Monday, December 10, 2012

The Fiscal Cliff Edges Closer

Well, we’re sort of getting down to the wire here. The Republicans seem to be signaling that they’re ready to accept some tax increases if they can get some entitlement cuts as well.

The question is, what would those cuts be?

What Republicans want is a raise in the age of eligibility for Medicare and a change to the way the cost of living adjustment (COLA) is calculated for Social Security.

I don’t necessarily have a problem with raising the age for Medicare and I suspect that will be a part of the final agreement. There has to be some sort of grandfathering clause though that keeps it at 65 for people close to that age (say 55 and older) in order to provide enough planning time.

It would be a little tough to tell someone very close to Medicare age that he’s out of luck.

I am opposed to the change in the COLA calculations.

There are a lot of senior citizens for whom Social Security is the primary source of income. These people worked their entire lives and EARNED that pension. I really dislike the term “entitlement.” Inflation can eat away at that pension and that’s simply not right.

Find another way to save the money. I know, stop giving Boeing, which hasn’t stayed within budget on a DOD contract in forever, less contracts! Less them build airplanes. THAT they know how to do. For everything else, forget it.

Why do the Republicans always want to take from the most vulnerable segments of the population while protecting people who really don’t need any protection?

Are we going to go over the cliff? It seems more likely now than it did a while back but I still doubt it.

My concern is there isn’t time left to iron out a comprehensive agreement and what we’re going to get is a band aid which kicks most of the can down the road. That means another six months or a year of uncertainty that will keep the economic recovery sluggish.

As for the industry I work in it means stagnation. That’s why I’m getting out. It’s time to hang up my guns and find a more reputable way to spend my time.

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