Don't "wait 'til he does something" on Social Security
Hamsher has an update about the "Fiscal Responsibility Summit" that indicates to me that the administration is working on the fly. I think that the stuff we heard about the plan being the result of a small group within the White House operating on the fly in changing circumstances is the most likely explanation for why this thing is such a train wreck. Apparently, the story is changing from minute to minute, even about who's speaking at this thing and who is attending. [Jane Hamsher writes:]
On a conference call today arranged by Campaign for America's Future that included Roger Hickey, Jamie Galbraith, Nancy Altman and Dean Baker, Roger said that several of them had been told they might be invited to the summit, but no formal invitation had been issued yet (though Pete Peterson has his invitation). And while they had initially been told that the summit would address Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid (which Ezra claims Orszag is desperately trying to separate), now they're hearing from administration sources that nobody is sure.
This is not the circumstances under which you want to meet with billionaires who have spent decades organizing for just such a moment. They know what they want down to the last penny. They have their marketing slogans all worked out. They have their "bipartisan" advocates. They have the villagers and the media, all believing one, simple thing: that the government is going broke because of "entitlement" spending. You don't face people like this not knowing exactly what it's about and what you hope to get out of it. It's not a friendly game of Twister. It's a death match.
Wouldn't the time to create the 360-degree shitstorm have been when Pete Petersen was invited to speak at all?
Anyhow, if they're still making it up as they go along, that means they can still be pressured. I'd say the best thing to do would be to call your Congresscritters and make sure that any any other outcome from a "entitlement reform" other than no Social Security cuts and an increase in Medicare coverage is acceptalble.
I agree that everyone must sacrifice. And with real wages flat for thirty years, and take home pay for the average American worse today than 2001, and everybody's 401(k) in the toilet, we've done our sacrificing. Why doesn't Pete Petersen donate a few billion or so to single payer advocacy, if he's so all-fired concerned about entitlements?