Saturday, October 16, 2010

Marijuana & Social Security

Fun subjects, right? You bet.

First up, Eric Holder issued an announcement that the DoJ wouldn't back down on marijuana law enforcement even if California (a sovereign state, did I mention that?) legalized said drug. Holder seems to be conveniently forgetting, in his push to keep it illegal so the federal government can continue enforcing drug laws, that the federal government has pretty much failed at either containing drug use, drug proliferation, and violence related to drugs.

Of course, one of the most hilarious (or sickening) parts of this thing is that the Republican party is against it. A state can't pass a law like that! They'll imperil the ability of the federal government to enforce laws! While...uh....Arizona is doing the same thing. Yeah! .....Right.

In other news, the Social Security Administration is reporting that payments to beneficiaries are once again staying at the same place, instead of going up as they apparently should. I wonder why that could be? It couldn't be at all because costs are increasing in other parts of the government, and so there's less money to devote for Social Security? It couldn't be because the Social Security system is bankrupt?

Oh no, of course not. It's just the recession. Yeah.

So there's your depressing fix for today. ^.^

1 comment:

suntzusays said...

Technically payments to Social Security should not have gone up over the last two years. Assuming they indexed it to inflation, inflation's been almost zero anyway (although it's been higher if you're retired and have lots of medications, etc). The only reason it goes up is that it has a built-in COLA rather than inflation indexing. In practice, payments could have DECREASED last year rather than gone up as they actually did. The other two budgetary problems for it are certainly at issue, but because SS is budgeted differently in this magical part of the budget, it technically "doesn't matter" how much we spend on anything else. Except that we're supposedly allowed to use the surplus from it to fund other things (only there hasn't been a surplus the last two years)... It'd be nice if we treated it like an actual problem that needs solving though.

Also, in practice, if California does pass Prop 19, the ability of the federal government to actually halt legalisation will be almost zero anyway (saving action through the courts). Without police enforcing those laws on the ground, the drug war would be effectively over in California. There just aren't that many federal agents to go around and they've had trouble enough raiding legal (or quasi-legal) production and distribution for medical marijuana clinics across the country. Of course... they also weren't supposed to still be raiding those either, but this is America.