Saturday, September 13, 2008

John McCain, Outraged

It's amazing the things John McCain finds "disgraceful." In a speech to the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers on September 12, Barack Obama contended

Because John McCain didn’t just oppose the requirement that the government buy American-made motorcycles, he called Buy American provisions "disgraceful."

Did the Arizona senator really refer to a provision geared to preserving American jobs "disgraceful?" explains

In this item, we’ll focus on whether McCain called a requirement for the federal government to buy American products "disgraceful."

Indeed he did.

McCain has repeatedly voted and spoken against requiring the government to buy American-made products. He argues that such a requirement hurts trade and doesn’t guarantee the lowest prices for taxpayers.

In a 1997 article in Defense Daily, McCain criticized the requirement as "the worst, most disgraceful aspect of the legislative process in Washington. I can not be more strong in my views without using four letter words. It’s crazy for us, because ball bearings are made in a certain state, to somehow prevent the United States Defense Department from purchasing ball bearings if they meet quality standards from our allies."

In 2005, he specifically mentioned motorcycles during Senate debate on a spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security.

"Lastly, I am also disappointed that the bill once again this year contains a department-wide 'buy America' requirement, and specific language directing the Secret Service to purchase American-made motorcycles. I firmly object to all 'buy America' restrictions, as they represent gross examples of protectionist trade policy."

Disgraceful. A strong word usually reserved for something an individual finds abhorrent.

Like Social Security. As you can see and hear in this youtube video, in July, 2008 John McCain responded to an inquiry at a town-hall meeting in Portsmouth, Ohio, by asserting

Americans have got to understand that we are paying present-day retirees with the taxes paid by young workers in America today. And that's a disgrace. It's an absolute disgrace, and it's got to be fixed.

That's the way Social Security works. Retirees are paid by present-day workers, some obviously young. The system currently turns a surplus and is robbed to pay for items in the general budget, given the passion of Repub presidents for running huge deficits. As any informed United States senator would know, the program is an intergenerational transfer necessitated by our concern as a society for the well-being of Americans as they age. And what do we have if Social Security is not funded by "paying present-day retirees with the taxes paid by young workers in America today?" Perhaps a welfare program, but certainly not Social Security.

John McCain on Social Security: "disgraceful." John McCain on saving American jobs: "disgraceful." And John McCain himself?

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