Tuesday, March 15, 2005

A Great Pinch Hit

Since we're sorta on a baseball theme today, Jonathan Chait is pinch hitting this week for Josh Marshall at TPM, while Josh goes out and (gasp!) gets hitched. Chait pens a very, very nice piece this morning regarding GOP miscalculation on selling the dismantlement of Social Security.

Without giving away a lot of Chait's good stuff, here's the money shot:

...I find this pretty heartwarming. Who wouldn’t? I’ll tell you who: an economic libertarian who sees concepts like social insurance or collective interest as fundamentally alien. Which is to say, the sentiment that has driven privatization from the very beginning. As usual, this sentiment was voiced in its most naked way by GOP strategist, business lobbyist and Rove confidante Grover Norquist. Last year, speaking to a Mexican newspaper, Norquist chortled over the demise of the World War II generation...

Ok, now that I've piqued your interest by invoking the Norquist card, you have to click through to TPM to fill the remaining blanks.

What's most disconcerting is that Norquist's line of thinking is what all Americans are up against. So, even though Chait is starting to take victory laps on Social Security "reform", I think it's a bit premature to declare the initiative DOA.

To Jonathan and everyone else who's swinging the SS bat: keep it up. The endorsement of private accounts by any politician needs to be the albatross that said politician wears around their neck going into an election battle next year. And, riffing on Chait (and many others), if anyone asks you if Democrats have a better plan, answer in the affirmative.

It's called "Social Security".