The fiscal cliff is a self-created bi-partisan drama that demonstrates the failure of traditional politics and the need for mobilized resistance and a new independent political movement. The mass media and operatives from the Democratic and Republican parties have raised all sorts of imagined fears to provide cover to unnecessary cuts to health, retirement and social programs, while marginally increasing taxes on the wealthiest. But watch out! This is really only the set-up for the payback to big business interests that bankrolled the 2012 elections.
President Obama is on track to be the first Democratic president to cut Social Security benefits at a time when pensions are disappearing and it is the primary source of income for elderly Americans. Social Security does not add to the deficit as it has a $2.7 trillion surplus, expected to rise to $3.7 trillion according to the Social Security Trustees. Cuts to Medicare and Medicaid are also on the table; no doubt other safety net programs will also be cut.
While Democrats like to blame Speaker Boehner, and he and the Republicans deserve their share of bi-partisan blame, Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi is cheering on the retirement cuts saying they would “strengthen” the program. Pelosi, who keeps her leadership by raising millions from the wealthy, has raised $328 million since becoming leader including $85 million in the 2012, seems out of touch with how retired Americans teeter on the verge of poverty. In fact, while Social Security keeps 21 million out of poverty, the Census Bureau reports that in the last decade there has been a 78% increase in Americans over 60 facing the threat of hunger and one in six seniors live in poverty. The Social Security Administration reports projected poverty rates are quite sensitive to the assumption that benefits are not further reduced. The proposal made by Obama and endorsed by Pelosi (and other leading ‘progressive’ Democrats) as strengthening would noticeably reduce benefits of retirees – a person who retired at 65 in 2000, if they live to 92 will have one month cut annually as a result.
And I'm going to note that Bob Somerby has no ideas of his own and appears ready to openly steal from C.I. now. That's the warning shot. If that bastard isn't toying but is about to start seriously copying C.I. and he thinks he can get away with it without being called out, he's got another damn thing coming.
It's end of the year time. As you wait for our usual end of the year pieces, might I suggest you enjoy C.I.'s year-in-review pieces for the last years?
May I further point out that if Bob Somerby thinks he's going to show up doing a 'year of . . .' at this late date and pretend like he's just thought of it?
After all the dirty smutty e-mails his drunken friend Tim sends C.I.?
Yeah, Bob Somerby, pretend like you're doing something you just thought of as you rip off yet another woman, you piece of trash.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"