Cenk Uygur: If the Democrats Have Any Sense They'll Make Social Security a Defining Issue for 2010
Cenk filled in for Dylan Ratigan again and wrapped up Friday's show with a spot praising the Democrats for finally looking like they're striking the right chord with their latest political ad going after Republicans for their views on privatizing Social Security and handing the funds over to Wall Street with a few very huge qualifiers following that praise that I could not agree with more.
Uygur: Finally, the Democrats getting it. This is such an obvious winning strategy and the Republicans gave you the Queen here when John Boehner and Mike Pence came out and said, hey you know what, maybe we should raise the age of Social Security before you even get it, or when they said maybe we should cut your benefits.
You know what the numbers are? The American people hate that idea. A new AARP poll says 85% of the country oppose cutting Social Security. 68% say even though the budget is really important, that we shouldn't cut Social Security or Medicare to trim the deficit according to a recent Greenberg poll.
Look, the American people are absolutely clear on this. When the Republicans asked over and over as Bush did and now Pence and Boehner are doing, "Hey can we cut your Social Security?" the American people say "Hell no you can't!" to quote John Boehner.
So given this golden opportunity, why don't you attack on this? Make Boehner the new Gingrich and say if Boehner is in charge of the House, what he's going to do is he's going to come after your Social Security?
That has the added benefit of being true. But how do the Democrats screw this up? Look, it's a good ad and a good campaign to start with but they've already shot themselves in the foot because already Steny Hoyer who's one of the leaders in the House came out and said "Well maybe we should consider trimming Social Security or raising the age that you would have to retire and then James Clyburn came said very similar things.
Now that's the trouble for the Democrats in the House, but how about Obama? Obama, a Democratic President that promised change has got a deficit commission where 14 out of the 18 people involved in the commission are fiscal conservatives.
The likely result of that deficit commission is, they're going to come out and say let's cut Social Security.
Yes it is. As Cenk said it's not too late for them to make this a defining issue if they had an ounce of political sense at all. Given Gibbs brain dead remarks this week, I've got to wonder. I've said this before and I'll say it again, if they think the public is going to sit quietly if they decide that the Social Security trust fund doesn't have to be paid back after they raided it or that Americans are going to be duped into turning it over to Wall Street, they've got another thing coming. Get rid of the cap and make the rich start paying their share. And while you're at it lower the rate for all of us when you do that.
Cenk's filling in for Ed Schultz next week. I'll be happy if I hear more like this out of him then. Robert Gibbs backtracked and said that President Obama does want to be pushed by the left to do the right thing.
Yeah, whatever buddy. If he decides to listen to that wingnut deficit commission of his, it's not just going to be the "professional left" he's hearing from. You go mess with Social Security and you're going to piss off a bunch of old people no matter what party they're affiliated with. And don't tell me it's not going to anger them if you think it's alright to break the social contract we promised their grandchildren as well.
I keep hearing the GOP talking heads say want to honor the contract for older Americans, but the youth of this country had just better get used to the idea of being thrown under the bus. I'm not buying for one minute that the public is going to like that any better than their privatization scheme.
Not everyone in this country's political mantra is "I've got mine and screw you". Some of us actually care that our friends, our families and our neighbors aren't out on the street begging for scraps. If we don't get this country back to work and yesterday would not be too soon, that's where way too many of us are going to end up no matter what happens with Social Security.