Thursday, October 28, 2004

Daily Kos is great today...or tonight...

Wow! Daily Kos's pickup of the self-immolation of "Tom" Coburn (R-Oklahoma-soon to be out of the political limelight) is shows conservative Republican racism in all its true glory...

If you die... If you're an African American male in this country, you die before the average... your average life expectancy is less than the retirement age of social security. How, what kind of plan is that that we're gonna take from those because they had a genetic predisposition to have less of a life expectancy. You're gonna steal from them and give it to somebody else. The fact is that we can solve the problem. We can't solve it if we won't talk about it. And we can do with what Albert Einstein said was the most powerful force on earth, which is compound interest. Get it out of the hands of the politicians.

As Kos rightly notes, what Coburn is saying here is that Social Security should be privatized because African American people don't live long enough.

Now to be,...uh... "fair" to Coburn, one of the reasons that the age for getting benefits was defined as it was in the 30's was because people didn't live that long. But given that we've set up a society where we work our butts off for 55 years (after the 20 years of school in which we've been put on the day shift, as Robert Zimmerman noted), at this point, it is a form of expropriation to do anything that would jeopardize benefits for, anybody working.

I've been working for 26 years, and guess what? I want those benefits guaranteed at the level they are. My retirement portfolio's got enough risk balanced in thank you very much. And to be frank, most people (unless they majored in finance) don't know squat about hedge strategies, portfolio managment, game theory, etc., and really, really don't know enough or have enough resources to do all this stuff right.

Heck, I've got a Ph.D. in electrical engineering (strong statistics/probability background) and I could learn more- though I know that most finance guys themselves don't know engough about their financial models.

The other story of the day at Kos, is yes, indeed, Bush has been lying about the high explosive scandal.

The number of excuses and nonsense coming out of the right on this has been breathtaking in their crudeness. Americans will see through this.

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