23 November 2016

The Answer Should be, "No".

While I am not a big fan of Nancy Pelosi, she learned the lesson of the Social Security fight with George W. Bush in 2005, when her response was simply "no."

No counter proposals, no deals, just, "No".

It worked, and it did a lot of damage to the both Bush and the Republican Party.

Paul Ryan, the "zombie-eyed granny starver from the state of Wisconsin" is proposing to privatize Medicare.

Nancy Pelosi gets it, and once again, her strategy will be "No", no counter proposals, no deals, just, "No":
Democrats are wandering around in the wilderness once again, shut out of power in Washington after losing a close, hard-fought presidential battle. The last time this happened, after the 2004 elections, the newly reelected president, George W. Bush, over-read his mandate and launched an ill-fated effort to partially privatize Social Security, providing a rallying point for Democrats to begin turning things around.

In an interview with me, House Dem leader Nancy Pelosi argued that history might repeat itself, if House Speaker Paul Ryan — with Donald Trump’s blessing — makes good on his hints to press forward with his plans to privatize Medicare. Pelosi vowed that Democrats would remain united in the battle to stop Ryan’s plan, a goal she described as crucial to defeating it, just as unity enabled Dems to block Bush’s Social Security plan.

“At that time, we committed to each other that we would be unified and disciplined,” Pelosi said. “Bush had just been elected. He gave us an opportunity by saying he would partially privatize Social Security. Everybody stuck together. The opportunity that we have now is the equivalent of the opportunity we had in ’05.”

In that 2005 fight, Pelosi recalled, Democrats actively avoided developing an alternative plan to Bush’s. Instead, Democrats said their plan was to defend Social Security, a very popular government program. At the time, some Democratic strategists warned against uncompromising opposition. But the gamble paid off. Observers noted that Bush’s plan sank in popularity as Dems remained unified behind a refusal to budge in defense of Social Security, a move that was widely credited with helping to put Dems on track to winning back Congress in the 2006 elections.
Now is not the time to listen to the the professional political consulting class of the Democratic Party, who will advise a counter-offer, and compromise, and bipartisanship.

Their advice is horrific policy, and even worse politics, and Pelosi is right to eschew the inevitable calls to capitulation.

These consultants are, with the possible exception of Dick Cheney, the most excessively overemployed people on the eastern seaboard, and they should be fired ……… Out of a cannon ……… and into the sun.


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