A couple o' toons from the Usual Source...
In regards to Mr. Kelley's cartoon... I have mixed emotions about means testing. I'm generally in favor of the proposed practice on the one hand, especially when I heard Warren Buffett say he draws $30K a year in Social Security. Mr. Buffett is entitled to recoup what he paid into the system but I feel he should draw a reduced rate while doing so. On the other hand I know from personal experience that the Feds tax 80% of my Social Security, based on the fact that I make too much money (according to the IRS). Who's to say my income won't be reduced if Social Security goes to a means-testing scheme? I damned sure ain't Warren Buffett!
As to Mr. Allie's toon... here's David Limbaugh, writing about Rick Perry, the other GOP candidates, and the Ponzi scheme angle:
It is very disheartening to see Republican presidential primary candidates racing to out-demagogue one another in denouncing Texas Gov. Rick Perry's accurate description of Social Security as a Ponzi scheme. It used to be that Republicans at least waited until the general election campaign to pander to liberals.
I admire Perry both for telling it like it is and for having the guts to stand by his statement when under fire. That shows character.
Honest people have been warning for years that our entitlement programs, as structured, are imminent train wrecks. Democrats were even saying it for a while, as Bill Clinton and Al Gore made a phony fuss about placing Social Security in a lockbox.
It's nothing short of outrageous that our politicians' instincts are to attack those who are talking realistically about entitlements instead of join them in talking realistically. I understand Democrats not doing so; I don't even expect them to anymore. But it's unacceptable for Republicans to pile on.
More here. I watched a little of Monday night's debate, but I came in late because of confusion on my part about the start time and left early to take an extended phone call. That said, I DID catch Romney trying to score points on Perry about Social Security and it turned my stomach. D. Limbaugh is correct: a GOP candidate attacking another GOP candidate for telling the truth is nothing short of outrageous.
Speaking of outrageous... Michele Bachmann scored her points on Governor Perry Monday night about his executive order mandating Gardasil vaccinations for Texas schoolgirls. Perry did a mea culpa on that point, admitting his decision was a mistake, and Bachmann really should have left it at that. But she didn't (from Ace):
So now an anti-vax lunatic buttonholes Michelle Bachmann (or so she claims, at least) and tells her the story of how Gardasil caused her child's autism. At age 12. Late onset autism, I guess. And despite there being absolutely no connection between Gardasil and late onset autism (whatever that is), she broadcasts her new medical findings out to the public.
Well. She did used to style herself "Doctor Bachmann," I guess.
Michelle Bachmann is desperate. She's an ambitious, egotistical woman who started running for President just two short years after she first ran for Congress. In the past two months her support went from 13% and rising to 4% and falling.
So she needs something, doesn't she, and Rush Limbaugh warned her off her planned Social Security demagoguery.
While we're on the subject, there's this, from Leon H. Wolf, writing at Red State:
I wasn’t informed until yesterday that believing vaccines are a bad idea and cause autism (or, if you’re Michele Bachmann, mental retardation. You know, basically the same thing.) was a prerequisite for supporting the TEA Party. Apparently, judging by the applause Bachmann received from a purportedly TEA Party audience for defending INNOCENT LITTLE TWELVE YEAR OLD GIRLS from the horror of being vaccinated against cancer, I missed a memo somewhere. Sarah Palin piled on the attack as well, and I am repeatedly assured by her followers that whatever Sarah Palin thinks is the Law in TEA Party land. It turns out, Sarah Palin is or at least was an anti-vaccination theorist herself. According to emails from 2008 (via Twitter), Sarah Palin wrote in response to the Department of Education’s announcement of a new vaccination policy (including vaccinations for diptheria, tetanus, polio, pertussis, measles, mumps, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, and rubella):
(Palin e-mail quote)
First of all, it deserves to be noted (as is clear from the context of the entire email exchange) that the Most Courageous Politician who Ever Lived™, when confronted with a policy under her Administration’s ambit, bravely passed the buck to her underlings while attempting to assauge anti-vaccine activists by letting them know that she was one of them. Second, the connection between autism and thimerosal was always pretty tenous and given the immensely salutary effect on the public health of mandatory vaccination against the highly contagious diseases listed above, only a reckless person would have based actual public policy on it.Well... a two-fer! Mrs. Bachmann overplayed her hand and Mrs. Palin piled on, for unknown reasons. I understand the need to score political points against your rivals in the primaries but I also understand bad politics and bad judgment when I see it. Bachmann and Palin are guilty of the latter... in addition to being hypocritical about the issue (Palin as noted above and Bachmann here). I don't wanna hear the phrase "innocent little 12 year old girls" ever again; I've heard it way too damned often in the last couple o' days.
The field narrows.