What is going on ?

I have tried to ignore politics since the election. My candidate lost even though, from the enthusiasm at his rallies, I thought he was winning. I have trouble understanding why people would vote for Obama. Some of it is the 47% theory that Romney was so criticized for voicing. I agree that it had a big effect. Another factor was the drop in turnout among lower income white voters. They seemed to buy the argument that Romney was a rich man who didn’t care about them. Why they would believe that Obama, rich and intending to be much richer after his time in office, would care more is a mystery to me.

Now, we face a supposed crisis of the “fiscal cliff,” a manufactured crisis related to the negotiations over the debt limit and the ignored Simpson-Bowles Commission recommendations. I think the Republicans would have been well-advised to try to enact the commission recommendations into law but they have have consistently chosen the less wise alternative, in my opinion.

Dating back to the Clinton Administration, the GOP majority on Congress had the opportunity to assure the future of this country as a free market, prosperous nation. Instead, following Gingrich’s lead, they looked out for their own political futures. We now face the consequences and I see no more willingness to deal with it than before. Paul Ryan had a plan That might have avoided what is coming but the voters rejected it.

It preserves the existing Medicare program for those currently enrolled or becoming eligible in the next 10 years (those 55 and older today) – So Americans can receive the benefits they planned for throughout their working lives. For those currently under 55 – as they become Medicare-eligible – it creates a Medicare payment, initially averaging $11,000, to be used to purchase a Medicare certified plan. The payment is adjusted to reflect medical inflation, and pegged to income, with low-income individuals receiving greater support. The plan also provides risk adjustment, so those with greater medical needs receive a higher payment.
The proposal also fully funds Medical Savings Accounts [MSAs] for low-income beneficiaries, while continuing to allow all beneficiaries, regardless of income, to set up tax-free MSAs.
Based on consultation with the Office of the Actuary of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and using Congressional Budget Office [CBO] these reforms will make Medicare permanently solvent
Modernizes Medicaid and strengthens the health care safety net by reforming high-risk pools, giving States maximum flexibility to tailor Medicaid programs to the specific needs of their populations. Allows Medicaid recipients to take part in the same variety of options and high-quality care available to everyone through the tax credit option.

The plan would have addressed the Medicare issue that is coming in the near future.

The Social Security issue is a bit less urgent but was aggravated by the Congress use of Social Security trust funds in the 1990s. We hear about a “surplus” but that surplus was made up of Social Security trust funds that were not necessary at the time to pay benefits. Now, they are needed but have been spent.

I have no solution.

Tags: , , , ,

9 Responses to “What is going on ?”

  1. doombuggy says:

    It looks like the solution is inflation, and rationing via waiting times and bureaucratic slow downs.

  2. norcal says:


    After giving it much thought, I have concluded that Romney lost for two reasons–class warfare and a lack of charisma.

    The 47 percent comment was significant, as was Romney’s low tax bill (probably because capital gains are taxed at a lower rate than income) and his overseas investment.

    My boss, who is a Republican, cited Romney’s offshore accounts as the reason she was voting for Obama. According to her, if Romney believes in this country, he should have his money here. Later, I thought of telling her that investing is different than donating to charity, but aborted the plan.

    As for charisma, Romney couldn’t stack up against Obama. Obama is smooth and confident. Romney acquired confidence during the campaign, but he was never smooth. It’s sad that the electorate treats presidential elections like a race for student-body president, where the one perceived as “cool” and “popular” wins.

  3. doombuggy says:

    My boss, who is a Republican, cited Romney’s offshore accounts as the reason she was voting for Obama.

    Wow. That is so lame. Obama didn’t have the wherewithal to keep enough money to worry about investing, so he gets a pass. I guess perfection is the enemy of the Good.

    Norcal: is your boss single? Not that I want to date her, but the single female demographic went big time for Obama, powered by the view of government as a surrogate for family and support.

  4. norcal, I agree that Romney lacks charisma. He is typical of the many Mormons I know. They all have an upbeat, chipper manner that seems too nice to many. They seem to lack vices that give character to some politicians. I think it is bad character but lefties and weak minded low information voters seem to like a bit of spice, something Mormons lack. Why do so many women go for sketchy guys and ignore the stable good husband type ?

    If you go through the Democrats in politics, I would guess there are more offshore accounts and houses, like Dodd and Rangel, than with Republicans. It’s the class warfare thing.

    I spent months reading about Coolidge (the posts are linked above) to learn what brought the prosperity of the 20s and why it ended. History doesn’t tell you because it is written by Roosevelt supporters. Our kids have been indoctrinated. It’s not just today. My 45 year old daughter, an Obama voter, when she was in 6th grade, had a class project to try Harry Truman for dropping the atomic bomb. The kids convicted him of war crimes. It’s an old problem. It will probably doom us.

  5. norcal says:


    My boss is married. Double income, no kids, if that enhances the demographic for you.

    She voted for McCain in 2008. Go figure.

  6. norcal says:


    As you may recall, I was raised Mormon, and I know exactly what you’re talking about. Some people said Romney talks likes he’s straight out of the 50s (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

    It’s a cultural bubble thing. My mother, who was a Mormon missionary in France in the 50s (Romney would do the same a decade later), and went on to major in French at BYU, did not know the common meaning of “menage a trois” until just a few years ago. My brother and I still laugh over that one.

    By the way, my uncle, a liberal Democrat, was an English professor at BYU, and Romney was in one of his classes. He admitted that Romney was a bright student.

    As to your question, maybe it’s something evolutionary that makes women go for the bad boys. Sandra Bullock and Jesse James is my favorite example of the phenomenon.

  7. doombuggy says:

    women go for the bad boys

    The internet has great rollicking expositions of <a href="http://heartiste.wordpress.com/""game&quot;, a colloquial science of how to pick up women using the appeal of the aloof, arrogant, thuggish “alpha” male.

  8. doombuggy says:

    Bah. Mis-linked. Try this for a link to “game”, the modern path to dating. For the bar scene, anyway.

  9. norcal says:

    Interesting link there, doombuggy. I’m not a player, but I think there is some truth to the male/female dynamic on that site.