Medicare and Social Security Can Expect Cuts
If there is ever a deal between Congress and the president, to divert cuts and find some common ground, or should I say some fair trades, the big three entitlements will face cuts, the president has already let us know that this is likely in any “Grand Bargain”. In a jobs speech to Congress back in September 2011, President Barack Obama said this concerning entitlements:
“Now, I realize there are some in my party who don’t think we should make any changes at all to Medicare and Medicaid, and I understand their concerns, but here’s the truth. Millions of Americans rely on Medicare in their retirement. And millions more will do so in the future. They pay for this benefit during their working years. They earn it. But with an aging population and rising health care costs, we are spending too fast to sustain the program. And if we don’t gradually reform the system while protecting current beneficiaries, it won’t be there when future retirees need it. We have to reform Medicare to strengthen it. ”
This president is ready to negotiate, if Republicans want to negotiate. This is what I believe: If President Obama makes a deal, it will likely include a raise in the age an individual can collect Social Security benefits for those currently under 55 years old, probably by a couple of years, perhaps 69 years of age. Current Retirees and those nearing retirement would be exempt from any change.
In my opinion, the way to fix Social Security is to raise the deduction taken from everyone’s payrolls and lift the cap off the annual income amount taxed by Social Security. Those of lower-income would only see their deductions go up a few bucks on their paychecks. The problem is; Congress cannot do it the simple way because it would be called an increase in taxes and that is not popular, especially when it hits everyone who collects a paycheck.
I believe Americans can accept the fact that they are going to have to take a small hit in their salaries to help pay for their future Social Security. Not all of us are tightwads, like a few rich people I know. Many of us may be having a difficult time making ends meet but we also know the necessity of paying higher prices for some things, our retirement included.
As far as Medicare, I think Obama has a card up his sleeve; I think he believes that The Affordable Care Act, Obamacare will take up the slack, whatever cuts he agrees upon with Congress. What is interesting, is while Republican lawmakers are asking for cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, Obamacare is getting ready to be implemented nationwide next year.
As a side note, I think Medicare perhaps will in ten or twenty years, be swallowed up by Obamacare and it just will cease to exist, as a matter of streamlining the system. The idea would be to provide the same amount of care those who are retired currently, receive. Of course, I think Medicaid will be done away with first, as it would be an entirely redundant program when Obamacare is fully implemented.
In my opinion, our health care system is a jumbled mess that needs to be swept away and started all over, and only as a single-payer system. Of course, I realize the practicality of that happening makes me realize that solutions that are more realistic must be created. I think Obamacare is a good start but a long way from the mark of what this nation needs. Perhaps it is the road to what we need and that is what is important now. Our future legislators — hopefully a more mature bunch than the current — will amend it as our knowledge grows with experience of Obamacare.
I agree; there needs to be cuts in the current entitlement programs but with caution not to touch the funds of those who will need them the most. Average, working Americans can understand that they need to pay a bit more to make sure the same benefits and everything is protected for a long time.
For many Americans, it is not a few extra dollars out of our paychecks to pay for our own, old age security; it is getting a paycheck in the first place. In addition, those who do get a paycheck would like to get a better paycheck, throw in a few benefits too. The corporate world and Wall Street has been prospering a great deal, thanks to us consumers and the workforce who creates, builds, manufactures, transports, sells and everything else that has to do with keeping this nation growing and going.
That means it is high time that the Middle-Class and all us working stiffs finally to get our dues. We can start with Congress passing that $9.00 per hour minimum wage President Obama mentioned in his State of the Union this year. Securing our future benefits is also a good idea, but Congress and the president should be warned; do not do harm to the least of us.