Baboon-a-palooza Heads Upstate

From Holden:

Chimpy took his Social Security demolition derby to Greece, New York, today where we witnessed a startling brush with the truth.

THE PRESIDENT: I’m sorry Laura is not here. Yes, you’d probably rather have her here than me, wouldn’t you?

Q We didn’t say that.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, no, but you thought it. You didn’t say it, but I could tell you thought it. You’re not the only person here who feels that way, I want you to know.

We also saw the old Baboon-a-palooza standard denial that there is indeed a Social Security Trust Fund.

Your payroll tax goes into a — not into a trust that we hold for your account; your payroll tax goes into an account and we pay out the money for the retirees and with any money left over, we spend it on general government. It’s important for people to understand that aspect of Social Security. In other words, it’s not a trust. In other words, we’re not taking your money and holding it for you and then giving it back to you when you retire. We’re taking your money, we’re spending it on current retirees, and in that more money is coming in that needs to go out for the retirees, we’re spending on other programs. And all that’s left behind in Social Security is a group of file cabinets with IOUs in it.

All this barnstorming appears to be getting to Dear Leader, either that or the record is stuck. For example, in this paragraph Chimpy attempts an explanation of “progressive indexing.

Right now the benefits, by the way, increases are tied to wages. If you’re the top 1 percent of workers in terms of income, your benefits would increase by the rate of inflation, not by the rate of wage. Your benefits increase, but not as fast as the folks at the bottom end of the spectrum. And if you’re in between, depending upon your income, your benefits will increase somewhere between the rate of wage and the rate of price.

Then later in the appearance he tries to explain his plan for private accounts only to inexplicably wander into progressive indexing again.

Notice I said “voluntary.” In other words, the government should say to a younger worker, if you want to, you can put some of your own money aside. You don’t have to. If you’re uncomfortable with watching your money grow with a conservative mix of bonds and stocks, you don’t have to do that. You can keep it the way — into the system. And you’ll get your check. If you’re in the bottom 30 percent, your benefits over time will grow at wages. If you’re in the top 1 percent, they’ll grow with inflation. And if you’re somewhere in between, they’ll grow depending upon your income, but greater than the rate of inflation. Secondly, it’s called a personal account. That means you own it. It’s an account the government cannot take away.

Another brush with honesty.

If you’ve retired, you don’t have anything to worry about — third time I’ve said that. (Laughter.) I’ll probably say it three more times. See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda.

Ah, that Dubya charm.

THE PRESIDENT: You are Audrey Ceglinski.

MRS. CEGLINSKI: That’s right. I’m a 70-year-old widow.

THE PRESIDENT: Don’t ever say your age. (Laughter.)


MRS. CEGLINSKI: I’m getting my check, and it’s wonderful.

THE PRESIDENT: They’re still coming.

MRS. CEGLINSKI: It’s still coming. And I’m planning on it for a while yet. (Laughter.)

THE PRESIDENT: Well, you need to, yes. Heading toward 80.

MRS. CEGLINSKI: That’s right.

THE PRESIDENT: Right around the corner. You look great.

MRS. CEGLINSKI: Thank you very much.

THE PRESIDENT: You look like 100 to me.

Finally, when the hand-picked guests go off script, you have to reign them in.

THE PRESIDENT: Now, you’re contributing in to the — both of you — payroll tax, aren’t you?

MS. McKENNA WEITZEL: Yes, we both currently are.

THE PRESIDENT: Pretty good-size chunk.

MS. RILEY WEITZEL: No, not really.

THE PRESIDENT: No, a pretty good-size chunk of your payroll tax.

MS. RILEY WEITZEL: Oh, of course.