paid. Drug addicts get SSI and spend the entire check on drugs so that we the taxpayers are buying crack. Welfare is an entitlement, why do women with no job, no education, no resources just go and have babies at all rates ? Because they know they will receive an entitlement called welfare, free healthcare, food stamps, housing? Solution? Stop cash payments, put these people to work, and offer no loop holes. use those cash payment you are stopping to create jobs and training and childcare. Capitalism works when people are working, not when more people are receiving services than are working and paying taxes.

  • Let me get this straight, Republicans in congress would rather force us going over the fiscal cliff than agree to have the richest people in this country pay a little more tax and they want to take revenue off the hides of the old, poor and sick people of this country. I’d like to know how much of a pay off they received for that promise they made a while ago. I guess their pockets are up against the wall.

  • faxt42

    Let’s make our voice to be heard that we support and back up the President who is working toward recovering the economics , building jobs , reforming healthcare with his teams going after fraud claiming going after medicare money done by many medical groups especially the richs who own many of those companies who fraudulently made the claim on government money.
    Remember some of the medicare money were paid by differnt discipline workers all over the country and and mostly the working class. WHen it comes the time the bodies could not sustain the strngth any more at the old age the social security money is there since those who agree to save upfront so they could have money to spend later at the later age.

    So they are entitle to their own money, in this sense, it is the entitlement( that it belongs to those who keep the money with the government pocket ( if the keep it themselves they may use it all). Many people know of the meaning on this sense but the republicans and may some of the rich people twitch the meaning as the handout money or services from the government.

    The Riches never have to send money to the government to keep so they do not earn or have the social security money to secure their financial need at their late life. The republicans and the riches know that very well. The majority of the country is middle income or working class who work to save the money in ss money, the republicans want to cut out or privatize the ss money so they can have the hands on it also use it to pay our national debts without using the riches money who pay unfair tax ( lower tax rate while the majority have to pay higher tax rate).

    We have to keep using the word fair share tax.
    I agree with many people here , lets call to cut all the benefits for those politicians, lower number of years to be in congress ( cannot be elected more than twice so the maximum to be in the House and Congress is 8 years). If we can do this, it will give the chance for the young people to be in the government office. The problem is, we will be having a hard time to get the government politicians to have experirences in problem solving. Or we can make the rule that the politicians cannot be on the job in consecutive time more that 8 years , at least they have to be out for another 8 years to be candidate again for the House or Congress jobs.

  • This is a profound and welcome revalation; Honest talk from Politicians of Both Partys? Unheard of and unimaginable; The next step of course complete disclosure as to campaign contributors plus Racing Jump Suits with the sponsors names displayed at all speaches and public appearences; What are our elected servants going to come up with next to help the common people.

  • Eleanore Whitaker

    Social Security is the same kind of entitlement your 401K is. The only difference is that your 401K can be seriously damaged by Wall Street. Why do you think employers in the 70’s were so hot to get rid of traditional pension plans in favor of funneling your payroll deductions to Wall Street?

    The Republican men despise the idea that trillions of dollars are sitting untouched in your 401Ks. They haven’t found a single loophole yet…accent on the word “Yet” to help themselves into that funnel of cash. Republican men have despised SS, Medicare and Medicaid, all of which, just like a 401K are payroll deductions.

    Look…face facts…What the Republicans are trying to do is create not a government but a corporation that is profit driven and funnel huge loads of payroll deductions to create a Worry Free Wall Street where there are ZERO consequences for Madoffing your hard earned money.

    Right now 4 of the most reputable US accounting firms like Coopers, Price Waterhouse and others are under investigating for their fraudulent dealings with Chinese investment houses who handed investors bogus financial reports.

  • This is a good way to look at it!!