The Babe Theory Of Political Movements.
Mar. 21, 2005 11:50 AM
Iran's Sham Election In Houston.
June 20, 2005 5:36 AM
Yes, Kanye, Bush Does Care.
Oct. 31, 2005 12:41 AM
Health Care vs. Wealth Care.
Nov. 23, 2005 3:28 PM
Americans Voting With Their Feet.
Nov. 30, 2005 1:33 PM
Idea Majorities Matter.
May 12, 2006 6:15 PM
Twilight Zone Economics.
Oct. 17, 2006 12:30 AM
The "Shrinking" Middle Class.
Dec. 13, 2006 1:01 PM
From Ashes, GOP Opportunities.
Dec. 18, 2006 6:37 PM
Battle Between Entitlements & Pork.
Dec. 21, 2006 12:31 PM
Let Economic Freedom Reign.
Dec. 22, 2006 10:22 PM
Biggest Health Care Moment In Decades.
July 25, 2007 4:32 PM
Unions Antithetical to Liberty.
May 28, 2008 11:12 PM
Right To Work States Rock.
June 9, 2008 12:25 PM
Social Security Reform Thursday.
March 13, 2008
Caption Contest: Enter Today!
Due: July 29, 2008
The Carnival Of Classiness.
Mar. 14, 2006
Quotational Therapy: Obama.
Apr. 4, 2008
Mainstream Melee: Wolfowitz.
May 19, 2007
Pundit Roundtable: Leaks.
July 9, 2006
A WILLisms.com(ic), by Ken McCracken
July 14, 2006
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Rock The Vote's Town Hall Meetings Continue To Underwhelm.
Basically, to recap, Jehmu Green, Hans Riemer, and the rest of the Rock the Vote gang, has been going around the country trying to undermine the sky-high support among young people for Social Security reform.
They're failing. Miserably.
It's embarrassing just to watch such humiliation.
...the under-30 crowd did not represent a majority.
Is it possible that young people didn't show because, oh, maybe, those actually under 30 (unlike Hans Riemer, of Rock the Vote) "favor giving individuals the choice to invest a portion of their Social Security contributions in stocks or mutual funds" to the tune of 76-16 (link is a .pdf).
Colleen Taylor, a Columbia University junior who went on the campaign trail as a political correspondent for CosmoGirl! magazine, said she's heard tremendous discussion from young people on both sides of the Social Security debate.
And that's what reform is really about: FREEDOM, INDIVIDUAL CONTROL, AN OWNERSHIP SOCIETY.
It's personal control and the free enterprise system versus inefficient bureaucratic control of trans-generational wealth redistribution (otherwise known as socialism). It's about choice and harnessing the power of the markets, versus compulsory wage garnishing and neglible (or negative) returns down the road.
Rock the Vote, ostensibly a group for young people, has had a tough time finding actual young people to get involved (it's no wonder, when Social Security reform is so popular with young people), so they've resorted to recruiting AARP-eligible people to oppose Social Security reform:
Financial freedom is hot; trucker hats with stupid slogans are not. A majority under-30 folks believe personal retirement accounts are a good idea and trust themselves more than the government to manage their retirement funds.
Indeed, on the Rock the Vote blog, Hans Riemer (who is closer to age 40 than age 21) asserts that "All the cool kids oppose privatization," as if that is supposed to make younger Americans turn against the idea of having more economic liberty. Riemer cites a Pew Center survey in which people who claim to have heard a lot about Social Security reform oppose it more than those who had not heard much about it.
We've commented on this in the very recent past, suggesting a list of questions about Social Security reform. Paris Hilton or Britney Spears could claim to be experts on politics, but unless they could answer a few simple political questions correctly, why would we take their word for it? How does that make any sense?
Despite the cherry-picked numbers Rock the Vote uses to prove that young people do not want Social Security reform, among those 18-29, support for reform in objective polls is consistently above 65%, sometimes even reaching above 75%.
The leadership of Rock the Vote shares much in common with labor union leadership on Social Security. Although young people and union members would benefit from President Bush's reform principles, and although young people and union members support Social Security choice, the leadership of each of these organizations is:
1) woefully out of touch with those whom they claim to represent;
2) part and parcel of the "radical status-quo" left;
3) believe personal accounts might undermine their long-term prospects for keeping their members dependent on them.
These organizations' leaders have one common partisan agenda of note behind their opposition to Social Security reform:
They want to make President Bush a lame duck and believe his "defeat" on the Social Security issue will make him one.
“Social Security is a signature issue for George Bush and a signature issue for American workers and the labor movement. The day after it is voted down or withdrawn is the day Bush becomes a lame duck.”
On the Rock the Vote blog, Hans Riemer explained what defeating Social Security reform means to him:
It is a recipe for a political backlash. Long assumed as the only demographic that would support private accounts, when young people turn on them, its ovah....
It's all a big political game with these people. It's sick to play politics with this kind of issue, considering the enormous negative consequences of no reform, but they do it anyway.
Because they have no solutions, only dogmatic adherence to 1930s ideology. They have no vision for the future, only a strategy for tearing down the reformers.
This strategy just might produce a political backlash, but not the kind that Hans Riemer hopes for. As we explained before, Bush has a huge polling advantage on "who is willing to work with both political parties to find a solution." Furthermore, a recent Democracy Corps (the organization founded by Democrats James Carville, Stan Greenberg, and Bob Shrum) poll found (in .pdf format):
50% of Americans believe that Democrats are opposing President Bush's plans to strengthen Social Security just to block his agenda, while only 42% believe that they are opposing President Bush's plan because they have a better way to strengthen Social Security.
Ultimately, it's a losing proposition in the long term (as well as the short term) to obstruct necessary reform on Social Security, a crucial program that so many people, especially young people, understand is broken and in need of reform. Just saying no to reform is not even a strategy, it's nihilism.
Meanwhile, the Rock the Vote roadshow of town hall forums ambles ever on... minus the actual young people.
Posted by Will Franklin · 3 April 2005 08:09 PM
You should turn the Rock The Vote = Unbelievably Lame image into a bumper sticker or T-Shirt!
Posted by: InkyAtari at April 4, 2005 10:36 AM
I just might do that, in fact.
Posted by: Will Franklin at April 4, 2005 10:38 AM