Saturday, September 10, 2011

Uncuriouser and uncuriouser

Since I wrote my thoughts about 9/11 in my non-political blog, Rainy Day Thoughts, which I will post tomorrow, I won't repeat them here. My mind is on other things anyway. Like Rick Perry as a serious Republican candidate for the presidency, and the things he said at the recent debate and before.

Perry is like Bush regarding being incurious about anything. Well, maybe they are about something but it's not something like the legal system. His lack of curiosity is why he does not feel guilt regarding sending so many people to their death in Texas. Yes, I know it was the jury system that did it but Perry didn't bother to look at any of it to say he slept great at night even knowing some innocent people might die.

Having just served on a jury, I'd like to let Perry know a little about how that system works; but he probably doesn't read anything that doesn't reinforce what he believes already. Juries give a verdict based on the evidence they are given-- nothing less and nothing more. That evidence is as good as the police and investigators give them and the District Attorney wants to use. When the police don't bother or have time to pursue all possible evidence, it doesn't get entered even by the DA. If the DA wants to withhold some, theoretically they are not supposed to do that, who finds out? Sometimes years later it comes out which can be too late when it's a death penalty.

In the jury on which I served, we wished we had some pieces of information that were never given to us and maybe never gathered. We had to make the verdict without it. Can you imagine doing that when someone's life is at stake? What Perry said is he won't bother to look at it either because he doesn't need to. He is a last resort for justice and showed himself to be clueless and curious-less. This is Bush and more. Does Texas encourage that attitude or just reward it? And what was with that Republican audience cheering that people were executed? Don't they get it that the death penalty is a failure of a culture, not a success!

The other thing Perry went clueless about was Social Security. He called it a Ponzi scheme which pretty well means he doesn't understand how it works either.  Social Security is an insurance system for old age. It is supported by premiums and we know when we are paying it that we are paying for current elders with the expectation someday somebody else will be paying for us. The surplus went into a fund until very recently. The checks that are mailed out won't be covering cruises.

Nobody is forced to draw money from SS. The money we have paid in will not determine how much we get out. If we live to be very old, we might get back more than we paid in but we could also die prematurely and get out much less.

All insurance is like this. We pay in premiums to get coverage in case we need it. We aren't looking to get rich. We are looking to have our costs covered in case we get sick. If Social Security is a Ponzi scheme than so is life, health, auto, and home insurance. If too many claims go against any of these, more than covers the premiums that went in, they can go bankrupt. The federal government would have to go bankrupt before SS would be endangered and then it would mean our whole system of government and the military would likewise collapse.

Repeating, although it's not complicated for people who are interested in exploring what it is, the cost for current retirees is paid for out of current premiums or was until the dollar amount began to be less coming in than going out. That has not been helped this year and probably next where the SS premium was reduced for workers. This was done to help the economy but it hurries the day when the reserve fund will run out. That reserve fund, of course, exists as much as US Treasury bonds do. We put money in there and count on that it will be there when we cash them in. It would take the failure of this country to cause our bond to not be worth a certain number of dollars at maturity. For now it's the responsible will of the people to make it be there.

Social Security premiums could cover the future retirees if they upped the dollar amount that workers have to continue to pay it on. Not complicated at all. Up the income on which people pay and the reserve fund grows as well as it covers current retirees.

One other thing with Perry's claim that it won't be there for today's kids. That's an out and out lie or he's just ignorant-- take your pick. Right now it would give them less percentage-wise than they should get but it would still be a monthly check. The only way it would not is if the country collapses totally. It won't amount to much though if it doesn't keep pace with the deflation of our dollars. They can leave it right where it is and if they don't allow for the dollar being worth less and less, it'll be a pittance, but it will be there unless someone like Perry gets it declared unconstitutional. I wonder how tea partiers will like it if that happens. Have they really through through what that would mean? I doubt it.

There was one actual conservative on that debate stage Wednesday night-- Jon Huntsman. He evidently doesn't stand a chance in the primaries for assorted reasons, like maybe that he is curious and does think; but as for the rest of them, sorry but righties are conservatives NOT. They are just, those who support them and those who run for office, incurious and willing to stay ignorant to suit their agenda.


Anonymous said...

how many time i do not do what i want to do but do what i dont want to do

Robert the Skeptic said...

The Republic playbook was successful in getting Bush elected twice, it certainly can work again for Perry.