More fun with math…and the English language

This time, I’m not doing the math…the government is:

President Barack Obama and lawmakers are considering cutting Social Security and increasing revenue by changing the way the government measures inflation.

There is a “pretty widely held” consensus among economists that the bureau’s methodology exaggerates inflation because it doesn’t fully account for how individuals respond to rising prices, said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics.

It accounts for those who buy cheaper brands of wine or steak when those prices rise, though not for those who opt instead for beer or chicken. That means it overestimates inflation, which leads to cost-of-living increases for Social Security beneficiaries, veterans and federal retirees that are bigger than necessary to maintain their purchasing power.

in·fla·tion
[in-fley-shuhn]
–noun
1.  Economics . a persistent, substantial rise in the general level of prices related to an increase in the volume of money and resulting in the loss of value of currency ( opposed to deflation).

inflation. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved July 08, 2011, from Dictionary.com website: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/inflation

So…the very definition of inflation in economics is an increase in prices due to a drop in the value of the dollar.

But, according to the government hacks in this story, if the cost of steak increased, say, 5%, and the cost of hamburger increased by the same amount, but now more people buy hamburger instead of steak so their total grocery bill doesn’t increase equally, the value of the dollar didn’t decrease at all.

Exactly how stupid do they think we are?

Don’t answer that…rhetorical question.

For the record, I am a retired, 40% disabled vet.  I receive two government checks each month, one retirement check and one from the VA for my service-connected disabilities.  Although this is true, I am willing to face the fact that our country is in serious financial difficulty.  Were they just to come out and say “we can’t afford these cost of living raises any more and we need to cut them”, I wouldn’t like it, but I’d accept it as a necessary evil.

What torques me off is not the fact that they’re trying to reduce government expenses by cutting COLA increases, what chaps my hide is the mealy-mouthed, dishonest and flat out dishonorable twisting of the meaning of words to rationalize it.

One more point before I go…although I am rated at 40% disabled, I have been blessed by God with employment opportunities that fit within my physical limitations and enable me to remain a contributing member of society.   A cut in COLA increases would impact me, but not insurmountably.

This policy will also affect veterans who’ve suffered catastrophic injuries in the service of our country to the point that they simply cannot support themselves any more.  For them, the disability benefits that have been rendered to them in compensation for their sacrifices is all they have.   A slight decrease in their benefits may very well mean the difference between being able to pay the rent and keep the lights on, not just whether they can afford steak versus hamburger.

They voluntarily sacrificed their ability to support themselves, in support of us, this country and this government…and the government repays that debt by declaring “let them eat cake.”

Despicable.

2 thoughts on “More fun with math…and the English language

  1. I get 20% VA Service Connected Disability and Social Security has me 100% disabled and I CAN'T work. In fact it's all I can do to take care of myself! If it weren't for my wife's just above minimum wage job, we would be in REAL bad shape!

    Sad thing is, I WAS a well paid productive member of society just a few years ago. When I became fully disabled, we lost it ALL. EVERYTHING. Our savings are gone and we are now dependant on my Social Security Disability and VA Disability just to survive.

    God help us if Terri get's worse or either of us have ANY emergencies of any degree. I don't know what we will do should that happen.

  2. "When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less."
    "The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean so many different things."
    "The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master – – that's all."
    (Through the Looking Glass, Chapter 6)

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