Simpson comes off as a total elitist S.O.B. during the interview, damn the voters. At one point, according to Bloomberg, he says:
...while voters would have some sense of the panel’s proposals before the November midterm elections, “we don’t dare put out a report before Election Day or it’ll be total cremation and we’ll have to move to the top of Mount Somewhere -- Erskine and I -- somewhere living up there like hermits.”
That's right, the S.O. B's are going to wait until after the mid-term elections to drop the real bombshells. Keep that in mind this November, if you haven't kicked the voting habit.
So how bad could the bombshells get? Real bad. Not only is a VAT in the air, but Simpson and Bowles seem to think that Social Security really is government money that should be paid out sparingly to the people. Get a load of this:
They said the panel would consider changes to the Social Security retirement system, including possibly raising the age when beneficiaries can begin receiving benefits.
“The thing was set up when the life expectancy was 57 -- that’s why they set the retirement at 65,” said Simpson. “Now the average life span is 80, 83 -- it can’t work.”
“If we’re going to get to the Promised Land, everything had got to be on the table or there won’t be money for Social Security,” Bowles said. “This debt is like a cancer.”
Taking Simpson's point to its logical current day extrapolation, Simpson is saying that Social Security wasn't meant to be paid out to all the people, only to the select long term survivors. It appears fine to him, that the retirement age was originally set 8 years ABOVE life expectancy. He states that life expectancy is now 80, 83. If he wants to set the Social Security age as he said it was originally set, 8 years above life expectancy, he's thinking of setting the retirement age for Social Security to between 88 and 91 years of age.