Occupy Elgin, December 17th, 1:00 PM, Save Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security

Occupy Elgin will gather at the corner of Kimball Street and Grove Avenue in Elgin on Saturday, December 17th from 1 :00 PM till 2: 00 PM. Our message for the day will be a call to Save Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. Below is the text of the flyer we will distribute.
Save Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security!

House Speaker Paul Ryan plans to change Medicare drastically. His plan would charge seniors more money and provide less health coverage.

Ryan intends to replace traditional Medicare, an efficient program offering guaranteed treatment and featuring rock-bottom administrative costs, with a privatized program. Seniors would get a federal voucher to help them pay premiums to buy private health insurance. Ryan calls this system “premium support.”

But the monetary value of the vouchers would be limited, while the costs of private insurance would rise. So a larger share of healthcare costs would land on seniors’ shoulders. This plan would also funnel our tax money straight into the pockets of insurance companies. That’s the nature of voucher plans.

These changes would not affect current recipients, but would gradually be phased in and impact people who are now age 55 and younger.

Medicaid, the program that provides health coverage for the poor and people with disabilities would also be drastically changed with severe cuts to benefits.

If he succeeds in making these cuts Ryan would, almost certainly, take the next step and try to cut and/or privatize Social Security. These changes have been his goal since he first arrived in Congress, and they are central to his ideology.

Yes, the Medicare program is financially troubled, and Medicaid has been dreadfully underfunded for years. The solution is NOT a voucher system but the opposite.

We need a Single Payer Health Care System, otherwise known as Medicare for All. Google HR 676 for more information. Most industrialized democracies have such a program. Their citizens get excellent, sophisticated healthcare at lower costs.

Also, Social Security could be fully funded for the foreseeable future if Congress would simply eliminate the cap on the payroll tax. Then wealthy people would pay the tax on all their earnings. Right now, they only pay on earnings up to $118,500. If we eliminated that basic unfairness, social security would be financially sound.

Call the Congressional switchboard at 202-224-3121 to get connected to your member of Congress. Tell him or her to oppose any cuts, any voucher plans, or privatization of these precious programs.

Call House Speaker Ryan (202) 225-3031
and tell him to keep his hands off Medicare. Tell him to support a Single Payer Health Care System.