Advocating on Behalf of the American Military and Defense on the War on Terror

Obama will release his budget this week, and we already know that he's going to  try to stake out a treacherous "middleground" as he attempts to cast himself as  a bold centrist, willing to stand apart from leftist Democrats.

He'll do so by, reportedly, introducing  a Chained CPI, which is a way of cutting Social Security by using a  different inflation measure that won't rise as much.

Liberals are already livid.

Congressman Jerry Nadler — who is part of the Democratic party's Progressive  Caucus — slammed the reports in a comment made on Friday:

 I am quite concerned by reports that the  forthcoming White House budget proposal might include chained CPI and other  accommodations to Republicans determined to dismantle our social safety net and the  progress our nation has made since the New Deal.  I must reiterate  that I will never support any reductions in Social Security, Medicare or  Medicaid benefits – and chained CPI is a direct reduction in Social Security  benefits.  Along with my fellow progressives, I will vehemently oppose any  such cuts.    

We cannot lose sight of the facts.  Social  Security is one of the bedrocks of our middle class society and is an essential  safety net for millions of American seniors and their families.  Millions  of Americans rely on Social Security benefits for medical care, food, housing,  and other needs.  We cannot force seniors to pay even more to fill the hole  left by unnecessary and irresponsible cuts to Social Security.

Other, more grassroots leftists, are even more livid.

Here's the pseudonymous  New Deal Democrat, who writes great economics analysis for The Bonddad Blog,  and who used to be part of the Daily Kos community:

For many grass-roots democrats, this is a bridge  - no, an ocean - too far. Any "democrat" who supports these proposals is never  going to get my vote. Period. I will support any primary opponents and I will  accept a one term GOPer if necessary to end the political career of any Grand  Betrayers, replacing them with a progressive in 2 or 6 years. And I know I am  far from alone.

In a blog post, Paul  Krugman argues that all Obama is doing is trying to appeal to the "Very  Serious People" who insist that both parties are to blame for Washington  dysfunction. Krugman argues that if anything, Social Security benefits should be  increased, given the collapse of other retirement vehicles  (401Ks and such) that haven't panned out as well as people thought.

Obama's gambit will blow up in his face, he argues, as the political points  he thought he could score will not materialize:

So what’s this about? The answer, I fear, is that  Obama is still trying to win over the Serious People, by showing that he’s  willing to do what they consider Serious — which just about always means  sticking it to the poor and the middle class. The idea is that they will finally  drop the false equivalence, and admit that he’s reasonable while the GOP is  mean-spirited and crazy.

But it won’t happen. Watch the Washington  Post editorial page over the next few days. I hereby predict that it will  damn Obama with faint praise, saying that while it’s a small step in the right  direction, of course it’s inadequate — and anyway, Obama is to blame for  Republican intransigence, because he could make them accept a Grand Bargain that  includes major revenue increases if only he would show Leadership (TM).

Oh, and wanna bet that Republicans soon start  running ads saying that Obama wants to cut your Social Security?

Anyway, we'll know more this week.

But while everyone is talking about the "civil war" inside the GOP, watch to  see if it's the Democrats who implode over this issue.

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