How Bill Clinton Tried to Privatize Social Security in 1998

In this presentation, author Thomas Franks talks about his recent book Hey Liberal, Listen Up: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People. The focus of his latest book is the blue collar backlash that has resulted in the probable selection of fake populist Donald Trump as the 2016 Republican presidential candidate. Franks places the blame for this squarely on Democrats, owing to their abandonment of working people.

As Franks describes it, the pro-Wall Street swing of the Democratic Party is based on a very deliberate strategy by Bill Clinton and his supporters to “screw over” their traditional power base (ie African Americans and organized labor).  Clinton proudly justified this strategy with the observation, “they have nowhere else to go.”

Franks most shocking revelation is that Clinton took office in 1992 with a deliberate determination to repeal the New Deal. In 1997, he made a secret deal with Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich to ram a bill through Congress privatizing Social Security (which Clinton mentions in his 1998 State of the Union address). Thanks to the Monica Lewinsky scandal, this bill never happened.

 

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