August 06, 2010

American Stories: Social Security Successes

The Alliance has received a great response to its American Stories Project, a compilation of anecdotes about how Social Security has impacted members’ lives, or the lives of a family member; neighbor or friend. The compilation is a lead-up to celebrations for Social Security’s 75th birthday next Saturday; to see events in your area, go to http://bit.ly/aTIDaP. Barbara Owen of Massachusetts, for example, told us: “I've paid into [Social Security] since I was 16 years old, and now, although I also have a small pension and (presently) a part-time job, it helps to keep a roof over my own head.” You can check out other inspiring responses here: http://bit.ly/bGvKY2 .  If you have a story to share, please submit it here: http://bit.ly/9JgsRm, or submit photos or videos by email to ARACommunications@retiredamericans.org.

A new study by the Center for Economic Policy and Research provides evidence of the potentially disastrous consequences of proposals to raise the retirement age to 69, with findings that millions of older Americans work in physically demanding occupations. The link to the press release, which links to the study, is here: http://bit.ly/brtBzh.

 

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July 30, 2010

Alliance Celebrates the 45th Birthday of Medicare


Today is the 45th birthday of Medicare, and Alliance members are holding dozens of events from New Hampshire to Arizona commemorating the occasion! From cake in Indianapolis to lobbying visits in Missouri, the events used a wide array of treats and techniques to drive home the point that Medicare has literally been a lifesaver for millions of seniors. To see the photos from the party of Judy Cato, Executive Vice President of the Alliance, and her crew in White Plains, Maryland on Wednesday, go to http://bit.ly/9VGoP2.  For video footage, go to http://bit.ly/9uy0RM.

 

Also on Wednesday, Alliance President Barbara J. Easterling wrote in the Huffington Post that “This year is an especially happy birthday for Medicare because the new health reform law makes it easier for seniors to afford to see a doctor, fill a prescription, and receive free preventive screenings and tests for serious diseases.”  To see the entire column, go to http://huff.to/dwQYfD.   A new ad featuring Andy Griffith, describing important improvements to Medicare made by the Affordable Care Act in advance of Medicare Open Enrollment, can be seen by visiting www.Medicare.gov.


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July 23, 2010

Alliance Members to Celebrate Medicare's 45th Birthday; Social Security Turns 75

 

On July 30th, the federal Medicare program turns forty-five, and Alliance members will be celebrating the occasion with events all across the country.  The events will serve to remind lawmakers and the general public how important and efficient the Medicare program has been in providing health coverage to retirees. At the same time, they will inform seniors on improvements to Medicare through the health care reform law.  For specific event information in your area, please e-mail araorganizing@retiredamericans.org.

 

The 75th anniversary of Social Security is also this year, on August 14.  The Alliance submitted testimony to the Subcommittee on Social Security of the House Ways and Means Committee for the record of a July 15 hearing, “Social Security at 75 Years: More Necessary Now Than Ever.”  In it, the Alliance addressed the incorrect words of deficit hawks who repeatedly claim that Social Security is to blame for the national debt, even though the program has not contributed to the federal deficit and maintains a $2.5 trillion surplus. To see the testimony, go to http://bit.ly/bi7qAJ.  To find a Social Security 75th birthday event near you, go to http://bit.ly/aTIDaP.

 

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July 16, 2010

Comments from Fiscal Commissioners, New Study Concern Seniors

On Sunday, the co-chairmen of President Barack Obama’s fiscal commission offered an ominous assessment of the nation’s economic future, calling current budgetary trends a “cancer” that will destroy the country from within unless checked by tough actions in Washington. The two leaders - Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles - singled out Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, saying that the three programs fully consume federal revenue. The commission looks to reduce the deficit primarily through spending cuts and additional revenue. Separately, a new study by the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) finds that if the Social Security benefit cuts and retirement age increases that have been widely suggested were adopted, they would have a substantially negative impact on low- and middle-income families. The report, “The Impact of Social Security Cuts on Retiree Income,” is available at http://bit.ly/dplKBb. “Social Security and Medicare have helped generations of seniors stay healthy and out of poverty,” Alliance Executive Director Edward F. Coyle argued. “Balancing the budget on the backs of seniors is absolutely not the solution.”

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July 09, 2010

Social Security: House Minority Leader Raises Renewed Privatization Fears

Social Security: House Minority Leader Raises Renewed Privatization Fears

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) stated this week that he is unsure whether the Republican Party will revive their 2005 movement to privatize Social Security. Recently, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), a member of the president’s Fiscal Commission on addressing the national debt, released a budget blueprint that included dramatic cuts to Medicare and Social Security before effectively privatizing both systems. Boehner has distanced himself from Ryan’s blueprint without mentioning where he stands, leaving many advocates for seniors uneasy about the fate of these programs should Republicans return to power. “Representatives Ryan and Boehner must not have seen what I saw when we put unbridled faith in the markets and Wall Street,” said Barbara J. Easterling, President of the Alliance. “We need to continue our work to protect Social Security.  It is a valuable lifeline which has kept millions of retirees out of poverty.”

Friday Alert July 9 2010 pdf

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July 02, 2010

Alliance Executive Director Testifies in Front of the Fiscal Commission

 

Alliance Executive Director Testifies in Front of the Fiscal Commission

On Wednesday, Alliance Executive Director Edward F. Coyle testified in front of the president’s Fiscal Commission, which is charged with addressing the nation’s national debt.  Coyle conveyed to the committee’s board members that retirees are deeply disturbed by the talk coming out of the Commission of cutting Social Security benefits and raising the retirement age.  House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) had said earlier this week that if the Republicans were to win control of the U.S. House, the party would try to raise the Social Security retirement age to 70 as part of a fiscal reform plan.  “John Boehner’s call to raise the Social Security retirement age to 70 is not only deeply hurtful and insensitive to workers, but also reflects a dangerously flawed misunderstanding of how Social Security is financed and operates,” Coyle told the Commission.  In response to critics who blame Social Security for America’s budget deficit, Coyle challenged them to find a federal program that functions as efficiently as Social Security.  Coyle proposed raising the payroll tax cap for the wealthiest Americans in order to further strengthen Social Security’s financial structure. The Fiscal Commission is set to meet three more times before it drafts its recommendation for Congress and the president; July 28 is the next meeting.  The House's FY 2011 Budget commits the House to vote on any Senate-passed recommendations of the bipartisan Fiscal Commission, and that net savings from any Commission recommendations will go to deficit reduction.

 

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June 25, 2010

Congress Delivers President Obama a 'Doc Fix' Bill

After realizing that combining the 'Doc Fix' provision with a jobs creation package was not politically feasible, House Democrats promptly passed a six-month solution to the ongoing cuts in Medicare reimbursement rates to physicians.

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June 18, 2010

Senior Issues take Center Stage in Nevada Senate Race

Nevada Alliance members rushed to Republican/tea party Senate candidate Sharron Angle's office last Friday to protest her position on privatizing Social Security.

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June 11, 2010

Obama Talks to Seniors, including the Illinois Alliance President, at Tele-Town Hall

The Alliance continues its involvement in the implementation process of the health care reform that President Obama signed into law in March.

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June 04, 2010

Alliance Members Get the Chance to Ask President Obama Questions

At a special event on Tuesday, June 8, Alliance members are invited to ask the President health care questions by telephone.

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