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December 30, 2012



With all due respect, Obama does not consider entitlement cuts to be a wound. He's said for many years now--at least since his speech before The Hamilton Project in 2006--that he is open to cutting entitlements. He offered cuts at the last debt ceiling hostage crisis and he said in the debates that he and Romney had essentially the same position on Social Security. He's not bluffing; he's more than willing to cut.


I don't see the Social Security concession as anything other than a strategy...he offered it with other items he knew the Republicans would reject and NOW it's off the table...let the Republicans be the ones screaming about cutting entitlements! Actually, as a S.S. recepient I can live with a smaller COL...we have been for the past three years or so!


Social Security is not a contributor to the debt and Obama should have left it out of the discussion along with the $400,000 level, which is now the starting point for negotiations.

As a future recipient of Social Security, I do NOT want to live with a smaller COLA. In fact I want larger baseline payments for Social Security benefits and, being fiscally conservative, I want them funded by higher tax rates on all income, including capital gains and dividends, a Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street, a reduction in Defense spending and no more wars.


Sorry, wtf, I cannot be that greedy. I do feel that people my age are so freaking lucky to be over 65 and have SS and Medicare (I did not sign up for Medicare D as it was a gifr to big pharma...)but that aside, this year's COLA gave me $22 a month more and then Medicare payments went up $5 a month more. I was raised by parents coming out of the Great Depression and I can make do. That said, I want the very rich to pay their share so that my hard-working kids and grandkids will have jobs and the benefits I now have!


On SS take off the Salary Cap, Means Test benefits and change COLA from CPI to CPI-E. That should be the Democratic counter position to the Republicans!

Peter G

As someone who quite regularly negotiates contracts and settlements of disputes I disagree with your assessment with regard to this strategy. In fact individual items offered in negotiation are often contingent on the acceptance of other terms. The SS chained CPI calculation could only be considered a trivial matter in a real sense as far as dollars go. The effect is minute and any cumulative effect so remote and easily correctable later as to amount to no more than a face saving sop to the Republicans. A concession which was previously considered by them to be laughable and which they now consider to be an essential deal breaker? I think not. It is merely an excuse to walk away from negotiations and thereby a confession that there was no deal acceptable to the majority of the Republican caucus. Act two follows.

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