Last Saturday, as a Fox News Alert swooshed across the screen, the big news was not the release of American prisoners in Iran (that was reserved for the small print in the news ticker) but Republican candidates sounding off about the national debt.
Host Gerri Willis opened the discussion by “asking,” If candidate Chris Christie was “right,” that “entitlement spending is a major problem that needs to be addressed.”
Of course, the nearly all-conservative panel thought so
Panelist Gary B. Smith suggested we’re all going to die if we don’t cut Social Security and Medicare.
SMITH: When they write the history of the United States, it won't be asteroids that did us in, climate change, Iran, Obama. It'll be entitlements. Two facts, Social Security Trust Fund goes bankrupt in 2034. Medicare Trust Fund is exhausted in 2030. That's all you really need to know. We're going to be paying it on the backs of taxes which are going to skyrocket, that’ll mark the end.
This is scare mongering of the worst sort. As CBS News explained (but nobody on this show did), Social Security is very unlikely to go bankrupt ever, “as long as democracy reigns.” Medicare is not only not bankrupt but the Affordable Care Act (ObamaCare) has substantially improved the program’s finances.
Instead of offering any challenge or pushback, host Gerri Willis gave Smith a thumbs up: "Don't know if I like your odds on Sixth Avenue, but I appreciate the honesty," she said.
Watch it below, from the January 16 Bulls & Bears.