Posted by Michael A. Kamperman on September 20, 2012
The Romney-Ryan plan to give everyone under 55 a voucher to pay for helthcare insurance and everyone 55 and older every penny of Medicare they were promised is redistribution of wealth from the young to the old. As a 51 year old I have not been happy at all about this plan from the beginning. I have paid into Medicare for 35 years, because I started working when I was 16. Some of those years I paid the maximum contribution into Medicare. The difference between Medicare and Social Security is everyone gets the same Medicare regardless of their monetary contribution to the plan, whereas the more one pays into Social Security the larger the check they receive. But under the Ryan-Romney plan (truth is Ryan had the plan first and Romney co-opted it) I will receive a somewhat to substantially reduced benefit while people who started working later in life than me, or who dropped out of the workforcce for several years, or who contributed less money to Medicare than me will receive 100% of the Medicare benefit and I will receive a fraction. And, I will still have to pay Medicare taxes the rest of my work life to fund those 4 years older than me who receive the full benefit. This is patently unfair. But it is also classic wealth redistribution. Why are people 55 and older allowed to keep their Medicare?
The reason is to sell the deal politically. But the Romney-Ryan plan also includes large tax cuts for the wealthy, which can be justified under the premise that the long-term budget deficit problem has been solved by ending the uncertainty of future Medicare costs as well as lowering them. So basically, the rich will also benefit from a redistribution of my lifetime Medicare payments by getting tax cuts. This is not capitalism where one eats and reaps what they sow. This is the worst form of socialism in that not all of society will benefit equally from wealth redistribution. This is state sponsored socialism that chooses winners and losers with the older being the winners and the younger being the losers. A person in their twenties and thirties will spend almost all of their working lives making the Medicare tax payments to fund a benefit for others they will never receive.
As regular readers of this blog know I believe we should be cutting taxes for everyone to stimulate job creation. They also know I believe we should lower the age of Medicare eligibility to open up jobs for younger workers. The federal and deficit do not matter because we finance everything in dollars, which we can print. There is no reason to cut a program that is working because of affordability. But the Romney-Ryan plan is not just another poor policy choice by Washington to balance the budget thereby exacerbating the depression. People have been brain washed to believe the U.S. can go bankrupt and many believe this urban myth. But the Romney-Ryan plan is designed not to balance the budget, but to redistribute the Medicare payments of younger workers to the wealthy. It’s just that in order to sell it to the public they need to also redistribute to the elderly to buy off their votes.