To Senators Murray and Cantwell and Congressmen Inslee and Larsen:
Dear Washington State and Snohomish County Delegation,
I almost feel foolish in sending this email to you all. After all, I should be able to expect anyone I voted for to defend Social Security as if it were their own personal possession. However, with the re-installment of George W. Bush as occupant of the Whitehouse and ruler of America, I believe it is important to remind you all (as I did in 2000) that George Bush does not represent the majority of the American people and, therefore, you should stand as a proud opposition party in defense of the values your constituency embrace.
As someone who lives in a 4 Generation household, I believe I see the issue of Social Security in a unique way. At the top, I have an 80 year old mother who depends on her Social Security check for her sole income. She is of that generation to whom Social Security was a solemn promise from a compassionate government to its hard working and sacrificing citizens. My wife and I are just a brief decade or so from receiving those checks ourselves. Due to outsourcing and off shoring in the recent Bush years, we have had to make deep withdrawals from our retirement plans to stay afloat while we were looking for our new, lower paying jobs. Needless to say, this has increased our anticipated dependency on the system we have paid into for so many years. We now have working children who are torn between the threatening and fear mongering rhetoric of the Bush Administration telling them that the system will fold long before they will ever see a cent of their payroll tax deductions returned to them and the reality that the current system (if left alone and not raided to fight illegal wars) is solvent well beyond their working years. Finally, we have a granddaughter (2 1/2 years) who, depending on the decisions you make today, may see herself needing to take on the responsibility of support for aging and ailing parents as well as trying to provide for her own family.
When George W. Bush slipped through the back door into Washington DC in 2000, he came with a tax scheme that the majority of Americans voted against. He said it would drive our economy and move the job market. It did both of those things. It drove our economy into massive debt and moved our job market offshore or into the ground. Most of you saw this and stood up against those "borrow and spend" plans. Now he is back with a plan to destroy Social Security by pulling TRILLIONS of dollars out of the account. His plan calls for my working children to invest their retirement money (some $25 or $35 per week is their typical payroll deduction) in the stock market on the CHANCE that they will invest wisely and not need Social Security. In the mean time, how does he propose to make up for newly created shortfall in current funding for my mother and my wife and I? He says we (you) will BORROW the money! We are talking TRILLIONS of dollars. Who will you borrow this money from? My granddaughter? Or, worse, the Saudis, Chinese, and Japanese who already hold much of our massive Bush debt?
What makes this scheme so much more bothersome is that it is being proposed by a republican to a republican controlled Congress. This is the same republican party whose one-time leader, Newt Gringrich said that the republicans were content to watch Social Security "wither on the vine". Does anyone in their right mind truly believe that the republicans would approve the borrowing of TRILLIONS of dollars to save a program they despise? Just as they did with the Bush tax scheme, they will gladly roll back the funding, only borrow a token amount of the new debt for the photo-op and sit back and watch the program die a painful death.
You MUST stand against this scheme! There can be no retreat or even compromise on this issue. Social Security, to many in this country, represents our government (and the Democratic Party) at its best. It is an issue worth fighting for and one that many at home will be watching. Do not let my mother down.
Chad (The Left) Shue