Friday, November 30, 2012



Excellent column by Paul Krugman in the New York Times.
The important thing to understand now is that while the election is over, the class war isn’t. The same people who bet big on Mr. Romney, and lost, are now trying to win by stealth — in the name of fiscal responsibility — the ground they failed to gain in an open election. 

Consider, as a prime example, the push to raise the retirement age, the age of eligibility for Medicare, or both. This is only reasonable, we’re told — after all, life expectancy has risen, so shouldn’t we all retire later? In reality, however, it would be a hugely regressive policy change, imposing severe burdens on lower- and middle-income Americans while barely affecting the wealthy. Why? First of all, the increase in life expectancy is concentrated among the affluent; why should janitors have to retire later because lawyers are living longer? Second, both Social Security and Medicare are much more important, relative to income, to less-affluent Americans, so delaying their availability would be a far more severe hit to ordinary families than to the top 1 percent.
President Obama and congressional Democrats hold the cards since the election.  Let's hope they play the game to the advantage of the great majority of the citizens of the country.  Keep in mind that the fiscal cliff is not that at all, but is rather a fiscal incline, and, if it comes to that, the slide down the incline will play a lot worse for Republicans than for Democrats.

Note to Mr President and Congressional Democrats: Hold the line!  (You don't need to tell me; I know I'm mixing metaphors.)

As for Thelma and Louise, they landed safely and moved to Mexico.


Roberta said...

Mimi, I hope that I do indeed have a long life expectancy; however, at a young 69, I cannot imagine undertaking the work I did for 20 years as a psychiatric social worker. As much as I loved the work, I simply do not have the energy and concentration I used to have to be able to do the work the way it should be done.
I don't make the connection between living longer and remaining young in body and mind. Could there be some denial that there is a difference between longevity
and youthful stamina?

Grandmère Mimi said...

Thank you, Roberta. Energy does indeed tend to flag as we age, even in so-called white-collar occupations. And think of jobs that require hard physical labor, lifting, digging, jobs that require repetitive motions, etc. All too many of the rich live in denial about the lives of those less fortunate.

JCF said...

"Drinkin' margaritas by the sea, mamacita."

I've told you before, how scared I am that the "Grand Bargain" will include these changes. "Younger" Boomers like myself have always taken it on the chin, economically. Will it happen at our lives' ending, as well?

[Hey Mimi: did you remove "Name" from the login? :-( ]

Grandmère Mimi said...

"Drinkin' margaritas by the sea, mamacita.


I can't help but be a little nervous about what the Dems will give away in the bargain.

I'm not sure what you mean by removing "Name" from the login, but I did have to disallow anonymous comments, because after months of Blogger doing a good job of screening out spam, I started having many spam comments come through under Anonymous. Some of my friends who used anonymous and signed their comments will be blocked, but for now that can't be helped.

Bonnie said...

Roberta--That was the first thing that came to mind when I read this. Many of us can probably remember the days when we "hit the deck" with feet running. Now the first thing I hit is the snooze button.

JCF said...

"Name" wasn't the same as Anonymous (though you could sign in as any name you wanted, so it functioned anonymously).

I miss it. While I have a Blogger account (obviously), I hate having to sign in w/ it. Grumble, grumble...

JCF said...

This what your Blogger comment sign-in *used* to look like (roughly):

Choose an identity
* Google Account
* OpenID
* Name/URL
* Anonymous

"Name/URL" is the one I prefer.

Grandmère Mimi said...

JCF, in the settings, I removed "Anyone", which disallows "Anonymous", and now I receive no spam at all. Previously, even before the spam was coming through to the blog, I had to delete so many comments from the spam folder every few days that it got to be an annoying chore.

Can't you set your computer to remain signed in?

JCF said...

When you remove "Anyone", it obviously must get rid of both the "Anonymous" AND "Name/Url" sign-in settings. You can't check to see that you're removing ONLY the Anonymous setting?

"Can't you set your computer to remain signed in?"

That's not relevant to this particular issue.

I'm not trying to be difficult, Mimi. I'm just trying to (aka "Old Fart Syndrome") KEEP THINGS AS THEY ARE. "Kids, today. Always changing things! Why can't they keep them the same???"

I've gotten used to Name/Url, and that's the way I want it to stay. [In same way I liked---STILL LIKE!---pop-up comment threads, but I haven't gotten them back from you either. Le Sigh.]

Grandmère Mimi said...

Yes, you are correct, JCF. If one goes, both go. Would "comment moderation" be better? Or I could go back to the blasted letters and numbers to prove you're not a robot?

The reason I don't use pop-up comments is because when I click "Preview", the comments bleed far out of the space set for them, which, to me, makes it pointless to use preview.

JCF said...

I thought it was the "Subscribe by email" feature? (That's what MP said when he got rid of them)

As far as the "comments bleeding" thing goes, you just use the scroll bar at the bottom of the pop-up window.

Oh, nevermind. It's not that big of a deal...

Grandmère Mimi said...

Subscribe by email does not give me trouble. I hope it doesn't give my readers trouble.