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Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Krugman, Social Security, and the Long Term 

Paul Krugman has written the next installment in his series on Social Security, focusing today on the fakery involved in manufacturing a 'crisis' around the Social Security Trust Fund.

Krugman has written two previous columns on the subject, both previewing the series that he has begun today on dissecting the Bush Administration plan.

It's important to see the Trojan Horse aspect of the Bush plan and the politics behind it. While Krugman explains how the Bush effort hypes a non-existent crisis, remember that the politics behind the hype are twofold:

First, raiding the Social Security Trust allows Bush to get away with the crazy spend-and-spend budget he's pursued without ever raising taxes on the wealthy--even if it hits middle class Americans in their retirement.

Second, by dismantling Social Security, Bush (and Rove, who's shadow can't be missed behind this) will undermine the basis of the progressive contract, emptying a fund that protects us all against poverty in our old age, forcing everyone to rely on the marketplace (and on the Wall St firms so tied to the Administration) for ALL of our nest-egg.

It's a brilliant long-term political strategy to break the electorate away from ties with government and with each other, leaving everyone ever less dependent on each other to build a society of common values. It's classic Rove politics, breaking the electorate into ever smaller groups, each of which can be appealed to separately and against one another.

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