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For a week I have watched people who should know better panic and freak out over the idea that Obama is proposing cuts to Social Security and Medicare. What the White House has actually been saying does not appear to be the same as what people here are claiming.

The White House is talking about chained CPI protections

As someone who has been receiving SSI benefits and Medicare/Medicaid benefits for five years now I feel like I have a vested interest in getting the story straight. I expect that for most of us the fact that chained CPI has Grover Nordquist fit to be tied should provide a clue as to where Obama's Grand Bargain is headed

For Democrats the purpose of government has always been to create a more perfect union, and to be stronger as a group by protecting the weak. For Republicans corporations the difference in perspectives comes down to trying to find ways to label every investment in the economy that helps people have a better quality of life as tax and spend. That's the mission of the right wing think tanks as they have been set up by the lobbyists.

For Republicans corporations the mission of government is to de-regulate and/or  de-stabilize any obstacle to maximizing profits including democracies socialist regimes that want to re-distribute the wealth.

Given his actions as regard Affordable healthcare, DADT, DOMA, Marriage Equality, Gun Control, Immigration, Woman's rights and his foreign policy does it really make sense to you that the legacy Obama wishes to leave behind him is the betrayal of everything the Democrats have worked for since FDR?

In researching the proposed cost of living adjustments to the present system called CPI-W, I learned that because Elderly people spend more on healthcare and medications than younger people, their CPI-W cost of living "basket" underestimates  their actual cost of living and it has been proposed that a CPI-E be implemented to correct this. The result would be more benefits for the poor and the elderly.

The Whitehouse Budget includes a chained CPI, CPI-U which it is proposed would offer at least two different types of protections.

The Budget contains two types of protections:

Benefit Enhancement for the Very Elderly and Others Who Rely on Social Security for Long Periods of Time

The benefit enhancement would be equal to 5% of the average retiree benefit, or about $800 per year if the proposal were in effect today.

It would phase in over 10 years, beginning at age 76, or (for other beneficiaries, such as those receiving Disability Insurance) in the 15th year of benefit receipt.

The benefit enhancement would begin in 2020, phasing in over 10 years for those 76 or older (or in their 15th year of eligibility or beyond) in that year.

Beneficiaries who continued to be on the program for an additional 10 years would be eligible for a second benefit enhancement, starting at age 95 in the case of a retired beneficiary.

Because of the benefit enhancement for the very elderly, the Budget proposal would not increase the poverty rate for Social Security beneficiaries, and would slightly reduce poverty among the very elderly according to SSA estimates.

I'll allow that when the POTUS proposes a budget that benefits the poor and the elderly at the expense of the rich and the powerful the administration still has to find a way to sell it to Congress. We can say that the protections are not enough, that the minimum wage and the Cap should be raised more, but lets remember that so long as we fail to get a deal we get nothing.

For most of my lifetime, going back to when the New Deal was still in its infancy, Republicans have been trying to cut back and ultimately to get rid of Civil Rights, Voting Rights, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Healthcare safety nets, unemployment insurance, public education, and everything else the government does other than make war.

Republicans, who spend so much time worrying about the deficit and austerity for social programs which they consider discretionary spending are delighted to double or triple the deficit with unnecessary warmongering.

The Civil War, Spanish American War, WWI, WWII and the Cold War spent ever more massive amounts of money on creating a standing army, a navy with a global fleet, building up huge foreign bases, turning the USA into the worlds largest arms dealer.

In the sixties we began simultaneously thinking seriously about having enough overkill in our doomesday scenarios to survive a nuclear war and developing special forces for covert actions. In the seventies Johnson tried to redirect our spending into a war on poverty but ran into calls for benign neglect and then from 1980 onward our military budgets began to enter the realm of science fiction with Reaganomics  and "Star Wars" until Gorbechov finally put an end to that arms race by introducing sanity depriving us of an enemy.

What Obama is trying to do with his Grand Bargain is achieve the sort of detente between Republicans and Democrats that the Russians introduced three decades earlier to bring an end to the insanity of the cold war. The prize in the box of cracker jacks is the peace dividend.

It looks like Republicans are catching on that the consequences of four years of obstruction are looking more and more like what happened to the Whigs. They are losing the ability of the NRA to call the shots on gun control, and the ability of the climate change deniers to convince us that the destruction of our cities by storm surges and rising sea levels is a hoax, and the ability of Citizens United funding to buy elections, and the ability of insane right wing governors to suppress the vote, make war on women, replace elected governments with managers, treat the children of undocumented immigrants who have been born and spent their lives in the US as illegitimate.

Meanwhile Obama has 80% of the country backing his play and all of a sudden the people whose ideas I respect the most are loosing their cool because they don't trust him to continue to look out for the best interests of the elderly and the poor rather than corporations.

Poll

What area where Obama let you down cost him your trust

40%8 votes
5%1 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
0%0 votes
15%3 votes
20%4 votes
0%0 votes
5%1 votes
0%0 votes
10%2 votes
0%0 votes
5%1 votes

| 20 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catkin, wdrath, isabelle hayes

    Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

    by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:04:17 PM PDT

  •  He's cutting middle class SS benefits (20+ / 0-)

    and disguising it by claiming that the poorest of all will be "protected".  Well how much do you think your typical middle class senior is going to like that?  

    He brags about cutting $130B.  Well, that's not magic.  

    The rich are held harmless and the middle class gets screwed.

    Plus, he's going to do something similar with Medicare so middle class seniors pay higher premiums.

    It may be OK with you.  I do not want my Social Security and Medicare benefits cut and I will vote on this issue.  

    •  With you greenbell, hands of SS (9+ / 0-)

      As I have been saying since 2005, create jobs, raise the min wage and we can watch the FICA roll in.

      Starting from the GOP talking point of SSTF will be exhausted in 2033 is insane. It ignores the 2048 and 2090 date by the SST.

      After all the information made available by the last 2 blogathons, this kind of dairy is just silly. Even with protections - C-CPI is still a cut.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:23:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The best way to create jobs (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        isabelle hayes

        is to get rid of the Republican obstruction and to facilitate Obama's plans for investing in infrastructure.

        The first tranch of infrastructure investment is affordable health care which needs to provide facilities to service 50 million people coming on line with affordable care in 2014.

        The second is the ARRA investments in things like roads, bridges, water and sewer treatment, alternative energy and mass transit.

        The third is the money being spent on education an investment which makes many more Americans qualified to compete internationally for well paying jobs both here and overseas.

        Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

        by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:07:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The best way to get rid of the GOP House (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rktect, eXtina

          Is to propose spending 1 trillion to create 25 million jobs in infrastructure. And let the GOP kill it.

          But this White House has never proposed that.

          This White House has never proposed more than 165 billion a year for hiways, bridges and tunnels. And that guarantees a GOP controlled House. And abysmal job  creation. And that guarantees SS is under funded.

          SO are you paid or are you a Volunteer?

          .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

          by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:30:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'm a 67 year old architect (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            isabelle hayes

            I can pretty much guarantee you that in my lifetime we will have to rebuild as much infrastructure as we have built to date in this country because most of it is old and obsolete.

            A lot of it is subject to climate change disasters, flood, tornado, hurricane, wildfire, mudslide, liquifaction due to rising sea levels and changing water tables.

            We have an affordable care act about to require facilities for 50 million new customers, the ARRA is spending money on water and sewer treatment, roads, bridges, tunnels, alternative energy, mass transit and utilities for new businesses.

            In addition to that we have new port facilities, airports, rail heads, new power plants, new beamed energy distribution, we have new educational facilities to build new municipal buildings.

            My urban planning class is looking at regional development that could easily swallow a trillion dollars  for just the Bos Wash corridor.

            Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

            by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:52:27 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Keep doing that, U R so funny 67 and in class (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              rktect

              taking Urban planning.

              BTW the ARRA money was spent, its done.

              .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

              by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:56:36 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  teaching it (0+ / 0-)

                Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:12:25 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  DO you make enough to reduce U R SS benefits (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  rktect

                  .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

                  by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:23:25 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I'm retired now (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    isabelle hayes

                    living on social security alone is pretty difficult, but the associated benefits we get from Medicare, Maine Care/Medicaid, the VA, Penquis, Heap, LIHeap, the Free Clinic, Pen Bay and Maine General help.

                    I learned Urban Planning working with Robert Wood the director of HUD under Johnson and served on the BSA's urban and regional focal groups.

                    Now I live in Maine and get my subsistence from my garden and orchard. I can forage in my wood lot and make most of what I need for infrastructure.

                    In a state with one of the worst of the austerity governors cutting everything he can we work hard at the State Committee and the County executive committee to ensure a Blue State Legislature.

                    Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                    by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 03:51:50 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Might be doing an infrastructure/jobs blogathon (0+ / 0-)

                      in a month or so. Keep an eye out.

                      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

                      by Roger Fox on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 08:42:09 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

    •  And because you're so angry your vote (0+ / 0-)

      will guarantee Social Security and Medicare benefits will be cut worse.

      "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

      by Whimsical on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:04:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Susan from 29, eXtina, Roger Fox

        Just...no.

        "The “Left” is NOT divided on the need to oppose austerity and the Great Betrayal. The Third Way is not left or center or even right. It is Wall Street on the Potomac."--Bill Black

        by lunachickie on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:11:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes. (0+ / 0-)

          But feel free to keep your head in the sand.

          "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

          by Whimsical on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:17:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I cant seem to diagnose the disease (0+ / 0-)

          I mean if they're paid to blog, you'd think they'd hire someone with some real language skills and a bit of vocabulary.

          SO they might be volunteers, right?

          .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

          by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:35:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  You should charge for that ... (0+ / 0-)

        Your ability to predict how people will vote is impressive.




        Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
        ~ Jerry Garcia

        by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:46:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No, its just reading comprehension. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          rktect, isabelle hayes

          Greenbell has repeatedly said they will vote against any Democrat who agrees with the President.

          Like it or not, believe it or not, if you don't vote for the Democrat, all you do is help the Republican.  That's just the way it is, until we make massive changes to the way we hold and fund election.

          Therefore Greenbells vote will help elect Republicans.  Now, unless you can make the case that Republicans won't blowtorch the safety net (and if you can, I'd really like to see it), his/her vote will guarantee worse results than the thing he/she is angry about.

          That's one of the top problems with "progressives" they vote emotionally, to air their feelings, instead of strategically.

          "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

          by Whimsical on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:16:26 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  S/he can vote however s/he wants (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Roger Fox, Zack from the SFV

            Unless s/he's advocating for others to abandon the Democratic party here on this Democratic bloc, that's his/her right.

            The election, I'm willing to bet, won't turn on Greenbell's single vote.

            And please elaborate, if you will, on your statement about progressives voting "emotionally" rather than "strategically."

            Do you have evidence of that? This emoprog would like to see it.




            Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
            ~ Jerry Garcia

            by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:32:38 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  emoprog, LOL Love it. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              DeadHead

              .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

              by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:37:29 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Isn't it great? It's the only thing I've managed (0+ / 0-)

                to find coming out of the other side of this debate that's even remotely useful.

                The rest is spin.




                Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
                ~ Jerry Garcia

                by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:03:57 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  Never said she didn't. (0+ / 0-)

              She can vote however she wants.

              However, she might want to look at the actual results of her vote (other than expressing her anger)- if you vote to express your anger but end up with a worse result than if you didn't, that's a perfect example of voting emotionally rather than strategically.

              "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

              by Whimsical on Thu Apr 18, 2013 at 02:49:50 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Whats wrong with progressives? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DeadHead

            That is some funny shit.

            .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

            by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:36:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Do you know (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DeadHead, rktect, Zack from the SFV

            what a primary is?

            Seriously, try harder.

            "The “Left” is NOT divided on the need to oppose austerity and the Great Betrayal. The Third Way is not left or center or even right. It is Wall Street on the Potomac."--Bill Black

            by lunachickie on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:54:45 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  A primary is something many candidates avoid (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              isabelle hayes

              by running as independents. In some cases they might chose to run as Democrats but are poorly funded single issue candidates who would lose in a primary.

              Running as independents or as a green party or the equivalent splits the vote  which helps Republicans.

              Because independents serve as spoilers and split our vote they are a luxury Democrats can not afford.

              We should never encourage them to run or vote for them to teach Democrats whom we perceive as not being strong enough on an issue we favor a lesson. When we do that we get Republicans in state offices which is not a favorable outcome.

              In Maine primaries give us right wing tea baggers like governor Le Page courtesy of Independents like Andrew King and Elliot Cutler.

              Because they have name recognition from repeatedly running as spoilers independents become nuisances that progressives like Cynthia Dill have to spend time and money running against.

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:09:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Obtuse much? (0+ / 0-)

                Because that shoots whimsical's "theory"--what remains of it--straight to hell.

                Stay smarmy and smug at your own risk.

                "The “Left” is NOT divided on the need to oppose austerity and the Great Betrayal. The Third Way is not left or center or even right. It is Wall Street on the Potomac."--Bill Black

                by lunachickie on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 07:17:36 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

              •  I hasten to add (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                rktect

                in case I'm reading you wrong--because I'm truly not sure why you'd rec my comment and then go on to seem to support that nonsense upthread--my point was these Democrats who insist Chained CPI is good are in for a big surprise. People are opposed to this shit, and those of us in this party who are tired as fuck of it being steamrolled by Third Way types are going to start doing something about it.

                And independents and third parties have NOTHING to do with that. Nothing.

                "The “Left” is NOT divided on the need to oppose austerity and the Great Betrayal. The Third Way is not left or center or even right. It is Wall Street on the Potomac."--Bill Black

                by lunachickie on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 07:21:35 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I recomend you for contributing your ideas (0+ / 0-)

                  it doesn't matter if they are right or wrong so long as they allow others to respond.

                  Eventually somebody goes to the trouble of checking your speculations and then we learn that the phrase "chained CPI" is like the campaign slogan "war on terror", a meaningless expedition into fear mongering and panic.

                  To discuss whats being proposed intelligently it helps to differentiate between CPI-W (what we have now), CPI-U (what Obama proposes), and the sweetners to the deal such as CPI -E (which most elderly SSI recipients are advocating)

                  In Maine we now have an Independent US Senator, Andrew King replacing a Republican and caucusing with the Democrats but by no means as progressive as Cynthia Dill would have been.

                  For my money a less speculative, less hyperbolic writing style that is willing to listen carefully to the arguments both for and against works better.

                  Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                  by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 10:03:16 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Given that I'm one of the strongest (0+ / 0-)

              supporters of primarying Democrats on this site, I can only conclude youv'e woefully misunderstood my point.

              "The future of man is not one billion of us fighting over limited resources on a soon-to-be dead planet. . .I won't go back into the cave for anyone."

              by Whimsical on Thu Apr 18, 2013 at 02:47:38 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Exactly (0+ / 0-)

            Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

            by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 03:53:13 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Typical GOP blame game (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DeadHead

        A RWNJ I know from High School on FB told me

        Liberals so angry at corporations.
        Blame people for being angry.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:32:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  We blame people for not working together (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          isabelle hayes

          because its solidarity that wins elections and beating Republicans till they are all gone is the name of the game.

          Its fine to invest some time in educating candidates and elected officials about what you consider the proper progressive position.

          Voting against a Democrat because they aren't progressive enough is something you should leave to your county and state Democratic committees which you should be on to determine which Democrats get funding

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:14:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  How is he cutting middle class benefits? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      isabelle hayes

      The Economy improving benefits everyone, bringing troops home and making the first inroads on cuts to military spending benefits everyone, his stands on gun control, immigration, marriage equality, women's rights, gay rights, the right to vote, alternative energy and climate change benefit everyone.

      Obama isn't doing anything to make middle class seniors pay higher premiums, that is unless your definition of middle class is $400k in which case
      raiding the cap affects the middle class.

      Obama is cutting subsidies and tax breaks written into Medicare for special interests like equipment manufacturers and big drug companies, insurance providers and the people who make going to a hospital cost an arm and a leg. I approve of that because that means there was some money left in ARRA to go into building the Al Jones radiation center in Augusta.

      He's got his foot in the door into getting Republicans to accept cuts to military spending and to actually consider getting revenue from taxes on millionaires and billionaires instead of just the poor and elderly

      With Elizabeth Warren in the Senate I'm less worried about the rich being held harmless and the middle class screwed

      I don't think he's perfect and I would hope the poll I added would allow some discussion of where he has let us down, but in general he's done a better job than most of us in winning over the people who tried the hardest to make him fail which is something which would not benefit any of us.

      I'm a pretty typical middle class senior. Obamas efforts to reform healthcare and make it affordable may well be the difference between life and death for my wife.

      For most of my working life I was self employed as an architect. I paid a lot of money into social security and I'm taking a fair return on what I paid in benefits. I'm a veteran and I get some benefits there as well. I own a home and expect Elizabeth Warren having Obama's ear will be one of the biggest reasons for me being able to keep it.

      My children and grandchildren have a better chance of survival because Obama has endeavored to speak up about gun control, climate change, woman's rights, marriage equality and gay rights and picked a team to include a fairly decent VP and secretary of state who have improved out approach to foreign policy.

      There is still a lot more to be done but its easier to get it done because Obama is making inroads on the obstruction. His supreme court picks Kagan and Sotomayor dare to take on Scalia, and Alito. That makes it easier for Kennedy and Roberts to do the right thing.

      He's winning over a few Republicans to vote for raising taxes and a few to vote for gun control and a few to vote against voter suppression. Taken all together his community organizing has made inroads on the fear of Grover Nordguist and Wayne LaPierre initiating a primary challenge.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:53:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Income tax increase hits earners hard 30k to 40k (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DeadHead, Throw The Bums Out

        Typically a senior with 35k in income will get bumped from the 15% bracket to the 25% bracket.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:21:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Baloney (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          isabelle hayes

          That's not a middle class income its bare bones social security for a family of two or earned income for a family with kids. The adjusted gross income for a family like that filing jointly and using individual exemptions plus schedules A and C could easily see a tax rate in the range of less than 15%

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:19:32 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Ahhh no. (0+ / 0-)

             photo C-CPITaxPolicyCenterincometax.png

            .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

            by Roger Fox on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:01:50 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  The Brookings and the Urban Institute? Really? (0+ / 0-)

              One of my greatest frustrations is looking at the sources of supposedly liberal positions and discovering they are coming from conservative organizations

              Some liberals argue, however, that despite its left-of-center reputation, Brookings foreign policy scholars were overly supportive of Bush administration policies abroad.[29][30] Matthew Yglesias, a liberal blogger, has pointed out that Brookings's Michael O'Hanlon frequently agrees with scholars from conservative organizations such as the American Enterprise Institute, The Weekly Standard, and the Project for a New American Century.
              The Heritage Foundation, The American Enterprise Institute, The Federalist Society, The Project for a New American Century and the Hoover Institute are among 3000 some odd right wing sources for the sort of economic policies reflective of Milton Friedman rather than Keynes and the once Liberal Brooking Institute in association with the Urban Institute which is responsible for the graph are coming to us courtesy of
              Robert Reischauer
              September 10, 2009

              1. What is the greatest risk to our financial system?

              The greatest risk is that our creditors will lose faith in either our ability or our willingness to put our fiscal house in order—that is, to reduce our deficit and reduce our need to borrow from abroad. If our creditors begin to lose faith in our economy's long-run viability, we'll see interest rates or inflation rise, and either would be disastrous for the average American.

              Reducing the deficit by austerity measures is not in the interest of senior citizens on SSI
              [29] Similarly, Brookings fellow and research director Benjamin Wittes is a member of the conservative Hoover Institution's Task Force on National Security and Law.[31] Brookings scholars have served in Republican and Democratic administrations, including Mark McClellan,[32] Ron Haskins[33] and Martin Indyk.[34][35]

              The Brookings Board of Trustees includes mainly prominent Democrats, such as Laura Tyson, former chair of the Council of Economic Advisers under Bill Clinton, but also a token number of centrist Republicans such as Kenneth Duberstein, a former chief of staff to Ronald Reagan.

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 11:38:11 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  I am not taking sides in this debate because (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wdrath, FG, DeadHead, rktect, Onomastic

    both are going to lose, so I don't want to be on either one of them. However, you take an interesting point of view.

    I hope you're wearing a hardhat.

    What is truth? -- Pontius Pilate

    by commonmass on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:15:10 PM PDT

  •  Enhancement= taking 4.5k and then spoon feeding (8+ / 0-)

    3k back to seniors. Its till a cut.

    Or we could spend historically normal levels on infrastructure, creating 20 million jobs @ 36k each would see SS solvent thru 2090.

    Some women, some blacks, and low income working class men wont live long enough to to see the first SS bump at age 76. The bottom 50% of earners at age 65 have a life expectancy to 81.

    Statistically only the very rich live to 95, do they really need a second bump.....

    .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

    by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:17:59 PM PDT

    •  And the lyin' spin is what drives me nuts (7+ / 0-)

      He cuts your Social Security benefit and calls it an enhancement.  

      I do not like people who lie to me.  It tends to make me not trust them on anything.

      •  We have to "FIX THE DEBT" donchyano (8+ / 0-)

        Totally fraudulent.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:25:44 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It doesn't hurt to redistribute the wealth (0+ / 0-)

          so that more of our money is spent on things we can use and less on paying interest on a debt we don't really need to have.

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:17:59 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  "redistribution of wealth" GOPers love to use that (0+ / 0-)

            second time in one dairy

            .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

            by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:58:55 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That is cause they are scared of it (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              isabelle hayes

              Its time for it. Wealth is way out of control in this country because of too many sweet deals engineered by lobbyists and think tanks to include subsidies for energy companies, insurance companies, big agra business, the MIC; no bid contracts for war profiteers and bailouts for wall street.

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:27:51 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  We earned what we kept in the New Deal (0+ / 0-)

                I suggest you dont use the GOP slang

                "redistribution of wealth"

                Unless you are referring to the class warfare the the GOP has perpetrated on us.

                Just cause its wrong, wealth was not redistributed to the working and middle classes during the New Deal. We earned it.

                .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

                by Roger Fox on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:08:59 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Why should I let them dominate the language? (0+ / 0-)

                  I'm for redistribution of wealth, from each according to their abilities, to each according to their needs.

                  The GOP has attempted class warfare, end result they are widely perceived as having no class and going the way of the Whigs.

                  Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                  by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 10:13:08 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

    •  Affordable healthcare will make us all live longer (0+ / 0-)

      Fewer will die of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, but even more will be able to go get a checkup, get some advice on diet and exercise, maybe see a dentist or an ophthalmologist, worry less and have less stress, and feel better about ourselves and so have less need to abuse drugs and alcohol, maybe be less fatigued, hold a job longer, have a better quality of life.

      As I have noted elsewhere providing the infrastructure necessary for 50 million new people to receive affordable healthcare, that alone will create jobs providing better access to the facilities, maybe mass transit, roads and bridges, maybe more broadband; definitely more medical equipment and staff, certainly more bricks and mortar hospitals and community health centers.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:16:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Baloney (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      isabelle hayes

      Most of us will live longer because of affordable health care and considerable progress in dealing with conditions like heart disease, diabetes, obesity, malnutrition, workplace safety, gun control, seat belts and addictions.

      That is we will if we get rid of the Republican obstruction and get around to working together to get more and better education, jobs, infrastructure, mass transit, and do something about climate change.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:25:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  11d...Again? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Roger Fox, 3goldens, denise b, eXtina




    Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
    ~ Jerry Garcia

    by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:18:33 PM PDT

    •  I saw a cartoon about this earlier today (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Roger Fox, 3goldens, DeadHead
    •  LOL, its asinine (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      3goldens, DeadHead, lunachickie, mimi9

      IF the Budget proposed wont see the light of day, then why not propose this, which wont see the light of day.

      900 billion spent on infrastructure, would create 23 million jobs. Historically 6% of GDP, what we used to spend.

      2o million jobs at 36k each insures SSTF thru 2090.

      If that was done, we could have run on that in 2010., My GOP opponent voted against creating 20 million jobs.

      Oh wait, we could use it in 2012, er ah, wait we could use it in 2014......

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:31:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You'd think, after all the blowback, (5+ / 0-)

        The pragmatists would realize, if for no other reason, this is a political FAIL.




        Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
        ~ Jerry Garcia

        by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:40:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  They've Demonstrated Time and Again They Will (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jabney, DeadHead, Roger Fox

          accept any degree of political fail to advance a conservative position.

          We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

          by Gooserock on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:53:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I'ma liberal I need to be thrown under the bus (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          DeadHead

          Once more into the breech.

          .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

          by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:06:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  the majority of of us support Obama (0+ / 0-)

          and the Republicans have managed to alienate every demographic group out there. They are losing on gun control, immigration, healthcare, bringing the troops home, women's issues, marriage equality, voter suppression, you name it.

          I'm 67 and depend on social security and medicare for my survival. Because I take the time to look at what Obama is actually doing rather than just accept some unfounded fear mongering, I can rest assured that my chances of living longer are improved by having Obama instead of a Republican in office.

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:25:10 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  One problem: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            rktect

            Obama is already in office, and is not running for a third term, last I checked.

            Do you have any ability to see the potential effect offering this politically toxic "modification" might have on future Democratic Party electoral success? How it helps to prevent that Republican from taking office in the future?




            Somebody has to do something, and it's just incredibly pathetic that it has to be us.
            ~ Jerry Garcia

            by DeadHead on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:43:24 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Democrats will hold the White House for a while (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              isabelle hayes

              and probably make slow steady gains in the Senate and House. What you view as potentially toxic will turn out to be the standard 11D correct solution.

              With control of  the White House and the ability to confirm the aging Scalia will be replaced and the balance will shift in the SCOTUS so there will be an end to the Bush v Gore, Citizens United stuff and we can maybe make some progress.

              Once Citizens United gets overturned, and attempts at voter suppression and gerrymandering get shut down by the courts, at some point the filibuster will get busted and we will go back to majority rules.

              The Republicans will go the way of the Whigs and then all the community organizing groundwork Obama has been doing on gun control, immigration, marriage equality, civil rights, women's rights; all of that will bear fruit.

              Meanwhile the economy will continue to slowly improve and alternative energy and climate change will by necessity be addressed.

              At some point there will be a redistribution of wealth and special interests will be held in check by Elizabeth Warren and some regulations with teeth.

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:06:39 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

            •  Doh, No. (0+ / 0-)

              Or a GOP shill.

              The possibility of have a DEM President propose to cut SS benefits will do what to Dem Chances in 2014....

              I mean look at the transparency of it everything in the diary and comments.

              A 67 yr old Architect who relies on SS & Medicare but is taking an Urban Planning class.....

              SO the Architect is retired, collecting SS. And going to College?

              Quite unlikely.

              Use of redistributation of Wealth.

              Gee, most Dems know we earned what we got in the New Deal. Our Homes, cars, etc. Nobody redistributed wealth to us.

              Republican
              GOP
              Conservative
              RWNJ.

              .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

              by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:06:52 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Your unfounded speculations about Obama (0+ / 0-)

                have a lot in common with your unfounded speculations about me. They are unfounded, speculative and wrong in both cases.

                If you wanted to know who I am and what I'm doing here there are a few hundred of my diaries out there going back to the first term of the Bush administration you could have a look at.

                I think we are through here Roger, your ideas are poorly researched and bankrupt. You have no credibility left.

                Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

                by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:07:29 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  Protections? (8+ / 0-)

    Why do you choose the word 'proteciton? What makes this a protection and what are people being protected from?

    What about people between 67 and 76 whose benefits are being cut? Don't they need protection?

    The Whitehouse Budget includes a chained CPI, CPI-U which it is proposed would offer at least two different types of protections.

    The Budget contains two types of protections:
    Benefit Enhancement for the Very Elderly and Others Who Rely on Social Security for Long Periods of Time

    The benefit enhancement would be equal to 5% of the average retiree benefit, or about $800 per year if the proposal were in effect today.

    It would phase in over 10 years, beginning at age 76, or (for other beneficiaries, such as those receiving Disability Insurance) in the 15th year of benefit receipt.

    The benefit enhancement would begin in 2020, phasing in over 10 years for those 76 or older (or in their 15th year of eligibility or beyond) in that year.

    Beneficiaries who continued to be on the program for an additional 10 years would be eligible for a second benefit enhancement, starting at age 95 in the case of a retired beneficiary.

    Because of the benefit enhancement for the very elderly, the Budget proposal would not increase the poverty rate for Social Security beneficiaries, and would slightly reduce poverty among the very elderly according to SSA estimates.

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 05:52:04 PM PDT

    •  I'm 67 my benefits are not being cut (0+ / 0-)

      Look at the big picture and you immediately see that a prosperous economy is a benefit, living longer due to affordable healthcare is a benefit, having my children and grandchildren safer due to gun control is a benefit.

      Having my son and his wife get equal pay is a benefit to them. My son's VA benefits helped put him through college, buy a home, get good medical care. Having my daughter and my grandson get better access to education benefits them.

      Having ARRA build a radiation treatment facility in Augusta as part of the affordable care act may save my wife's life.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:32:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  They will be cut by C-CPI, just wait the check is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        in the mail if it is adopted.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:12:21 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Obama is talking about CPI-U (0+ / 0-)

          what is C-CPI?

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:18:52 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  c-cpi is chained CPI (0+ / 0-)

            it's the measure that he wants to replace the current one for calculating ss benefits - not cpi U

            "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

            by eXtina on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 08:38:47 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  No (0+ / 0-)

              C-CPI is handwaving and fear mongering.

              The Present CPI-W improperly weighs the cost of medical care for seniors because seniors spend more on medical care than what is in their basket  CPI-E would correct that.

              There are a lot of different corrections like that which come together as CPI-U which is what the President proposes.

              Chained Consumer Price Index for All urban Consumers (C-CPI-U)
              (Select from list below)

                  C-CPI-U US All Items - SUUR0000SA0
                  C-CPI-U US Food and Beverages - SUUR0000SAF
                  C-CPI-U US Housing - SUUR0000SAH
                  C-CPI-U US Apparel - SUUR0000SAA
                  C-CPI-U US Transportation - SUUR0000SAT
                  C-CPI-U US Medical Care - SUUR0000SAM
                  C-CPI-U US Medical Care Commodities - SUUR0000SAM1
                  C-CPI-U US Medical Care Services - SUUR0000SAM2
                  C-CPI-U US Recreation - SUUR0000SAR
                  C-CPI-U US Education and Communication - SUUR0000SAE
                  C-CPI-U US Other Goods and Services - SUUR0000SAG
                  C-CPI-U US All Items Less Food and Energy - SUUR0000SA0L1E
                  C-CPI-U US Energy - SUUR0000SA0E
                  C-CPI-U US Services - SUUR0000SAS
                  C-CPI-U US Commodities - SUUR0000SAC

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 04:36:59 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  CPI-U is in use now. (0+ / 0-)

            C-CPI is not.

            .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

            by Roger Fox on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 08:58:04 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  That's the C-CPI-U that is not used (0+ / 0-)

              Its meaningless to speak of C-CPI without the last letter

              The Beaureau of Labor Statistics says

              The C-CPI-U to our knowledge currently is not used in any federal legislation as an adjustment mechanism.

              One thing you might want to consider is when a comparative analysis is made. An analysis made in 2000 is still being affected by the actions of the Clinton administration which did considerably better than either of the following two Bush administrations.

              Obamas record is also substantially better than the policies of the Bush administration. Here the Bureau of Labor statistics is citing an analysis from 2000 and 2004 when the economics were considerably different than they are today

              Is the difference between the CPI-U and the C-CPI-U expected to be fairly stable over time?

              Earlier evidence suggested that the difference between the CPI-U and the C-CPI-U would be around 0.2 percent a year. For the period December 1999 to December 2000, however, the difference was 0.8 percentage point. There were a number of reasons for the larger difference, including the relative age of the weights in the CPI-U, and the increased variation in price movements across CPI item categories, causing the divergence between the CPI-U and C-CPI-U to grow. In each of the last four years (including 2004, for which the C-CPI-U values are not final), the difference in December-to-December changes was 0.3 or 0.4 percentage point.

              Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

              by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 11:59:19 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Very Orwellian. I guess in your rush to shill for (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jabney, Roger Fox, eXtina

    the WH, no amount of distortion seemed inappropriate to you. Wake up and smell the coffee. The chained CPI is a cut and nothing but a cut, designed solely to try to appeal to the Banana Republicans.

    I refuse to accept the idea.

    I believe that in every country the people themselves are more peaceably and liberally inclined than their governments. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

    by Blue Knight on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 06:14:55 PM PDT

  •  I agree with you but White House is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rktect

    always two words.

  •  Where is ignoring fraud and crimes by the (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rktect, Roger Fox

    financial sector while bailing them out to the tune of trillions in your list of grievances?

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:24:37 PM PDT

    •  I don't think Elizabeth Warren is ignoring (0+ / 0-)

      fraud and crimes by the financial sector. My sense is that she has Obama's ear. Most of the bailouts have been paid back with interest and as for the necessary redistribution of wealth that will come. Leave something for Biden and Hillary and the rest of the Democrats we trust to take Obama's first steps and improve on them

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:38:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Suck up to a Liberal, gives U credibility (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        The New Darling of Liberal, Senator Warren. Got to keep up to date, good on you for that, well done.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:41:36 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  When did wealth get redistributed? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eXtina

        Yoiu mean redistributed to the rich.

        Cause the working and middle class families in the New Deal.....

        .......Earned what they got.

        Thats another RWNJ slang term "redistribution of wealth".

        Stop making it so easy for us.

        .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

        by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:52:50 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Every time Elizabeth Warren demands regulations (0+ / 0-)

          be enforced it redistributes wealth from the rich to those who have been productive members of our society and earned the right to trust their government to protect them.

          Its about time really, but it won't be easy and she needs our help.

          Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

          by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:42:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  This "enhancement" idea is the first step to (0+ / 0-)

    turning social security into a need-based welfare program.

    Social security was never intended to be a welfare program.  It is in the nature of a pension, paid for by the pensioners.  It was supposed to be a basic amount to which retirees could add their own savings in the hopes of having a comfortable retirement.

    This is nothing but a back-door invitation to "means testing."  If it succeeds, you can look forward to social security being reserved to the very poor, and the rest of us will be at the mercy of the stock market with our measly little 401(k)s which may or may not be worth anything when we retire.

    The whole thing is utterly ridiculous.  It was pointed out in another diary that raising the cap from $113,000 to only $200,000 would bring in more money than this scam.

    Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed. --Herman Melville

    by ZedMont on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:39:17 PM PDT

    •  Actually creating 20 million jobs thru (0+ / 0-)

      infrastructure spending, returning to historical levels during the New Deal, and SSS will be good thru 2090. 6% of GDP.

      Will the GOP agree to a huge tax increase by removing the cap, I dont think so. A network exec making 20 million will pay 550k more in FICA, and so will their employer.

      And removing the cap creates a 168k annual SS benefit for some real rich retiree. Is that what we want to do?

      SS is wage insurance for wage earners.

      .................expect us......................... FDR 9-23-33, "If we cannot do this one way, we will do it another way. But do it we will.

      by Roger Fox on Mon Apr 15, 2013 at 07:49:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Raising the cap happens routinely (0+ / 0-)

        Its been a part of SSI right along. When I first started working I made $1.25/Hr. By the time I finished I was making more than the cap.

        My benefits are averaged and reduced by taking early retirement at age 62 like most people did when it became evident what the Bush administration was doing to the economy. What I receive from SSI isn't enough to live on, but I do have other resources, Medicare, the VA, Maine Care; those parts of affordable care which are already in place, those parts of ARRA which took the form of grants to the states. I also get help from forestry programs, agricultural programs, low interest loans and the Free Clinic, Pen Bay and Maine General all provide social workers to help you work your way through the ropes.

        My kids are social lists. Their income is maybe in the upper three percent but where they live in New York things are pricey. Its good for their careers but not so good for their retirement savings.

        Social Security has to be flexible enough to deal fairly with both situations.

        Your fears about what the GOP will agree to are unwarranted. If they stay the course they are going the way of the Whigs, and if they don't then they'll do as they are  told.

        Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

        by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:37:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  unfounded fear and panic don't impress me (0+ / 0-)

      Social Security isn't being changed. The methodology for determining its benefits has regularly been modified according to changes in the economy for decades.

      One thing that is happening here is that because of affordable care a lot of people who weren't eligible for healthcare but were served by SSI disability will be shifting over to medicare and medicaid.

      They will be getting more benefits and SSI will not need to provide that coverage out of its trust fund.

      The White House has proposed an additional benefit for elderly people who spend more than what has been allowed for in CPI-W on healthcare treatment and medications, something similar to CPI-E to be included in CPI-U which is a better deal for us than CPI-W.

      Its also proposed that the minimum wage be raised and that the cap be raised. Your mission, if you choose to accept it is to get with the program and call your representatives in Congress to ask them to support Obama and CPI-U.

      Live Free or Die --- Investigate, Incarcerate

      by rktect on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 09:20:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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