USA Today has a must-read editorial supporting our position that Medicare should be allowed to negotiate with drug-makers for lower prescription drugs, just as the Veterans Affairs department currently does.
“Part D already costs about $80 billion a year and is on track to double by 2022 as benefits improve and Baby Boomers retire. For two reasons, a significant chunk of that money is wasted on overpayments to drug companies: When Part D began, millions of patients were shifted over from Medicaid, the state-federal program for low-income people that gets far lower drug prices than Medicare. Suddenly, the cost of providing drugs to the same people shot up. Congress barred Medicare from negotiating the way Medicaid and the Department of Veterans Affairs do with drug makers to get lower prices. Instead, lawmakers insisted the job be done by private insurance companies.”
The fact that Medicare is forbidden in the law that created Medicare Part D to negotiate lower prices is no accident ...
For the second year in a row, America’s massive health insurance industry lobby launched a Washington lobbying and advertising blitz hoping to scare seniors into believing they’ll lose their Medicare and politicians will lose their seats if the industry’s government overpayments aren’t protected. Mission accomplished. Rather than trimming rates, the Obama administration raised them:
“Private Medicare plans would see a 0.4 percent boost in their payment rates for 2015 under a final rate announcement made by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services officials Monday.
Officials with Medicare said the better-than-expected news for insurers came about in part as a result of healthier enrollees signed up for both Medicare Advantage and traditional fee-for-service plans, which means less of a cost burden on the health insurance system for the aged.” Congressional Quarterly
When CMS says “in part” what they aren’t mentioning is the part where the adm ...
By Max Richtman, NCPSSM President/CEO
Momentum continues to build inside and outside the halls of Congress to reverse course on the single-minded quest to cut Social Security benefits which has dominated our political discourse for years. Not surprisingly, commentators who bought into the billion dollar Wall Street campaign to convince America we can’t afford a strong Social Security system are distressed at this turn of events. Apocalyptic screeds with headlines like “Increasing Social Security Benefits Would Wreck Retirement Security” portray efforts to boost these earned benefits as partisan pandering. They conveniently ignore the fact that legislation increasing benefits would also extend Social Security’s long-term solvency by decades. The American people have never bought into the false choice that the only way to “save Social Security” is to slash benefits. Congress now has the opportunity to plot a course that addresses our looming retirement crisis whi ...
Attempts to reignite the intergenerational warfare campaign against Social Security -- led by the billion dollar austerity lobby -- seem to have hit a new high. Alternet highlights just a few of the recent instances:
A string of recent examples—rants  from MSNBC’s wealthy young commentator, a notorious elderly-attacking  House candidate, think tanks promoted  on NPR—generational warfare cheerleaders are proclaiming that America is heading toward an epic and immoral conflict as better-off seniors are robbing millennials of shrinking federal dollars because retirement programs cost too much. That’s simply false, as Social Security is solvent  through 2033, and spending on all mandatory programs as a percentage of GDP is close to  where it’s been since 1975, at 21 percent.
This line of attack isn’t in a political vacuum. It comes as some Democrats are reframing  the debate on Social Security and campaigning  for increased benefit ...
Three decades of stagnant middle-class incomes, disappearing pensions, limited ability to start and maintain personal savings, and the failure of the 401K experiment lay the foundation for a retirement crisis that could further threaten millions of older Americans and their families.
It’s time to Boost Social Security Now to preserve a secure retirement.
Find out more about our Boost Social Security Now campaign.
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