Breaking News: Otter Puppies Are Adorable, Especially When Learning to Swim | Main | Joe Miller's Spelling Lawsuit
November 10, 2010

Simpson, Bowles Propose Cuts to Social Security and Medicare as Part of Deficit-Reduction Panel

Above-the-Main-Post Update: Drew reads further and writes:

They want to repeal state and local tax deductions.

Looks like the mortgage thing only applies to 2nd homes and mortgages over 500K, not entirely.

They also say roll non-defense, discretionary spending back (starting in '12) to 2010 levels. In other words, lock in all of the Obama spending forever and always.

They can go fuck themselves.

Uh, yeah on that last bit. Roll back spending to 1998 levels -- like as spurred the Miracle Economy of Bill Clinton (TM) -- and that's a good start.

And here we go!

Leaders of President Barack Obama's bipartisan deficit commission on Wednesday proposed reducing the annual cost-of-living increases in Social Security, part of a bold plan to control $1 trillion-plus budget deficits.

The proposal also would set a tough target for curbing the growth of Medicare and recommends looking at eliminating popular tax breaks, such as mortgage interest deduction.

As proposed, the plan by Chairman Erskine Bowles and former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo., doesn't look like it can win support from 14 of the commission's 18 members to force a debate in Congress. Bowles is a Democrat and was former President Bill Clinton's White House chief of staff.

Cuts to Social Security and Medicare are making some liberals on the panel recoil. And conservative Republicans are having difficulty with options on how to raise tax revenue. The plan also calls for cuts in farm subsidies, foreign aid and the Pentagon's budget.

"This is not a proposal I could support," said Rep. Jan Schakowsky, D-Ill. "On Medicare and Social Security in particular, there are proposals that I could not support."

The Social Security proposal would change the inflation measurement used to calculate cost of living adjustments for program benefits, reducing annual cost-of-living increases. It will almost certainly draw opposition from advocates for seniors, who are already upset that there will be no increase for 2011, the second straight year without a raise.

Overall, that sounds pretty good to me. The cut to the mortgage-interest deduction is of course effectively a hike in taxes for homeowners, but I'm not sure if that alone is a reason to oppose it.

So, here's a serious proposal, quite heavy on the spending cuts and rather light on tax increases, which seems pretty necessary if we're to get spending under control.

A la Allah:

Exit question: Are the majority of Tea Partiers ready to actually make the cuts they talk about in vague, abstract ways, even when such cuts reduce social spending directed towards them?

Exit answer: No.

Here's the sad fact: People want free stuff, including (or especially) those who talk the loudest about ending the flow of free stuff to other people.

That said, this is important stuff, and should be pushed as hard as possible.

But, like a dozen other blue-ribbon deficit-reduction panels' proposals that came before it -- all making similar recommendations -- I expect this will go nowhere.

The Democrats will of course demagogue this, and the GOP will flinch.

Oh: Beating up on "the establishment" is a favorite past-time right now, but it should be remembered the establishment panders to us -- they reflect, then, what we're asking of them.

P.J. O'Rourke noted in his book Parliament of Whores that none of the sensible cuts he suggested would ever actually happen, because for each subsidy, there is a constituency demanding the subsidy -- including rock-ribbed individualist conservatives who don't truck with no government hand-outs (but farming subsidies aren't handouts, you know).

We wind up with a parliament of whores, he wrote, and in a democracy, the whores are us.

And making a similar point -- Milton Friedman.

digg this
posted by Ace at 01:57 PM

| Access Comments

Recent Comments
JT: " Jewells, he is immune now you probably are too, ..."

Insomniac: "Hey Emmie! ..."

qdpsteve: "AOP, hmmm thanks. ..."

deplorable unperson - refuse to accept the Mask of the Beast [/b][/i]: " [i]President Trump can leave office without form ..."

chique l'African Viking Math Queen of Greenland (Happy Thanksgiving to my American allies!): "is she cooking moar yummy yummy stuff? Posted by: ..."

vmom Trump Won! : "Presidebt Trump will leave office 2025 ..."

Mike Hammer, etc., etc.: "'bubble', dammit. ..."

chique l'African Viking Math Queen of Greenland (Happy Thanksgiving to my American allies!): "Hello, Chique! Sounds like you had a nice Thanksgi ..."

Mike Hammer, etc., etc.: " Not as many as in the Large Pyramid collapse. P ..."

Wake me up when Tyson's in the ring: "[i]YouTuber Jake Paul scores a brutal knockout vic ..."

Adriane the Brothers Gruff Fan Club Organizer Critic ...: "[i]What was the worst industrial accident of all t ..."

Michael the Texan [/i][/s][/u][/b]: "[I]Parts of it sounds nuts, yet parts of it just w ..."

Recent Entries

Polls! Polls! Polls!
Frequently Asked Questions
The (Almost) Complete Paul Anka Integrity Kick
Top Top Tens
Greatest Hitjobs

The Ace of Spades HQ Sex-for-Money Skankathon
A D&D Guide to the Democratic Candidates
Margaret Cho: Just Not Funny
More Margaret Cho Abuse
Margaret Cho: Still Not Funny
Iraqi Prisoner Claims He Was Raped... By Woman
Wonkette Announces "Morning Zoo" Format
John Kerry's "Plan" Causes Surrender of Moqtada al-Sadr's Militia
World Muslim Leaders Apologize for Nick Berg's Beheading
Michael Moore Goes on Lunchtime Manhattan Death-Spree
Milestone: Oliver Willis Posts 400th "Fake News Article" Referencing Britney Spears
Liberal Economists Rue a "New Decade of Greed"
Artificial Insouciance: Maureen Dowd's Word Processor Revolts Against Her Numbing Imbecility
Intelligence Officials Eye Blogs for Tips
They Done Found Us Out, Cletus: Intrepid Internet Detective Figures Out Our Master Plan
Shock: Josh Marshall Almost Mentions Sarin Discovery in Iraq
Leather-Clad Biker Freaks Terrorize Australian Town
When Clinton Was President, Torture Was Cool
What Wonkette Means When She Explains What Tina Brown Means
Wonkette's Stand-Up Act
Wankette HQ Gay-Rumors Du Jour
Here's What's Bugging Me: Goose and Slider
My Own Micah Wright Style Confession of Dishonesty
Outraged "Conservatives" React to the FMA
An On-Line Impression of Dennis Miller Having Sex with a Kodiak Bear
The Story the Rightwing Media Refuses to Report!
Our Lunch with David "Glengarry Glen Ross" Mamet
The House of Love: Paul Krugman
A Michael Moore Mystery (TM)
The Dowd-O-Matic!
Liberal Consistency and Other Myths
Kepler's Laws of Liberal Media Bias
John Kerry-- The Splunge! Candidate
"Divisive" Politics & "Attacks on Patriotism" (very long)
The Donkey ("The Raven" parody)
Powered by
Movable Type 2.64