Without the pain, swells can’t be glad: Various atrocities occurred on last Sunday’s This Week.
We’re going to wait until next week to record the way Senator Johnson lectured the world about the Social Security trust fund. As it turns out, the fund is a mere accounting fiction! Poor Krugman was forced to look on.
For today, here’s what Julianna Goldman had to say about a potential Grand Bargain:
GOLDMAN (3/10/13): Look, both sides understand what a Grand Bargain is going to look like. Republicans are going to have to give on revenues. Democrats are going to have to give on entitlements.Goldman, who was born on third base, thinks she hit a homer. She never fails to mention the need for regular folks to feel some pain as we adjust our social insurance programs.
And so there is some case for optimism now that, if the president, in trying to build trust, wants these lunches, these dinners—don't become news events that we're covering [sic]. But if Republicans see the president moving forward, putting Medicare savings on the table that doesn't just hit providers but also hits beneficiaries as well—and also, going out and selling it to give Republicans some cover—then there could be a sense that you could get some Senate Republicans to help bring the House along as well.
In terms of health care, those spending cuts shouldn’t just hit the providers! They should hit beneficiaries too!
As a matter of policy, does that make sense? As everyone knows but no one says, we spend two to three times as much on health care, per person, as other developed nations. Presumably, a lot of that massive over-spending is looting of various kinds.
Why can’t we simply eliminate the overspending without making beneficiaries feel some pain? We don’t know, and people like Goldman never get that far.
Neither does anyone else, of course. Typically, network discussions of this topic run about sixty seconds. But Goldman makes a point of calling for pain for those average blokes.
We don’t think it’s smart. In fairness, This Week's roundtable segment was a fake—an imitation of life.