Wednesday, April 11, 2007

BS Meter Explodes When Washington Post Publishes False Medicare, Social Security Scare "Stories"

The once proud Washington Post continues its slide into the abyss of propaganda, lies, and deceit. Mark Thoma has the sordid story:

Once again, Robert Samuelson lumps all the social insurance programs together and foresees a dire future, in this case generational warfare. But as Dean Baker continually and correctly reminds us, Social Security is not the problem, and the programs themselves are not to blame - Medicare is not the cause of the growth in costs for health care:
The Washington Post ... complained about ... "the coming crisis in Social Security and Medicare." The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office's most recent projections show that Social Security can pay all scheduled benefits, with no changes whatsoever, until 2046, and roughly 75 percent of scheduled benefits for many decades after that date, even if no changes are ever made. ...

The Medicare story of course boils down to projections of exploding health care costs. If the health care system is not fixed, then "fixing" Medicare is irrelevant. We can zero out the program, but exploding health care costs would still devastate the economy. If the health care system is fixed, so that costs in the U.S. are in line with health care costs in other wealthy countries, then Medicare would be easily affordable. ...
I think the last point is too often missed - it's not the Medicare program, it's the growth in health costs that is the source of the dire projections for rising budget deficits. Digg Stumble Upon Toolbar propeller Furl

No comments: