Thanksgiving Day 2010
GRAY MATTERS: Social Security – The Anti-Ponzi Scheme

What You Can Do to Help Save Social Security

category_bug_politics.gif Thanksgiving dinner was a smashing success – a beautiful turkey, all the trimmings and I am, today, properly – ahem, stuffed. Thank you all for your lovely greetings yesterday.

Black Friday holds no charms for me. Shopping has never been among my interests and even more, I abhor crowds. One of the advantages of retirement is that any necessary purchases can be made when most other people are not in the stores.

In his Gray Matters column tomorrow, Saul Friedman will argue against the billionaires and politicians who want to destroy Social Security. One of the most common questions here on the this blog and elsewhere from those who know better is, “What can I do?”

The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare has come up with one answer for us. They have named next Tuesday 30 November, National Call Congress Day.

“Plans like Bowles/Simpson,” writes the NCPSSM on their blog, Entitled to Know, “are being pushed by fiscal hawks in the media and in television ad campaigns as the only way to fiscal solvency while ignoring other options like Rep. Jan Schakowsky’s plan, which actually takes the economic realities facing working Americans into consideration.

November 30 is the day before President Obama's deficit commission issues its final report – that's the one chaired by Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles - so, as the NCPSSM notes, it is a

“...perfect opportunity to let your representatives in Washington know that cutting Social Security and Medicare benefits is a one-way ticket to economic and political ruin.”

To help us do that, the NCPSSM is setting up a toll-free Legislative Hotline for National Call Congress Day on November 30 that will connect you directly with your congressional representatives:


Save that number for next Tuesday and there is plenty of time for you to pass the word on your own blogs and telephone other friends and relatives too. Don't forget the younger ones – they are the people who would be most adversely affected by cuts in these programs.

I urge you to do this. I know from conversations with aides to Senator Harry Reid that all phone calls to representatives and senators are tracked and counted so the more of us who telephone on Tuesday, the greater the impact.

At The Elder Storytelling Place today: Steve Kemp: A True Story


See this is why I am so grateful for your blog. I don't know where I would find this information. Obliterating Social Security and Medicare would would be political and economic ruin so you bet I will be calling. Thanks for the info. Glad to hear your Thanksgiving was a success.

One more thing, I will be passing on this information to anyone who will listen.

Thank you for the specifics of action. There are times I really wish to do something but am perplexed as to how. Call I will and I will share this information.

...and if we can't get through, I hope an email will make the same point.


It will. Senator Reid's office tells me that emails are tracked and counted just like phone calls.

I am much more concerned about Medicare. The potential cuts to Social Security involve raising the retirement age for people not yet born and will not affect anyone alive today. Also, the other proposal gaining ground involves raising the taxable income so folks making more than the current SS taxable amount will pay more. Neither of these issues strikes me as unreasonable. People with diabilities will be protected and eligible for SS at the younger age of 62 which will not change. This information was discussed ad naseum in the WP this week and articles about it can be found on According to the Post newspaper, even the AARP approves of the tentative plan.

Medicare, alas is in a differerent boat and has been for some time. The amount doctors are reimbursed for office visits is due to increase in January without action from Congress during the lame duck session. The reason we care about the amount doctors receive in payment for services is because many of them are opting out of serving Medicare patients because they cannot afford it. (Washington Post, page 1, 11/26/2010)

Thus, Medicare shortages are a far more serious matter. particularly in underserved areas.


What you say is true, but we can do only so much at one time, and it is no less important to protect Social Security for future generations.

We will have plenty of future opportunities to try to influence Medicare decisions in Washington.

I'm saying this because I don't want anyone to not participate on Tuesday just because it doesn't address everything at once.

I will call and if I can't get through I will send an email. I will also write my family to make the call, also.

Thank you Ronni. I'm working on the blog post for Sunday now. I appreciate your constant sharing of this important information! I wouldn't be able to keep up without you. I truly appreciate it.

Both my Senators are very supportive of Social Security and older Americans' concerns in general. My Representative is a card-carrying conservative Republican who has shown time after time that he's not about to change his position, which hews straight to the Republican line on fiscal issues. I'll email my Senators "just in case" but my Representative is a lost cause. I contributed to and voted for his opponent, but his superior name familiarity and incumbency were too much to beat.


I am in agreement that the plan to reduce benefits is uncalled for. The program is solvent and only the govt using fund elsewhere has presented the problem.
Worse, is that using the same funding formula will not provide the fix. Only using an alternate method.
I have been suggesting to anyone who would listen that the current income tax will
But, this we elect think the know better.
Check this blog and forward to others if you think the proposal is better.

when will the gov put back all they have borrowed from our fund,this is what is hurting,pay us back the way you did the banks,it was our funds we paid in

this is the fault of our senant and congress not obama I am 87 and dont know how they could take a trust and use it.they are the ones resposible for all this

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