New budget, same entitlement deceptions from Obama: 4JH. B12
President Barack Obama bows his head towards the Dalai Lama as he was recognized during the… National Prayer Breakfasts are usually occasions of inspiring messages and fellowship across religious and political divides. In recent years “Braveheart” writer Randall Wallace, Bonhoeffer biographer Eric Metaxas and Dr. Ben Carson have amped up the content with the effect of increasing the breakfast’s visibility and reach. I have played each of these messages on my radio show to great effect.This year NASCAR legend Darrell Waltrip was the keynote speaker and he too hit a home run (or whatever the appropriate stock car analogy would be) and I again played his remarks to an enthusiastic response from the audience.But I ended up playing President Obama’s riff on the Crusades and the Inquisition, slavery and Jim Crow far more often than anything Waltrip said. In fact, though a lot of MSM outlets spent a lot of time this week on Brian Williams, the country as a whole was first stunned, then mystified and finally angry about the president’s deep dive into moral equivalence.
Yet his budget lays out a plan to kick this can down the road for some future president to handle. Even a New York Times news story on the budget — hardly a Republican mouthpiece — noted, “the new budget plan does virtually nothing to change the trajectory of entitlement spending by the federal government.”
Obama’s budget asks Congress to “reallocate existing payroll tax collections” so as to take money intended for Social Security’s already-shaky retirement program and hand it over instead to the disability program. In short, he wants to loot the retirement fund for today’s 45-and-under workers in order to pay another program’s current bills, rather than take up the hard work of fixing a disability program rife with fraudulent claims.
Another deception in Obama’s budget goes all the way back to 2010, when Obama sold his national healthcare law as something that wouldn’t add a dime to the deficit. Obamacare could apply the same savings from Medicare cuts to both the regular federal budget and to the solvency of the Medicare program itself. it is more like a scam in which multiple bad checks are written against the same account at once. The way the accounting works, a cut to projected spending levels of Medicare is recorded as extending the life of the program’s trust fund. But with Obamacare, that money was used to help finance the creation of an expensive new healthcare entitlement. the same money can’t be simultaneously used for both purposes, it hasn’t stopped the Obama administration from claiming otherwise. This was not the only such manipulation, either, as advisor Jonathan Gruber would later share in an academic forum.
In his new budget, Obama does the same thing. He proposes modest cuts to future spending on Medicare — claiming the money will extend the life of Medicare by five years — but then uses the money to help finance other new spending priorities. But Congress will do well not to go along with his deception on Social Security, and Republicans should continue to push for genuine reform to Medicare.