Believe or not, sometimes sandwich meat can actually make a pretty good political point. That was the case on Tuesday night as the two co-chairs of the President’s Deficit Commission, Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles, came to the Paramount Theater in Oakland to push their proposed drastic changes to Social Security, including raising the retirement age, taxing benefits, and privatizing the program – even though Social Security has not added one cent to the deficit.
Simpson and Bowles didn’t get a very warm welcome. They were greeted by more than a hundred seniors, nurses, health care advocates and others who came out to protest their draconian proposal and the effects it would have on seniors and the disabled. As audience members entered the theater, we handed them informational flyers explaining why these proposals are misguided and “full of baloney.” And we also handed them a baloney sandwich to underscore the point. View more photos from the event here, courtesy of the California Nurses Association.
CWA-Newspaper Guild member Jody Ginsberg explained why she came to the rally:
I am here tonight because I oppose the plans of the Simpson-Bowles “Cat Food” Commission. I have been in this fight since 2005 when George Bush first tried to privatize Social Security and give the money to Wall Street, and I am more determined than ever to keep up the fight to save Social Security for today’s seniors and for future generations.
Although the Simpson/Bowles proposals did not get the votes needed to send their recommendations to Congress, they continue to promote these ideas with lawmakers and the public.
Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid provide a vital lifeline to seniors and the disabled, and must be protected and expanded. Bowles and Simpson have been proposing cutting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to solve our nation’s deficit problems – solutions that are full of baloney, especially since these are America’s most popular and successful programs.
And that’s the message we sent at Tuesday’s event.
For more information about the Bowles/Simpson proposals, contact the California Alliance for Retired Americans at 510-663-4086 or www.californiaalliance.org.