If you read the monthly reports, you will find that Politics Plus readers tend to be older, poor, and more female that male (although of course both are represented.) Those of us living in the Unitd States who fit that description are probably living mostly or totally on the earned benefits of Social Security. I know I am.
So I thought that the content of this article from Mother Jones should be posted to Politics Plus.
Now, it's nothing new that Republicans want to cut Social Security (or should I say gut Social Security?) That has been true since it was created in 1935. But usually, when government programs are cut that people depend on, current recipients at least are "grandfathered" in so that the cuts will apply to future beneficiaries. Well, that's not exactly true of this bill.
The Mother Jones article includes the complete first draft of the bill, but also refers to Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo, from whom I'd like to quote:
[Y]ou're out of luck even if you're a current beneficiary…. [R]eviewing the summary of the GOP bill, keep the following in mind. If you've been working for any number of years, but especially if you've been working for two or three decades, you've been paying in not only money for current beneficiaries but additional money which was invested in US government bonds to make it possible for Social Security to pay benefits of Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers…. This plan appears to foresee the government never paying that back to Social Security. In other words, your payroll taxes have been socking away additional money to cover the growing senior population. But this bill says too bad. That money goes for high income tax cuts.
Nancy Pelosi had this to say: "Apparently nothing upsets House Republicans like the idea of hard-working people getting to enjoy a secure and dignified retirement." Yes, she went into more detail, but that sums it up.
Even Yahoo! Finance has a scary article:
The bill introduced by Johnson, who was recently acting Chair of the Ways and Means committee, slashes benefits, adds means testing, and would raise the retirement age from 67 to 69. For most workers, the bill would cut Social Security benefits substantially. As Michael Linden, associate director for tax and budget policy at Center for American Progress, pointed out on Twitter, a letter from Social Security’s Office of the Actuary calculated workers making around $50,000 would see checks shrink by between 11% and 35%. Nearly every income bracket would see a reduction….
The Mother Jones article is the only one I found which has the actual complete text of the draft bill. It is 54 pages long. I haven't finished reading it myself yet – I am still dreading it. But I wanted to get this up so we can all share.