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Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Bush's Secret Plan to Fix Social Security

One might think that a year-end press conference would be a proper forum in which to explain what the heck this administration rumbling about social security privatization is all about. But not if you're George W. Bush, apparently. Instead we get this drivel when someone dares ask Bush what the basic outline of his proposal is:

The principles I laid out in the course of the campaign, and the principles we laid out at the recent economic summit are still the principles I believe in. And that is: nothing will change for those near or on Social Security, payroll tax -- I believe you're the one who asked me about the payroll taxes, if I'm not mistaken -- will not go up.

The -- and I know there's a big definition about what that means.

Well, again, I will repeat, don't bother to ask me.

More is painfully excerpted at length in the full link above.

Now, excuse me, but what the hell?

Brad DeLong: "I guess nobody has told Bush of his Constitutional duty to 'recommend to [the Congress's] Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient.'"

Josh Marshall quoting Sam Rosenfeld: "Rather than merely dodge the questions, Bush seemed intent on staking out an explicit, principled position in favor of dodging the question."

Even the WaPo editorial board is not impressed: "He seems determined to stay above the detail and to limit himself to vague statements of principle. Details, however, can make the difference between desirable reform and the sort that compounds the problem."

Just when I think I've seen it all from George W. Bush, he pulls something like this.