Looks like Tommy Christopher at Mediaite figured out what we've been saying over here for a long time now... that David Gregory is a right wing tool who's constantly advocating for really bad Republican economic policies along with a bunch of his fellow Villagers in the media: David Gregory Tells Morning Joe That President Obama Must Gut Medicare To Succeed:
On a very special 2nd Quadrennial Barack Obama Day edition of Morning Joe, Meet The Press host David Gregory provided some more evidence against the mythical “liberal media bias” when he endorsed the emerging Beltway media consensus that in order to deal with debt and deficits, President Obama is going to have to gut Medicare. “He’s got to be able to convince his own party, but also to do something that, frankly, Americans don’t want done,” Gregory said of Medicare, “which is to have to give back some things.”
[...] what’s significant is that Gregory wasn’t offering merely pragmatic political advice, but actually endorsing the idea that the way to solve our fiscal problems involves cutting Medicare for beneficiaries.
Unfortunately for America, President Obama has already indicated a willingness to move in that direction, having already placed raising the Medicare eligibility age on the table. Raising the age will only shift those costs, at higher rates, and only partially away from the federal government. Those two extra years will either be paid for by the seniors themselves, who will be charged up to 3 times as much for health insurance on the individual market, or by the government in the form of Medicaid for those who can’t afford private insurance, or by private insurance companies.
What no one is talking about is that Medicare is a huge break for private insurers, who get to lay off their highest-risk patients onto the government. People with retiree group health insurance will be covered by their health insurance for those two extra years, at great expense to those companies. The amount of money they pay out in claims will far outstrip what they can take in in premiums, and the additional premiums will fall on those retirees’ employers.
The other problem is that, relatively speaking, 65 and 66 year-olds are bargains for Medicare, and eliminating them from the program would only succeed at making the overall pool of Medicare recipients older and sicker. If there was a way to eliminate the last 2 years of eligibility, you’d be on to something.
Gregory and his fellow beltway hacks Joe Scarborough and Tom Brokaw have been singing this tune for some time now as we've pointed out here over, and over, and over, and over and over again. And as Christopher rightfully noted out, there are ways to make Medicare solvent without turning it over to the private insurance market:
Imagine the bleating if David Gregory, or any mainstream, “objective” journalist, bothered to point out that you can solve Medicare’s solvency “problem” (which is, at ten years’ solvency, the same as it’s always been) by some combination of raising Medicare taxes, making Medicare available to everyone, and, as Chris Hayes constantly points out, giving Obamacare time to kick in, and see what it does to health care costs.
Neither of those examples represents “bias,” of course. What Gregory did on Morning Joe was analysis, it was just bad analysis, wrong analysis. The problem is that this is what Washington lawmakers listen to.
And we had the hapless Eugene Robinson sitting next to him who didn't give an ounce of push back to Gregory. For anyone who doesn't watch the show, this has really become a daily event on there to be pushing for the social safety nets to be gutted, no matter who the guests are. If someone they have on isn't doing it, Scarborough is. Here's Gregory from this past Friday, telling the audience that cutting "entitlements" (And I hate that word by the way. They're earned benefits.) will lead to growth in the economy. Of course no one asked him how jacking up health care costs for all of us and funneling more money to the private insurance market is going to do that.
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