Sunday, August 16, 2009

Riots in the Streets

by Rich Miles

A small factoid has slipped by us all in recent months, and as 2009 draws to a close, we draw ever closer to this factoid coming to pass:

There is not going to be a Social Security COLA in early 2010.

Now, needless to say, the SocSec Administration has not trumpeted this information too terribly far and wee, so a lot of old folks don't know this yet. But when they do learn it, there is going to be blood in the streets.

Perhaps literally. But figuratively in any case.

You see, the older generation, the folks who are fully retired and vested in SocSec, Medicare, pensions, and all that, have come to view all those benefits as not just governmental entitlements but MORAL entitlements as well - in other words, they think they deserve these emoluments. And now that we're in the middle of health care reform, and may still be at the end of the year, the old folks will bitch and moan a blue streak if anyone tries to deny them one thin dime of their due as they see it.

If you don't think this is true, you just hide and watch about Dec. 15, when the government finally can't hide this any longer, and has to tell people about it (again, since the news has already been put out, if quietly.) The Democrats will be held responsible for it, and AARP and all the other advocacy groups for the elderly will behave as if the 8 years of GWB never happened, and it seems likely that the only way out of the mess will be for the COLA to be reinstated after all, costing the government several billions more than it anticipated.

There'll be no mention of mutual sacrifice, or if there is it will be ignored by the Auld Folks, and the deficit will get bigger and bigger (even more so because the numbers were crunched without the COLA), and even if the COLA is reinstated, the Dems will suffer for it at the ballot box next November. Perhaps enough to turn one or more houses of Congress over to the forces of evil, AKA the repugs.

Which brings me to another point: the American people in general have become a bunch of selfish pig bastards. 60 or 70 years ago, Americans really were a generous nation. We really did care about the rest of the world, and from thence came our reputation worldwide that so many of us still believe we merit today. There are many Americans who do indeed care about others - but as a nation, we have become insufferable. And the rest of the world knows it. And regrets it as much as we do, or should.

Nuff said. Comment if you dare.

1 comment:

Jack Jodell said...

This is definitely an accurate observation on your part: we HAVE become a nation of "pig bastards!" We have become so complacent and so smug that we were the "greatest, richest, and best" nation on earth that we are now no longer any of those things. We accept and peddle mediocrity and same old, same old in our products and in our attitude. We have lost our innovative and entrepreneurial spirit. I do NOT blame our government for this, as would many conservatives. No, I blame our corporatist mentality. Corporations have become so all-pervasive and influential that they have permeated our government, our media, our culture, and our mindset. We are obsessed with materialism and individual profit. Competition is stifled, and, rather than coming up with something bold and new, we are now bred to take the easy, established way out and never rock the boat. Our minds are closed to foreign ideas. Our media does not educate or investigate. Instead, it peddles controversy, conflict, and mere spectacle as a means of providing entertainment rather than news. Our mass culture plays to the lowest common denominator and does not even attempt to raise the bar. We have become obsessed with ourselves and our possessions, and are deathly afraid someone else will take them from us.

Such short-sighted self-centeredness is a guaranteed recipe for decline. We MUST destroy this stranglehold profit-crazed corporations have on our government and economy. Their greed is literally killing us!