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One might think that the Chained CPI was one of the greatest ideas since the invention of sliced bread if one avoided critical sources.

But some in Congress are not buying what the Pres is selling, and said so today even after a brilliant dog and pony from one of the White House best and brightest.

White House struggles to rally House Dems behind chained CPI
By Mike Lillis - 04/16/13 12:37 PM ET

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Senior White House economic adviser Gene Sperling defended the budget eloquently, according to several Democrats in the room, but did little to convince critics of chained CPI of its merits.

"For me, there's no question. If this is a negotiation on budget issues, trying to deal with deficits, then Social Security has never added a single penny to the deficits of this country or to the national debt," Rep. Xavier Becerra (Calif.), chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, said immediately after the meeting.

"So if you're talking about making cuts to seniors, to disabled folks, to children, to widows [and] widowers, to help take care of deficits, please don't tell me to consider Social Security. The chained CPI is a cut to benefits – earned benefits – to all those folks who paid into the system.

"I don't see the value of including it in the budget," he added.

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AARP has an article which elaborates on this stance, and a video to boot.  Feel free to FB these and pass them on.

Poor to become new chain gang

The Strengthen Social Security    coalition calls chained cpi

Social Security COLA Cut
Social Security COLA Cut Will Chain Many Seniors and People with Disabilities to a Poorer Life
Some politicians in Washington are preparing to cut your Social Security COLA for good--even after two years without getting a COLA. This COLA cut has an obscure name: chained-CPI. But it would do real damage by changing the formula used to calculate the COLA. Here's what you need to know about it:

    It's a benefit cut. It's not some minor technical change to the COLA. It's a real cut to the benefits you have earned every year into the future.

    It cuts benefits more with every passing year. After 10 years, your benefits would be cut by about $500 a year for the average retiree. After 20 years, your benefits would be cut by about $1,000 a year.

    It hits today's Social Security beneficiaries. Politicians like to say that their cuts to Social Security will not affect those getting benefits today. Wrong! Switching to the chained-CPI would hit all current beneficiaries.

    We need a higher COLA, not a lower one. The current COLA is not large enough--it does not adequately account for large health care cost increases faced by seniors and people with disabilities.

Look, we just got back from a hour round trip drive to a lab for a oncologist ordered blood test at lab that our state teacher retiree insurance will pay for.  Think gas and wear and tear on an already old car.  While in that other town we stopped off at HEB for some shopping.  

Sticker Shock

We both have border line high cholesterol and are back to eating more vegan and vegetarian and less meat.  Walnuts go into our morning smoothy and they were now up to over $10 a pound. But hey, not enough for a COLA for two out of the last three years, right?

I am here to confirm what you already know, inflation is rampant and cuts like the chained cpi will certainly hit seniors hard in their most vulnerable period.

Bullsh*t to the meme of taking care of the oldest and poorest which will further the President's apparent plan to convert it to welfare and therefore make it even more vulnerable to plutocratic raiding.

To Senator Bernie Sanders, new chair of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee:  It's ' nuts!'

Bernie Sanders on frontline for veterans

As an antiwar activist who never served in the military and the first self-proclaimed socialist in the U.S. Senate, Bernard Sanders is at initial glance an unusual choice to chair the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee.

But Sanders, the tousled-haired 71-year-old Vermont independent who took over the committee in January, has embraced the role with a populist gusto that has won him staunch backing from veterans groups.

“That is odd,” said Peter Gaytan, executive director of the American Legion, whose members gave Sanders a warm reception at the organization’s Washington conference in February. “If you look at his leanings, you wouldn’t think he could care so much about veterans, but he does.”

“He’s very passionate about the issues,” said Bob Wallace, executive director of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. “I think he’s going to be very good for veterans.”

Angered that the 2014 budget proposed by the Obama adminstration includes changes in how annual cost-of-living adjustments are calculated, potentially reducing future compensation payments for 3.2 million disabled veterans, Sanders joined in a demonstration Tuesday outside the White House and denounced the plan as “nuts.”

This sucks for veterans in    so many ways.  

We all know this, the question is, what are we going to do about it?
#Rattle Your Lawmaker's Chain This Friday !
Senator Sanders and House Democratic Caucus Chairman Becerra are not alone in criticizing Chained CPI, but far from enough of his colleagues have come out firmly enough to really bury this.  

We need to do our job and get our Congresspersons to take stand on this as well.

HT to Robert Naiman for the heads up diary on this yesterday:

On Friday, MoveOn has called for actions at Congressional offices across the country to oppose President Obama's proposal to cut Social Security and veterans' benefits by using the "chained CPI" to cut the cost-of-living adjustment.
So this Friday please come on down to your Congressman's local office, give 'em all a hug,  keep him or her informed of your constituent wishes on this item.  :)  Take a petition, perform some political theater, hell, put up a tent and stay awhile till this blows over.

Let's show Congress that we care more about cutting granny's benefits, about cutting her veteran offspring she is so proud - cutting veteran benefits ....  

 Let's show them that we care more for the 99%  than we care for the 1%, who apparently would have us all be paupers if we let then have their way.

Originally posted to divineorder on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 12:31 PM PDT.

Also republished by The Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party and In Support of Labor and Unions.

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