Friday, February 04, 2005

The Pattern, Pt. II - The Shift

As the L.A. Times points out, the Bush walk-back began in the SOTU:

In a significant shift in his rationale for the accounts, Bush dropped his claim that they would help solve Social Security's fiscal problems — a link he sometimes made during last year's presidential campaign. Instead, he said the individual accounts were desirable because they would be "a better deal," providing workers what he said would be a higher rate of return and "greater security in retirement."

It continued today during the Nebraska leg of the Bamboozlepalooza tour:

And he explicitly acknowledged for the first time that the accounts are not a cure-all.

"I fully recognize a personal retirement account is not the only thing needed to make, to solve Social Security permanently," Bush said. "But it's a part of a solution."

Now, it's "part of a solution," and a "better deal" than the guaranteed benefit of Social Security.

But, as Paul Krugman points out, it's more like borrowing money from the mob to bet on a horse.

Push-back. Walk-back. It certainly fits The Pattern.