Ron Paul on Social Security, Obamacare and the Tea Party Movement

Ron Paul appeared on MSNBC’s Hardball today to discuss Social Security, Obamacare and the Tea Party movement.

Channel: MSNBC
Show: Hardball
Date: 04/22/2010


Chris Matthews: Welcome back. We saw thousands of Tea Partiers rally in Washington on Tax Day last week. And a recent political poll actually shows the movement is split between social concerns (Sarah Palin is their leader), and libertarians who support Congressman Ron Paul. Congressman Ron Paul is with us tonight. It’s an honor to have you, sir, you’re a leader of a movement. Sometimes you remind me of my hero growing up, he was in fact Barry Goldwater.

Ron Paul: Oh.

Chris Matthews: And then I grew up. And I began to see the complications of life, like people get old and they don’t have a lot of ability to save money, so they need Social Security. And we need a civil rights bill, even if it was done under the Interstate Commerce Clause maybe a fiddle there. But the fact is it isn’t always as clear and simple as libertarian philosophy argues. But you have stuck to your position. You are a libertarian and at your age you still believe that way less government is way better.

Ron Paul: But aren’t we on the verge of proving our point? Social Security sounds good, but it’s broke. And even if they take care of sending out the checks, eventually the checks won’t buy anything because they’ll just print the money. So I think our point has been proven. That’s what this whole movement is about, that’s what the Tea Party Movement is all about. I mean, the failure of government is everywhere around us.

Chris Matthews: Okay, I used to argue this with my dad who was sort of a middle-of-the-road Republican. I tried to take your position and he would say, “Yeah, but some people just don’t save money. Maybe they don’t have the discipline, maybe they don’t have the financial ability. They live paycheck to paycheck.” All of a sudden they’re 65 and they don’t have any money. In the old days you’d move in with your kids. But in modern society the kids have already moved to the suburbs, you’re in the old neighborhood, it doesn’t work. That’s why the government felt it needed to have some kind of safety net for retired people. You still don’t think we need Social Security? This is pretty fundamental.

Ron Paul: There is a moral issue there as well. The person that didn’t save and spent their money and had no money when they were 65, why does that give them a moral right to take it from the person who was frugal and saved?

Chris Matthews: Because you forced them to pay in the payroll tax.

Ron Paul: But what if you didn’t force them?

Chris Matthew: That’s the problem my father would say. Okay, so what do you do with those people? If you don’t have a Social Security System, what do you do?

Ron Paul: Well, you’re going to better off than a Social Security System where everybody is dependent and goes totally bankrupt and you have a whole society broke. That’s what the problem will be. Nobody is going to get care.

Chris Matthews: Would it be better getting rid of Social Security?

Ron Paul: No, not in these circumstances. I have bills in the Congress that would make it solvent, that you couldn’t spend a penny of it. And I would take care of these people who are totally dependent by stopping the money being spent overseas and I would have a transition in order to do that.

Chris Matthews: Cutting spending overseas […] that’s the part I like. Let me ask you about this healthcare bill. It always seems to me that when people say, “I don’t want a helmet”, fine, ride without a helmet. But, when you get picked up on a highway and you’re all messed up and the ambulance gets there and the rescue squad gets there ten minutes later, you’re taken care of. Somebody takes you to the best hospital, the closest hospital, gives you the best treatment they can give you. So society does look after its individual members; it does. Libertarians say, “I don’t need society. I don’t want to pay into healthcare”. Is that logical to you?

Ron Paul: No, it’s not logical to have what we have. That means you create the moral hazard. The person goes out and says, “Oh, I don’t really have to worry. If I get hurt, somebody else is going to take care of me”. But where does he have the moral right to say that, “I’ve been injured”, it’s a socialization of medicine. This idea that government will take care of me, that means that somebody will…

Chris Matthews: No, but doesn’t that person have to take responsibility and buy health insurance?

Ron Paul: I think they have to take responsibility for their life. If they injure themselves, if they’re stupid, we can’t protect people against themselves.

Chris Matthews: No, but when you get a stroke, you have a heart attack or something goes wrong with you at the workplace and somebody has to look out for you, isn’t it better that society says, “No, wait a minute, while you’re young and healthy, kick into healthcare like this new plan requires, so that when something goes wrong, you’ve already begun to contribute.”

Ron Paul: See, I think where we disagree is you use the word “society” rather carelessly. Who’s the society? Society is just everybody that is only a few people who are in the Congress someplace dictating who society is and who pays, who gets bailed out and who doesn’t. And under a society where people are responsible for themselves, they have to suffer the consequence. If they don’t take care of themselves, they have to depend on charity, their friends or their neighbors, their churches. But you would have a lot fewer people. Now we’re going to have a whole society. I mean, now we have 21% of the people that are underemployed because of this false illusion about Keynesian economics, that this is going to work. There is going to be nobody else to bail them out. So society isn’t going to be there because society is broke. The government is broke.

Chris Matthews: So the president should not have pushed a big spending bill in the face of the big looming second great depression?

Ron Paul: Oh, that was horrible. It was exactly the opposite thing.

Chris Matthews: He shouldn’t have done it?

Ron Paul: He should have cut spending and put the money…

Chris Matthews: That’s what Hoover did.

Ron Paul: What?

Chris Matthew: Cut spending.

Ron Paul: No, he didn’t. Hoover was every bit as bad as Roosevelt. Roosevelt just continued the Hoover program.

Chris Matthews: You want to go back to Coolidge? You love Coolidge. You guys love Coolidge.

Ron Paul: No, how about Thomas Jefferson and few people like that who believed in freedom and free markets.

Chris Matthews: Let’s take a look at this Tea Party Movement that you and Barry Goldwater are going back. People believe there is too much government, too much big brother. I understand the impulse. Some people in the Tea Party Movement don’t exactly go along with that. They’re more for Palin, they love to outlaw abortion, a lot of other issues they’re very concerned about. They don’t like same sex marriages. Is the Tea Party Movement too social and not economic enough for you? How would you describe what you see in that?

Ron Paul: Well, I don’t think anybody can describe it yet. They’re claiming there is a difference, but they’ll say that I am not as interested in the social issues. But in many ways here I’m a very conservative person.

Chris Matthews: But you’re not rallying around the evils of same-sex marriage. I don’t hear you talking about that.

Ron Paul: No, but to say that I’m not interested in family values – I happen to be married and I have children and all that.

Chris Matthews: That’s fairly normal, but you’re not out there waving signs against same-sex marriages.

Ron Paul: That’s true. I believe in values, but I do not believe in using force to put those values. I don’t believe in using force to make you a better person for your own sake. But I don’t believe in putting force on you to make you more responsible economically. I apply the rules equally to social justice and economic justice. I don’t understand this division why you may defend social liberties rather well, but as soon as it comes to me spending my money and assuming responsibility…

Chris Matthews: You are consistent, you’re the only one that I know. Because most people who say that they’re libertarians always come back in and say, “Yeah, but no same-sex marriage and let’s outlaw abortion”.

Ron Paul: I think the consistent position should be that government shouldn’t be involved in marriage. I mean, why should we have this argument? It’s up to anybody’s opinion.

Chris Matthews: I agree. Do you think every Tea Party person takes that view?

Ron Paul: Probably not, but I think everybody should be able to define it. I have my definition of marriage, but I don’t have a right to impose my views on others. But nobody has a right to impose their views on me.

Chris Matthews: What do you make of the ugly part of the movement? I don’t think you have anything to do with it. When I look at these signs, they got Hitler moustaches on the president of the United States, they do crazy colors on his face to play around with his ethnic background. Look at this stuff, they got hammer and sickle. All this stuff is really kind of nasty, edgy, “I hate the guy”, rather than “I have a different philosophy than this guy”. He got elected president legitimately. I disagree with him. What’s all this de-legitimization: “He’s not really our president. He wasn’t really born here.” What is all this?

Ron Paul: Well, I think that might be a distortion. I have never seen that on Fox.

Chris Matthews: You got a look around a little. Most people are aware that this is part of the movement.

Ron Paul: I think it’s rather small and it’s rather ugly.

Chris Matthews: O’Reilly is almost moving to the center compared to some of those guys. I mean, he knows it’s going on.

Ron Paul: But they’ve done some detailed polling on these people, and these are well educated people and probably 99% of the people probably don’t carry ugly signs up.

Chris Matthews: But who got the signs up? The signs are from outside agitators?

Ron Paul: Maybe they’re leftist for all we know. Maybe somebody gets out..

Chris Matthews: You are kidding me.

Ron Paul: Yeah, probably. Just trying to needle you.

Chris Matthews: Okay, Rand Paul, I know this guy is your kid; your son. He might pull an upset and win one of the Senate seats for Kentucky.

Ron Paul: Yeah, looks good, it looks very good.

Chris Matthews: But you guys have become the bandwagon. Who’s backing your son now? Is it Mitt Romney’s backing him?

Ron Paul: Oh, I don’t think so. But Bunning did.

Chris Matthews: Jim Bunning.

Ron Paul: Bunning is the conservative independent, you know. He has not fallen to the trap of being part of the establishment. He’s anti-establishment. He’s with the grassroots and the Tea Party people and the people who like individual liberties and free markets and sound money. I mean, they’re all for that.

Chris Matthews: You guys can win it. You can win in Florida with Marco Rubio, you can win in Kentucky. You can win it around the country.

Ron Paul: There’s a revolution going on, Chris. You’re not checking up on us?

Chris Matthews: Are you a leader? Sarah Palin?

Ron Paul: No, I’m not a leader. I don’t think there is any one leader.

Chris Matthews: You think she could be president, by her abilities.

Ron Paul: Oh sure, just look at the past history. Almost anybody can become president.

Chris Matthews: Now you’re just not saying anything. You’re saying anybody can be president. You’re saying there’s no standards. It’s a complicated job.

Ron Paul: That’s right. But I would say that on both the Republican and Democratic side, people rise to the occasion. All of a sudden they have good advisors.

Chris Matthews: You’re a true romantic. A Harry Truman romantic here. Thank you. Congressman Ron Paul.

Ron Paul: Good to see you.

  • Theresa Romano

    Also about the inbalance of medicare.
    Those paying in can’t sustain the benefits which are paid out.
    But what if those benefits only went to those who had paid in to it??
    That’s how an insurance policy is supposed to work.
    Also while it’s true that years ago people ‘paid in’ less money it is also true that the money should have sat and accrued interest.
    Think about it.
    If a guy put 10.00 in the bank in 1910 and left it until 1995 then, at 5% interest what would that 10.00 be?
    Fica was supposed to go into a reserve fund where it accrued interest.
    Then when the payees got old it would reflect the current economy as the money would have accumulated interest in a way that reflected inflation.
    But the government didn’t reserve the money for them.
    So it never grew and accumulated interest.


  • Theresa Romano

    We are coming at this from completely different perspectives.
    My foster boys’ mom needed to stop being enabled. She used my boys’ secrion 8 house as a brothel. This is not a joke. I can post addresses and dates….
    This woman ”played” the system.
    She went to therapy(out patient) and passed all her tests. She got her section 8 house.
    On visits the children slept on the couch while mom and her female room mate and mom’s …. um…ok I’ll just say it…her pimp….entertained.
    So here’s what happened.
    The week that she was supposed to get the children back she … suddenly… failed a drug test with one of the harshest substances …. one she’d never used before.
    The children have since been adopted(beatiful little angels).
    ‘Mom’ is still living in the section 8 house, getting disability and laughing…yes…laughing at the gov’t.
    And if you don’t think the recipients laugh then maybe I can get some video.
    I remember one guy laughing about How to get disability….
    He started to shake and look nervously over his shoulder…..he said ”it’s them….do you see them…it’s them”…..
    Then he sat back and grinned while some others in the room fell back laughing…..
    He winked at me and said ”that’s how you get disability”……

  • Theresa Romano

    Actually I think I know one thing about medicare. When we pay that tax…what is it…FICA…isn’t that supposed to go to social security and medicare.
    So I thought medicare was a type of insurance that American workers were buying from the government(maybe I’m oversimplifying).
    Now mediCAID is the complete opposit. Medicaid is handed out by the government to persons who never paid taxes or may not be citizens. (again maybe oversimplifying).
    But the bottom line is that Americans expected the government to create an old age cushion for them when they paid taxes.
    But that’s not where the money went. It’s not an old age insurance tax.
    Much of the $$ gets funneled to mediCAID.
    Through mediCAID the $$$ goes to persons who never paid taxes.
    If they’re orphaned children then God Bless America and I’m all for it.
    But when money that the government gathered from working Americans’ taxes in the guise of ‘old age security’ goes to a 25 year old able bodied ex-con because excessive drug use left her feeling depressed I have to say… what???…
    I really believe we need to find out more about the difference between mediCARE and mediCAID.

    • 1111cb

      Medicaid absolutely varies state to state and because is administered on a state level, much easier to review and keep more in line with modern scientific thinking.
      I was referring both to hospital and outpt reimbursement rates.
      Old days was 80’s-to early 90’s- docs I volunteered with got veggies and chickens and free care as a physician was at your discretion.

      I do believe alcohol and drug addiction are absolutely medical conditions.

      I also believe the shortsighted cuts in psychatric care and outpatient treatment of these and other mental health conditions escalated the ED and hospitalization rates in these groups to unsustainable numbers. They cut drug coverage for schizophrenics and limited outpt visits but unlimited payment for NECESSARY hospital stays- which means out of compassion, we err on the side of safety, we admit at night, sort out the next day when help arrives. We risk denial of payment on many visits and some are, but when someone says they will kill themselves and we think its just because they are cold and hungry, we can’t sort it out. It would be cheaper to feed and help these people. Some even admit they commit small crimes in the hopes of being jailed and fed. Many of these people used to be safe and working when on the more expensive meds.

      It costs the hospital money to see them, RN staffing goes up, we have to do a medical screening with labs, so lab costs, etc- if this goes unreimbursed- because the social net failed- you through taxes (Medicaid/Medicare and insurance premiums )eat the cost.

      Think about what your mom needed? was it a hospital/ED or real help through outpt therapy, groups, intense living situations, treatment center,etc? Crisis care is expensive. Did Medicaid really pay for what she needed to get well? That is what is wrong with the system. Some groups do better- in Boston we had a great outpt system for addicts and mentally ill 15 yrs ago. Where I am now- they are in a revolving door shoved between outpt referrals and inpt care and no real help.

      Medicare is funding by those working. See other posts who add up the benefits and do the math. Now the elderly getting benefits and those working to sustain the system are out of balance. Its 2 workers to 1 payee. add up what you put into the system over your life and what you are supposed to get out- the math does not and never worked unless you have a system that prints infinate money, or a stock market that always goes up ( but can’t anymore since the scams were exposed) Those saying they cover the cost of Medicare and its not subsidized and unsustainable at the current level- check their math.

    • 1111cb

      At this point following the money trail will help find the ones who need to be thrown out of office. And assist inguiding reform. But at this point, they are not sustainable under the old system or reform. Ron Paul is one of the few telling the truth. I believe if we start from the truth we can save these but all parties minus the lobbyists need to hash out solutions. The politics means saying the truth loses you votes. We the people need to say telling the truth wins you votes.

      The states are broke. The federal government is in debt with unfunded mandates that make no sense and could be streamlined. The people are struggling with their own debt and unemployment. The ineffient use of health care dollars is worsening the situation.

  • Theresa Romano

    Could this differ from state to state? I know that co-payments for someone on or medicaid are zero(I know nothing about medicare). As to what the government pays out on their behalf I really do believe it is higher than we think.
    I’m in New York.
    Maybe you are talking about primary care giving and I am talking about hospital visits.
    Is this possible?
    Also you mention something about the old days? Free care was cheaper in the old days?
    How long ago was that?
    Also, medicaid and medicare differ greatly. I don’t know about medicare. But I did have to find ‘medicaid’ doctors when my foster children need doctors, counselors and dentists.
    Here’s what tweaks me. I was glad the government gave the children coverage.
    But ‘mom’ got medicaid because she was a drug addict. No joke. No lie. At 25 she was considered ‘disabled’ and given medicaid.
    She got the dental care, therapist and pcp that the children got.
    If you think being a drug addict isn’t a disability then you’ve been misled.
    Apparently excessive drug use can cause depression (or paranoia or agoraphobia).
    Now, voila…..a free dentist? A free psychotherapist?
    I know many working men and women who can’t get dental coverage or psychotherapy coverage.
    Are you sure about the amount that medicaid (not medicare) gives the pcp?
    Is that recent?

  • Theresa Romano

    Hey great link!
    Look what I found…

    Medicaid payments currently assist nearly 60 percent of all nursing home residents and about 37 percent of all childbirths in the United States. The Federal Government pays on average 57 percent of Medicaid expenses.

    The link says that each state participates and the average amount the state’s put in is 16% of their funding.
    At the very least the federal government matches that by 50%.

    What I also know from personal experience is that Medicare and Medicaid contribute to inflating hospital costs.
    For example, since medicaid and medicare are willing to pay hospitals $20.00 for an aspirin (and why not…it’s not their money), then the health insurers are pressured into paying that same amount. If they don’t. they could simply be dropped.
    I’ve been told by some nurses that there are examples of state of the art equipment which only medicaid patients will get because the government pays more than the private insurers. Maybe that differs from state to state?
    Incredible that media sources would claim insurance companies were greedy and all the while they know that medicare and medicaid are helping inflate prices….

    • 1111cb

      The first part of your post was great and factual. I am not sure what the source of the RN’s were speaking from. I work in hospital medicine after leaving primary care work. Medicare payments do not meet costs and while it is true that everyone inflates the bill- I see the stats monthly. Reimbursement is considered great of you recoup 30 % of billing.

      It is why I do not say lightly that free care was cheaper to offer in the old days. The issue of prosecuting or auditing those who give free care and calling it fraud is outrageous. Its called differing fees and fraud.

      Medicaid also pays less than what it takes to cover. So to compensate, doctors and hospitals in order to stay afloat negotiate with private insurers driving up your rates to cover the losses from Medicare and Medicaid. The insurers need to doctors and hospitals to stay in business. Then they pass on the premium increase and reduced benefits to you who pays for the insurance. Since its harder to negotiate with government- the reimbursement remains too low. Also to stay afloat, practices calculate how many medicaid and medicare pts they can subsidize. They then stop taking new pts in this category after the limit is reached. Result- you can have medicare or medicaid but no doctor as a primary care to see you.

      Don’t believe it- call around as a “new pt” and say you have Medicaid or Medicare- unless its a new guy with an unfilled practice- you can’t get in. Then call again as an insurance pt to the same practice.

      This was the hidden cost that due to the political games could not be clearly shown to the public. Now the hidden cost is more up front that’s all. It’s a system on a course for crashing unless all sides sit down and really hash out a solution.

      Lastly- lack of consumer choice drives up cost- that is why health savings accounts are best or coverage for first 4-5 PCP visits a year plus post hospital visits. Despite insurance I wanted an ECHO which was approved and some ultrasound screening not approved. The ECHO alone would have cost $ 1000 due to the administrative costs related to dealing with insurance companies, etc.

      I opted to pay through flex for a mobile private screen- all the tests were <$250 because they only take cash.

      Now if you have a medical condition- the higher quality ECHO at a cardiologist or hospital does make a difference but for screening? If there were no insurance complications- the entire cost of all procedures would drop. And Medicare is one of the most complicated to deal with because of the IRS/fraud threat and the lack of clarity on billing. Ask 3 doctors to define observation vs inpatient status, 3 Medicare workers and 3 professional coders- you will get 9 answers.

  • Theresa Romano

    Thanks. One more question. Where doe the federal government get the money to partially fund the state run medicaid? Is it from medicare funds?

    • 1111cb

      I cannot understand the complex funding in Washington- I only have basic understandings- perhaps some others who post know more??

      I do recall demands for transparency in this area about exactly where the money came from and went have been met with resistance.

    • 1111cb

      with a caution as to the source- perhaps this will help. The lack of transparency is why the Medicare trust fund is depleted and no clear answers to these type of direct questions are ever met with straight answers.

      When you look at federal budgets- my understanding as someone with no accounting background, but based on my reading – is that it is deliberately hard to read where the money goes to and comes from.

      You are welcome to press your Congressman/woman’s office- bet they can’t answer. If they do- they deserve consideration of a possible vote in my bok for knowing their job

      you got my curiosity up- so I will keep searching- but my time is limited

    • 1111cb

      OK – here are some sites for starters- the answer seems to be they have a changing budget, federal requirements, inadequate funding and patched together solutions.

      hidden cost-lobbyists:

      effect of Health care reform:

      basic info:

      last 2 have an agenda- but contain good facts.

      basically – things are being phased in so there are 2 presidential elections before full impact of Health care reform is phased in- so there is time to figure this out and correct it starting with the unfunded mandates and unconstitutionality of forced purchase of health care. As a physican- this benefits only the lobby interests from what I see. I would rather provide free care as we used to do before it became Medicare fraud to offer it.

  • Theresa Romano

    Does anyone know how medicaid and medicare are connected?
    My understanding is that medicaid takes funds from medicare and gives it to persons who never paid into the system. Is that correct?
    I also know for a fact that depression and paranoia make persons eligible for disability and it is illegal for the therapist who diagnoses the person with depression or paranoia to mention whether the depression or paranoia is the result of using hallucinagenics.
    So in other words a crack dealer who never paid taxes and is living on welfare can receive disability benefits through medicaid if he is paranoid. The fact that the paranoia is a result of crack/cocaine use and a legitimate fear of being arrested does not matter.
    Anyway I would love to know more about medicare and medicaid and how they differ.
    Does anyone know?

    • 1111cb

      Medicaid is run by the states and funded partly by the federal government. It has more responsiveness and flexibility as it is state run. That said- yes- if you do drugs, and qualify for disability as a result, you can go on Medicaid. Disability and Income are major qualifiers. In our state a ballot measure from the people opened up the prescription program to anyone who wanted to buy in and get the group discount. That is the kind of flexibility it has.

      Medicare is run by our politicians in Washington who make medical decisions, set them in stone (law) based on old science, politics or reasons I cannot figure out. Given the current hostile political climate no one will do anything to fix it so its quietly going broke- you can’t meaningful reform bad science, bad rules, real waste or do things that make sense if everyone is grandstanding.

  • Joe

    Joan, it seems like you’re jumping the gun on this. And also, I’m confused.What are the 40 trillion in unfunded liabilities? I don’t even know what that means. I just know that the Social Security fund would currently have over a 2 trillion dollar surplus if that fund wasn’t used for other things.Did it occur to you that perhaps people have an agenda? Like when Reagan’s buddy Grover Norquist said he wanted to ‘starve the beast.’ The ideal is to create massive debt so the government has to cut social programs. So what did Reagan do? Cut taxes on the wealthy, nearly quadrupled the national debt, then tried to pay for that debt by raising cigarette and gasoline taxes to all time highs, and raising the FICA tax, so he could take from that fund and pay off those tax cuts for the wealthy. They purposely bankrupted Social Security and Medicare, and trust me it’s not a hard thing to fix. First of all, you make it so that fund can’t be used for anything else, and you make the FICA tax a flat tax, rather than a degressive one.

    • Joan

      Joe, what it is, is that what they pay out in those two programs so far exceeds what is paid in, that it goes trillions in the red. An example is one World War II generation person paid zero into Medicare and one half of one percent tax into Social Security for a few years after the programs first started. So, let’s say the person paid 2,000 total into SS. They retire at 62-65, they get 1,200 a month, 12,000 a year, many of them are living to be almost 100. So, they get 12,000 a year for 30 years, that comes out to $360,000 that they receive in cash from SS, for paying 2,000 into it. They paid zero in those days into Medicare, then Medicare paid for lets say a hip replacement, knee replacement, open heart surgery, expensive tests, meds, end of life care, nursing homes. So, the government paid hospitals and doctors and nursing homes maybe 500,000 to over a million dollars, they paid zero into it. You multiply that by 45 million people being paid that money and having all of their medical bills paid by the government, after 20 years, it goes trillions into the red.

      Now, you have 75 million more people who are starting to go onto those programs. Each one wants 3,000 a month, one payment for them, one payment for the spouse who didn’t pay into it. So, now your looking at paying over 700,000 in cash over 30 years, and they paid maybe 30-50K into it. They paid one percent into Medicare, they will receive over a million dollars each in health care. Multiply that by 70 million people, it would take 85 trillion dollars to give out all of that free money and free health care. The idea is you pay in a small amount of money, receive it back the first year, and every year after that it is free money to you. You pay a few dollars into Medicare and receive full free health care for the rest of your life. Now, one could argue they could have made interest on that money or made a better investment. Not really. After four years, you have made four times your investment. It’s basically the same as when you pay taxes when you work and then if you applied for welfare and food stamps and free housing and said, well I paid taxes, I paid for it. Well, after two years on free rent, it’s welfare.

      They have to do away with the SSI component of it, where they give out 600-1,000 a month for life to people who never paid into it, stop paying children, they are not working age, stop letting everyone say they are completely disabled because they are overweight or diabetic or an alcoholic or drug addict or they have ADD. They have to cut back and only pay the person who paid into it, not spouses who never paid into it. They need to raise the retirement age, raise the tax again, do a tiered system where millionaires get 4 years, 4 times what they paid in and then no more, give people who make over 300,000 a year retired 5 years, 5 times what they paid in and drop it. Unless they streamline it, it would cost 40 trillion dollars to pay out all of that free money to everyone.

      They need to privatize Medicare, pay for everyone to have a private insurance policy. Instead of paying 200,000 for one surgery, pay 20,000 a year and no more for seniors to purchase insurance. Otherwise it would cost 45 trillion to pay the medical bills for one more generation. Both programs are bleeding to death by paying thousands of times more out than they take in.

      • 1111cb

        great post

        just a thought to add
        do you realize there is no option besides Medicare after age 65- there are no insurances other then Medicare or insurance companies subsidized by Medicare to administer care?

        There is no option for Health savings accounts, etc.

        Even if you are wealthy- your options are cash or Medicare.

        Wonder why it was set up that way?

        • Joan

          That’s such a good point. Older people have to be on Medicare, so when Obama took 500 billion out of Medicare to fund the new health care bill, while 75 million more people will be going onto Medicare, it leaves people forced to be in a system that will not serve them. It was such a dirty trick. If her cared about older people, he would have worked with the Repubs on their privatization package.

          The states are suing over the individual mandate, but I don’t think they will win on that argument because health care is necessary to survive, same as food and water and air. So, coming at it from the idea that it’s a good or service people are now being forced to purchase, I feel the Supreme Court will side with the feds. I emailed Dick Morris, who is all over this bill, and told him the states should be suing over the Medicaid component. They have proof that New York and California went bankrupt over Medicaid, so with this bill adding millions more people onto Medicaid, it goes against the welfare of the people of every state. I also loved Morris’ idea to vote the Repubs in and ask them to refuse to sign to fund the bill, game over. It’s going to be so interesting to see how it all turns out.

    • Joan

      Joe, what I see with people is they all saw their grandparents get all that free money for decades, and everybody knows they paid almost nothing into it, and we all know it’s massive welfare, and mainly for wealthy retirees who have big pensions, own several pieces of property, some have rental properties, stocks, bonds, some have millions in cash in the bank. They see hey, more free money for me, I want it, I want 3 grand a month more, I as promised it, that would mean several trips a year to Europe, who cares how much it costs. Everyone knows darned well how much they paid into those programs and that they would get so much more out of it than they ever paid into it, but they just want that free money no matter what. No one will budge anymore on the idea of free government money. The Tea Party people are retired people on those programs and their only concern is keeping those programs. They don’t care about debt or big government or how much it costs their kids or grandkids. They want more vacations, more expensive clothes, whatever it is they had planned on spending that extra money on, and they do not want to have to pay one cent for health insurance, nor do they want to pay any co-pays for Medicare. They want it all for free so they can live the high life. One senator was on Fox the other day and he said “seniors call me all the time and ask me if their SS will be cut. They live in gated communities and drive a Lexus and all they care about is will their free money be cut back.” A political commentator on Fox said the other day “those Tea Party people are not going to budge on SS and Medicare, I’ve talked to some of them, they want all of the entitlements.” If the Tea Party people were for real, they would be working to privatize Medicare and to reduce the payouts on SS, if they really want to reduce the national debt and not burden their childen and grandchildren. Most of our budget is going for those two programs at this point, yet those Tea Party people protest for a balanced budget, smaller government, no more debt, knowing their programs will cause 85 trillion in debt. And, it is socialism. So, they protest and say “no socialism, evil socialists.” But, those programs are socialism at its finest.

      • fred the protectionist

        “It has 40 trillion in unfunded liabilities.”

        So is every other government program like roads, military, etc… “unfunded liability”.

        You just made a useless political mantra and buzz-phrase.

        • Joan

          No, unfunded liability is 75 million people now want to be paid by SS, they have been told they will get almost 3,000 a month each for the rest of their lives. They have been told they will get full health care for the rest of their lives. It will cost 85 trillion dollars for the government to keep their commitments to those 75 million people. It’s not what if a road needs repairs, it’s the actual amounts they now owe people.

          You people can scream until you are blue in the face that you want, want, want it, the facts are the government would have to borrow 85 trillion dollars or get it through increased taxes to pay out what they said they would pay out. It isn’t going to happen. China isn’t loaning any 85 trillion to us, never mind paying just the interest on 85 trillion would take up the entire GDP. You can say, “I’m entitled, I want” all you want to, that doesn’t mean the money is there nor does it mean you don’t need to negotiate with the government to make adjustments and to privatize Medicare to keep it in existence. It’s time to negotiate to save the programs, not stay stuck on I want, I want, who cares, borrow 85 trillion dollars to give me what I want.

          • fred the protectionist

            All government programs are technically “unfunded liabilities”.

            “Unfunded liabilities” is a political buzzphrase of the neocons like “Climate Change” is a political buzzphrase of the left. Both are meaningless fiction.

            Once you strip away the propaganda, buzzphrases and political mantras, there’s not much to say.

        • Joan

          Nope. When 75 million people are being sent statements from SS telling them they are all entitled to 1,500 a month for the rest of their life, that they paid into it and this is what the government owes them, do the math. $1,500 a month for 25-35 years times 75 million people. That comes out to 40 trillion in promised SS money, 2 trillion taken in. The government has promised them full free health care for the rest of their lives, a few dollars taken in, 45 trillion has been promised to be given to them in Medicare. Where does the money come from? You can’t pay 30,000, get 700,000 out and have a balanced account. How many banks would let you deposit 30K, and then give you 3,000 a month for you and your spouse for the rest of your lives because you gave them 30K? None. Doesn’t exist. How many insurance companies would let you pay them 5,000, and then pay all of your and your spouses medical bills for 25-35 years? Zero.

    • fred the protectionist

      Watch out Joe, you mock the neocon/Libertarian God Reagan. They’ll be on you like stink on stool.

  • But, see, 2 trillion would have been in the Social Security fund, and the estimate is that it would cost 40 trillion to pay out what has been promised. That’s why it went under giving it out to only one generation. I remember seeing my rich relatives from the WWII generation live to be almost 100, knowing they paid zero into Medicare in their day, and knowing they paid one half of one percent of relatively low incomes in those days into SS. They got raises every year, many retired at 62 on a shoulder injury, a minor disability, or they never worked, got it because their spouse paid into it, and they drew it from 65-98 or ove 100 years of age. That’s how it went bankrupt. Many of them paid maybe 3,000 into it, and ended up getting 200,000 or more out of it, never mind they got hip replacements, knee replacements, major surgeries, all free to them for paying zero into Medicare. It’s a bad ponzi scheme, pay a few bucks in, collect for 25-35 years. I used to see all of it and think, “this won’t be here when we retire, at this rate, both of these programs are going to go bankrupt.” I used to think how one day the politicians would tell all of us Medicare is trillions in debt. There was no way around it. But, the politicians knew they had 75 million working baby boomers paying into it, and everytime they gave the WWII people a raise, they raised the tax on the baby boomers to pay for it. The politicians knew they had no intention of ever giving 75 million people those same benefits, they played it for all it was worth to get re-elected, now it’s someone else’s problem.I must say, I emailed Matthews recently and told him the Tea Party people are only after SS and Medicare, and he’s been talking about it ever since on air. They do read your emails.

  • RADI

    Chris was really good at getting off the subject. And also is very close minded. Also i think joan and jack are bots.

  • Joan

    Matthews was middle of the road for years until he started hanging out with Keith Olbermann. I remember when Matthews thought John McCain was the best politician ever, McCain was radical to him compared to far right and far left politicians. I also remember Matthews admit he voted for Bush the first time. He used to do hard hitting interviews, he could smile and be so kind and do a pit bull type of interview at the same time. Then, during the presidential election, him and Olbermann worked together on election results shows all of the time, and he went left, lefty, left. He got on the bandwagon about defend Obama at all costs because he is part black, and lost all perspective about politics. Him and Ed Schutz and Olbermann and Maddow are off a liberal cliff. All they talk about is the people on Fox, the Republicans and conspiracy theories about domestic terrorism and say bad things about the Tea Party people. No wonder no one watches.

    • Jack

      Joan, you’re simple wrong. That’s a two trillion dollar SURPLUS, that’s after it’s paid out, how much of a surplus in the social security fund there would have been if that fund wasn’t used for wars and tax cuts for the wealthy.

      I don’t know what a ponzi scheme is, I just believe, as Ron Paul does, that the fund must only be used for it’s purpose, if that were the case there would be no problem. Also, you’re simplifying it too much. For example, it could be made more solvent by getting rid of the cap on that tax, therefore those who earn hundreds of thousands or millions a year, or whatever, pay the same percentage of their total income as those who make under 100,000.

      • Joan

        It has 40 trillion in unfunded liabilities. You are saying there would have been 42 trillion dollars in the fund. Think about it. That’s trillions. Do you know how much tax money would have to be collected to have 42 trillion dollars in an account? You would have had to have 200,000 people paying 90 percent of their income into it to emask a huge amount of money like that. No tax has ever accumulated a trillion dollars, let alone 42 trillion. Think about the 45 trillion in unfunded liabilities for Medicare. Are you saying people paid 45 trillion dollars into Medicare by paying one percent tax into it?? Hilarious. I bet the total money ever taken in, in taxes for Medicare is not in the billions, at one percent of part of the population paying into it. You can’t pay 5 grand into it and expect full free health care for the next 25-35 years. It’s not socialized medicine, that would be if you paid 10 percent into it, it’s welfare, straight up.

      • Joan

        Jack, I’m not trying to be mean about it. The simple fact is that the politicians took the huge baby boomer generation’s tax money and gave it to the WWII generation in SS and free health care in exchange for their votes, and we all know after seeing the huge free payouts they got for decades and huge free medical they got, that this cannot be done for one more generation. The money has to come from somewhere. The government pays for people’s 200,000 dollar surgeries, expensive tests, on and on. People can’t pay 5,000 into it, and get all of those things without someone paying for it. So, the government would have to borrow trillions more from China to pay for it. The politicans knew they were using our generation to give the older people free money, raises every year. They raised their payments from $200 a month to as high as $1,500 a month, and everyone gets it, millionaires, people with huge passive incomes, and the politicians knew it was welfare, it was welfare for many rich people in exchange for votes. Now, there are not enough people paying into it to pay what they have promised all of us. And, see if a man pays into it and his wife doesn’t, she gets full payments too, so the money has to come from somewhere. If a person pays 50K into it, and they get 3,000 for themself and their spouse, that’s 36K a year, it’s about 700,000 after 20 years. The money has to come from other taxpayers to give to them, from raising the tax on their kids and grandkids and from borrowing money from foreign countries. The politicians knew it was unsustainable, they only cared about getting the older folks’ votes for as long as they could by feeding them free money and free health care. Their kids all saw how much they got, now everyone is addicted to it, but it’s not possible to do for another generation unless it is massively cut back.

        Obama just gutted Medicare and now there are boards that will ration care. The politicans saw Medicare was a bleeding monster, bleeding trillions of dollars in free heath care, and they have been looking for away to gut it for a long time. They just did, they took 500 billion out of Medicare to fund the new health care bill and set up rationing. I saw an article on MSNBC, it’s still there, you can go and look at it. It says the cuts to Medicare will close hospitals and that many doctors will no longer take Medicare patients. They cut it in a chicken way, by surprise with no way for people to opt out or to be able to use it. They should have privatized it, but the politicians don’t care one thing about people, only about votes. They should have come out 20 years ago and been honest with everyone and said, “we can’t continue to give rich people free money, people are living 30 years longer than we expected, we can no longer pay anyone who didn’t pay into it.” It should have been dealt with decades ago, not wait until it’s 40 trillion in debt. They do it on purpose so they can get rid of programs when they become too expensive and when the people they were paying are no longer the group they want votes from.

        • Jack

          Joan, it seems like you’re jumping the gun on this. And also, I’m confused.

          What are the 40 trillion in unfunded liabilities? I don’t even know what that means. I just know that the Social Security fund would currently have over a 2 trillion dollar surplus if that fund wasn’t used for other things.

          Did it occur to you that perhaps people have an agenda? Like when Reagan’s buddy Grover Norquist said he wanted to ‘starve the beast.’ The ideal is to create massive debt so the government has to cut social programs. So what did Reagan do? Cut taxes on the wealthy, nearly quadrupled the national debt, then tried to pay for that debt by raising cigarette and gasoline taxes to all time highs, and raising the FICA tax, so he could take from that fund and pay off those tax cuts for the wealthy. They purposely bankrupted Social Security and Medicare, and trust me it’s not a hard thing to fix. First of all, you make it so that fund can’t be used for anything else, and you make the FICA tax a flat tax, rather than a degressive one.

          • Joan

            Wow, I didn’t know that about Reagan. So he ran up big debts on purpose to cut programs, taxed people more and then gave the tax money to corporations. Wow. I did not know that.

            Well, where they came up with these numbers of 45 trillion unfunded liabilities for Medicare and 40 rillion unfunded liabilities for SS is they look at how much it would cost to pay the baby boomers SS and give them Medicare, based on how much they spent on the WWII generation. They came up with these figures, it would cost 85 trillion dollars to give out SS and Medicare to the baby boomers. So, they say, there is no money in there, and even if we didn’t spend the money on other things, there would have been 2 trillion. So, we need an extra 83 trillion to pay for all of this.

            End of life care for most people goes almost into the millions, so they figure 75 million baby boomers, paying them and their spouses a total of just about 3,000 a month, and paying all of their medical expenses, it will cost 85 trillion, and baby boomers paid like 2 trillion into it. That’s the problem. If people pay 5,000 into Medicare and each person uses close to a million in care, trillions in unfunded liabilities eventually show up. Same with the payouts. If a man pays 50K into it, then draws out 700,000 for him and his wife over 20-30 years, it goes into trillions of the money isn’t there. A ponzi scheme is a group of people pay into something and the group before them gets their money, then the next group pays into it, and the previous group gets their money. It’s fine if it’s like 2 trillion in, 2 trillion paid out. When it turns into 2 trillion paid in, 85 trillion paid out, yikes, what to do now?

  • Jack

    I enjoyed that interview, but I’m kind of disgusted by these comments. Why attack Chris Matthews like this? He’s got a different point of view, that doesn’t mean we gotta start name-calling.

    Also, Matthews wasn’t the first person to talk about “Social Good”.

    Thomas Paine, after first proposing a plan for minimum income, states a social security plan, “The sum of Ten Pounds per annum, during life, to every person now living of the age of fifty years, and to all others as they shall arrive at that age.” He goes on to write, “But it is justice and not charity, that is the principle of the plan. In all great cases it is necessary to have a principle more universally active than charity; and with respect to justice, it ought not to be left to the choice of detached individiuals, whether they will do justice or not.”

    So we can honestly disagree with each other, but we shouldn’t act like Chris’ views and anyone else who believes in Social Security is just an ignorant nut. Read Paine’s short pamphlet ‘Agrarian Justice’, it will give you a different perspective of things. He explains why it’s not charity, but it’s justice.

    • Citizen

      We are not calling Chris M names, but he is calling the Tea Party names like hateful, bigoted, and extremists.

      Thomas Paine may have had a good idea back then, but FDR social security has become the biggest Ponzi Scheme imaginable. We’ve been paying a whopping 14.3% in of every dollar we’ve earned and its technically bankrupt.
      The National Debt Clock >> simply publishes our Debt, most is unfunded.

      Dr Paul and the TEA party are simply trying to draw national to the problem. They don’t need to be demonized by Chris M.

      History is chocked full of nations who have gone down this path of self destruction, we can not avoid the same if we refuse to make major changes soon. But sorry to say Chris M is on board with Big Gov Spending and thinks the government is the solution, we HERE believe that is flat WRONG!

      • It doesn’t do us any good to have the Government control every aspect of our lives. I want us to be America and I don’t want our country to be like Greece with chunks of government spending and more job losses.

        • Jack

          Respectfully, the debt did not start to rise until the 1980s. Over 40 years after we put into place social security. Why did it rise? Well after Reagan cut taxes for the wealthy he nearly quadrupled the national debt, in a matter of a few years turning America from the largest creditor nation in the industrialized world, to the largest debtor nation.

          It’s a fact that Social Security actually would have over a 2 Trillion dollar SURPLUS right now, if money wasnt being taken from that from to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy or the Bush wars. I think Ron Paul even meantions in this clip that he’s supportive of making sure we can’t touch that fund for things other than it’s meant for.

          I’m sorry you feel Matthews is being demonizing towards you and the Tea Party. I guess that explains the animosity towards him on this site.

          • Joan

            But, see, 2 trillion would have been in the Social Security fund, and the estimate is that it would cost 40 trillion to pay out what has been promised. That’s why it went under giving it out to only one generation. I remember seeing my rich relatives from the WWII generation live to be almost 100, knowing they paid zero into Medicare in their day, and knowing they paid one half of one percent of relatively low incomes in those days into SS. They got raises every year, many retired at 62 on a shoulder injury, a minor disability, or they never worked, got it because their spouse paid into it, and they drew it from 65-98 or ove 100 years of age. That’s how it went bankrupt. Many of them paid maybe 3,000 into it, and ended up getting 200,000 or more out of it, never mind they got hip replacements, knee replacements, major surgeries, all free to them for paying zero into Medicare. It’s a bad ponzi scheme, pay a few bucks in, collect for 25-35 years. I used to see all of it and think, “this won’t be here when we retire, at this rate, both of these programs are going to go bankrupt.” I used to think how one day the politicians would tell all of us Medicare is trillions in debt. There was no way around it. But, the politicians knew they had 75 million working baby boomers paying into it, and everytime they gave the WWII people a raise, they raised the tax on the baby boomers to pay for it. The politicians knew they had no intention of ever giving 75 million people those same benefits, they played it for all it was worth to get re-elected, now it’s someone else’s problem.

            I must say, I emailed Matthews recently and told him the Tea Party people are only after SS and Medicare, and he’s been talking about it ever since on air. They do read your emails.

          • 1111cb

            actually its population age shifts not politics causing the problem. Japan has the same issue. The Baby Bomer grew up- there are more people going onto SS and Medicare even if they do not need is and less people of working age to pay in. Plus more people are unemployed so its even fewer paying in and more retiring early. The government made a promise it could not keep- just like the guaranteed pensions. We need to be serious about this and figure the fairest way out – to pay out what we can to those elderly but we need to stop pretending it works or that anyone will get what they paid in. The Tea party says they want what is best for their kids? let them prove it.

  • Way to go Ron! You tell em who are and what you believe in. I wish I was as calm as you are when someone else argues at me. I agree Matthews is a little too partisan just like the Neo-cons on Foxwhole News.

  • Citizen

    Christ Matthew is a common Serial talk show Liberal who has never been able to carry an argument by reason or logic.

    Instead, he relies on S.I.N. by talking fast.
    1. S = “Switch” the subject to confuse and derail the topic
    2. I = “Ignore” facts and skip around to avoid dealing with the facts
    3 N = “Name” call and label the opposition with a slur and insult.

    Matthews talks fast and lose but Dr Paul was factual and concise, especially on the topic where Matthews attempts to argue the “Social Good” to defend government control. Superb response Dr Paul

  • Rylick

    Wow, you could see how differet their moral believes are. That’s the problem with interviews like that. They’ve got so different oppinions that it can only lead to a fight.

    Ron was pretty calmed down. I would have raged so hard about this liberal ideas of having the government intervent in my life.

  • Meredith

    Ron Paul is freakin’ awesome! 🙂

    Hope he runs in 2012!

  • Craig

    Paul is IMPERVIOUS to desperate attempts toward associating him with hypocrisy.

  • Eric in KC

    I have never had a “hero” in my life before Ron Paul. He is an amazing guy and one of my greatest hopes is that he will run again.

  • I love Ron Paul. He is finally starting to be heard. His ideas to clean up the FED and BIG GOV and tell people like Kennedy did, “ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” What we need to do for our country is take it back, clean house and regroup.

  • Ryan

    I’ve always been repelled by Chris Mathews; he’s both highly Partisan and highly Liberal. Eek!

    Ron Paul not only withstood his rhetoric and distortions but had some good comebacks too, and he also stayed calm and even humorous. That was Ron Paul at his best.

    Chris Mathews just doesn’t get it. He’s too Partisan and Liberal to understand someone with Principals and Common Sense.

    Mathews goes immediately to insults, starting the interview by saying, “You remind me of my hero growing up, Barry Goldwater, … then I grew up.” What an idiot. What an atrocious way to start an interview. Then Chris Mathews starts finger pointing at the “haters” within the Tea Party movement, as if they are the voice of the whole Tea Party movement. That’s the tea calling the kettle black coming from the guy who starts an interview with a personal insult.

    But Ron just took it all in stride and pointed out the fact that the haters are a small minority, “1%”, of the movement. This was Ron Paul at his best, and Mathews as the typical political bigot that he is.

    • AnthonyC

      Brilliant! This was Dr. Paul doing what he does best. Calmly and intelligently stating his libertarian beliefs in personal liberty, personal responsibility and sound money and fiscal policy.

      Dr. Paul calmly shut down Chris Matthews several times. When Matthews tried to assert that Social Security was necessary for the 65 years old who suddenly finds himself without any savings, Dr.Paul asks whether the frugal person who has been saving and sacrificing should be penalized. Instead he suggests that the first 65 year old (the one without a retirement fund) rely on his family, friends, churches and charities.

      Matthews also tries to school Paul on a little history, referring back to Hoover as someone who cut spending. Paul wasn’t having any of that and Matthews quickly changed subjects when he realized Dr. Paul is as well read in history as he is. Ha!

      I also loved it when Matthews tried to bait Dr. Paul with a gay marriage question and Dr. Paul stunned him by being consistently pro-personal freedom. To paraphrase, “I am conservative, I am married and have kids. But I have my own definition of marriage. I don’t have the right to force my definition of marriage on you.” Matthews was visibly surprised by this: a conservative who was consistent about personal liberty regarding both financial AND social issues. You could see that he had hoped to cause Dr. Paul to falter and was disappointed that he didn’t. As Dr. Paul said, “I apply the rules to social justice as I do to economic justice.” Yeah, something even Obama cannot say he does.

      Dr. Paul, thank you again. Ron Paul 2012!

      • Lindsey

        The problem with Matthews is that he didn’t listen to his daddy!!!!!! Go Ron!