Repubican’s Big Lies On Social Security – Why Do They Hate Seniors?

Updated Below with just found information!

Republican’s have consistently lied about Social Security and for many years. As with most of their lies, they come to believe them after repeating them enough. We’ve all known liars who are sociopathic and truly believe their own lies, well, I put a lot of the GOP in that category because it’s hard to explain how they can continue the lie, even in the face of the actual facts.

Social Security is not “on-budget” and has no effect on the deficit or the national debt. People pay in and people draw on it. There have been many accounting gimmicks used over the years to use Social Security surpluses to hide the actual debt for any given year. Go here for a detailed history of Social Security, it’s interesting to read if you are a total geek like me. Here is a summary of Social Security and it’s “on-budget” and “off-budget” status…(emphasis mine)

Summary –

So, to sum up:

1- Social Security was off-budget from 1935-1968;
2- On-budget from 1969-1985;
3- Off-budget from 1986-1990, for all purposes except computing the deficit;
4- Off-budget for all purposes since 1990.

Finally, just note once again that the financing procedures involving the Social Security program have not changed in any fundamental way since they were established in the original Social Security Act of 1935 and amended in 1939. These changes in federal budgeting rules govern how the Social Security program is accounted for in the federal budget, not how it is financed.

It’s interesting to note that during Reagan’s term, they did a hybrid approach, make it off-budget except for computing the deficit, nice little trick Ronnie and Company.

Another lie being perpetuated by both Republicans and Democrats has to do with the life expectancy of Americans and whether it has increased very much over time. This is new information to me, I have to admit, but it makes complete sense. Thanks to Steve Benen once again for his great writing and insight, from Steve…(emphasis mine)

After Simpson made some bizarre remarks about retirement ages and the history of Social Security, Grimm pressed the former senator on his understanding of the basics.

“HuffPost suggested to Simpson during a telephone interview that his claim about life expectancy was misleading because his data include people who died in childhood of diseases that are now largely preventable. Incorporating such early deaths skews the average life expectancy number downward, making it appear as if people live dramatically longer today than they did half a century ago. According to the Social Security Administration’s actuaries, women who lived to 65 in 1940 had a life expectancy of 79.7 years and men were expected to live 77.7 years.”

I don’t think a lot of Democrats even know that fact, to be honest. I often hear them say that we have to do something because people are living longer. When in reality, they are only living slightly longer because averaging things out tends to skew reality and give people like Republican’s a kernel of misinformation that they can run with.

The other big lie is that Social Security is in dire straights and something has to be done immediately to fix it. It just isn’t true, the latest estimates that I found say it is solvent for the next 27 years, nearly 3 decades. From Pacific Progressive…

Many policymakers and analysts are insisting that there is an urgent need to make major changes to Social Security. Their argument that long-term imbalances make the case for action now have even swayed some who consider themselves supporters of the program. A new issue brief from the Center for Economic and Policy Research, calls attention to the fact that Social Security will be fully solvent for the next 27 years and any premature action to make changes to the program will have a severe impact on millions of near retirees.

“Misinformation about Social Security has led many to believe that Social Security is in immediate danger of insolvency” said Dean Baker, a co-director of CEPR and author of the report, “but the program will be fully solvent for almost three more decades. Furthermore, even if no changes are ever made, a child born in 2010 can expect to see a benefit that is more than 50 percent larger in real terms than what current retirees receive today.”

So don’t believe the “sky is falling” folks who are trying to create a false urgency in order to undo the social safety net that Americans have been relying on since it was implemented 70 plus years ago. I always have to think that these people must be extremely rich if they don’t see a need for Social Security for themselves, their parents and grandparents. Damn, it must be nice to be so comfortable that they don’t have to rely on Social Security when they retire. But to me the larger issue is how can they care so little about the people who aren’t rich and have paid into the Social Security trust fund their whole lives, counting on it for their later years. What sort of person is willing to hurt the seniors in our country who I was taught to take care of, respect, and who’s wisdom should be cherished.

I’m encouraged by the announcement yesterday by Sen. Max Baucus, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, when he said “he doesn’t think Congress will address Social Security as part of an effort to reduce government borrowing.” I would have preferred a more definite statement, but I’ll take that one. I wonder if the whiners in the Professional Left, who wasted so much time and energy bitching about the “cat-food commission” and their recommendations, will spend just as much time lauding the President and Democrats for not touching Social Security. Yea right!

Update: The People’s View has a post up responding to an Ezra Klein post that sheds more light on the above. I’ll just send you over their if you want to get into the minutia. There is more to the idea that people aren’t living that much longer. Go read it for a great analysis, albeit pretty deep, of Social Security. That’s a great site over there.


2 thoughts on “Repubican’s Big Lies On Social Security – Why Do They Hate Seniors?

  1. Watch for natural disasters such as tornadoes, drought, fires, floods, etc. to affect upcoming economic numbers….

    The flooding along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers may alter the economy with gas prices already going back up being attributed to barges unable to bring crude oil to the many refineries in Louisiana. That and the preparation the refineries must do to protect their properties along the river will cut back on fuel production.

    All 19 riverboat casinos along the river will be shut down by the end of the week, possibly costing state governments millions in lost tax revenue. The gambling industry’s 13,000 employees will temporarily be out of work and any extended flooding and damages could add to the unemployment rolls.

    But wasn’t the flooding Obama’s FAULT??? Pat Robertson will again blame it on the GAYS. For sure, NO Republican will blame the weather extremes all over the planet on Global Warming.

  2. Hasn’t it always been mostly “3 score and 10” that was the lifespan at the time of the writing of the Holy Bible?

    In my family, longevity was in our genes. My grandmothers generation all lived to ages between 93 to 102, my great-grandmother’s generation mid-90’s also. (men have mostly died in their 70’s and 80’s) However, my mother’s generation all died in their early 80’s and all of cancer, a condition that wasn’t a part of our family’s medical history. So in these modern times with the newest medicines and technology not afforded to previous generations, in my family people are dying younger. Lost my niece in Austin last year at age 53. What has changed in our environment to bring about cancers in families where it had been mostly unknown? Cause of death used to be “old age, natural causes” usually pneumonia or an aneurysm.

    Even my oldest American ancestor, died in 1857 at age 88 after having delivered 18 babies over 30 years back in the days of really natural childbirth, no drugs! Surprising, also, that in an age of leeches in medicine, children born at home, no pre-natal care, that 17 of her children lived into adulthood. My direct ancestor, Joanna, lived to age 92 passing away in 1884.

    Here is part of my genealogy of my French ancestor who fought under General Lafayette and was wounded at the Battle of Yorktown that enabled the United States to be formed. (Unlike many, I don’t badmouth the French).

    BTW, my French Marine ancestor is the only reason some women in the family were eligible to join the D.A.R. Joseph Tremeau-Sippy was too injured to return to France with Lafayette and was left behind to be treated by the Doctors Johnson in Fredericksburg, Virginia. The Johnsons were Irish immigrants. The recuperating French Marine fell in love with his doctors’ daughter which caused a problem between France and the new American government. France proclaimed him AWOL and wanted him returned and the USA was not in any hurry to deliver him. In the meantime, Sippy-Tremeau got his girlfriend pregnant and they finally had a Presbyterian wedding only a month before their first of EIGHTEEN was born. For some reason they traveled to what is now West Virginia to be married. Did the pastor know she was 8 months pregnant?

    I am also proud that their son, Dr. Joseph Sippy, Jr. (dropped the Tremeau), moved “west” to Indiana where he set up a practice, and became part of the Underground Railroad, even using his house as a stopover for escaping slaves on their way to Michigan and Canada.

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