Wednesday, December 05, 2012

They're called "entitlements" because you're entitled to them. You paid for them. Don't let Republicans rip them off.


Whether you have a job or you're self-employed, every day you work, and every day you have worked, the government has deducted part of your pay for Social Security and Medicare.

That's as it should be. If you get something of value, specifically Social Security and Medicare, you should pay for it.

Now most of the Republicans are demanding that in exchange for some kind of tax increase on the very rich, or just for closing tax loopholes, they want cuts in "entitlements." As if you never paid so much as a nickel into them. As if "entitle" doesn't mean you have a legal right to them, just as the dictionary says.

The truth is, even the very rich are entitled to entitlements if they paid into Social Security and Medicare. There should be no means test. There should be no test of any kind. Like an insurance policy or any other kind of contract, if you paid in, you're entitled to take out.

If you paid into an insurance policy every month for twenty, or thirty, or forty or more years, and then the insurance company said it wasn't going to pay you the benefit you're entitled to, you'd be furious. You'd demand action. You'd insist on the arrest of the executives at the insurance company for theft and fraud.

It's the same with Senator McConnell, and Speaker John Boehner, and Congressmen Paul Ryan and the dozens of other Republican entitlements cutters from Michelle Bachmann to Paul Vitter. Notice that they don't seek to cut the budget by cutting the far richer benefits of senators and congressman that are also ripped indirectly out of your pay check. They want to cut your benefits – benefits, it bears repeating, that you're entitled to – and to hell with you if that plunges you into poverty.

Not only did you pay for those entitlements, your boss paid for you in addition. And if you're self employed, you paid twice – both the employer and the employee tax. How dare those self-serving S.O.Bs Republicans in the House and Senate make a grab for your retirement money and your sick money.

Don't let them do it. Stealing from the poor and middle class to keep the rich waist-deep in clover is an outrage and an affront to 98 percent of the citizens of the United States.

The Republicans in Congress and the Senate deserve the number 98. Ninety-eight years to life.

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