Simpson-Bowles Recs: Progressive Deficit Reduction All But Ignored to Further “Serious” Attacks on Middle Class

By: Thursday November 11, 2010 4:30 pm

I don’t feel like going point by point through the recommendations put forward by President Obama’s deficit commission appointees Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles, mainly because their real goal is to advance conservative ideology; they are a wish-list of horrific, anti-middle class proposals supported by only two men with no real political power. But I do want to highlight their treatment of a robust public health insurance option, a very popular progressive idea that would also have the added benefit of cutting the deficit. It perfectly encapsulates the anti-progressive, anti-middle class, pro-corporatist ideology the “serious” people try to advance using their deficit hysteria.


The Budget Cap: A Prescription to End Any Hope of Progressive Governance Forever

By: Thursday November 11, 2010 1:30 pm

Atrios is right: the idea that someone can be “serious” about the deficit while wanting to extend historically low tax rates is ridiculous. But that’s only true if you think yesterday’s Bowles-Simpson recommendations for deficit reduction had anything to do with deficit reduction. Clearly they don’t.

Bowles-Simpson Outline Cuts Pay, Raises Health Care Costs for Soldiers

By: Thursday November 11, 2010 8:30 am

On this day as we pause to remember our soldiers, airmen, midshipmen and Marines, remember that Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson want those men and women to get paid less, spend more for their health care and have their houses and workspaces left to rot.

Obama’s Catfood Commission Already Hurting America

By: Thursday November 11, 2010 6:02 am

Everyone must now debate the measures recommended by the inept chairs of the Deficit Reduction (aka “Catfood”) Commission to reduce the federal deficit. The fact this topic is the focus of attention is itself a national tragedy and a sign of the political elite’s unwillingness to heed the public’s concerns and their desire that government focus on the nation’s real priorities.

Cutting Social Security Would Prove Disastrous for Democrats at Polls

By: Wednesday November 10, 2010 6:25 pm

While more and more prominent Democrats slowly joining President Obama’s drum roll in support of Social Security cuts “reforms,” like those just put forward by the co-chairs of the deficit commission he appointed, this most recent election should give them serious pause before pursuing these recommendations.

In this last election, Democrats performed terribly with senior citizen voters. National House exit polling shows only 38 percent of those over 65 voted for Democrats while 59 percent votes for Republicans. This is the worst showing for Democrats among seniors in decades and a big part of why Dems lost so many House seats.

According to a Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research memo (PDF), it was concerns about the “cuts” to Medicare in the new health care law that caused such a huge swing away from Democrats among the elderly.

Third Way Says Cutting Social Security and Public Health Care a Sign of “Leadership”

By: Wednesday November 10, 2010 3:15 pm

This is a really vicious proposal. But just because it has a few tax increases doesn’t necessarily mean that Republicans won’t take it and run with it. And there are enough Democrats in the Third Way side of things to be swayed by a “get serious” approach.

Catfood Commission: Increase Retirement Age, Cut Social Security Benefits, VA Co-Pays, Corporate Tax Cut

By: Wednesday November 10, 2010 12:55 pm

Keep in mind that this is more of a shock doctrine document than a blueprint; they have no support on the commission for all this, and they’re trying to gather it with this early release.

Trumka: Catfood Commission Co-Chairs Just Told Working Americans to “Drop Dead”

By: Wednesday November 10, 2010 12:15 pm

What does AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka think about the recommendations made by the co-chairs of the Catfood Commission?

Co-Chairs Simpson, Bowles Release Benefit-Slashing Report to Pressure Catfood Commission

By: Wednesday November 10, 2010 10:45 am

Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, co-chairs of the President’s fiscal commission, are holding a surprise press conference at this hour to announce the chairman’s mark for recommendations to deal with the nation’s budget deficit. Included in those recommendations are benefit cuts to Social Security and Medicare, as well as tax changes.

Peter Orszag and the Drive to Cut Social Security

By: Friday November 5, 2010 6:00 am

The Democratic deficit hawks are moving their attack on Social Security into high gear. They hope that progressives will be sufficiently disoriented by the election defeat to allow them to attack this essential program.

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