Friday, June 26, 2009

"Healthcare reform is entitlement reform," cont.

Re the Obama budget team's mantra,"healthcare reform is entitlement reform": one soundbyte strategy for getting this across is to portray the projected 75-year social security shortfall as a bite on the ass of projected Medicare deficits.

In today's Times Jackie Calmes channels one such comparison from the Obamites:
Adding to the pressure, Republicans are back to attacking Democrats as tax-and-spenders. Yet they have not proposed how to pay for their own, more modest health care proposals. Nor did they offset the cost of creating the Medicare prescription drug benefit six years ago when they controlled Congress and held the White House. Its projected deficits exceed the shortfall for all of Social Security over the next 75 years, according to the program’s 2009 trustees report.
Among the trustees issuing that report: Geithner, Sebelius, Solis.

Compare Peter Orzag in last week's FT:
Our fiscal future is so dominated by healthcare that if the US can slow the rate of cost growth by just 15 basis points a year (0.15 percentage points), the savings for Medicare and Medicaid would equal the impact from eliminating Social Security’s entire 75-year shortfall.
Imagine...a rhetorical strategy based on fact.

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