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Lindsey Graham advocates changes in Medicare, Medicaid

Monday, Oct. 1, 2012 9:18 PM
Last updated Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2012 12:55 AM
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NORTH AUGUSTA — Entitlement reform “has to happen,” and that means changes in Medicare and Medicaid, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham told a group in North Augusta on Monday.

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U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham speaks to city officials and members of the Greater North Augusta Chamber of Commerce on Monday.  EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham speaks to city officials and members of the Greater North Augusta Chamber of Commerce on Monday.

Graham, R-S.C., discussed the country’s debt, Iran’s nuclear program and other issues and in front of nearly 60 people at the North Augusta Municipal Building council chambers.

He told the audience that the biggest driver of the country’s debt is entitlements, particularly Medicare and Medicaid, and that what is paid out for the programs will eventually exceed what is taken in.

Adjusting the retirement age to 69 is one of the things that needs to happen over the next 30 years, he said.

He also advocated that those “in my income level” take less in benefits, by doing things such as paying the full cost of the Medicare premium, so that those who can’t afford it are able to get it.

On the other end, the country also has to grow the economy by creating more jobs, he said.

There should be less regulation and lower taxes, which would encourage companies to create more jobs in the United States. Deductions should be eliminated also, which would bring in more revenue, he said.

Graham also said he believes Iran isn’t building a nuclear power facility but is instead preparing for nuclear weapons.

He said that if Iran gets a nuclear weapon, he fears the country would use it to intimidate its neighbors, including Israel, and share the technology with terrorists.

U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, who was also spoke briefly, added that “we should take seriously” the things Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said.

The meeting was sponsored by the city of North Augusta and the Greater North Augusta Chamber of Commerce.

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afadel
530
Points
afadel 10/01/12 - 10:22 pm
0
0
Audio Recording of last 35 minutes of Q&A

Audio recording of Sen Lindsey Graham @GrahamBlog 2012-Oct-1 in N #Augusta #SouthCarolina #Iran #Budget #SRS

http://aymanfadel.tumblr.com/post/32702625420/audio-recording-of-sen-lin...

afadel
530
Points
afadel 10/01/12 - 10:25 pm
0
0
North Augusta's Protest Permit Laws Need to Change

I hope citizens of North Augusta will encourage its government to change its policies regarding protests.

http://search.municode.com/html/10209/level4/COOR_CH16OFMIPR_ARTVIBRPEDI...

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/01/12 - 10:34 pm
4
1
We can cut entitlements today

We can cut entitlements today or have no entitlements tomorrow.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 04:49 am
3
4
It always seems that those

It always seems that those who want to increase the retirement age to 69 or 70, have jobs where they sit on their rear ends. I suggest Lindsey and the others spend some time digging ditches during a SC or Ga July and August when he hits 68 years old. Heck, I'd pay to see it. Maybe that's how we can pay for the entitlements. They all can spend a week a year doing outside manual labor in the south, starting when they're 65 years old, and we can donate money for every hour they last. Sort of like the old dance-a-thons. Then again, they might not last long (except for Paul Ryan since he can run marathon in under an hour).

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 04:56 am
3
4
Or, how about: If you do

Or, how about: If you do physical labor you retire at 60 and if you sit at a desk or run your mouth for a living, you retire at 80. That way it can average out to 70.

agustinian
721
Points
agustinian 10/02/12 - 05:10 am
5
2
And Your Solution?

Mr. Techfan,
I know it is popular to skewer anyone who tries to come up with a solution to the Social Security/Medicare looming deficit. Paul Ryan is depicted as throwing Mama off a cliff.
Throw the brick bats if you must, but other than shooting the messenger, what is your solution? These programs are mortgaging our children's futures. It is extremely selfish to keep these programs running at levels we cannot afford, while we "boo" anyone who dares to offer solutions.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 05:37 am
2
3
Simple solution: Lift the

Simple solution: Lift the cap.

Insider Information
4009
Points
Insider Information 10/02/12 - 06:49 am
2
1
Irony

It's Democrats and people like Techfan who truly want to abolish all entitlements.

They shoot down any ideas to save the system killing time until the system goes broke.

The one thing everyone agrees on: If we do nothing, Social Security and Medicare will go bankrupt. And, that is the Left's plan. Do nothing. They are quite good at it too.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 06:54 am
1
3
Did my 6:37 post not show?

Did my 6:37 post not show? Also have folks who live on dividends (like Romney) pay their 1/2 into the system. That's 2 solutions that'll work vs one that extends the retirement age so high most people who really work for a living will never be able to retire.

soapy_725
43965
Points
soapy_725 10/02/12 - 07:00 am
1
0
Carter nailed the last nail in the SS
Unpublished

coffin when he signed the bill that allowed anyone, citizen, illegal, non worker, non payers, people with travel visas, multiple spouses, children, etc to draw SS benefits and added additional SSI entitlement benefits paid from the "supposed SS fund".

SS was designed as a "safety net" against poverty for WORKERS who paid into the FUND. SS was never designed to be a "money tree" for all of the entitlement/welfare programs since 1935.

- President Roosevelt signs the Social Security Act of 1935 on August 14, 1935 as part of his New Deal
- 1937 Payroll Taxes for SS begin ( FICA)
- 1937 to 1951 53,236 S.S. Lump Sum Death Benefits are paid
(prior to 1951 that equaled payee’s contributions)
- 1937 and 1938 2 billion dollars collected for "Trust Fund"
- 1939 U.S. is in a recession blamed on FDR's policies
- 1939 Collection of tax moved from Social Security Administration to the Internal Revenue Service
- 1939 An amendment changed from a "reserve trust" to a "pay as you go" system.

seenitB4
93940
Points
seenitB4 10/02/12 - 07:09 am
2
1
Well duhh

Ok Senator ..tell us something we don't know.....how about BRING the DANG JOBS back.......I like you Senator but I'm tired of all talk & no action.

Little Lamb
48039
Points
Little Lamb 10/02/12 - 07:18 am
3
0
Apples and Oranges

From the story:

Entitlement reform “has to happen,” and that means changes in Medicare and Medicaid, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham told a group in North Augusta on Monday.

Medicare and Medicaid are being lumped together unfairly. Medicare is an entitlement. Medicaid is a welfare program. People pay a special tax dedicated for medical care benefits after age 65.

In the case of Medicaid, 50% of the population pay general income tax to pay for medical care benefits of the other 50% of the population.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 07:31 am
0
2
Many payed income and payroll

Many payed income and payroll taxes and are now unemployed or disabled or elderly. Most pay payroll taxes even if they are so underpaid they don't hit the threshold for income taxes (or have kids and a mortgage deduction that drops their AGI). All pay excise taxes and sales taxes, which are regressive. Also the Ga income tax kicks in at the top bracket at $7,000. So, in reality, everyone pays taxes.

Little Lamb
48039
Points
Little Lamb 10/02/12 - 07:47 am
4
0
Point

That was my point, Techfan. Most pay Medicare taxes, but most do not pay income taxes.

One pays for his own Medicare in advance. One does not pay for his own Medicaid.

OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 10/02/12 - 08:49 am
5
0
The usual Talk around election time.

The word "Entitlement" was never used when these helping hand assistance programs were started in the early 1960's.

Because Welfare was only meant to be a bridge over a rough spot, not a place to set up housekeeping for life and 5 generations to come.

I am all for helping those people who are temporarily out of work, or down on their luck. But, I wished I could find a way to stop paying the taxes that support those that are unwilling to help themselves.

OpenCurtain
10049
Points
OpenCurtain 10/02/12 - 08:58 am
6
0
In response to a few

In response to a few erroneous comments.

When was the last thing anyone saw a person with a shovel digging a ditch on a commercial project? Now a days Ditch Diggers use Backhoes or excavators. The operators got off their tails learned a viable trade now earn their own living.

GA Income Tax does kick in at some low point, but that is after deductions and adjustments. In short Welfare / Dole benefits are not counted unless the person has other income. Then question should become; Why are they on the Government dole?

Dividends -mostly incorrect. Most Retirement Funds are based on stock dividends, so a lot of retired people are invested in Tax free dividends. The problem for liberals and takers, is a person has to work to invest to reap the rewards. The Takers get Womb to Tomb limited but demand more Government handouts. Wanting more, they go after those that LEARNED TO EARN IT.

Want fairness?
Rewrite the tax code to eliminate deductions and set 1 Tax Rate for everyone. Have a US Constitutional required that all budgets be based on the previous years tax revenues minus 10 year pay down of the the national debt, with the reminder for the Federal Budget with NO new deficient spending unless of declared Congress approved War vote.

Quit going to war unless directly attacked by a country. Have the best defense and retaliation ability. But send dark-dark-side Merc's teams after terrorist groups & their blood kin, and/or the dictators, with large rewards for mission accomplishment.

rmwhitley
5547
Points
rmwhitley 10/02/12 - 09:06 am
1
0
Ain't heard a word
Unpublished

'bout charlie rangel doin' a hard days work. Just Stealing and he's what? DEMOCRAT! nancy pelosi and her husband make an awful lot of money from dolphins and fish. Wonder how much harry reid skims from the casinos? Where did obama get his wealth? In fact, what do we really know about OUR "president"? democrats love to make up their own narratives but forget to tell the whole story. Wonder why?

KSL
140589
Points
KSL 10/02/12 - 09:10 am
4
0
Techfan

If they paid payroll taxes, the disabled and elderly would be covered by Medicare, not Medicaid, unless they didn't work the required amount of time.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 12:58 pm
0
0
Or they became disabled and

Or they became disabled and had to fight the system to be covered. Or maybe they were married and the spouse worked and the other was a stay at home mom or dad.

resident
501
Points
resident 10/02/12 - 02:25 pm
1
0
Open

Opencurtain....Thank you for your beatifully worded response. You hit ir right..I for one can say my familiy used welfare programs as a lst resort...My father found replacement work in some cases less money but still went back to work..This happens and people need to swallow that pill. Look back in time factories changed to mechanical labor, robotics and other things...This is reality..The unions do not get this..The job is gone when smart educated people come up with smarter ways to do things. Outsorcing is well sort of an evil but if Unions had not been so greedy those jobs may not have moved overseas. Let's face it we all need to cut back. Defense spending is a place we can chop but within reason..Eliminate duplicate programs...This is rampant in the defense industry as it is just as bad as wasteful spending in states ...TSPLOST is just another example of highlighting wasteful spending..I would bet that these bridges and road could cost 40 to 50% less but too many people inflate prices for greedy purposes. Lest worry about fixing the broken stuff the budget will fix itself if fraud is fixed..medical programs need fixing...get the trial lawyers out of this stuff..just lookat a Television ad or newspaper or even magazine..People need to earn their keep instead all of these parents have made it a growing society of entitlements instead of teaching their children to stay in school, ignore economics (poor has nothing to do with reading, writing,math, and science scores), These parent should go back to disciplining when wrong, showing what is right and lead by EXAMPLE and certainly not the one we have right now.

burninater
9799
Points
burninater 10/02/12 - 04:11 pm
0
0
When was the last thing

When was the last thing anyone saw a person with a shovel digging a ditch on a commercial project? Now a days Ditch Diggers use Backhoes or excavators. The operators got off their tails learned a viable trade now earn their own living.
------------
I worked at the excavations for both the Vogtle and VC Summer expansions. There were plenty of manual laborers doing intense physical labor with shovels and other hand tools. They weren't necessarily digging ditches, but they were doing back-breaking work in peak summer heat. Heck, during the early July heatwave, we had an excavation-bottom temperature of 140 before laborers were sent home -- and these guys are non-union, making less than $10/hour in most cases. But they weren't near-retirement age, that's for sure -- that type of labor, in that heat, would probably kill many older workers.

KSL
140589
Points
KSL 10/02/12 - 04:54 pm
1
0
People should have

People should have aspirations higher than being a ditch digger all of their lives.

That said, both our boys worked construction jobs the summers before their freshman years in college. And when they got off work, they had American Legion baseball practice and games.

It was a good experience for them. That was the only summer they did manual labor.

Techfan
6461
Points
Techfan 10/02/12 - 09:02 pm
0
0
Personally, I have respect

Personally, I have respect for the people who do manual labor. It seems that some look down their noses at them and think that they might be beneath them. The typical "Let them eat cake." attitude of the far right. Let them all stop and see how long things operate in this country.

KSL
140589
Points
KSL 10/03/12 - 07:07 am
0
0
I don't think it is a matter

I don't think it is a matter of looking down on them. As you said yourself, the practicality of a lifelong career of doing that kind of labor is not that great. And wha is the potential of increasing income relative to inflation?

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