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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Raising taxes on the rich alone won’t close the deficit or erase the national debt, as Republicans superciliously inform us over and over again. But in their negotiations with the White House to avert the so-called fiscal cliff, congressional Republicans seem obsessed with a change in Medicare eligibility whose budgetary impact (when compared with ending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy)  is truly negligible — but whose human toll would be immense.

That Republican imperative is to raise the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67.

Why do Speaker John Boehner and the Republican majority in the House so badly want to put Medicare out of reach of elders younger than 67? It will be costly to their most loyal voting constituency among older whites. And it won’t save much money, according to the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation’s latest study – which shows that the estimated $148 billion in savings over 10 years is largely offset by increased insurance costs, lost premiums, and higher subsidies that will be paid as a consequence. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities offers an even more stringent analysis, which shows that raising the eligibility age in fact will result in total costs higher than the putative federal savings — which amount to around $50 billion over 10 years. Contrast that with the savings achieved by ending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, which amounts to well over $1 trillion during the same period — and it becomes clear which party wants to reduce deficits.

Assuming that the savings are mostly mythical, the only sensible assumption is that Republican politicians and financiers simply hate Medicare, a highly successful and popular federal program that the right has been trying to destroy, with one tactic or another, ever since its establishment in 1965. They don’t really care whether their alleged solutions save money or improve efficiency. They want a privately-funded medical system that preserves profits rather than a system that improves and expands health care, as Medicare has done for almost half a century.

What the Republicans evidently desire most in their “reform” crusade is to exacerbate inequality among the elderly – because that is the only assured outcome of their plans.

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Copyright 2012 The National Memo
  • Interesting, the same people that object to raise the tax rate for our highest earners by a mere 3.6%, and don’t support raising the Social Security contribution cap because that would be unfair to our highest earners, don’t have a problem raising the MEDICARE eligibility age for people who worked all their lives and are beginning to experience the ailments that come with age. Goebbels would have been unemployed if the Tea Party had been around 7 decades ago.

    • Leave It To Our GOP/Tea Party American Taliban They Always Up To The Job Of Destroying Their Own People!!! I Be So Glad When 2014 Come Around So We Can Work On Getting Rid Of Some More Of Them!! We Will Vow To Never Have Another 2010 Again In Life!!!!

  • Social Security and Medicare are earned benefit programs which I and my fellow Americans have paid into and continue to pay into in the form of insurance premiums, i.e. payroll taxes and post retirement insurance premiums.The cure to Medicare costs is cost control, preventive care, competitive bidding for services, reductions in redundant and unnecessary treatments, tests, etc. In addition, the payroll premiums could be raised as well, e.g. from 6.2 % to 7.0 % and from 1.65% to 2%. Removal of the Social Security cap. After all it is pension and health insurance! By the way ObamaCare is health insurance industry reform! A better way to invest the “payroll taxes” is also needed such as stock market index investing, and a law forbidding the Congress borrowing against the SSTF ( Social Security Trust Fund). Hey, how about a “war tax” that should stopped it real quick!

    • Gary, I agree with everything you suggested, especially the last item. A war tax would make our hawks think twice before they commit our country to unnecessary and immoral crusades, and it would highlight the consequences of our decisions like nothing else would. That, by the way, is the reason Bush hid the cost of the war in areas such as unfunded liabilities. Out of sight, out of mind…

      • You Are So Right My Friend As Always!!! Good Morning Dominick And Gary!!!!! 🙂

        • Let me see if I got this right . Obama gutted Medicare of 718 Billion Dollars and you Libtards are tying to spin this as a GOP issue ? OMG you are morons ….That is all have a nice day Fern …all lollipops and unicorns right ?

          • Hey Your Little Bitch Ass Come Crawling Out Of Your Hole Stop Talking To Me Bitch Nothing Changed!! You Still An Ignorant BITCH!!! Your Mother Is A Moron She Had Your Nasty Stinking Ass Didn’t She??? Why Don’t You Go Suck Out Of A Dead Unicorn Ass!!!

          • Nonsense. No one said there aren’t ways to cut costs in Medicare. Obama’s plan cut overpayments to insurance companies. Paul Ryan’s budget made exactly the same cut for exactly the same 718 billion. What he did not do is cut benefits or increase the retirement age. Unless you are independently wealthy you should look at this from the perspective of your future survival.

          • I Told You Also Your Low Life Knuckle Dragging Party Wasn’t Going To Win The White House !!! LOL That’s All You Got Still Is 343 Likes For Your 454 Comments If I Was You A Would Shut The Hell Up!!! LOL

          • irishtap

            Michael your ignorance is blinding. Have a nice day hanging out with all the other FOXING idiots out there. Should you ever figure out how to kick start what remains of your brainstem come on back, we’d love to have you.

      • The trouble is the GOP would want to exempt the Rich. The GOP signs a tax pledge to Grover but it seams it only applies to the top 2%.

    • chisolm

      Good luck with convincing the left that payroll taxes should be invested in the markets. They will never stand for people on SS to actually own something, it takes away their ability to spend our confiscated property buying votes. Not only do they require workers to participate in the payroll tax pyramid scheme they tax us on all our earnings and then tax us again when we begin to receive the benefits. As for Medicare cost control you forgot to mention tort reform which creates part of the redundant and unnecessary treatments, tests, etc. you mention.

      • Michael

        I would much rather see the government handle the investing than I would the existing brokerages. The government could set up their own structure, thereby depriving the existing brokers as “middle men”.

        • rustacus21

          … which was the original idea behind Social Security, as the Wall St speculators were determined, at that point, to reject regulation – w/the help of conservative Republicans of course… Was that an echo across time we all just heard?!

      • CPANewYork


        You are an unmitigated buffoon. You concentrate on the issues of the smallest significance and totally ignore the major issue.

        You’re also intellectually dishonest. Payroll taxes are not a “pyramid scheme,” as you assert. I doubt that you know what a pyramid scheme is. If you don’t, just Google Bernard Madoff. Perhaps you meant to say “double taxation.” But, double taxation isn’t a valid tax defense. The term is virtually meaningless.

      • Sand_Cat

        First of all, your right-wing lunatic friends would object to investing SS funds in markets as “Socialism”; I have it straight from Torquemada Santorum when he spoke in favor of privatization at my daughter’s school.

        And of course, a few “adjustments” arranged by Wall Street could handily disappear the funds and cause much of them to magically re-appear in their own pockets.

      • rustacus21

        To Chisolm; unregulated Wall St tried this ‘scheme’ in 2005 & the American people saw clearly thru it, at a time when pension, IRA & other invests were being stolen right under the nose of an supremely incompetent 2001-2009 conservative administration. U must be paid to come on here w/that silliness, b/c I refuse to believe U’r really that vacant to trust still ‘unregulated’ speculators w/those many trillions of dollars!!! Taxes are also instrumental to civil society, in case U slept thru that portion of U’r H.S. civic’s classes. Oh, U didn’t have civic’s in H.S.? Thank conservatives for that as well, since Nixon thought an ‘ignorant’ – NOT an ‘ENLIGHTENED’ citizenry, would give him a pass on his anticipated criminal repression of college students exercising their constitutional rights to protest an illegal, immoral war they were being forced to die in, along w/Nixon spying on his opposition, in order to stack the odds in his favor, in case he needed to spit venom on Democrats in the ’72 election. But back to taxation, we the people decided long ago, that we WANT to pay into systems that WILL BE available in our old age, ‘in cases where we aren’t able to save on our own…’ (FDR, 1933) & we were correct, b/c another conservative administration (2001-2009) created (intentionally!!!) another DEPRESSION, leaving 10’s of millions (again) at the mercy of the greedy rich & corp’s & nothing in old age/forced retirement, b/c of the ruination of a perfectly GREAT (2001 Clinton) economy…

      • How could anyone have witnessed the financial meltdown of the past four years and think it would be a good idea to have social security invested in the markets?

        • chisolm

          Long term the markets have always increased. Go to a retirement calculator and enter a reasonable annual salary, add the average wage increase over the years, enter the number of years typically worked during a lifetime, add the average market performance as interest, enter the social security employee and employer percentage contribution and you will be astonished at the result. Young people can put their contributions into growth funds and as retirement age gets closer the investments should be changed to more conservative funds. In any case, the money invested belongs to the employee and can be passed to survivors and best of all, people do not have to depend on the good faith of the political elite. The only losers in this system are the political elite which lose the ability to spend money rightfully belonging to workers.

    • Thanks for a well thought out and well written comment. I like the term “earned benefit program”, it should replace the “entitlement” term used by both sides. I have paid into both programs for 40+ years (part of which I paid both parts of the SS amount due to being self employed) and have justed started to collect SS and will sign up for Medicare next year. On MSNBC Ezra Klein had a segmment on the topic of raising the Medicare age to 67 and showed how is would most likely double the costs of health care for the effected people for those 2 extra years. Klein pointed out how it appears to be a good political move but a very poor economical one.

      • CPANewYork

        “Entitlement” is used mostly by the rich sleazebags like Ryan to counter that assertion of favoritism for the rich.

  • put all of congress on ss the same as i get . they would holler like a pig under a gate

  • 13observer

    Obama has the “MANDATE”, he should be able to stop ANYTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jarheadgene

      REALLY …..because BOEHNER and McCONNELL act like the President didn’t win his re-election they are still crying about the same crap and stalling just like they did his first term.

      • 13observer

        So then what did we gain by his re-election besides more AMNESTY for illegal aliens and a greater BURDEN on all our welfare programs….higher taxes on the middle class!!!!! You can’t blame your way out of things! You can;t blame the republicans for everything!!!! MANDATE MY FU*KING ASS!

        • Progressive Patriot

          I’m really sorry you’re so angry. I know that you truly see the Citizenship issue as a real problem for America. If I remember correctly, you’re also a union man (me too). You know that this whole “taker,” spin is B.S. The vast majority of Americans work real hard. Why should we be talking about taking away benefits that hard working Americans have earned over a lifetime, just so that corporations and wealthy people, that have benefited the most over the last 30 years, are allowed to continue to write the rules in their favor, and live High On The Hog?
          Obama is fighting to preserve middle class tax cuts. The Repubs are holding that hostage.
          As much as I do blame Repubs, you’re right. There are corrupt Dems too; but in general, it seems to me that the Dems at least pretend to represent the poor, working and middle class. It’s really clear to me that the Repubs are the party of business and the rich. They don’t seem to like those of us who do not own a business or are not rich. They want us to pay for everything so that they can continue to make record profits. To me it’s all about equality. I guess I’m guilty of the great sin of thinking that you and I are just as good (no better, no worse) as any one of them. I have no intention of sitting quiet, while they attempt to project messages to my family, and the people I love, that we are inferior to any of them.

    • Sand_Cat

      At least he’s got something other than the vacuum you have in your braincase!

  • 13observer

    Can’t blame it on Bush or the republicans, Obama has the “MANDATE”!

    • 13observer, That’s the different between anarchy,dictatorship, and democracy. No one person or branch of government dictates. Give credit where credit is due, and likewise criticize those that earn it. We have three branches of government that work together for the welfare of the people(right now that’s not true). The Republicans are trying their darnest to blame everything on the White House(Exec branch) and say we need leadership. “you can lead a blind horse to the water but you can’t make him drink”. So stop this on lame game of trying to shift the blame. That’s exactly what they want you to do. The white(Seniors) voted for republicans(in large numbers) and now they’re crying about they earned their government handouts(hypocritical) as though they were the only ones. Unless you have forgot or think everyone else has, these are the same people that said they wanted to see the “President fail”. When the president fails, “America fails”.

      • 13observer

        We can’t all be on welfare or America will fail!!!!! You make a GOOD argument for why we should pay for the welfare of illegal aliens who broke our laws!!!!! Try teaching your kids about right from wrong, but when someone is raping your wife, perhaps they just don’t want to obey some of our other laws……you know……….like the illegal aliens don’t…….whats good for one is good for another!

      • Believe me, honey, this is one white senior who has voted a straight Democratic ticket for years. And the people I know who are my age do the same. Don’t try to “shift the blame” to us.

  • nobsartist

    I believe the the tactic here is to get the jackass republiCON congress to agree with what the President wants to do on the basis of raising the age for medicare and then the President to come back and pass “medicare for all” thru budget reconciliation which would allow him to bypass congress.

  • NONE of these yokels have actualy WORKED an 8 hr. day, 5 days a week, when they are in their 60’s They keep taking time off and barely ever work a 3 day week. So who are they to try to raise the age of retirement. Nobody, that;s who. They haven’t faced the mean and hateful treatment of “seniors” in the workplace. You are given more and more work to try to make you fail, and bad reviews when you are actually doing THREE JOBS for the price of one. It is demeaning to a person’s psyche, and stressful all the time. The effort to FORCE people to retire early and get out of the way of their young employees is disgusting. But, these GOP idiots have never worked liek that so they know nothing about it. They live in la la land. The truth is, it’s mean and spiteful out there for older workers. In city employment offices, it’s whether you have a husband or wife also employed, and if you do, well, you will get priority every time. It’s also high heels and long lashes that give you the protection….NOT hard work. So, wise up or be SURE you will not be re-elected. We are sick to death of you.

    • johninPCFL

      The House just posted their 2013 work schedule. 126 days. $174000 per year.

  • I am 63 two years away from medicare, I had to take early retirement due to job loss in 09, I had no plans to retire early but was forced to, after working for almost 40 years I just could not find a job that would pay me any more than my social security. I am depending on medicare in two years. I blame the Republicans for leaving me in this mess to start with and if they raise the age of medicare I for one will be push back and might not recover.

    • jarheadgene

      PLEASE, PLEASE write your Congressman, your Senator and the President. They need to know….NO DEAL is better than a BAD DEAL. Giving up what WE THE PEOPLE (middle class) have Worked for and Paid for, to get shifted and changed by them to allow the super wealthy to stay and get even more super wealthy, is a BAD DEAL. SSI, and Medicare are ENTITLEMENTS….WE are ENTITLED to them because we EARNED them and PAID for them.

    • I also had to retire in 2009 due to a workplace injury. Social Security gave me disability payments, but Medicare did not kick in until 18 months later. When my COBRA (for which I was paying almost $400 per month) ran out I could no longer afford health insurance and so was without it for a year. I am grateful that nothing dire happened to me during that time.

      Now that I have reached “full retirement age,” according to Social Security, they are eliminating my disability payments. At my age and with severe chronic back pain, I am now desperately trying to find a job because I can not live on my current income and have had medical bills this year that are far beyond the small amount covered by Medicare and the supplementary insurance I purchased.

      What is the GOP going to do when our streets are filled with homeless seniors?

      • Susan your payments from SS should be the same as they were when you were getting disability, mine are. I had to go on disability and it took me two years and getting a lawyer to get my disability. My back gave out and my blood pressure couldn’t be regulated, and my heart messed up also.

  • Lovefacts

    Social Security & Medicare are NOT entitlements. They are earned benefits. If the Congress wants to make a change, then remove the cap for Social Security and the ability for Medicare to negotiate the prices for medications. Means test seniors for recieving Social Security. These three actions will help with the solvency of both programs.

    If the Congress is serious about entitlement reform, here are a few:
    1. Not allowing Medicare to negotiate the prices on medications is a boondoggle and major benny to Pharm.
    2. Stop subsidies to oil companies and large agri business.
    3. Stop all corporate welfare.
    4. Stop all tax bennies that only the wealthy have, such as deferred tax on interest.
    5. Cap Capital Gains and Dividends at $50,000, then you can’t hear the whining that it’s what seniors live on.

    I’m sick and tired of Congress treating us as if we are ignorant.

    • You are right, especially on the legislation that prohibits negotiating the price of medication across state lines. I can’t believe it is cheaper to buy American made RX in Canada than in the USA!!!

    • I’m Sick Of Them Also And I Guess Most Smart People Are!!!

  • jarheadgene

    GO AHEAD GOP…..destroy the last of your “Great WHITE hope”. You will lose anyone over the age of 65, or just under, who isn’t independently wealthy, that was what you considered your base.
    They see that once again they will be asked to make sacrifices. Sacrifices to a system they ALREADY spent a lifetime paying into, all to protect the [BS] “Job Creators” and their taxes from being raised. As messed up as the Dem party can be sometimes, it is is the GOP that has a corner on the market of STUPIDITY. Let me clarify, those in that age bracket, mid 50’s to 70 (WHITE) voted for Romney and will always vote for a GOP candidate unless they pull crap like this. Those like myself, same age bracket (NON-WHITE) remember what it was like to be considered a 2nd class citizen and how Jim Crow laws affected people. We remember the rhetoric of GOLDWATER and NIXON. We remember the same man, (pictured in the article) PRESIDENT JOHNSON signing civil rights laws, Civil Rights laws that took until the election of BARRACK H OBAMA to come to fruition. We remember that and we WILL NEVER vote for a GOP Candidate like them to return to the bitter times of second class citizenry. Willard Romney had that same bigotted sense about him, and he lost badly …… GOP take note. IT IS NOT JUST ABOUT RACE, OR MONEY, IT IS ALL ABOUT ATTITUDE. And your bigotry and your greed darken your party like the dark side of the moon.

  • Hey, Dems & Repukes,don’t even think about it.. Anyone from either party who votes for this,will be taken out by the voters..Keep your grubby hands of Medicare & Social Security..These two earned programs are not the problems…

    I’m with Lovefacts and many others–stop the subsidies and corporate welfare, and get your ass away from the important programs people have paid into all these years…

  • William Deutschlander

    The only guarantee that the Republican Cartel brings to the collective bargaining table is, IGNORANCE and GREED for the top 2%!

  • No information is offered about how this coordinates with Obamacare. If seniors between 65 and 67 have access to medicare care through Obamacare, how will this be a problem? Right now, my spouse–age 63 is self employed and unfortunately has no access to medicare insurance. We’re waiting for Obamacare to kick in. But–what difference does it make if Obamacare kicks in or if Medicare kick in? I want to know this answer. Does anyone know?

  • SaneJane

    I would hate to be a 65 year old trying to get health insurance. Can only imagine the cost at this age not to mention the effort of shopping around. Are the people who think this is a good plan actually human?

    • johninPCFL

      A former employee worked for me just to pay for his health insurance, no salary. His wife had suffered a near-fatal heart attack, and both were 63. The premiums were $26k per year.

  • stcroixcarp

    The real issue here is that benefits delayed are benefits denied. The proposal to raise the minimum age of eligibility from 65 to 67 is callous and cruel The hope is that sick people will die between 65 and 67, before medicare is available. The burden of medical bills will be on the family and surviving spouse who may be on the hook for hundreds of thousands of dollars for cancer treatments, heart surgeries, etc. The “savings” will come from the deaths of heard working people.

    • northroader1775

      Does anyone remember what happened to the horse in “Animal Farm”. This is the same thing. The people who busted their ass to build the bridges and roads from the “You didn’t build that….” comment, all the orange vest types that are out there everyday making things work, those people are almost completely worn out by 65. I worked as a blacksmith for 15 years and at about 40-42 ish my shoulders just quit. I was able to once again reinvent a career and carry on but by 65 I am going to be soooooo worn out if this keeps up.

      In case you don’t remember what happened to the horse, instead of out to pasture he went out to the glue factory when they couldn’t use his back and legs anymore.

      • Those politicians do not know the meaning of hard labor. I worked for the same company for 25 years as a dressmaker. At 62 I could not even work anymore I have ASHMA from the dust. I only received $125.57 from the company pension. No 401K’ no insurance. We are not rich but we are human being like them. Someone should ask them to go and work for one day in a factory and come back talking to us about retirement.

  • 13observer

    Obama is allowing Medicare and Social Security to be compromised so that Medicaid and food stamps can take care of illegal aliens residing in our country. ARRP should be up in arms about this! Obama is only worried about getting democrats elected and not your future.

    • What unadulterated crap!! Do you realize that the vast majority of food stamp users are southern state REPUBLICANS?? And they’re not poor because of Obama, they’re poor b ecause their nitwit GOP legislatures have drastically cut state budgets and services, throwing million out of work, leaving many families with one or no breadwinners so they have no option but to apply for welfare. The Princes of Poverty are the GOP!!! America’s largest anit-Christian anti-American organization in AMERICA!!! Stick your comments you know where!!!

    • And by the way, the food stamp uses by Republicans doesn’t stop with those southern states I mentioned, it applies to the whole country: more than 70% of food stamp users are Republicans; those six states I mention also suck the most welfare dollars from Washington than any other states in the country. And it’s not just those six red states that the GOP is destroying, it’s almost every Red State in the country. The nitwits are cutting budgets during a recession which is just making everything worse for their states and the whole country but slowing down the recovery. Their nitwit actions are why welfare is up so much across the nation; it’s got nothing to do with illegal aliens!!!

      • 13observer

        Illegal aliens drive wages down and raise the cost of welfare programs and 70% of those on food stamps are not republicans where in the fu*k do you get your stats…the democrats.
        Once the illegal aliens get ahold, full-time jobs will be hard to come by! When illegals get citizenship and start a business..the first thing they do is hire illegal aliens (discrimination) without consequences!

        • Read some of the information from the few Republicans that tell the truth and you will find that Independent1 is telling the truth. Also goggle food stamps and welfare to see where most of the food stamps and welfare are used. In right to work red states that are controlled by Republican governors and legislature is where there are more people getting food stamps and welfare.

  • 13observer

    The BIG SWINDLE is the agenda of the “Prince of Poverty”…………GET DEMOCRATS ELECTED!

  • 13observer


    • why should the old folks?

    • Que? Es un idiota…The undocumented problem is in this country is not as simplistic,as you say the rich are paying for undocumented people? Are you really that stupid? The majority of big rich corporate America are interested in employing the undocumented at peasant wages and you seem to be one among the few complaining about the undocumented..Bastante ya, idiota…

      How many of these so-called rich people have you heard “bitching” about the undocumented? Name them,since you’re so emphatic about a subject you know nothing about…

      • 13observer

        I wish I didn’t know as much as I do!!!!!!! I wouldn’t be so sick about it!!! Most of the public hears stats from “politico”, MSNBC, or the “PEW Center and that is how we ended up with 20 million illegals roaming around OUR country! Sure there are employers who want cheap labor…….but what the fu*k is Obama doing to stop it? He wants votes from legal mexicans who want their fellow countrymen and women here regardless of them breaking our laws……..that should tell you alot about those legal mexicans!!!!!! The fact remains that they are here illegally and are costing us out the ass! What if you were raped and the rapist defended his action by saying; I have a right to violate the laws just like illegal aliens and should suffer no consequences!

        • What’s he done about, in the process of trying to make some sense out of the immigration situation in general with absolutely no help from the GOP, his administration has deported more illegals than any presidency since Eisenhower’s; and more than twice what the last 3 GOP presidents combined deported.

          • 13observer

            Hey PROFESSOR, Obama just gave AMNESTY to 1.7 million between the age of 0-30. That kind of undoes the deportations..besides, the deportations were just fu*king “window dressing” for the “so-called reform he wants but most democrats don’t know what the fu*k they are talking about!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Justin Napolitano

            Obama has deported more illegals in 4 years than Bush did in 8. In fact Obama has deported more illegals than any president in history. The difference is that Obama is deporting criminals not high school and elementary school children that came here with their parents.
            Please educate yourself 13, so you wouldn’t embarrass yourself with ridicules proclamations.

          • 13observer

            does the exterminator just kill the adult cockroaches? Oh my, I hope no one is offended by that statement…………… wait…………….I don’t give a FU*K if they are……………..or wait……………maybe they will call me a “racist”………….oh wait….flash…..this just in……. I DON’T GIVE A FU*K!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! these actions by the president giving AMNESTY to illegal alien criminals will turn many against the Latinos for PROMOTING ILLEGAL ACTIVITY! They are so concerned about illegals getting “ripped off” by scammers……………guess what………who cares, because they are just breaking the law like the illegals are! Too bad for their misfortune but, they didn’t care when they crossed OUR border!!!!!!!!!!!!

        • You’re too stupid for words…Not all undocumented in this country,idiota, are Mexicans..

          A path to citizenship takes all undocumented out of the shadows to become legal taxpayers to help the economy…Learn something,besides the talking points of the right wing bigoted racists,who wants everyone to be like you/them…

          We are a diverse country,whether you like it or not,we don’t give a damn,so get over it…We’re not just old,slow,grey haired and from the South…

          • 13observer

            Really, too stupid for words really? How about this……….how fu*king much are the illegal aliens with LOW JOB SKILLS and LOW INCOMES going to be paying IN TAXES professor? Tell me about all they will be paying..rather, tell me how much they will be sending to mexico and how muck welfare will they be getting as the breed like fu*king FLIES! That is why they left mexico…because they are too stupid and “overpopulate” and then can’t take care of them so they come to America where the middle class can pay for their overpopulating America! This is not fu*king mexico and we don’t need anymore “wetbacks” here living off our TAXES! So stay the fu*k out!

        • Justin Napolitano

          Oh, so it is now 20 million? Next week asses like yourself will say it is 50 million. And how do these Mexican illegal people get to vote when it is hard for even people who have been born in this country to vote after Republicans did everything they could to disenfranchise them?

  • howa4x

    The only way to save medicare is to change the way we practice medicine. The institute of medicine concluded after a multi year study that we have 700 billion of waste, fraud, unneeded testing and surgery. Doctors and drug companies treat the senior population as a cash cow, constantly putting them on medication that only maintains their illness but also has severe side effects that require more doctor visits and different medications to counteract the ones that they are taking. We can start to stop this by negotiating drug prices with big pharma, since we are the only country that dosen’t do this. That is why drugs are cheaper in Canada. Secondly we have to stop paying for random testing. Each senior should have a documented treatment plan with medicare, with a justification for deviation. Thirdly we have to stop the practice of prolonging death. If a 90 yr old goes into cardiac arrest do we need to spend 25k to save them? We all are going to die sometime and none of us is getting out of here alive yet we will spend millions prolonging death. One of the reasons this happens is that the offspring that have power of attorney will spend anything of the government’s money to keep their parent alive, or really to just to go back and rot in a nursing home. Maybe after a certian age if you want to keep you very elderly parent alive then pay 1/2 of the cost of saving them. The majority of medicaid payments dosen’t go to primary care for the poor but keeping the infirm elderly in nursing homes. We spend far too much on end of life care at the expence of getting more care to our children. Senior lobby groups like AARP should help educate seniors on advance directives and living wills instead of drawing lines about not touching any of it. Finally have to have a national conversation about death and dying in this country with out calling it dealth panels. That would be a good 1st step

  • CPANewYork

    I don’t understand why Obama is insisting on raising the tax on the wealthy when a more lucerative and ethically responsible change would be to eliminate the foreign tax havens.

    There are trillions of dollars stashed away out of the country earned by United States citizens outside the country. The basic United States income tax law subjects all income earned by American citizens to federal income tax regardless of where it was earned. The tax havens scam came about by virtue of subsequent legislation put into law by the members of Congress in exchange for lobbyists’ bribes and campaign contributions.

    The whole thing is nothing less that a filthy scam perpetrated by the rich and their minions.

    The law now requires that when those offshore fundes are repatriated, they become subject to the appropriate income tax. Ah, but Congress in its wisdom has passed forgiveness legislation to tax those funds at around eight percent. Eight percent instead of a top rate of thirty-five percent. Nice gift for the rich, huh? The rationale was that by releasing the rich scumbags from their lawful tax obligation, employment would be stimulated. We all know that that “reasoning” is nothing more than a barefaced lie.

    But there’s more: The repatriation foregiveness had some conditions, one of which read that the repatriated funds could not be used to pay executive bonuses or to buy back the corporations’ stock. Guess what, sports fans? The sleazebags did exactly that. Their defense is that they didn’t separate those funds from their other cash, so they couldn’t conform to the law. How ridiculous is that? Their corporate books must be pathetically inadequate if they cannot identify repatriated funds totalling billions of dollars.

    Not to belabor the point: The biggest slap in the public’s face is that there have been no attempts to recover the taxes evaded or to prosecute the miscreants. Why not? Where the hell is Obama’s Attorney General in all of this? Why hasn’t he started prosecutions? Where is the Commissioner of Internal Revenue? Why hasn’t the Internal Revenue Service conducted audits and imposed fines and interest in addition to demanding the payment of the evaded taxes?

  • Don

    Why doesn’t the President have all the people in our country pay the same tax?

    • The president can only do so much..Where did you get idea that the president is all powerful and can wave a magic wand? Have you ever heard of Congress?

  • Progressive Patriot

    It’s clear to me that the demand to raise the age of eligibility represents a symbolic play to save face with the Tea Party base. Their commitment is to shrink government to the size of a bathtub and then drown it in that tub. It is their plan to chip away at the social safety nets until they no longer exist. They clearly do not care about supporting our seniors, and are lacking in empathy. Can ALL of their parents be rich?

    They are fighting for lower taxes for themselves, while conspiring to de-regulate, de-fund, and de-stroy the American Middle Class. “I’ve got mine, now you go out and get yours; but I’m not going to give you a living wage, so good luck with that. You slacker.” Just look at the arrogance that they display by forcing the RTW down the throats of Michiganders during their lame duck session. Polls show that only 6% of the population wants RTW in Michigan.

    “Go to sleep!” “Accept the New Normal.” “Just be happy to have a job.” “This is the new World Economy, and there is nothing you can do about it.”

    We are at a crossroad here in America, and across the world. It’s business and the rich against the rest of us. They want complete freedom to stick us with poverty wage jobs, so that they and their shareholders can make huge profits, and live a life of luxury, while We The People, and workers around the world, are forced to live lives of quiet desperation.

    We are in a battle for the soul of this country. Make no mistake about it. We must unite. If multi-nationals want access to the greatest economy in the world, then we must force them to pay a living wage. How do we do that without unions? If we are not united, then the transfer of wealth continues, and our democracy slips away completly. The push to raise the age of eligibility, and the push to work for less (RTW) are all part of their master plan. We must push back!

    A vibrant democracy needs a vibrant and thriving middle class.

    Let’s change the conversation. Medicare for all! The best, most cost effective insurance plan. Union Yes!

  • The GOP–always willing to make things harder and kill everyone and everything that isn’t them.

  • Sand_Cat

    I believe Obama has already told Boehner he’s OK with raising the age of eligibilty, and other supposed progressives have suggested it’s best to give this “trophy” to the Republicans, as if they think handing the Repubs their first victory will somehow cause them to abandon or delay their campaign to destroy the pillars of the Democratic Party: Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.

    • Justin Napolitano

      I certainly hope President Obama didn’t give in to the republican’s concerning medicare retirement age. If you raise the age to 67 many millions of Americans will not retire until they are 67 causing even more unemployment in younger Americans.
      Leave Medicare alone!

  • feeeo

    Who is running this country: Grover Friggin Norquist or the People?

  • northroader1775

    You are such a n ass. Just go away. There is nothing to be gained from pointing out the facts to you, nothing to be gained from asking you to do some credible research, nothing…just head over to townhall where all the bubble heads agree with everything you say.

  • Someone needs to do a projection of what America would look like today had he GOP gotten it’s way on all the socially responsible issues it has faught so hard against over the past 70-80 years; and broadcast the result of the projection on nationally on TV, so all Americans can see just how destructive and worthless the GOP has been since the Big Depression. The only bright spot I can see for the GOP since the big depression is when Eisenhower took on building the nation’s interstate highway system; and he really wasn’t a Republican, he ran as one because he didn’t like the way Truman was runing things.

    When I’ve tried myself to picture what our country would look like if there had been no Social Security for the past 70 odd years , with no Medicare for the past almost 50 years; and I believe even pension plans that many of us live on and 401Ks, would at the least be much more limited, or maybe even non exisent. My imagination tells me, that at a minimum, there would be millions and millions more homeless roaming America’s streets because there would be no saftety nets for those not independently wealthy to fall back on after retirement; or maybe the word retirement would not even exist and people would be working until they passed away. And I have to believe that the life span of Americans would be many years shorter than it is today; because the vast majority of Americans would not have been able to pay the cost of medical care in their older years. Keeping in mind too, that without Medicare, GWB may well not have been able to get the drug benefit giveaway passed, or even thought of it, so millions of American’s would be going bankrupt trying to pay for their medicines.

    I would not be surprised if America came out looking very much like a 3rd world country.

  • To Gary,Dominick and Bill, AMEN! My fellow Americans, don’t you think it’s time for a referendum on if we the people should allow our employees ( Congress and Senate) to maintain government funded healthcare and retirement benefits? They seem bent on depriving those of us employers who have earned and have paid into our benefits. What say we the people decide that they should pay for their own benefits? I believe that would really help cut “government spending”. Right?

  • Typical GOP war on the middle class and the poor by trying to privatize it. They’ll probably want the Insurance Companies to write it so they can maximize their profits like the Drug Companies did with their drug plan. The GOP could care less about reducing the dept, after all they created it. They could save a lot of money if they could take bids on drugs instead of paying full price to the Drug Companies. You’ll never see the GOP do anything that makes since, their only loyalty is to the 2%. GOP message to the middle class and the poor, “if you get sick, die quickly”

  • ObozoMustGo

    Yet again, Joe Conason, the head useful idiot at The Memo, displays a stunning depth of ignorance and inability to do simple math. Medicare, by it’s own trustees admission, will collapse within 10 to 12 years. It simply is not sustainable. There is no money left with a government that borrows 46 cents of every dollar it spends, and this is going up. This means that the biggest items in the budget need to be reformed if we are to keep these programs for the most vulnerable amongst us. There MUST be entitlement reform. There is no bottomless pit of money available, folks. Use some common sense for once. Don’t buy off on this phony bullsheet that somehow simple math does not apply to government finances.

    Have a nice day!

    “We have elected some very intelligent people to administer our government… ..WHY do they (all elected government officials at all levels; National, State, & Local) not understand that we cannot continue to SPEND more than we take in indefinitely without end … … .????? Have we all gone nuts????… ..Eventually, income MUST equal or exceed spending; it’s just plain common sense, not rocket science… … !!!” – Anonymous

    • Stop trying to rationalize cuts in earned benefits..Cut out the damn illegal immoral wars and all other of the taxpayers money being thrown the rat hole and stay the hell away from Medicare & Social Security…

      By the way,BozotheClown, if you’re so against Medicare and Social Security and you are running to the mailbox each to retrieve the check,or have a Medicare card, send back the SS check and tear up that Medicare card..That’s your contribution to the national debt, right Bucko?

      • ObozoMustGo

        AS… I recognize that a great many of you on this site are sucking off the system. I am 25 years away from that, and frankly, I’d sign away my rights to what I have paid in to those systems in a heartbeat if I could have access to those funds SAVED AND CONTROLLED PRIVATELY FOR MY OWN USE LATER IN LIFE. You on the other hand are perfectly content to be a dependent, a ward of the state, and one of those losers that votes for a living instead of working for a living. I reserve the right to take back that remark if you are physcially or mentally incapable of providing for yourself. But remember, for every benefit you have given to you, other people who are working pay for you out of the fruits of their own labor.

        Have a nice day!

        “The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.” ― Alexis de Tocqueville

        • Then speak about something you know,moron…

        • Who the hell are you taking about,BozotheClown? I happened be to be a business owner taking care of myself…Take your right wing agenda and your speculation and stick it up the wazooooooooooooooo.

    • Justin Napolitano

      Obozo, no it will not. Medicare would still be able to provide 80% of its benefits in 2024 if nothing were done between now and then.
      Everyone but the rich is vulnerable to a financial catastrophe without Medicare. What insurance company is going to want to insure someone over 65 when it is almost impossible to get affordable health insurance even when you are in your late 50’s? Obamacare may help but it is not a replacement for Medicare. Do not forget that Medicare and Social Security is paid for by payroll taxes; the government is contributing nothing but a very small amount of interest earned by the SS and Medicare trust funds.

      • ObozoMustGo

        Nappy… so Medicare would be able to pay on 80% of it’s obligations? That’s your rosey scenario? What about the 20% it can’t pay? Duhhhhhh….. at least you have admitted to the impending insolvency. This is why reform is needed NOW. Not when the problem reaches the point of no return. This is called being sensible. Anticipating problems and heading them off before they arrive. What part of this do y0u leftist freaks not understand?

        And one other thing…. the IOU’s that sit in SS and Medicare are worthless because they have to be paid out of general revenues anyway. The problem with your lefist freaks is that you love these social programs, but you don’t realize that you have been duped by the politicians who have raided those funds for decades, putting you in a position of having to defend the programs when they are financially untenable. Even Obozo admitted that very same point that the programs are untenable in his interview with Bob Woodward.

        You need to wake up, Nappy.

        Have a nice day!

        “Rule of thumb… never trust what comes from the mouth of a socialist politician. They are only lying to you so they can spend other people’s money to build up their own power base and bureaucracy.” – ObozoMustGo

  • elw

    Leave it to the Republicans to suggest the most expensive and hurtful way to save Medicare. I have one question for them; what will they do to ensure that people over 60 can find affordable health coverage? Right now if you are between 60 and 65 you can count on a health insurance premium that would cost you at least 1000 dollars a month, if any of the insurers will even cover you. Try paying that on the average income of the elderly in this Country (22,000 dollars a year).

    The reason we have Medicare in the first place was by the late 1950s health insurers were refusing to cover older Americans and many seniors were dying for lack of money to go to the doctor. It didn’t only affect those seniors, it also was making a huge impact on the finances of their adult children who were scrambling to try and afford the cost of their care. This is a serious issue that goes to heart of the problem with our current health insurance system, a private sector that is more interested in their profit margins than delivering the service they are being paid for.

    Social Security and Medicare are not charity, in order to receive the benefits people have to pay into them for decades. To say that the programs will go bankrupt is ridicules; the only way that can happen is if the US is no longer able to collect payroll taxes. The Republicans are so caught on not raising taxes, they cannot see that things as simple as a small increase in payroll taxes, eliminating waste and fraud, and limiting or eliminating the profit of private health insurers contracting with Medicare can help keep Medicare strong and healthy. The bottom line, one of the decisions we have to make as Americans is where do we want to put our tax dollars? I for one think the Medicare and Social Security should be a priority; Even if that means less for the military, bridges to nowhere and benefit for people serving in Congress. How about putting Congressional members on Medicare and Social Security when they retire instead of the high end benefits we as tax payer cover? Let’s see how that changes their attitude towards the entitlements they have been fighting for decades! After all can the tax payers really afford to pay for fancy retirement and health coverage for the millionaires who have worked for us (many for short periods of time)?

  • Habodabi

    It is very easy for republicans to propose cutting medicare because they don’t personally need it. They have private doctors and excellent medical benefits. They are rich.

  • If you attempted today to pass Social Security, Medicare, Medicad, and Health Reform before this Congress the Republicans would block them. In fact, if you attempted today to pass the Voting Rights Act, the Civil Rights Act, or even if the Emancipation Amendment came up for a vote today the Republicans would block them. If the Clean Water Act, the EPA, Joining the United Nations, etc, etc. would all be blocked. You may think that I am joking but I am not !!!!!

  • ChristoD

    The REPUGNicans are all about GREED. They are all for Medicare as long as is it privatized and they can make money from it.

  • rustacus21

    ‘He spends too much’ is the conservative refrain, but when confronted w/truth (http://wwwdothuffingtonpostdotcom/bob-cesca/repeat-after-me-obama-cut_b_1955561dothtml) they run & hide or get even crazier w/stuff like… ‘it’s his out-of-control spending as why we MUST cut entitlements (http://wwwdotoffthechartsblogdotorg/what%E2%80%99s-driving-projected-debt/), when had the tax cuts ended IMMEDIATELY upon his (Obama) entering office in ’09, the Depression would be over by ’10 & the ‘fiscal cliff’ talks not even happening! America’s Middle Class & poor were injured badly by not only the 2001-2009 administration mishandling of every single aspect of the government but also when conservatives blocked & obstructed relief efforts to end the ’08 Depression. So why should the Middle Class, working poor, elderly, retiree’s & handicapped suffer still more, when the rich owe the treasury @least $10 trillion dollars by way of a deformed, purposefully damaging, crazed, knowingly worthless policy as rich-only tax cuts, knowing it would DESTROY the perfectly fine & expertly efficient Clinton economy of 2001? W/that said, this part of the discussion should NOW BE OVER!!! Life expectancy of the richest 2% has increased over the last 11 years. For the bottom 70% (especially the lower 30%), life expectancy, quality of life, income gains, savings, economic mobility potential ALL HAVE DROPPED dramatically!!! What more can the poor & Middle Class afford to give, in other words? President Obama & the Democratic/Independent Senate majority MUST ask Republicans this question, immediately exit the room & let conservatives talk this over w/their wealthy masters & corporate ‘person’ friends, about how to replace that $10 + trillion dollars they failed to pay to OUR national treasury!!! THAT is the best place to start ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations…

  • Gary, I too agree with your suggestings your soo right!!! A WAR TAX sounds great!! Iam soo tried of these REPUBLICANS messing with social security and medicare!! I will never vote for a republican ever again!!

  • The Republican Party was always for the rich . Forget the middle or the real poor .
    When will the Republicans get it that the American People are fed-up with their antics . Grow -Up Republicans of Congress and stop playing with others lives. Thinking only of yourselves again . And your oil buddies and Insuranced Companies .
    Should all Americans give the republicans a baby bottle ? because a one year old has more brains then any of them have.

  • onedonewong

    Strange the only one going after Medicare is Barak and the Dem’s. Barak TOOK $750B from medicare to fund obamacare and he now proposes another $200B reduction to balance the budget. The Dem’s proposed the american public that taxing ALLLL income with a medicare surcharge would make it solvent until 2100. Guess they were looking at the wrong calendar.
    For some reason Dem’s don’t understand that adding illegals and other who have never paid in medicare hastens its insolvency.
    Fix for medicare?? Easy stop trial lawyers from bilking the system of $400B a year

    • The money was not taken from medicare, the 750 billion were savings from better management of the system, more fraud prevention and working with the medical profession to lower the cost of care for seniors and still take the best care of them they could. GET THIS THROUGH YOUR HEAD, NO MONEY WAS TAKEN FROM MEDICARE TO FUND THE AFFORDABLE MEDICAL ACT, that is a lie that the Republicans have been telling since before the election and most of us seniors understand what President Obama was doing even if younger people like you don’t.

      • onedonewong

        No Money was taken?? Time for you to get your news from other source than the state run media. barak plans on TAKING $1 Trillion from medicare contributions. Rather than eliminate trial lawyers from stealing $400B a year from the healthcare industry

    • Justin Napolitano

      onedone, You must be among the stupidest people in the country. Everyone with half a brain knows that Obama didn’t take one dime from Medicare but only reduced the reimbursement
      rates to providers. Stop the BS, you lost the election so spare us the ridicules rhetoric.

      • onedonewong

        Time for you to quit listening to the State Run Media trying to defend barak rape of medicare. He plans on taking over $1 TRILLION from the fund. He could have fixed it by eliminating trial attorneys stealing $400B a year from the healthcare system but he refused. Why?? Because trial attorneys are the dems Number 1 contributors

  • Make ALL income, including capital gains, dividends, and “carried interest,” subject to both FICA and Medicare tax. (I’d keep current law’s once-in-a-lifetime exception for up to $250,000 per person/$500,000 per couple for sale of a primary residence.) That solves ALL of Social Security’s problems and a large chunk of Medicare’s. Then add a modest Financial Transaction Tax (aka Robin Hood tax), which would both reduce the deficit and disincentivize speed trading.

  • irishtap

    It took me a while to figure out the GOP wasn’t interested in human rights, dignity and fairness at the work place, a quality education system, protecting our fragile planet from the excess of industry, or allowing consumers to know if a ‘frankenseed’ grew the food they’ll be ingesting etc etc . Perhaps worst of all : their clandestine and fervent war against representative government.

    These people are vicious and vile. If this sounds a little strong, it is from ‘not only’ my own observations that I arrive at this summary; but from republicans themselves, that are not simply disenchanted from the ravenous activities of the party. But see a reckless mission toward complete dissempowerment of the citizen. A retired conservative judge, whose name escapes me, said “the actions of the GOP are causing me to become (less conservative).” Mike Lofgren who spent nearly three decades in Washington as a dedicated republican operative wrote a scathing article about the party he had been committed to for so many years and it’s fall to what he described as a “cult”.
    I suggest you GOOGLE it, it’s wholesome honesty, caught me off guard. He isn’t fond of democrats, but he makes it crystal clear :it is the GOP, that is ruining government and by extension – the country.

    Lofgren points out his discovery of the end game philosophy: obstruction as standard governing practice, from disscussions with elected representatives is absolutely, definetly the mission of republicans to turn people off from government, they hope will result in lower voter participation. Circumvent the machinery of democracy through manipulation of it’s gears to bring it to a grinding halt. These UNpatriotic insects want citizens to simply give up on their country. It’s the Republican plutocrats that gives capitalism a bad name. We must NEVER succumb to this hideous disease.

  • seems to me from an insurance point of view it would make more sense to reduce the medicare age to 62. that would add 3 years of younger and healthier insured to medicare and remove 3 years of older and less healthy(relatively) from the private insurance plans. a financial benefit for all.

  • That is what the republicans want; they are full of hatred (ie. one term president) trying to fend off becoming extinct, and willing to sacrifice one another, their own sons and daughters, their own supporters (ie.47% 0f which only 0.2% would not need medicare, caid or ss.) due to their hatred of Barack Obama being the President of these United States.