Joe Biden’s Social Security Record Is Cause for Concern

Social Security Works has the article Joe Biden’s Social Security Record Is Cause for Concern.

The following is a statement from Nancy Altman, President of Social Security Works and one of the nation’s leading Social Security experts:

“Vice President Joe Biden recently claimed that the Bernie Sanders campaign ‘doctored’ a clip of a 2018 speech, to make it appear that he supports cutting Social Security. The truth is that the clip is in no way doctored.

The article has a link to the transcript of the full speech. Here is the couple of paragraphs, one of which was shown in the video clip.

As I say where I come from, get a life. Look what’s happened with the latest tax cut. Once again those at the very top get the biggest breaks and what do we have to show for it? Even our Republican friends are now beginning to admit there’s no evidence these tax cuts are being put to work in the economy. No new growth,just more debt. And that puts middle class programs that they rely on and they’ve worked for at real risk.

Paul Ryan was correct when he did the tax code. What’s the first thing he decided we had to go after? Social Security and Medicare. Now, we need to do something about Social Security and Medicare. That’s the only way you can find room to pay for it.

Maybe this doesn’t sound quite as bad as hearing only the second paragraph. But thinking “That’s the only way you can find room to pay for it.” shows a completely obsolete understanding of economics and money. If Biden really believes this nonsense, then we are never going to have the policy freedom to do what needs to be done in this country. What might be a more enlightened statement is that “We need to expand Social Security and Medicare. If tax cuts for the rich leaves them the wherewithal to compete for limited resources and raise inflation when the government is trying to do its important work, then we need to rescind those tax cuts.”

Using the word “expand” rather than the unclear words “do something about” would have made Biden’s words unambiguous.

Here is a third paragraph from the transcript.

Now, I don’t know a whole lot of people in the top one-tenth of 1 percent or the top 1 percent who are relying on Social Security when they retire. I don’t know a lot of them. Maybe you guys do. So we need a pro-growth, progressive tax code that treats workers as job creators, as well, not just investors; that gets rid of unprotective loopholes like stepped-up basis; and it raises enough revenue to make sure that the Social Security and Medicare can stay, it still needs adjustments, but can stay; and pay for the things we all acknowledge will grow the country.

You actually have to know what Biden ought to be saying to make sense out of this word salad. Maybe somewhere else in the transcript, he finally says something that I can clearly understand without my having to put words into his mouth, but I didn’t have the stamina to read the rest.

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