Get this little tidbit:
Even more curiously, a "senior administration official" who briefed
reporters on the Social Security proposal earlier today disclosed details of the
White House plan that I don't think will play well in Peoria. Most
significantly, this official revealed that most or all of the earnings from new
"personal" or privatized accounts will be paid not to the holder of the account,
but to the government. The senior official called this a "benefit offset." It's
one way to finance the creation of these private accounts, but it's going to
cause quite a political stir, I think.
Well, yeah! I think so. What the hell is the point of private accounts if the money they earn goes to the government? They're finally admitting something many of us knew months ago (I believe I blogged about it, in fact): The administrative costs of private accounts will eat up all the accounts' gains, leaving the individual worse off then if he or she just put the money into a savings account.
But Bush's agenda isn't to save Social Security anyway. It's to give a big government boon to his buddies on Wall Street, where all the money earned on these private accounts is going to go, and eventually kill the program entirely. He simply hoped to convince the American people to adopt his plan on false pretenses just like he got us to go to war in Iraq by saying, "9/11! WMDs! 9/11! WMDs!" over and over, even though the regime was already planning to invade Iraq when Bush took office and knew that there were no WMDs in Iraq. But his cover has been blown this time, as noted here:
In a significant shift in his rationale for the accounts, Bush dropped his
claim that they would help solve Social Security's fiscal problems — a link he
sometimes made during last year's presidential campaign. Instead, he said the
individual accounts were desirable because they would be "a better deal,"
providing workers what he said would be a higher rate of return and "greater
security in retirement.
A Bush aide, briefing reporters on the condition of anonymity,
was more explicit, saying that the individual accounts would do nothing to solve
the system's long-term financial problems.
See? It's just the same. "We've gotta go get Saddam's WMDs" = "We've gotta save Social Security." Then, later, when it turns out that what Bush told us in the first place was bullshit, we hear, "The world is better off without Saddam", just as we would have heard, "It's a better deal!"
Bush runs the country as if he were a con man and the country is his mark. But he thinks we're all so stupid that he doesn't even have to vary his cons. It's just bait-and-switch with this guy, over and over.
He also thinks the American people are too dumb to figure out that "personal accounts [will] do nothing to solve the system's long-term financial problems" plus "most or all of the earnings from new 'personal' or privatized accounts will be paid not to the holder of the account, but to the government" does not equal "a better deal." In fact, it's no deal at all.
Bush is planning nothing more than enriching his friends in the process of destroying Social Security. I can only hope that Bush has misunderstimated the American people on this.