Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Repubs Still Trying To Destroy Social Security

I have bad news for those of you that thought Georgie's plan to destroy Social Security had died and gone away. Although no action on it will probably be taken until after the election in November, another plan to change social security has been devised. The architects of this plan are Jeffrey Liebman [assistant for economic policy for Bill Clinton], Maya MacGuineas [adviser to John McCain], and Andrew Samwick [former economist on Georgie's Council of Economic Advisers]. It is called the LMS plan.

These plan designers call this a "nonpartisan" plan. They say it has elements in it that will please and anger both parties. These experts met at the American Enterprise Institute on monday to discuss the plan. Let's look at this plan and see if it really is "nonpartisan".

1. The taxable wage cap would be raised. Currently the cap is set at $94,200. This proposal would raise the cap to $171,600, and bring in more money to the system. [Democratic]

2. The payroll tax rate would increase for workers. At this time, workers pay 6.2% of wages and employers add another 6.2%. This proposal would gradually raise the rate on workers until it is at 7.7% in 2018. Note that only the worker's rate is raised and not the employer's. I can't imagine any Democrat supporting this concept. [Republican]

3. Raise the retirement age for full benefits. The age would be gradually raised from 66 to 68. The early retirement age would be raised from 62 to 65. While this may not affect rich republicans much, it would have a huge impact on the poor and working-class in this country. [Republican]

4. Cut the benefits paid out by Social Security. Today, Social Security replaces about 41% of a worker's salary. This plan would cut that to 35%. Again, this hurts those who can afford it the least. [Republican]

5. Create mandatory investment accounts. Every worker will be required to have an investment account [no one can opt out of this program]. About 3% of a worker's earnings will go into this account. This will allow the rich republicans on Wall Street to suck even more money out of our system. [Republican]

Well, there you have it. This "nonpartisan" plan simply does not pass the smell test. Looks to me like they added one Democratic plank to Georgie's old plan and are now trying to sell it as a bipartisan solution. It is not nonpartisan and it is not a viable solution. It must be stopped before it can be sold to the American people by the greedy, lying republican Congress. Once again, we see just how important the upcoming election really is.

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