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Old 03-29-2005, 09:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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AARP: The Real Heavyweight on Social Security

And we all thought the GOP was already having trouble on the Social Security debate. It looks like their trouble is only just beginning.



Quote:
In the punch-for-punch debate over Social Security, AARP is working hard to keep the White House on the ropes.

When President Bush arrives in Iowa today to talk up his private-accounts proposal, the senior citizens group plans to counter him with two news conferences, the release of a national poll, full-page newspaper advertisements and commercials on radio and television.

Over this week and last, AARP, the nation's largest lobby, will have spent more than $5 million on ads attacking the president's Social Security plan -- nearly three times as much as all the supporters of his proposal put together. That's just for starters.

Every state that has a swing-vote senator will have AARP forums, which have been drawing about 300 people each. And every time a member of Congress holds a town meeting, AARP volunteers are dispatched there to protest the president's plan for individual accounts.

"We're going to do this as long as it takes," said William D. Novelli, AARP's chief executive. "We will put just about everything we have into it."

No organization has more tools or more money to wage such a battle. So both its friends and adversaries agree: AARP holds the key to how or whether Social Security will be restructured this year. "It will be very difficult to do anything without AARP's support," said Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Finance Committee. "And it would be a heck of a lot easier if they came along."

AARP's 35 million membership base is 10 times the size of the National Rifle Association's, and its $800 million budget is five times that of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the country's biggest business association. In number of members, AARP is surpassed only by the Roman Catholic Church.

Some polls show that a majority of voters reject Bush's plan to make investment accounts part of the retirement program, a result that can be attributed in part to AARP's persuasiveness. "We're behind the curve right now," said Rep. Jim McCrery (R-La.), a Bush ally and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee's Social Security subcommittee. "The momentum is with the other team."

As head of that team, Novelli works 13-hour days packed with visits to Capitol Hill and the White House, where he is, by turns, berated for his position but probed to see where he might compromise.

Bush has bashed as "scare tactics" commercials by AARP and like-minded groups, and House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Tex.) called AARP "incredibly irresponsible" for rejecting "a solution that hasn't even been written yet." Yet behind the scenes, Novelli and his staff have been consulting with Bush aides Karl Rove and Allan Hubbard about finding common ground, and talking with congressional leaders of both parties.

For now, compromise doesn't look likely. Members of Congress and AARP officials said their meetings have involved mostly laying out conflicting views. They also say neither side is likely to budge significantly until Bush completes his 60-day campaign for his proposal at the end of next month.

But then the issue could be reopened. "I'm hopeful that maybe we can construct a plan," McCrery said. "AARP represents for us a very valuable ally if we can get it to sign on to what we want to do."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...2005Mar29.html
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Old 03-30-2005, 05:36 AM   #2 (permalink)
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What gets me on this whole SS thing is the old folks bullying around the young people on the younger people's own money. I don't care what side side of the isle you vote on, but something as simple as wanting to keep some of your own money for your future and for your heirs transcends party lines.

But yet, the young people could give a rats ass and the old folks get away with bullying them around. When will young people wake up and fight back against these selfish, controlling pricks at the AARP?
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by NCB
What gets me on this whole SS thing is the old folks bullying around the young people on the younger people's own money. I don't care what side side of the isle you vote on, but something as simple as wanting to keep some of your own money for your future and for your heirs transcends party lines.

But yet, the young people could give a rats ass and the old folks get away with bullying them around. When will young people wake up and fight back against these selfish, controlling pricks at the AARP?
At the same time we wake up and fight back against these selfish, controlling pricks in D.C. (both major parties).

Don't hold your breath
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Old 03-30-2005, 06:57 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The real issue to this debate from my point of view is to have SS or to not have SS, not should we fix it this way or that way.

Imo, we should pay the money out to the people who have put the most in and be done with the program. At 22 years old I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to exclude myself from the program and get my full paycheck and take care of my own retirement.

I'm tired of these welfare programs. Let me spend my own money.
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Old 03-31-2005, 08:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCB
What gets me on this whole SS thing is the old folks bullying around the young people on the younger people's own money. I don't care what side side of the isle you vote on, but something as simple as wanting to keep some of your own money for your future and for your heirs transcends party lines.
It was the old peoples' own money when they paid into it for their whole freaking lives. So in a way all they are asking for is their own money back.

Quote:
Originally Posted by samcol
Imo, we should pay the money out to the people who have put the most in and be done with the program. At 22 years old I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to exclude myself from the program and get my full paycheck and take care of my own retirement.
Sure, but where do you draw the line on who has 'put in the most'? I've paid in for 13 years, why should I just lose everything I put in? Furthermore, we don't have the money to just pay the money out to people unless we keep withholding SS from our checks.
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Old 03-31-2005, 09:22 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kutulu
It was the old peoples' own money when they paid into it for their whole freaking lives. So in a way all they are asking for is their own money back.



Sure, but where do you draw the line on who has 'put in the most'? I've paid in for 13 years, why should I just lose everything I put in? Furthermore, we don't have the money to just pay the money out to people unless we keep withholding SS from our checks.

Well I guess you can keep begging them to take money out of your paycheck. You want a governemnt who wastes TRILLIONS of dollars to handle your retirement. I feel sorry for you and your family. I think I should have the option to not have them take my money to use as a slush fund.
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Old 03-31-2005, 09:31 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samcol
Well I guess you can keep begging them to take money out of your paycheck. You want a governemnt who wastes TRILLIONS of dollars to handle your retirement. I feel sorry for you and your family. I think I should have the option to not have them take my money to use as a slush fund.
I challenge you to cite reputable sources to substantiate the claims in your post. This is the political forum. Your statements seem inappropriate for the level of discourse that is the norm that I observe on these threads.

Your assertions of "a governemnt who wastes TRILLIONS of dollars to handle your retirement", and the inference that the government will "take my money to use as a slush fund" seem false and absurd, if you are associating them with the current provisions of SSI, unless you reference your inflammatory statements with facts that can be examined for accuracy.
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Old 03-31-2005, 10:44 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Over this week and last, AARP, the nation's largest lobby, will have spent more than $5 million on ads attacking the president's Social Security plan -- nearly three times as much as all the supporters of his proposal put together. That's just for starters.
I think the AARP is wrong on this issue and so do a great many of it's members. If you send them a message crticizing their position they send you a canned message in return because of so many negative responses. Also there are many critical discussions on their message boards. I believe this will cost them a lot of members before this is over.

Many of us retired people have paid into SS our entire lives and know first hand how paltry the returns are. We do not wish the same for our children and see personal accounts as one way to establish a real retirement plan for those who do not make enough to have their own IRAs or 401Ks. If the personal accounts are modelled after the federal government's Thrift Savings Plan, there will be much better returns than SS and little risk.
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Old 03-31-2005, 04:09 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by host
I challenge you to cite reputable sources to substantiate the claims in your post. This is the political forum. Your statements seem inappropriate for the level of discourse that is the norm that I observe on these threads.

Your assertions of "a governemnt who wastes TRILLIONS of dollars to handle your retirement", and the inference that the government will "take my money to use as a slush fund" seem false and absurd, if you are associating them with the current provisions of SSI, unless you reference your inflammatory statements with facts that can be examined for accuracy.
These are not the people that I want to handle my retirement. Their track record of handling money has little to be desired.

The National Debt

Quote:
The Debt To the Penny
Current Amount
03/30/2005 $7,786,606,686,259.96
The War On Waste
Quote:
"According to some estimates we cannot track $2.3 trillion in transactions," Rumsfeld admitted.
And yes our government uses the surplus from social security on other government programs.
Quote:
What's worse, the $738 billion in surpluses (excluding interest) generated from the tax increases since 1984 and increased taxes on Social Security benefits enacted in 1993 have been wasted on other government programs instead of utilizing these proceeds to fund the transition to a fully funded personal retirement accounts program.
Social Security Slush Fund


I see no reason why I shouldn't be able to completely opt out from paying into social security as well as receiving any benefits. I'm smart enough to handle my own retirement. Tell the government you are too.

Last edited by samcol; 03-31-2005 at 04:33 PM.. Reason: My opening was a little harsh.
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Old 03-31-2005, 06:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kutulu
It was the old peoples' own money when they paid into it for their whole freaking lives. So in a way all they are asking for is their own money back..

Come on, you know better than that. The current generation is paying for the older generations benefits right now. Sure they want their money back and they're getting it (well, except for a disproportiante number of black males whose family only recieve a 600 dollar benefit when they kicked the bucket before the retirement age).

So, how 'bout ansering the intial question?
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