In the coming budget battle, a growing number of Democrats have chosen a side — against the American people.
The battle lines are forming within the Democratic Party over the charged question of reforming Social Security in the days leading up to President Obama’s State of the Union address.
Liberals, such as Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and labor unions, such as the AFL-CIO, AFSCME and SEIU, have taken a firm stand against cutting Social Security benefits.
They are still reeling over the deal Obama struck with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) in December to extend almost all of the Bush tax cuts and chop the Social Security payroll tax for one year by 2 percentage points.
There isn’t a reasonable person in this country right now who imagines we can make a serious dent in the deficit unless we get Social Security under control. That will almost have to include some sort of benefit adjustment. Whether that means pushing the retirement age up, means-testing recipients, or (my personal choice) developing a private system that will let people opt out of the government-run program is up for debate. What we can not do is exactly what the progressive left wants — massive tax increases. The rest of the country understands this, even if we don’t agree on the details.
According to this recent CBS News poll, a stunning 77 percent agree that spending cuts are the answer to our deficit problems. Only 9 percent want to raise taxes yet again. If you throw in the 9 percent who want to do both, the percentage of Americans who say we must cut the federal budget jumps to 86 percent.
Of course, that’s the one thing the public sector unions and creaky Socialists like Sanders, who make all their money off of us, can not allow. Bigger budgets in Washington mean less freedom for us and more control for them. They will fight to their last breath against our liberty, even if that means they destroy Social Security, Medicare, the housing market, and whatever remains of our still-struggling economy in the process. I’m okay with that fight, because when we win, we will have crushed their dreams of a totalitarian America and driven them so far from the levers of power that it’ll take them a generation to get near them again.
That will make us all a lot more free, prosperous, and happy.
Category: The Economy and Your Money