McLaughlin Group Conservatives Defend Perry's Ponzi Scheme Remarks

Another week, another day for Eleanor Clift to get ganged up on as the lonely representative of the “left” on PBS's The McLaughlin Group. This week one of the topics was Gov. Rick Perry's statement during the GOP debate that Social Security is a
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Another week, another day for Eleanor Clift to get ganged up on as the lonely representative of the “left” on PBS's The McLaughlin Group. This week one of the topics was Gov. Rick Perry's statement during the GOP debate that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme. Naturally, Mort Zuckerman, Pat Buchanan and Rich Lowry all came to his defense.

ZUCKERMAN: Yes, well you know there was a cartoon in The New Yorker and somebody was asking Bernie Madoff, “What was your inspiration?” He said “Social Security.” I'm not making that up. Okay, so that's in fact what you have in Social Security is we all know, you have millions of people who are going to be beneficiaries over the next several decades, and the funding still isn't there. And nobody's being willing to address this, either by postponing the age at which you get it. So in one sense it is clearly a false basis for the financial structure of it.

After McLaughlin chimes in and claims the money is not going to be there for young people as well and who also calls Social Security a Ponzi scheme, then we get treated to Pat Buchanan with yet more fearmongering.

BUCHANAN: But John, there is no trust fund. They say, look at the trust fund out in Virginia, they borrowed it and spent it. There's an IOU out there. He's telling the honest, though, hard truth! Is is smart politically? Romney is stomping all over him for having said it.

After some back and forth over whether Perry made a political mistake with what he said, we get this from the National Review contributor and Sarah Palin fan-boy, Rich Lowry.

LOWRY: The Ponzi language is not what's most dangerous to him. If he goes into a general election saying it's a failure and unconstitutional, then it will be hard to defend. But no one believes in the financing of Social Security over the long term. But it is a mistake for Romney to take this on now.

Late in the segment, Eleanor Clift finally got a chance to weigh in and talked about lifting the cap on taxable income to shore up the funding and the difficulties those who do manual labor would have with increasing the retirement age. Of course they all had a good laugh when she mentioned, heaven forbid, any of them possibly having to pay more in taxes. Heaven forbid any of these overpaid rich white men should think they might have to participate in some “shared sacrifice.”

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