Category Archives: Social Security
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year had 4,036 generic drug applications waiting for approval. In October 2012, there was a backlog of 2,868 drugs. It now takes a median 47 months to approve a generic drug by the FDA – nearly four years.
What does this mean to the healthcare consumer?
First, it allows a drug company to continue selling their “brand name” drug because there is no replacement on the market. Brand name drugs are sold at incredible prices, pushed up by obscene profits, as well as constant advertising, plus promotion of drugs by medical professionals. To many in the health business, brand name drugs are the real money makers.
By comparison to the United States, the European FDA – the European Medicines Agency (EMA) – has just 24 generics awaiting approval. It takes about a year to get approval in Europe, one quarter the time of the U.S.
Why would it be faster to approve generics in Europe than here? The answer is that patients in America pay for their drugs, either directly or through health plan premiums. In Europe the government negotiates drug prices, because they are working to lower costs to benefit their citizens and reduce spending. It’s the difference between healthcare for profit or Continue reading →
71-year-old man shoots robbers at internet cafe in Florida
Last week, it became more dangerous to be old or disabled.
That’s because the Barack Obama brain trust ordained a rule that will force the Social Security Administration (SSA) to share records with the Department of Justice (DOJ) to look for so-called disabled or impaired individuals.
The government then decides whether or not to ban them from buying a gun.
The SSA maintains that “under our representative payee policy, unless direct payment is prohibited, we presume that an adult beneficiary is capable of managing or directing the management of benefits.” That means you better keep your checking account in your own name, and if you go crazy. just let someone handle your finances using only your name.
Social Security really needs to be reformed. Medicaid probably needs to be capped when it comes to the states. Medicare, there needs to be some sort of means testing.
The (Social Security) retirement age needs to be raised. A portion of Social Security ought to be privatized, if not all. And there probably needs to be some means testing. It’s a Ponzi scheme that’s not sustainable.
“Citing a story in USA Today, which reported that a rash of retirements in 2009 is pushing Social Security to the brink, Johnson said the retirement age needs to be raised perhaps to 70 or 72. “This is the reality, we’re broke,” Johnson said in 2012. Continue reading →
Alan Greenspan, former Federal Reserve chairman, current hubby of Andrea Mitchell (Hillary Clinton’s talking head at NBC), and long-time member of the Trilateral Commission, has a big problem
Al isn’t mad at the “pop” in pop-out-of-the-cake by some former girlfriend, like Barbara Walters. He sees a dangerous “pop”, the worst kind – the potential revolt of what he might call the “vast unwashed multitude of the deplorable and nonredeemable.”
Google identifies the threat to Al this way: Continue reading →
Fracker’s friend frets that you might retire and get your Social Security, instead of working to death
When Libertarian Gary Johnson proclaimed that Americans should not get their Social Security until age 72, he was actually condemning many to death before receiving any of their “earned benefits.”
That’s because the average life expectancy of a Black male in the U.S. is 68 years, meaning death four years before Gary would grant retirement security. While the average life expectancy for men in general is 76.9 years, men in the middle and lower income levels die five years sooner, or at 71.9. With a 72 retirement age, most men would die before that first Social Security check.
As an aside, male life expectancy in this country, where we work so long and hard, is ranked 32d in the world, behind such places as Costa Rica, Chile, Greece, Slovenia and Korea, as well as most members of the EU. We did tie with Cuba – for what that’s worth.
David Barton, another Johnson/Tea Party type, personified the big business view of Continue reading →
Gary Johnson wants to cut 43% from Medicare and the Defense Dept., end the senior drug benefit, eliminate student loans, and stop taxing the rich
Is the grass always greener?
It was a simple question to Gary Johnson in a 2012 interview, while running for President as the Libertarian candidate: How do you stop the deficits and out of control spending?
The answer from Johnson, who is currently managing 6% to 10% voter support in national polls:
A: Well, cutting $1.675 trillion from the federal government. You got to start out by talking about (cutting) Medicare and Medicaid by 43 percent. They could block grant the states, 50 laboratories of innovation. Give it to the states to deliver health care to the poor and those over 65 and do away with the strings. Do away with that regulations; let states handle it. There would be best practices emerge. Other states would emulate the best practices. They’re be failure. States would avoid the failure.
Johnson also wants to eliminate the Federal Income Tax, which would require huge program cuts in the federal budget to pay for it. His revenue solution would be a national 23% sales tax, plus virtual elimination of the earned Medicare benefit (now paid for by workers with a payroll tax). Continue reading →
UPDATE: (July 23, 2016) Rumors swirling today that Jeb Bush may announce that he will vote for Gary Johnson, joining the smoking car on the Libertarian train to nowhere No word yet from Bush the elder, Bush the brother or mama Bush.
Former Republican Presidential nominee Willard Mitt Romney said recently he would not vote for presumptive nominee Donald Trump in the general election in November and would consider voting for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson.
Romney’s running mate in 2012, Paul Ryan, has also been described as a Libertarian, although he votes as a Republican. His consideration to vote for Johnson, Romney explained, is because he doesn’t regard Donald Trump as a true conservative. Johnson ran against Romney in 2012 for the nomination.
Here’s what “true conservative” Gary Johnson believes, gleaned from press interviews: Continue reading →
There’s little love in Paris this Springtime, as French President uses executive power to crush labor rights
Best of times for very rich; worst for the working class!
France’s President Francois Hollande has learned many lessons on how to offer false promises from America’s President Barack Obama, who campaigned in 2008 with the following plans:
- convince the working class you stand for better wages and stronger unions
- say you will reduce job competition by ending reckless import of foreign labor
- suggest you will renegotiate current income-lowering trade deals that send factories overseas
- pledge to cut outsourcing jobs to new trade “partners”
- offer to increase social benefits for the middle class
- bring taxes for the very rich back up to fair, historic levels
The day he took office, Obama began breaking promises:
- The “goal” of passing card check for unions was forgotten.
- The number of Visas was increased and illegal aliens were not stopped at the border.
- He began negotiating for even more trade deals, didn’t touch NAFTA, and instead praised it.
- A loss every month in total manufacturing jobs in America was ignored by the White House
- Instead of increasing aid for workers, he formed a commission to cut Social Security benefits
- When Bush tax cuts expired, Obama agreed to lowest tax rates for very rich since FDR.
Social Security is not in “trouble”, except that it has vast wealth in reserves, and politicians want to steal this treasure trove (designed only to insure future Social Security benefits), and use it for something else. That something would probably be tax cuts for the rich by the GOP, or more redistribution downward from the middle class to the poor by the Democrats.
When I combine Treasury Note rates, Cost of Living, Interest on the Social Security fund and the total reserves (in Millions) of the Trust Fund, the resulting Trust Fund Table demonstrates the steady growth of these reserves from year to year – now exceeding $2.7 trillion total, invested in special Treasury notes.
The table also shows that reserves decreased from 1976 to 1983 (except a small increase in 1982), but since 1983, reserves have grown 1,000%. Every year since 1983 has registered more taxes (FICA) paid, than benefits distributed.
The deficit scolds want benefit cuts, higher retirement age, to accomplish what? Even larger reserves? They never mention that every other government program shows a deficit year after year, while Social Security “makes money.” Today’s trust fund is the largest in its history and growing every year. Continue reading →
Cut Medicare and Social Security Club is back again – this time pointing its daggers at Donald Trump
The Committee for a Responsible Budget (CFRB) is at it again in their quest to cut Social Security and Medicare. Cloaked behind a lace curtain of “bipartisan” concern, the committee includes impotent deficit hawks, sharks and other carnivores of ill repute.
Of course, at the top of the list is Pete Peterson, a very, very old creature and to his fellow seniors, certainly very, very cold and calculating. This Wall Street darling, founder of the Blackstone Group (about $7 billion annual income), is former chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, chairman emeritus of the Council for Foreign Relations, founder of the Concord Group, and former CEO of Lehman Brothers (John Kasich’s prior employer). With that background he deserves the Establishment+ designation.
If you watch tv you have probably noticed ads from Fix the Debt, which was founded in 2012, funded by Peterson and multiple CEOs and corporations. Fix the Debt is calling for a grand deficit bargain to be reached by reducing taxes on the wealthy, and cutting Medicare and Social Security by raising eligibility ages for both and reducing benefits.
Enter Stage Right Donald Trump. Continue reading →