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September 06, 2012

Obama Will Address Entitlement Reform Tonight

Actually, I'm pretty sure he'll just say what he's said a thousand times before.

First of all, he'll discuss, as Clinton did, his "plan" in which each $2.50 of "real cuts" is matched by $1.00 in tax increases.

The Democrats -- like Clinton -- are fond of telling tales of woe of what horrors the Republican cuts will bring. "They won't even tell you the details of what they'll cut," they often say.

Meanwhile, the media doesn't seem to notice that when Obama speaks of his 2.5+ trillion in cuts, he doesn't specify what will be cut, either. Here's one thing he plans on cutting: Medicare.

Now, Romney and Ryan plan to cut that too. But the Democrats are fond of describing Republicans' necessary reforms to the social welfare system as catastrophic, while the media apparently thinks that Obama's own planned cuts (and who knows if they'll ever happen; he's shown no courage thusfar) are a sort of "magic" cut which doesn't hurt anyone.

We saw this in Clinton's pulsating, squamous speech, wherein he described the Parade of Horribles that would flow from Romney/Ryan's cuts, but was very silent on the harm caused by cuts when he spoke of Obama's planned 2.5 trillion cut.

Similarly, Clinton claimed Obama's cuts to Medicare-- $716 billion! -- were not in fact "cuts" at all. In fact, he claimed, this "strengthened" the system.

Look, if cutting programs "strengthens" them then Democrats and Republicans have little left to argue about. Then let's "strengthen" all of them.

But of course this is nonsense on stilts. The Democrats do not believe that cuts "strengthen" programs. They scream that cuts "destroy" programs. They make this one claim with respect to one cut -- Obama's $716 billion cut to Medicare, because it's politically potentially catastrophic. So this one cut has the remarkable quality of actually "strengthening" the system.

Suppose you put aside $100 a month for your retirement. And suppose I want to sell you a pricey widget you don't need. I tell you to just pay $50 a month for my widget for 10 years, and take it out of your retirement savings.

When you object, saying that that would deplete your retirement savings in favor of a widget, I counter that cutting that money actually "strengthens" your retirement account.

Is this plausible? At all? Taking money out of an already badly underfunded program "strengthens" it?

Again, if so, let's similarly "strengthen" all Washington spending programs.

Sounds to me more like a huckster trying to convince you to abandon your prudent retirement plan in favor of his Shiny New Piece of Shit.

The other thing Obama will talk about is a "balanced approach," by which he means raising taxes.

Will this move the needle? I don't think so because he's said this crap already about 100 times by my count. I don't see how much fresher and novel he can make this very old material sound.


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posted by Ace at 02:19 PM

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