AARP - "the mother of all special interests"?

From the CEO of the AARP in the Boston Globe:

Why AARP supported Medicare bill

12/12/2003

IN RESPONSE to "AARP backing of drug bill takes toll on reputation" by Stephen Glain (Page A1, Dec. 8), AARP supported the Medicare prescription drug legislation for one reason alone: because it will expand health security for millions of current and future beneficiaries. It also protects traditional Medicare.

While Glain's article is fraught with misinformation about our support for this legislation, we take particular exception to his statement regarding Social Security. AARP is opposed to any efforts to use Social Security funds to establish individual accounts. Older Americans count on Social Security's rock-solid, guaranteed benefits, and we will continue the fight to build, strengthen, and protect those benefits.

We strongly encourage people to save money for retirement and have nothing against individual accounts so long as they are in addition to Social Security, not carved out from it. Today, one out of three older Americans relies on Social Security as his or her only source of income, and carving out a portion of it for private accounts could be devastating.

Ultimately, our goal is to continue to provide an inflation-protected benefit for current retirees and the generations to come.

WILLIAM D. NOVELLI
Chief executive officer
AARP
Washington

A letter to the editor from the NY Times:

To the Editor:

Bob Herbert (column, Dec. 8) says that this new prescription drug bill is an attempt by the Republicans to undermine Medicare. Unfortunately, it is not. It is a huge enlargement of Medicare that will add trillions of dollars to the already tens of trillions of dollars in unfinanced liabilities in the future.

Mr. Herbert is right about this being another act of the people's money being hijacked and handed over to special interests. Except that the special interest in this case is the AARP, the mother of all special interests.

MICHAEL GINDES
New York, Dec. 8, 2003


Share this

AARP is closely tied to

AARP is closely tied to pharmeceutical and insurance companies, and has drawn considerable flak for endorsing the bill (I believe that 15,000 members or so have resigned.) Republicans are also significantly supported those two interests, as well as the "securities and investment" industry, which has been very closely tied to the above two since the 1999 "securities modernization act."
\
Capitaleye has a study showing a high correlation between between support by the above industries and "yes" votes, as well as the converse.

ps- Dems are supported by "securities and investment" as well, but mostly by the international wing, which can handle an alignment with unions, and is ambivalent to medicare (for the most part.)

Don't trust anyone over 30.

Don't trust anyone over 30. :)

No fair, Micha, and I'm not

No fair, Micha, and I'm not just saying that because I'm 29! Those people aren't bastards because they're old, they're bastards because they see no moral problem with the fact that every 3 working people has someone's grampa on their backs, cracking the whip. Pretty soon it'll be 2 to 1. What happens when it's 1 to 1?

These kinds of unfunded liabilities on the government actually give me a perverse sort of pleasure, as I believe that the FedGov grinding to a halt under its own weight is one possible way we might be able to get out from under it.

My own father, who is 55, seems to have trouble apprehending why this is wrong, even though I already provide him with $9100 in monetary support every year to supplement the disability pittance he receives from the government, and this ain't the only time in his life my dad has been on some form of welfare. My father is in poor health (mainly due to his own poor choices in life) and I'm happy that I'm financially able to help him out, but he can't seem to appreciate the fact that if I could keep the $20K the FedGov extorts from my family every year, I could help him a hell of a lot more than the government *ever* will, and nobody would be *forcing* me to do so, either.

Old people aren't bastards

Old people aren't bastards because they're old, they're bastards because they vote. In droves.

And as for the government sowing the seeds of its own destruction, Marx thought the same thing about capitalism. Funny how that turned out.

Good Slate by Steve Chapman

Good Slate by Steve Chapman yesterday...

http://slate.msn.com/id/2092302/

They're not bastards because

They're not bastards because they vote, they're bastards because they vote themselves a bunch of junk. If they were voting for Libertarians en masse, I'd drive them to the polls myself.

- Josh

Good point. (heh)

Good point. (heh)