Friday :: Mar 12, 2004

AARP Gets Its Thank You From The White House For Supporting Medicare Drug Bill Charade

by Steve

Having used the AARP for its purposes in selling the public and Congress on the now-fraudulent Medicare drug benefit bill, the White House and GOP have now paid back the organization in the typical GOP way: by trying to kill the organization through imitation and confusion. Today a new organization headed by Social Security privatization zealots was announced, using the intentionally confusing acronym ARP, Alliance for Retirement Prosperity.

The new group, founded by Republicans, is called Alliance for Retirement Prosperity, or ARP. "Gee, what a coincidence," said John Rother, AARP's policy director.

ARP will be led by Jack Kemp, the 1996 Republican vice presidential nominee and housing secretary during the first Bush administration, and former House Majority Leader Dick Armey. A third co-chairman is Dorcas Hardy, a former Social Security commissioner who served in the Reagan administration. Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, and Steve Moore, president of the Club for Growth, also are involved.

The new group will launch a campaign next week to advocate overhauling Social Security to let workers divert into personal investment accounts at least half (emphasis mine) of the 12.4 percent in payroll taxes they and their employers pay.

Rother said AARP, which learned of the new group Thursday, is considering a lawsuit to protect its trademarked name. "If it's an intentional effort to mislead the public, then it's not legal," Rother said of ARP.

AARP has not yet contacted ARP, but plans to do so. "We're certainly going to respond," Rother said. "I don't think anyone with a straight face can say this is a coincidence."

I hope the leadership of the AARP is happy with its new friends in the White House now.

Steve :: 5:13 PM :: Comments (5) :: Digg It!