Hey America, guess what! Paul Ryan still wants to kill Medicare!

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medicare poster paul ryan, eric cantor, boehner

privatization

Austerity does not work. Just ask Europe. Privatization doesn't either, it just widens the wealth gap and creates more inequality. In fact, because of budget cuts, “even police protection is more accessible to those with cash.”

Steve Benen at The Maddow Blog:

The unemployment rate was effectively unchanged at 7.9%, and as is often the case, austerity measures undermined the employment landscape — while America’s private sector added 166,000 jobs in December, the public sector lost 9,000 jobs. Indeed, over the last three months, the nation’s private sector added 624,000 jobs, while 24,000 government jobs were lost.

It’d be easy for Washington to improve the latter number and lower the unemployment rate, but congressional Republicans won’t allow it.

By the way, GOP, you can scratch more talking points off your list, because three-quarters of deficit reduction has been via spending cuts, and we have the slowest spending in decades.

The L.A. Times:

Fired up as once-unimaginable spending cuts start to slice the federal budget, Republicans are launching a new phase in their austerity campaignresurrecting the party's cost-cutting plan to turn Medicare into a voucher-like system for future seniors.

Read that first part again. Republicans are "fired up" over the nation going down the sequester toidy, and they actually believe they have momentum. And by momentum, they mean every poll showing disagreement with their policies:

poll cuts taxes ed showpoll sequester ed show

In fact, GOP Sen. Rob Portman was protested at panel discussion for supporting Medicare, Social Security cuts.

And Michael Hiltzik wisely asks: Cut Medicare and Social Security? What’s the rush?  There's a good reason why Republicans refuse to provide details.

Did I mention that those "future seniors" who Republicans speak of so dismissively may not realize it yet, but they won't like what's coming down the ol' voucher pike?

So what do they do with their imaginary momentum? Clearly, something constructive to get us out of the ditch their party created, right?

Ryan's approach would transform the benefits program into one that would provide a fixed amount of money in a voucher that future seniors could apply to the cost of buying private health insurance or to buying coverage through traditional Medicare.

Again, that "fixed amount of money" is a drop in the bucket compared to the costs of even one medical procedure... which would be covered by Medicare. And how many seniors can or want to switch from Medicare-- a program that works so well and has a proven track record-- to spending a fortune on premiums to Big Insurance which cares nothing about them but cares a whole lot for their damned bottom line?

What part of "This plan has never gotten American support" doesn't Ryan get? Read our lips, Paul: That would shift healthcare costs from the government to seniors.

Ryan's budget proposal is expected to lock in $1.2 trillion in sequestration-linked cuts over the next decade, while also reducing growth in the costs of Medicare and Medicaid — the health program for the poor, disabled and seniors in nursing homes. Other safety net programs, including food stamps and school lunches, also would be targeted.

See how the GOP is changing their ways in order to appeal to more voters? Me neither.

Oh, and to anyone out there who still thinks Chris Christie is worthy of praise and would make a swell Dem, think again. Chris Christie supports the Ryan Budget.

Finally, just for good measure, a couple of L.A. Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Re “Seniors vs. kids claim is a sham,” Business, Feb. 27

As a senior, I am concerned about my Social Security and Medicare benefits. However, I am also concerned about the future prosperity of my children and grandchildren.

Your writer correctly points out that the chatter about “generational theft” in the debate over national fiscal policy is an intentional distraction. This false proposition that we must choose between spending on seniors' benefits or spending on our children's futures diverts attention from the national economic policies of the last 30 years, which have damaged the economic security of most Americans. These flawed policies caused an immense transfer of wealth to the top 1% while most Americans' incomes stagnated.

We don't need excessive wealth languishing in private hands and corporate slush funds. Our country has enough wealth to serve the needs of all our seniors, our families and our children. We need more of this wealth redirected to serve all Americans.

John D. Kelley
Santa Barbara

***

The argument that Social Security is causing a generational rift is just as false as the use of the term “entitlements” to describe both Social Security and Medicare.

The generational theft is a scam created by those who are trying to kill these programs. The truth is that the benefits from these programs may be greater for young people than they are to the old.

Consider this: When Social Security and Medicare pay for the cost of caring for your parents and grandparents (and that is who the old people are), it relieves the young of that obligation. The point is, if those programs do not pick up those costs, who do you think will have to? The children and grandchildren.

Sanford Thier
Marina Del Rey

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  • http://www.facebook.com/Gaililly Gail Anderson

    For Ryan to even think of cutting Medicare for the elderly is disgusting. Does he not realize that we worked all our lives for this, that friggen little weasel. My husband is 72 yrs. old and I am 69 and I have had cancer and many other health issues. Without our Medicare which we are still paying into eery god dam month, we won't make it. I am on 16 meds a day. Does he have any idea what the cost of all this would be??? We barely make it now and we are living in elderly housing on just SS. My husband began working at 12 and I was 17 and we paid into these programs all our lives and now that we need it this SNAKE, LYING CHEATING BASTARD WANTS TO TAKE IT AWAY FROM US?? HE CAN GO TO HELL. He will anyway. It was ok when he and his motoher used govt. progrms though wasn't it??? College funding for him and the mother, medicaare for his mother which she don't even need as the father's business has made them wealthy. He took the programs but now that we can no longer work and our health isn't what it use to be he wants to take away the one thing that we really NEED???? HE IS AN EVIL and may he rot in hell.

  • ORAXX

    Killing Medicare won't, magically, make the health care issues of the elderly go away and it won't reduce the cost of dealing with those issues go away.  The costs will still be absorbed by the economy as a whole and will be borne, largely, by everyone paying a health insurance premium.  Evidently, conforming to Ayn Rand's abstract ideas, that have never been demonstrated to work, is our ultimate objective.  Paul Ryan's two-bit religiosity combined with Rand's total lack of humanity, is a sickening combination.

  • lahru

    with every job loss,a feeling of rejection and sadness. Going home knowing tomorrow is going to be different. No paycheck next week, and days later you get the letter regarding Cobra and you know that will not be affordable and sink further when the bills arrive and you can only afford food for the next few weeks and the car payment and rent/mortgage weighs heavy at night when you are trying to go to sleep.

    Those that were the jobless and entered into the column of employed were relieved to look forward to a paycheck and paying their way. 

    you get my drift, it is emotionally, depressing and enjoyable.