Mudcat Café message #1391952 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #62901   Message #1391952
Posted By: Amos
28-Jan-05 - 10:56 PM
Thread Name: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
http://www.pahrumpvalleytimes.com/2005/01/28/opinion/brummett.html

By JOHN BRUMMETT



If you didn't know better, you'd think that George Bush and his people admire Bill Clinton. For the last couple of weeks they've fallen over themselves quoting Clinton as having said in the 1990s the very thing Republicans are saying now to Democratic ridicule.

You know, that Social Security is in a crisis, which it isn't, technically speaking.

One of my favorite bloggers calls this "cherry-picking," meaning the selection of an occasional Clinton quote to suit one's purposes, never mind one's objections to the extensive balance of what the man ever said.

If you call a guy a liar and impeach him, it ought to follow that you would impair your ability to embrace him credibly for your advantage later.

Anyway, Social Security's actuarial projection was grimmer in Clinton's '90s than Bush's '00s. And on at least one of those occasions, and perhaps all of them, Clinton was talking specifically about a crisis not in Social Security itself, but in the federal budget owing to its obligations to Social Security.

That came, you might recall, as Clinton was endeavoring without a single Republican ally to get the Reagan-Bush deficits down and save us from being bankrupted and owned lock, stock and barrel by foreign owners of our debt.

The Bush administration talks of a Social Security doomsday in 2018. But the experts say Social Security will have plenty of assets for all its liabilities until sometime between 2043 and 2052.

The problem in 2018 is specifically a federal budget problem, not a Social Security problem. That's when the federal general fund's IOUs to the Social Security surplus start coming due. So, Social Security would have a problem in 2018 only if a key asset was rendered worthless by the system's having involuntarily extended credit to the United States government.