03/21/2005: Bush NON-Plan for Soc. Sec.
USA Today posts this disingenous little piece called : All opposition, no ideas cast Democrats in poor light.
"...Still, over the longer term, they [Democrats] run a risk in challenging Bush without ideas of their own. Social Security requires a fix. It's not the largest or most imminent budgetary crisis the nation faces. That's Medicare. But it's impossible to deny that Social Security will be in a bind as baby boomers retire and live longer than previous generations. In 2018, it will begin paying out more than it's taking in. And by mid-century, it will have spent its savings. Doing nothing is not a viable option.
Without a plan, Democrats risk looking unconcerned about future retirees. What's more, they risk ceding to the GOP an issue that they've dominated for 75 years.
Democrats need to counter the perception that they are a party without ideas. A recent poll by Democrats James Carville and Stanley Greenberg found that just 44% — scarcely anyone beyond diehard Democrats — think the party has any ideas for addressing the nation's problems. If party leaders can't offer ideas on Social Security, it's hard to challenge the public's perceptions.
Some in the party point out that the GOP never offered an alternative to the Clinton health plan. That's true. But health care was a far more complex problem. And Republicans weren't so widely perceived as lacking ideas.
The Democrats don't need to lead with their chins by proposing the tough medicine that Bush hasn't offered himself.
But a set of ideas and principles would allow them to put forward a good-faith effort to be part of a solution. Some concepts floated by liberal-minded policy analysts — but not endorsed by Democratic leaders — include raising benefits for the poorest retirees and creating private accounts as a supplement to traditional Social Security, rather than as a partial replacement of it.
Somehow the two parties need to put aside their political agendas to reach an accord. As with the last Social Security bailout, it may take a bipartisan panel to provide both sides with political cover for tough choices. For now, the Democrats' "just say no" strategy reflects poorly on the party."
But from my point of view, how are Democrats (or anyone) supposed to deal with the Bush NON-Plan and extended Propaganda NON-Plan Lola-Palooza Tour of Pre-paid, Pre-Selected "average" citizen testimonials to the NON-Plan?
And WHY would the Democrats (or anyone) wish to propose a Plan-Specific to be knocked about for weeks and months against such a Bush NON-Plan?
If Bush was serious about his great goals and ideals and HOW GOOD his NON-Plan is -- he'd turn it into a PLAN, with numbers and costs and evaluations, for Everyone to see. The fact that he doesn't and continues with his NON-Plan strategy just proves what bad "planner" Bush tends to be and how he's only good at floating ideals without real ways to get from here to there.
Karen on 03.21.05 @ 08:03 AM CST