You can fool some of the grandparents some of the time.
Heaven knows the GOP has been fooling a lot of grandparents a lot of the time. Seniors are typically the GOP's most reliable voters.
But Paul Ryan, aka Eddie Munster, is the deal-breaker! Ryan has been consistently proposing we get rid of Medicare "to save Medicare". Gosh, that sounds a lot like when the U.S. generals in Vietnam said we were "burning villages to save them".
A lot of my fellow seniors may be foolish or reactionaries, but most of them aren't anywhere senile enough to believe that you can "save" Medicare by replacing it with vouchers. Remember the exceedingly ill-informed gray-haired old lady who said in 2009, "Tell the federal government to keep its hands off my Medicare!"
Though she was in the wrong church fact-wise (it is, of course, a federal program), she sure as hell had nailed down the right pew! Medicare WORKS JUST FINE for us seniors. And we NEED it! JUST AS IT IS, with only the twitches necessary to make it solvent for longer, e.g. means-testing for the wealthy; federal bargaining for RX prices, etc.
For us Medicare is life and death. Literally.
And we want it there for our middle-aged children and their children. We worry enough now about how they are going to get or keep the health insurance they currently need. We want to be very sure that when they are old, they won't suffer as did our parents before there was Medicare. I remember the Gray Panthers fighting for a federal program that would prevent seniors from having to choose between starving to death and getting medical care. Those were the BAD old days!
It was a hideous, uphill fight against the conservatives just so we could get Medicare. And now they want to take it away! They always want to take it away! We've seen this film before! The conservatives HATE our social-conscience programs. The only "entitlement programs" they love are the parts of the tax code that entitle the rich to better breaks than the rest of us get.
We are not in a generational war with younger people, selfishly wanting benefits that load them with future debt. That's nonsense! We don't want to load them with the burden of paying our medical bills NOW! And it's nonsense that the choice is (a) screw seniors out of Medicare or (b) load their kids with too much federal debt. This is the richest country in the world! People are buying apartments for $15 million! Yes, apartments! They are buying $1000 shoes and multiple pairs of them! They are buying islands! And they are building elevators for their cars in their beach-side homes.
Don't tell me this country cannot afford medical care for the elderly! EVERY country in the so-called developed world has medical care for everyone. A lot of "undeveloped" countries do too. What do we have? Tax rates and loopholes for the wealthy that allow them to escape their fair share of supporting the society that built the schools and roads and ports, etc. that make businesses possible. And we are stuck with a debt-creating, GOP-engineered Medicare prescription benefit that prohibits the fed from controlling outrageous pharmacy prices. That alone is adding a trillion bucks to the fed debt, baby!
Grandpa Munster shuffled over here this morning for a cup of coffee. ( He always gets his cape hem in the coffee.) He was not at all happy this morning. As I had reported yesterday, he and Herman and Lily had originally been delighted that Mitt Romney picked their boy Eddie to run for veep on the GOP ticket, but now they're having second thoughts.
Part of it is Eddie changing his name. "Why, is he calling himself Paul Ryan?" Grandpa Munster mused. "We aren't Irish. The Irish have had their problems but we werewolves and vampires have never been on that scene. We're Middle European, not Celtic. Is Eddie ashamed of his roots? Why the Clancy Brothers instead of Lon Chaney and Boris Karloff?" He wiped his eyes with his coffee-damp cape. "The worst of it is, he has turned against me! Me! His own grandfather! "
And then he put his head back and wailed: "He wants to turn Medicare into a voucher system!"
How do you comfort a vampire?
I slipped a bit of Jack Daniels into his coffee. (No blood being to hand, alas.) After a few more cups of coffee and J.D., he staggered out the door, vowing "to take little Eddie to the woodshed". The J.D. had fired him up wonderfully well. (Maybe the Munsters are a bit Irish after all.)
In any case, Paul Ryan had better be running damn hard. Because here comes your Grandpa, Paul-Eddie, and he's hopping mad! And the lots of us grandparents will be right behind him! You are going to get a whupping!
We haven't forgotten those tax returns, Mitt. Nor Little Paul-Eddie's.