Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Rubio's Insane Comments on Social Security

Sen. Marco Rubio spoke at the the Reagan Presidential Library. Rubio told the audience that entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare have "weakened us as a people."

These programs actually weakened us as a people. You see, almost forever, it was institutions in society that assumed the role of taking care of one another. If someone was sick in your family, you took care of them. If a neighbor met misfortune, you took care of them. You saved for your retirement and your future because you had to. We took these things upon ourselves in our communities, our families, and our homes, and our churches and our synagogues. But all that changed when the government began to assume those responsibilities. All of a sudden, for an increasing number of people in our nation, it was no longer necessary to worry about saving for security because that was the government’s job.

This was the kind of lift yourself by your bootstraps that was spoken by conservatives during the aftermath of hurricane Katrina. Bobby Jindal argued that Katrina was an example that people should help themselves and government should stay out of the way. Never mind that Jindal took federal relief money to help Louisiana recover from Katrina and the BP spill.

In the worldview of Republicans such as Rubio and Jindal, those people stuck on roofs during the Katrina flood should use their American exceptionalism to help themselves. Rubio unexceptionally was in debt with college loans. Rubio ran up a $110,000 credit card bill using the nonprofit funds of the Republican Party of Florida.

"Having expenditures in the tens of thousands of dollars to pay off credit cards, it's clear to me it was being used to live off of. The Rubios were living off it,'' said state Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, a strong Crist supporter.

Exceptional indeed.

Rubio fails to understand basic economics by stating that the government pays for Social Security. The reality is workers pay into the retirement fund with the payroll tax. As for Rubio's good old days of families taking care of each other, the depression made that nearly impossible.

The elderly also relied heavily on their families. ''Children, friends and relatives have borne and still carry the major cost of supporting the aged,'' the Committee on Economic Security, the Roosevelt administration panel that developed Social Security, reported in 1935. ''Several of the state surveys have disclosed that from 30 to 50 percent of the people over 65 years of age were being supported in this way.''

The Depression swept this world away. Many of the elderly could no longer find work. Those who had been lucky enough to have a pension or some savings saw them disappear. And many who relied on their children saw them buckle under the strain.

''I am in no position to do the right thing for my mother,'' one woman wrote to Roosevelt. ''I thought as long as I lived there was no need to worry about her being taken care of, but I never dreamed of a depression like we have had.''

Working past 65 and families having to financially shoulder the burden of taking care of elderly members is a wonderful thing in Rubio's worldview. What Rubio does not find wonderful was President Barack Obama's proposal to tax owners of corporate jets.

“It was rhetoric, I thought, that was more appropriate for some left-wing strong man than for the president of the United States.”

Rubio's worldview is that taxing corporate jets is the radicalism of a third world dictator and Social Security weakens America. That tells you all you need to know about Marco Rubio.

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