Coming off the Social Security kerfuffle in the Democratic campaign, Paul Krugman reminds us of what went down in the GOP drive to privatize Social Security under George W. Bush and the bizarre elite consensus that facilitated this lunacy.
"Back in 2004-2005 the Bush administration tried to use the supposed crisis in Social Security to privatize the system, converting it into 401(k)-type accounts. This never made any sense: What did privatization have to do with a potential revenue shortfall?
A few years later it somehow became Beltway orthodoxy that it was urgent to lock in gradual benefit cuts. Why? It’s true that if the Social Security trust fund is eventually exhausted, it will be necessary either to raise taxes or to cut benefits. And, the argument went, to guard against the possibility of future benefit cuts, it was urgent that we act now to… cut future benefits. If this doesn’t sound to you as if it makes sense, that’s because it doesn’t. But all the Very Serious People believed it."
And what did Nancy Pelosi say?
Asked when she would present an alternative to the Bush plan, she replied, “Never. Is never good enough for you?”
You tell 'em, Nancy!