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Sat Feb 15, 2014, 06:30 AM

Dear Mr. President: Don't You Dare Cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2014/02/14-5



Having seen mistake before, senators preempt Obama on suggesting cuts to safety net are solution to budget issues

Dear Mr. President: Don't You Dare Cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid
- Jon Queally, staff writer
Published on Friday, February 14, 2014 by Common Dreams

A letter spearheaded by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), signed by fifteen Democratic colleagues and sent to the White House on Friday warns President Obama against calling for—as he has previously—cuts to Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid in his upcoming budget proposal.

Obama was rebuked strongly by progressives nationwide last year when he included a plan to cut Social Security benefits as a way to reduce future budget deficits.

As the letter from the 15 senators states, "Social Security has not contributed one penny" to the current deficit. In fact, it continues, the program "has a surplus of more than $2.7 trillion and can pay every single benefit owed to every eligible American for the next 19 years."

In addition to defending both Medicare and Medicaid funding, the letter goes on to say that "these are tough times for our country" but that additional cuts would make life for a struggling middle class and those living in poverty "even more difficult."

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Arrow 44 replies Author Time Post
Reply Dear Mr. President: Don't You Dare Cut Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid (Original post)
unhappycamper Feb 2014 OP
Scuba Feb 2014 #1
KG Feb 2014 #2
durablend Feb 2014 #3
msanthrope Feb 2014 #6
delrem Feb 2014 #12
msanthrope Feb 2014 #18
FiveGoodMen Feb 2014 #27
yurbud Feb 2014 #40
cate94 Feb 2014 #4
msanthrope Feb 2014 #5
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #7
NorthCarolina Feb 2014 #8
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #22
NorthCarolina Feb 2014 #32
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #35
NorthCarolina Feb 2014 #37
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #38
Faygo Kid Feb 2014 #9
George II Feb 2014 #16
Faygo Kid Feb 2014 #17
George II Feb 2014 #19
Chef Eric Feb 2014 #11
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #23
George II Feb 2014 #25
bvar22 Feb 2014 #30
George II Feb 2014 #31
bvar22 Feb 2014 #33
George II Feb 2014 #34
yurbud Feb 2014 #42
delrem Feb 2014 #14
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #24
delrem Feb 2014 #26
Drunken Irishman Feb 2014 #36
delrem Feb 2014 #39
berni_mccoy Feb 2014 #10
rurallib Feb 2014 #13
berni_mccoy Feb 2014 #20
rurallib Feb 2014 #15
oldandhappy Feb 2014 #21
bvar22 Feb 2014 #28
yurbud Feb 2014 #44
MisterP Feb 2014 #29
yurbud Feb 2014 #41
yurbud Feb 2014 #43

Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 07:12 AM

1. Kick.

 

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 07:55 AM

2. why the poutrage? it hasn't happened, yet. which, of course, is proof it would never happen.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 07:56 AM

3. Cue the apologists...

"He hasn't cut anything yet, YOU HATERS!!!!"

"With that attitude, enjoy Republican rule folks!"

"You want a pony with that?"

Etc, etc, etc...

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Response to durablend (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:39 AM

6. No apology from me for understanding basic civics. Article I, section 8. If the members

 

of Congress don't want the President signing a budget with cuts.....perhaps they should not send him a budget with cuts.

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Response to msanthrope (Reply #6)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:17 AM

12. Meanwhile as we wait... maybe the Pres. *won't sign* such an abomination?

Is that really too much to ask?

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Response to delrem (Reply #12)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 10:01 AM

18. Sure...but then you have the problem of omnibus spending and section 7. This is why 2014 matters.

 

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Response to durablend (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 02:02 PM

27. I seem to remember that the Pony meme hit the press

before Obama had even been in office for a month.

That would imply that someone was expecting the complaints and had a talking point ready ahead of time.

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Response to FiveGoodMen (Reply #27)

Mon Feb 17, 2014, 11:21 AM

40. good point.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:32 AM

4. K & R

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:37 AM

5. Article I, section 8. nt

 

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:43 AM

7. DEAR MR. PRESIDENT, DON'T YOU DARE INVADE CANADA!

I mean, if we're just going to demand the President not do something he has never done before...

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:59 AM

8. Has Obama suggested invading Canada before?

 

You may not be aware, but he HAS actually suggested cuts to Social Security.

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Response to NorthCarolina (Reply #8)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 12:53 PM

22. Has he cut Medicare, Medicaid or SS?

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #22)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 06:12 PM

32. He can't do it by himself, but he has hearalded that he thinks it would be a good idea.

 

That's more than enough for me to go on. Perhaps you don't have a problem with cutting Social Security and that's all fine and good, for you, and you can certainly use this venue as one outlet to explain why you agree with the President. But to simply be "in denial" by couching your anti-safety net positions in a "has he done it yet" is a bit ridiculous and adds nothing to the discussion.

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Response to NorthCarolina (Reply #32)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:13 PM

35. Can you provide the link?

I know you'll come back with the Chained CPI, which is not a cut, but I'll even give you that - so, show me any statement or reference to his wanting to cut Medicare and Medicaid. Thanks!

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #35)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:47 PM

37. In what universe is chained CPI not a cut to Social Security???

 

LOL...no further discussion is really necessary. I can see from your claim re chained CPI that you and I have absolutely nothing in common, so there is really nothing to base any discussion on.

For the record though, I found your juxtaposition from

well, forget about his wanting to cut Social Security,

to

But show me where he said anything about cutting Medicare or Medicaid

is quite priceless.

I guess Social Security really isn't all that important......to some.

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Response to NorthCarolina (Reply #37)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 11:10 PM

38. Are benefits actually cut?

And why is it that you're only focusing on SS? When has Obama ever proposed to cut Medicare or Medicaid? I love how you keep ignoring that part about this 'petition' - hence my 'don't invade Canada...'

Keep spinning. Still waiting for that evidence.

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:01 AM

9. He has threatened cuts before

Take the execrable "chained CPI" as an example.

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Response to Faygo Kid (Reply #9)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:22 AM

16. Here we go again - the chained CPI is NOT a cut!

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Response to George II (Reply #16)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:31 AM

17. Yes, it is

It is a recalculation of inflation that will result in a reduction in Social Security benefits over time.

That's a cut.

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Response to Faygo Kid (Reply #17)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 10:48 AM

19. It's a different way of calculating INCREASES (!!!)

I've done this before - compared the historic Social Security COLA to the CPI back to 1976.

Over those 38 years the COLA was higher than the CPI in only 16 years, it was LOWER than the CPI in 22 years.

If one were to take an average of the two (not the best way to compare, but....), the average COLA was 3.93% and the average CPI was 3.97%.

Further, if one were to take $1.00 and compound the annual adjustment for both the historic COLA and the CPI, the result in 2013 would be $4.26 using the historic COLA and $4.33 using the CPI.

Any way one plays with the numbers, historically tying the Social Security increase to the CPI would have resulted in an overall HIGHER increase than the actual increases.

All this "the sky is falling" gloom and doom about the chained CPI is unrealistic gnashing of teeth.

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:16 AM

11. Ridiculous comment.

The President has never suggested that invading Canada is a possibility, but he has suggested that Social Security benefits could be cut.

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Response to Chef Eric (Reply #11)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 12:54 PM

23. Can you give me a link on him saying we need to cut SS, Medicare and Medicaid.

Hell, the ACA actually expanded Medicaid.

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #23)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 12:58 PM

25. DI, the fact is that he never said anything about cutting SS, Medicare and Medicaid...

...I think people are drawing the mistaken conclusion that if the annual SS increases are tied to the CPI it will result in a Social Security "cut". That is definitely not true.

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Response to George II (Reply #25)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 03:17 PM

30. John Conyers disagrees with you.

[font size=3]
Rep. Conyers: Obama Demanded Social Security Cuts--Not GOP[/font]

"We've got to educate the American people at the same time we educate the President of the United States. The Republicans, Speaker Boehner or Majority Leader Cantor DID NOT call for Social Security cuts in the budget deal. THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES CALLED FOR THAT," declared US Representative John Conyers in a press conference held by members of the House "Out of Poverty' Caucus on 07/27/11."

Conyers added ""My response to him (President Obama) is TO MASS THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE IN FRONT OF THE WHITE HOUSE TO PROTEST THIS."

This declaration is significant both politically and morally as Conyers is not only the second most senior representative in the House, but was also the first member of Congress to endorse candidate Obama. Conyers doesn't merely draw a moral "line in the sand' but he presents a candid picture of violent contrasts between himself and the first African-American president.

http://www.opednews.com/articles/Rep-Conyers-Obama-Demand-by-Jeanine-Molloff-110729-352.html




I trust John Conyers to get it right, and to tell me The Truth.
He has had a long career of doing just that,
Getting it Right for the American People,
even when it has been politically inconvenient for him to do so!

This man has sterling creds.
He was #13 on Nixon's Enemy List!

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Response to bvar22 (Reply #30)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 03:45 PM

31. Okay then, what is it that Obama said?

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Response to George II (Reply #31)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 07:45 PM

33. Rep. John Conyers word is not good enough for you?

What do you bring to this table?

John Conyers is one of the very best with a LONG history of Standing for what is RIGHT.
I'll take this man's word over any anonymous poster on the Internet who doesn't even live in the USA,
and thus has no skin in the game.

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Response to bvar22 (Reply #33)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 07:59 PM

34. For your presumptuous information, I was born in Brooklyn NY and live in Connecticut, AND....

....I'm living on savings and Social Security benefits. So, I'd say perhaps (not knowing your circumstances) I may have a LOT more "skin" in this game.

Politicians say a lot, much of it in generalities. I do respect John Conyers very much, but if he said that Obama wanted to cut SS benefits, surely you could come up with either what Conyers specifically said other than the quote you provided OR you can come up with specifically what Obama said in reference to "cutting Social Security".

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Response to bvar22 (Reply #30)

Mon Feb 17, 2014, 11:23 AM

42. shit--that's the bigger story than this letter.

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #7)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:20 AM

14. You can do better than that.

You can, for once, be one of those who do what he asked in 2008, and rally with the Dems who had/have hope to put his feet to the fire? Since, unlike invading Canada, he *did* mention e.g. chained CPI...

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Response to delrem (Reply #14)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 12:55 PM

24. Link me to his plans to cut all three. Thanks!

You do realize Obama expanded Medicaid, right?

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #24)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 02:00 PM

26. Definition of 'or': used to link alternatives. nt

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Response to delrem (Reply #26)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 08:14 PM

36. So no?

Got it. I still haven't heard Obama ever hint or suggest at any type of Medicare or Medicaid cut. In fact, he expanded Medicaid. So, I'll stick with my analogy.

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Response to Drunken Irishman (Reply #36)

Sun Feb 16, 2014, 01:46 AM

39. Unlike you I distinguish between the connectors 'and' and 'or'.

It isn't the kind of distinction that I'm going to allow some coyness about fudging 'to make a point'.

I do hope that Pres. Obama doesn't sign onto some damned Republican cuts to what the Republicans call "entitlements", for the sake of what bought and paid for politicians and pundits call "bipartisanship" and "moderation", however the cuts are named and packaged.

I haven't the perspective that you have, Drunken Irishman. For one thing, I'm a Canadian and haven't the intimate understanding of US social issues that Americans have, or *should* have. For example, I'm astounded beyond anything I could possibly have imagined before it happened that the US would cut the food stamp program -- because the US food stamp program is *already* totally backward (not even in the same ballpark) as compared to minimum annual income type programs being developed in enlightened parts of the world. Likewise "Obamacare" is *already* totally backward compared to any of a variety of single-payer programs already implemented and continuously being developed in enlightened parts of the world (note that these single-payer programs are *all* steps in advancing a minimum annual income policy). I don't see *any* advantage to be had for either Democrats or Americans as a whole from the DLC/third-way strategy of "triangulating" in order to fight for the votes of so-called Republican "moderates". In fact I can't see how such triangulation is anything but suicidal for reasonable, progressive and enlightened people, because such triangulation doesn't appeal to reason. That kind of DLC/third-way type strategy of triangulating against the Republican extreme (or rather, the right-wing corporatist extreme) is pure corporatism, plain and simple.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:05 AM

10. Not this again. Folks, it ain't gonna happen.

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Response to berni_mccoy (Reply #10)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:18 AM

13. Wish I could be so sure

shoot I remember when Obama would never agree to extend Bush's tax cuts. Good thing that never happened.
There is a list of things we would never thought Obama would do. When he even brings up these ideas (and he sure has with SS) he scares me.

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Response to rurallib (Reply #13)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 10:51 AM

20. Obama only said the things he did to bring Republicans to the table. That isn't gonna happen now

Any chance Repubs wanted to work with Obama was blown.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 09:20 AM

15. If Hillary is thinking about running for Pres.

she needs to tell obama to back off SS and Medicare or he will totally decimate the democratic party.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 11:17 AM

21. These decisions are made in Congress.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 03:03 PM

28. Is a simple, direct statement like THIS too much to expect from a Democratic President?

#t=26

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Response to bvar22 (Reply #28)

Mon Feb 17, 2014, 11:25 AM

44. if one wants to have the support of Wall Street, apparently yes.

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Sat Feb 15, 2014, 03:05 PM

29. or what?

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Mon Feb 17, 2014, 11:22 AM

41. what counterbalancing pain does this budget inflict on the rich?

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Response to unhappycamper (Original post)

Mon Feb 17, 2014, 11:24 AM

43. left out of the letter: stop letting Wall Street dictate budget policy

This letter went to easy on Obama--it implied he was simply weighing different policy options and hadn't considered the facts mentioned in the letter.

They should have gone to the reasons he is considering it at all: his big donors on Wall Street want to divert the money from Social Security into their own pockets, and reduce social spending so their taxes can be lowered AND so more money will be available to bail them out when their Ponzi schemes implode.

Taking advice from Wall Street about government spending is like taking diet advice from Jeffrey Dahmer, who is less concerned about your health than what kind of meal you'll make.

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