Wonky Muse
Wonky Muse

February 16, 2005

Scare Tactics

Last week, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-Ca) gave an excellent speech at the San Francisco Senior Center about the lowdown on Social Security privatization.

She mentioned a White House memo marked "not for attribution" which states, "For the first time in six decades the Social Security battle is one we can win – and in doing so, we can help transform the political and philosophical landscape of the country”, confirming that the ultimate goal is not to "strengthen" Socials Security but to destroy it.

Also, this memo supposedly outlined ways to justify privatization by using alarmist language like "crisis", "bankruptcy" and "collapse". Regarding this tactic, she said:

So let’s talk about these scare tactics for a moment – the “iceberg” strategy. If someone told you that your family would be in solid shape for the next 38 years, you would probably breathe a sigh of relief because that would mean you had done everything necessary to prepare for the next 38 years to pay for your rent or mortgage, feed your kids, take care of your health care, and send your kids to college.

During those 38 years, keeping your eye on the future, you would have to try to earn more, save more, and prepare for that 38th year. You wouldn’t have to throw up your hands and sell your house. And you certainly wouldn’t call your situation a crisis. Frankly, we all face the fact that expenses go up over the years and our families need to prepare for those challenges.

When it comes to Social Security, President Bush not only wants to sell the house, but the car, the antique grandfather clock, and the wedding band. In essence, he is walking away from the foundation of America’s most successful insurance program using scare tactics.

I couldn't have said it any better. Check out the speech here; it's worth a read.

posted at 7:40 PM by Wonky Muse

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"Sapere Aude."
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Wonk (noun): def. A political nerd. Know spelled backwards.

Wonky Muse is the other Filipino American female political blogger. The sane, liberal one.


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