Democrats for a while have successfully painted Conservatives as political 'extremists'. From everything to abortion to giving tax breaks to the rich. This has been a boon to the Democrats in terms of winning elections. Unfortunately, it also gives them power in terms of messaging our deficit and debt problem. Because if you listen to President Obama and the Democrats in Congress, this is only a problem as far as Republicans don't let the Democrats increase taxes on the rich.
I have already pointed out that President Obama's Tax Increase Only Cuts Deficit by 7.5%, which leaves 92.5% of the problem unresolved. This means that the rest either has to come from taxing in other ways, or cutting out of control spending. Senator Harry Reid however has decided that any attempt to reduce budget expenses via Social Security will be off the table:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Wednesday that he will not allow changes in Social Security to be part of the negotiations to avoid a federal budget fiscal cliff, further narrowing the opportunities for savings that could be tapped to close the deficit.
Republicans have insisted that big entitlement programs such as Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid be part of the end-of-year negotiations to head off tax-rate increases and the $110 billion in automatic spending cuts.
But Mr. Reid said Democrats have already made changes to Medicare as part of President Obama's health law, and said Social Security is solvent for the time being and shouldn't be tapped to pay for other government needs. Read more: Reid takes Social Security off the table - Washington Times
Very nice of Senator Reid to take one of the country's biggest expense off the table. Also very nice of him to pronounce Social Security as being solvent when the assests were taken years ago and exchanged for US Treasury Bonds. Not to mention the fact that the President was scaremongering how insolvent Social Security was, that checks would not go out if the debt limit was not increased.
Look, there are a number of places where the budget can be adjusted to help save the US from financial ruin. It is a fact that Americans are living longer. With that comes increased expenses as retirees collect Social Security for much longer than was ever expected. In light of this, Either Social Security retirement ages should be increased or Social Security taxes should be increased to offset the higher costs of older people living longer.
Senator Harry Reid however is insisting that Social Security not be changed, instead keeping it operating in a fashion that is completely unsustainable.