Wednesday :: Feb 2, 2005

Another Bush State of the Union, Another Set Of Lies


by Steve

Yes, these three sorry bastards are the best that the GOP has to offer.

This was one of those rare times when I was glad to be traveling on business today. Why? Because I was airborne returning from SoCal and got to miss Bush’s SOTU, although I am sure the cable news shows will be rerunning Bush’s speech over and over again, telling us that he is the second coming of Winston Churchill and FDR all in one. For those of you who saw the speech, go ahead and weigh in with your comments and observations.

But before you do, here are some of the lies that Bush told about his privatization plan tonight:

Your money will grow, over time, at a greater rate than anything the current system can deliver, and your account will provide money for retirement over and above the check you will receive from Social Security.

This is false. The CBO report stated that Bush’s plan, even including the returns on private accounts will not even generate benefits equal to doing nothing. In fact, the Bush plan will reduce benefits for all seniors, even those who choose not to invest in privatized accounts. According to the Congressional Budget Office, benefits for the 1980s birth cohort would be 30 percent lower, and benefits for the 2000s cohort would be 45 percent lower.

We will make sure this plan is fiscally responsible, by starting personal retirement accounts gradually, and raising the yearly limits on contributions over time, eventually permitting all workers to set aside four percentage points of their payroll taxes in their accounts.

Another lie. Bush never came clean tonight about the true costs of his borrowing necessary to finance this boondoggle, which the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities today estimated to be trillions of dollars in new debt on top of Bush’s existing trillions of dollars in debt over the coming decades. In fact, as the CBPP shows, much of what Bush and the administration said today about the proposal was a lie.

By the year 2042, the entire system would be exhausted and bankrupt. If steps are not taken to avert that outcome, the only solutions would be drastically higher taxes, massive new borrowing, or sudden and sever cuts in Social Security benefits or other government programs.

Again, the statement that the system would be exhausted in 2042 is an outright lie. And given the costs of Bush’s own plan, any scare tactics about massive new borrowing are the pot calling the kettle black. Plus, the private accounts that Bush touts do nothing to deal with the solvency issue. And any claims about borrowing need to be evaluated against the truth that extending Bush’s tax cuts will require trillions more in borrowing while never generating the jobs that were promised.

And as always, in evaluating any Bush SOTU, one must remember his sorry record on his past SOTUs.

Now, it’s your turn to comment on the speech.

Steve :: 10:11 PM :: Comments (36) :: Digg It!