AP tagline (08/14): “President Barack Obama used the anniversary of Social Security to trumpet Democrats’ support for the popular program and accuse Republicans of trying to destroy it.” Remember the (stacked) Deficit Commission? Key relating quote: “everything on the table.” That was President Obama – including Social Security in the “austerity” mix. As a result, this is Ripe – as election season ploys (note recent articles on the sway of using Social Security as a mid-term campaign issue). “Obama said he’s ‘committed to working with anyone, Democrat or Republican, who wants to strengthen Social Security.'” Somehow, the person who put Social Security “on the table” is also supposed to be the same person who is a champion of “strengthen[ing]” it? (Word game/setup alert: cutting can lead to solvency, even if there are no actual solvency problems.) On one hand, he scores points by “accus[ing] Republicans of trying to destroy,” based on the privatization issue. On the other, he had already opened the door to destruction, based on “self-sacrifice” and “personal responsibility” (after 75 years – and millions upon millions have lost their jobs). This is what’s happening – with “everything on the table”: “Housing crisis reaches full boil in East Point; 62 injured.” This is what’s at stake – under the auspice of “Austerity: “Individual Mandates Bootstrap the Homeless.” This is what’s still going on – while we hear condescending updates on “Shared Sacrifice”: “How Goldman gambled on starvation.” Again, what was the (immediate) main target of Bush II after the 2004 (second stolen) election? Social Security. Since 1935, what has been at the top of ongoing goals for the conservative elite, as far as dismantling programs? Social Security. What was one of the main safety nets we Believed Obama would never allow to be Changed (gutted, step by step)? Social Security. As another domino is set to fall because of his administration’s continuous sellouts, there are no doubts of (progressive) betrayal remaining. The “collective good” they promote is a fascist focus as a guarantee for chosen corporations – and bootstraps as the only guarantee for the masses.
FDR, August 14,1935: “Today a hope of many years’ standing is in large part fulfilled. The civilization of the past hundred years . . . has tended more and more to make life insecure. Young people have come to wonder what would be their lot when they came to old age. The man with a job has wondered how long the job would last. This social security measure gives at least some protection to thirty millions of our citizens who will reap direct benefits through unemployment compensation, through old-age pensions and through increased services for the protection of children and the prevention of ill health.”
And now, we are maybe two “only a sliver” PR cycles (“heated rhetoric“) away from the next Change We Can Heave In. [Other notes: 1) Associated Press: “Unless Congress acts, Social Security’s combined retirement and disability trust funds are expected to run out of money in 2037.” Pure talking points propaganda. Reality: “The wildly pessimistic projections are based on assumptions that the economy will grow an average of 1.8 percent per year for the next 75 years – less than half the rate of the previous 75 years.” 2) Republicans: “An increase in Social Security taxes is out of the question, even for the wealthy.” But, of course.] Update (09/04): Re: Labor Day Irony: The People Who Want to Cut Social Security All Have Great Retirement Plans More Labor Day reflections: The (robber baron) Deficit Commissioners crowd – the “elite” that Bush II referred to as his “base,” the group that President Obama allowed to be purposely stacked into a predetermined place – would have us forget, or evolve from (as in Social Darwinist Commission recommendations) certain history. What are the origins of the Pullman Strike? Why did President Cleveland want to “reconci[le]” with the labor movement? Who was right – the oppressed workers being gouged to early deaths, or rampant, soulless corporatists? What was right – taking the side of “the least among us” while they were under endless siege, or emboldening the assailants further by placating their ongoing looting mentality? Further, where did the eight-hour work day/five-day work week come from? Vacations? Pensions/retirement? Child labor and Safety regulations? Minimum wage? When corporate marauders crashed the (bubbled) system in 1929 (causing the Great Depression), who eventually stood up to Hoover’s status quo – while providing a mutually benevolent renewal of the rules (and opportunities)? FDR. Now, under the most similar of circumstances, ask yourselves: Which president, Hoover or FDR, would have set up a Deficit Commission (selectively biased for the bourgeoisie’s desires)? In relation, what would Bush II have done? Final question: Who presented a populist campaign based on Hope and Change – then went in the opposite direction once at the helm? Update (11/10): “President Obama’s . . . deficit reduction commission just proposed slashing Social Security.” In relation to narratives created by Fox/Koch Brothers, etc., and what was the continuing mindset of the remaining minority, Obama appointed a biased Deficit Commission – during a Second Depression. At the same time, he “Put Social Security on the Table.” Then, the Deficit Commission’s (predetermined) recommendations were put off until after the midterms. Now, with a new House, Obama and the remaining Blue Dogs will seek even more of that (veil of) “Common Ground,” and “Compromise” – while the sacrificed hear further sermons on the sanctity of sacrificing.