The Next Stop In Obama's Political Suicide Tour: Announcing Social Security Cuts During State Of The Union Address

Tyler Durden's picture

Obama's latest quid-pro-quo with the republican party over a doubling down on fiscal stimulus in the form of mutual back scratching, funding by yet another trillion in debt, may have well be the start of his toxic spiral to the the bottom of political insignificance. According to Politico, "The tax deal negotiated by President Barack Obama and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky is just the first part of a multistage drama that is likely to further divide and weaken Democrats." Next up on the path of what many see as the terminal alienation of the president from his liberal constituency, will occur during the next State of the Union Address, when the teleprompter in chief is expected to announce cuts in Social Security, according to Politico which quotes "well-placed sources." Why will the president pretend to espouse even an ounce of fiscal prudence? Because, around that time the discussion over the US debt ceiling will be in full heat: we expect total US debt to be about $14.1 trillion by the end of January: just a $200 billion buffer from the debt ceiling breach. Therefore, as Robert Kuttner of politico speculates: "The idea is to
pre-empt an even more draconian set of budget cuts likely to be proposed
by the incoming House Budget Committee chairman, Rep. Paul Ryan
(R-Wis.), as a condition of extending the debt ceiling. This is expected
to hit in April." And as Kuttner once again phrases it best: "
How to put this politely? For a Democratic president, this approach is bad economics and worse politics."

More from Politico:

For starters, cutting Social Security as part of a deficit reduction deal is needless — since Social Security is in surplus for the next 27 years. The move also gives away the single most potent distinction between Democrats and Republicans — Democrats defend your Social Security, and Republicans keep trying to undermine it.

If you think the Democratic base feels betrayed by Obama’s tax-cut deal, just imagine the mayhem when Obama proposes to cut the Democrats’ signature program.

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) compared Obama’s tax deal to punting on first down. A pre-emptive cut in Social Security is forfeiting the game before kickoff.

Obama is already in trouble with older voters. Republicans have succeeded in convincing seniors that the health care reform bill diverted money from Medicare.

With his recent tax extension compromise Obama has effectively checkmated himself into a corner from which not even his delightful onscreen charm can extricate him:

Consider what the right will do when Obama moves to cut Social Security. Republicans, with no sense of contradiction or hypocrisy, will whack Obama once for not being sufficiently serious about deficit reduction — then whack him again for cutting Social Security.

As for what next steps are, it may just get a whole lot more interesting to all those who follow the MOVE index:

As for the Republicans’ leverage on raising the debt ceiling, a more resolute president would dare the Republicans to jeopardize government bonds, just as President Bill Clinton dared Speaker Newt Gingrich to shut down the government. One hopes that Clinton, in his recent visit to the White House, reminded Obama that Gingrich blinked first. But Obama’s trademark is that he blinks first.

There was brief talk in the House Democratic Caucus on Tuesday night of tying an extension of the debt ceiling to the tax deal, to deprive the Republicans of that leverage. But that support crumbled in the face of White House lobbying and overwhelming Senate support for the deal. Obama, who gives in repeatedly to Republicans, turns out to be highly skilled at isolating Democrats.

And another observation, which has to do with not only decision making in the beltway, but the increasing incursion by Wall Street into both the fiscal and monetary decision process in Washington: now that Obama has no economic advisors left aside from Geithner, it is up to Tim to call up Jan Hatzius daily and get his thoughts on what should be done. Of course, the end result is one that is in Goldman's best interest, and in America's worst:

Beltway Washington —
the editorial writers, columnists, centrist policy organizations, Blue
Dogs and, of course, the Obama administration and its Wall Street
advisers — has become an echo chamber of bad advice.

End result: no second term for Obama, as his shallow rhetoric is exposed for all to see that it is nothing but a deflection from the fact that his entire platform is falling asunder:

Obama is finally getting the bipartisanship he craved — but entirely on Republican terms.

Republicans win three ways. They have a Democratic president doing their work for them, destroying the Democratic capacity to use affirmative government to address dire national problems and annihilating his own party.

And for an economy, in which the market has become nothing but a policy tool, we believe that the rising temperature in DC, is about to manifest itself in a surge in market volatility, which on Friday hit a near record 2010 low, although not only in stocks, but across all asset classes, as we have been demonstrating patiently over the past month. Should that vol enter bonds, and just a few days ago we had a 6 sigma event in the 2s5s30s, which we will describe shortly, this would mean some very painful derisking in that most important of asset classes, and a rapid test of just how accurate Jim O'Neill's prediction that surging bonds rates are really nothing but a boon to the economy.

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Apostate's picture

Naturally, the old, the weak, and the invalid will be defaulted against first.

By the time the system works through the rest, the golden men and their armed guards will be safe from reprisal. 

Sudden Debt's picture

and if history repeats itself, in 10 years there will be a uprising.

Not by us. We still have to much to lose, but by the kids that are now playing in the snow and don't really know what's going on.

Apostate's picture

Less, I think.

The government steals from everyone who works for this antisocial insecurity program. It's right there on every paycheck.

This is not something arcane like fiddling with the COLA numbers. The blowback will be more immediate.

UGrev's picture

So if anything, we should put a stop to SS NOW so our kids don't have to pay into anymore/at all and can thus use that money in the way they deem proper (i.e. being fiscally responsible and saving it). 

notaFerengi's picture

Sorry but those kids will be supporting their parents and grandparents.'s picture

Yes, that's one good use to which our money could be put if it wasn't stolen by the government. Why does that make you "sorry?" One would think that the ongoing theft would be the object of any remorse.

UGrev's picture

OMG.. self sustainability... watch out!! we can't have that now, can we?  If I didn't have to spork over that extra cash each month, I could concievably store it for the future on some medium that, oh.. I don't know.. stores wealth. My kids could do the same.. then, when I kick the bucket, I give them what I have left, if anything...and holy shit! I might actually avoid a nursing home. I swear to god, I'm checking out if my kids put me in one of those fucking places. I give them life and they put me in there... fuck it. This world doesn't allow for people to take care of their elderly and dying parents. Any one else sick of this shit yet?'s picture

I could concievably store it for the future on some medium that, oh.. I don't know.. stores wealth. My kids could do the same.. then, when I kick the bucket, I give them what I have left, if anything.


Parents could invest money in their childrens' education thereby increasing that generation's ability to earn and in turn support the parents. Parents could invest in capital goods like a farm or a store or a fabricating facility which would be eventually taken over by the children who would care for their elders in turn.

One can imagine myriad ways that our lives would be more fulfilling if we didn't have to hand over half of our incomes for the government's protection racket.

UGrev's picture

This is part of the cycle. I would love to invest in my childrens' education.. but I'll be fucked after all the taxes and shit we have to pay, as well as trying to invest for my own retirement, if I can afford to put away enough (I still do, just not enough) for my kids. Then they're forced to take out loans.. what a miserable cirlcle jerk.

I went to school for psychology and ended up making a living as a software developer. Guess what.. I spent about 600.00 on books over the course of my eduction in programming and that was AFTER psych college. Man, I always wonder what I could have done if I didn't "almost waste" 4 years of college and I maybe spent 600.00 a year on learning how to program as well spent all that time I had without a wife/kids to support; what kind of education I could have given MYSELF. I guess I'll find out 4 years from now. 

The system is fucked up. It benefits no one but the recipients of our money. 

tip e. canoe's picture

funny...this is exactly what the chinese do.

StychoKiller's picture

Why should your children put their lives on hold, taking care of you, until you finally die in a pool of your own filth?  There aren't enough hours in a day for two, let alone one person, to care of someone infirm or demented -- throw in having to raise children of their own, and it becomes obvious why nursing homes exist.  Native Americans had the right idea; once someone reached the age where they became mostly a burden on the family, they would go off into the woods and never return.

tmosley's picture

Right, the Native American model was clearly superior to the European model, as is made obvious by the Native American colonization of Europe.

Oh wait, that isn't how it happened, is it?

Having extended family living with you is a blessing.  It means that you never need to look far to find someone to watch the children, or to run errands.  You can have multiple incomes in a single household as well.  Knowledge is also passed down from the grandparents to the grandchildren this way while the parents are working their jobs.

"Caring" for an elderly member of the family only becomes a burden at the very end.  If they live with their family, they will find ways to be helpful right up until they have gone deaf dumb and blind.

-Michelle-'s picture

Nursing homes exist because people are afraid of death.  Instead of facing their twilight years with acceptance, people swallow dozens of pills daily in order to stave off the inevitable.

Instead of a quick diagnosis and rapid decline, at home and surrounded by family, the infirm are forced by well-meaning doctors and relatives to extend their lives to the point of misery.

And, no, I'm not advocating euthanasia.  I am pro-life, from natural conception to natural death.  It's just that death isn't very natural anymore.

tip e. canoe's picture

methinks you just smacked the keystone of the whole kitakaboogle.

ColonelCooper's picture

CLAP CLAP CLAP CLAP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I would only add that "Big Pharma", whose evil is rivaled only by "Big Banks" have hijacked our entire medical existence, and greatly contribute to the problem.

DaveyJones's picture

another round of applause. Big Pharma, Big Banks, Big Oil, Big Media. They all have the same first name. They must be related.

A Nanny Moose's picture

Pro-property rights. I have the right to terminate my existence should I become a burden to those around me, or my existence become too painful for me to bear.

Prolonging of life is more about the guilty consciences of the living, than it is for the benefit of the dying. Death is part of the cycle. Period.

UGrev's picture

Have fun on your long walk. I would expect a little more out of my children that I raised them and took care of them in their piles of filth. At a such a young age they are mostly a burden too, are they not? You win the "Go screw yourself" award of the year. I may not be most knowledgable person when it comes to the markets.. but damn, bro.. at least I have a clue or two about life.

Eally Ucked's picture

What a bunch of american losers! For years grandpa & ma were providing you with whatever they could, to buy your toys. And now when SHTF they are dispensible and burden, what a sad end to that  most developed  society of yours.  

UGrev's picture

Umm. I think you replied to the wrong person. I'm all for children taking care of their parents. Heck, I helped take care of my grand-mother who had alzheimers when she lived WITH us. In fact, I went to school to study psychology with a focus in neuroscience to better understand the disease so I could help her more. 

Element's picture

I think we can improve on that with a self-administered lethal dose of barbiturates in the woods, but yeah. The idea that we are chattels of the State, and that to top our self is a crime against the State, is really the ultimate in Govt arrogance and power over-reach.


(Well, besides the drafting and brainwashing mere kids to fight needless and pointless wars of utter butchery against some other state’s ‘chattels’).

I don't remember signing my freedom to chose what I do over to some State, ... but they sure want me to think that I did.

pan-the-ist's picture

I think I might find a nice snowbank to fall asleep in when I am old enough to permanently retire.  Before then, I'd like to think that I could burden my children a bit.  I did wipe their asses when they were babies.

DaveyJones's picture

and they'll do the same for you someday. The circle

wiskeyrunner's picture

They will make younger workers pay into it knowing they will receive nothing, hey thats stealing.

chinaguy's picture

Jesus tap dancing Christ - Obama is NOT going to announce cuts to SS. I mean - fer fucks sake- take a breath & weight the odds.

strannick's picture

Put yourself beyond the power of the corrupt politicos, and safeguard the children in the snow with some gold and silver

High Plains Drifter's picture

Getting rid of the old and the invalid. This is called Obama heath care.

benb's picture

Good link… Gates’ true mission is as a eugenics front man for the scientific dictatorship. Funding involuntary sterilization, depopulation, genetically modifying mosquitoes to give you a brain damaging vaccination…that’s what this monster is all about. I suppose there are a lot of people who believe the propaganda that this little scumbag ‘Made it on his own’ and now wants to help his fellow man. Not true.

Translational Lift's picture

Me thinks Billy G has outlived his usefulness.......time for him to go and thanks to con-gress the US will get 35% of his estate.....that should help the defecit for a couple of days......

Sig Sauer's picture

Sorry, but the US will likely get 0% of Gates' estate.  It will go to his foundation and/or Buffet's foundation, and escape taxation altogether.  He's probably already using other strategies such as GRATs to provide funds for his heirs, which will also escape estate taxation.  Wouldn't surprise me if the taxman gets less than 1% of his wealth, if any at all.

Translational Lift's picture

"the teleprompter in chief is expected to announce cuts in Social Security"

This fucker has a death wish........Unless of course his intent is to eliminate benefits to illegals and others that have not paid into SS.

StychoKiller's picture

Sorry to burst your bubble there, but EVERYONE that gets a paycheck has Social Security and FICA taxes withheld from them.  Illegal aliens don't get a chance to collect on their "investment" though -- in fact, this is the dirty little secret that the Govt won't reveal:  They're counting on "other" contributions (from illegal aliens!) to partially fund the shortfall, which is why the Govt is always dragging its feet on enforcing the Border(s) and immigration law(s)!

-Michelle-'s picture

I've often wondered what happens to those funds from illegals.  If they steal someone's social, wouldn't the contributions go to that person? 

Does anyone wind up getting an unusually big monthly payment and wonder how it came to be?

Or do the Feds know exactly which withholdings are illegitimate and use those to fill the slush funds?

QQQBall's picture

There have been attempts to get bennies for Messykins that used stolen or "broowed" SS numbers. The movement would have their bennies send directly to Messyco.

QQQBall's picture

There have been attempts to get bennies for Messykins that used stolen or "borrowed" SS numbers. The movement would have their bennies send directly to Messyco.

tip e. canoe's picture

bingo.   what happens when the pink elephants leave the building in droves?


SmittyinLA's picture

Its just business, the Democrats see the elderly as a declining vote dying off & getting smaller every year,  as well as not paying theri vig at all any more, they'd rather pander to the broke humping masses, even if they can't get the alien invader's parental vote they can get their anchor baby kid's vote(s) which is a far bigger number anyway, besides they also have the alien parents vote through benefits paid to them for their anchor kids, its not like ID is checked when you register to vote anyway, they can do whatever they want through fraud RIGHT NOW. 

D-Falt's picture

Everything our government is doing to drive intelligent money into commodities and thereby drive up the cost of eating and driving to work does far more to destroy fixed incomes than what pResident Obama will propose in his STFU address.

Rusty Shorts's picture

Excuse me, but I would like to "opt Out" of the SS system, and please return the money that I have paid into the SS, plus any interest you fuckers have made off my back. I can handle my own retirement, fuck you very much.

Landrew's picture

I would like money from you to cover all those in your family that received benefits for disability, retirement, death benefits etc. Did you forget we all have families that are covered? So you plan to take care of BoBo and Bettie Sue yourself?

FU very much

yakmerchant's picture

"I would like money from you"


Really?  Nice argurment Marxist d-bag.

Rusty Shorts's picture

Do you really believe this is sustainable?


BoBo and Bettie Sue can take care of themselves, it's called taking responsibility. In the event that they cannot, then of course it's the families responsibility, not the gooberment. 

pan-the-ist's picture

Yes it is sustainable.  Medicare, not so much, but that is because of the health care market's fanciful pricing on their goods and services.  The real crime is, as Bernie Sanders pointed out, the defunding of Social Security with a one year tax break.'s picture

So you plan to take care of BoBo and Bettie Sue yourself?

Why would he when the government is taking care of them so well? It's not like Obama is going to stop cost of living increases or cut benefits, right?

Bearster's picture

ding ding ding! +10

One cannot speak of a "profit" in armed robbery.  Second, one cannot speak of a profit in a regime which forces all private businesses with revenues over a low threshold to use the ACCRUAL METHOD OF ACCOUNTING and yet the government quotes its "profits" using the CASH METHOD OF ACCOUNTING.

Accounting for dummies: if you give me $1 this year for a promise that I will pay you $10 next year, THEN I HAVE NOT MADE A PROFIT!!!

SS is bankrupt.  Spare us the altruistic, crocodile-tear-crying, hate the "golden guys" pap.  What cannot be paid will not be paid.  Rousing up righteous class warfare does not change these two facts.

And class warfare BS does not change the fact that the only way to extend-and-pretend that SS is solvent for a while longer is to keep looting (and increase the amount) of productive people.

I stand with Rusty.

blindfaith's picture

with all due respect to you and Rusty...

next time you drive down the freeway remember that SS money made that possible, and a lot more.  There is nothing wrong with SS, what is wrong is the government "borrowing" SS money (at interest rates IT chooses to pay)...and then doesn't pay it back, but rolls it over with cheaper dollars!  (and, oh yes, lets put those retirement dollars in the bogus stock market and let Goldman or JPM manage it because you will not be able to...are you nuts?). 

You want to see where the real crime is, go look at government retirement plans, which get supplemented by your income tax( not so with SS), because the payments they pay are a fraction of the cost.  If those SOLID GOLD benefits don't make you ANGRY, then you are just another FOX news/Republican cheerleader who can't see truth and doesn't want to either.

As for my President, likely if the Democrats don't run him, the Rupublicans will.  Who needs Sara when you have Obama.  AND, YES...I am changing so many elected Democrats I don't want to be caught 'on the wrong side of this fence'.

minus dog's picture

"Excuse me, but I would like to "opt Out" of the SS system, and please return the money that I have paid into the SS, plus any interest you fuckers have made off my back. I can handle my own retirement, fuck you very much."

I hear this a lot.  You didn't "pay into" anything - you paid a tax.

The government already spent the money you "paid into the SS", at the time you paid them.  You're money is right there - in the subsidized housing, the food stamps, the roadways, etc.  Welcome to the Ponzi scheme.  

Not saying you don't have my sympathy here, but those with 20-30 years of payroll taxes down the drain have had all that time to notice and do something about this.

linrom's picture

Is that you Karl Denniger, duchebag.