Plale's denial on Social Security is the 'flat-out lie' | Wis.Community

Plale's denial on Social Security is the 'flat-out lie'

"My" state senator, Jeff Plale, left me a voice mail this weekend saying some special interests were "flat out lying" about him and claiming he wanted to privatize Social Security.

"I've never tried to privatize Social Security and never would," Plale (pictured) declared on his recorded autocall to voters.  Besides, he said, it's a federal program, and he has worked for programs to help seniors at the state level, where he serves.

Uh, Senator Plale, in the Internet age it's not quite as easy to get away with that sort of flat-out lie -- the one you, not some special interests, are telling.

A Capital Times story: 

Thirty people showed up at a State Capitol press conference Friday called by Economic Security 2000 to discuss having citizens individually invest part of their Social Security account. The senior citizens said they wanted to show there was opposition to the concept. State Rep. Jeff Plale, D-South Milwaukee, the state spokesman for Economic Security 2000, charged that the Social Security issue ''has gotten bogged down in demagoguery.''

In an opinion column in the Wisconsin State Journal, Plale wrote:

Assembly Speaker Scott Jensen and I have agreed to co-chair the Wisconsin chapter of Economic Security 2000, the nation's first non-partisan, grassroots organization dedicated to saving and reforming Social Security.

In another State Journal column, he finally got to the specifics:

Let's allow all workers to set aside at least $ 1,000 annually intoindividually-owned IRA-type Social Security accounts with a portion of their Social Security contributions.

What is this organization, Economic Security 2000, that Plale and Jensen co-chaired? A National Journal article explains:

Democrat Sam Beard, a onetime aide to the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy who has spent nearly three decades as head of a Delaware-based nonprofit group called the National Development Council, is crusading for private retirement accounts through Economic Security 2000, a group he founded in 1995.

He and his small staff travel the country speaking to Rotary Clubs, editorial boards and civic groups in an effort to build a state- by-state grass-roots network of volunteer activists.

Their goal: replacing today's pay-as-you-go Social Security program with a funded pension system of individual accounts invested in the stock market. ''If there's no grass-roots pressure, we won't adjust Social Security until there's a crisis, and then it's too late,'' Beard said in an interview.

Those articles are from 1997 and 1998, but that doesn't make them "a flat-out lie." Plale said he NEVER wanted to privatize Social Security and never would. Never is a long, long time.

Their long-ago partnership on privatizing Social Security is not why Jensen, through the school choice organization he runs in Wisconsin, the American Federation for Children, is paying for a mail and phone smear campaign against Plale's oppponent, Chris Larson, in the Democratic primary.

Unfortunately, there are all sorts of reasons for conservatives and Republicans, corporations and special interests, to want to keep Plale in office. He's their kind of Democrat -- one who's always willing to play the game, the one people are calling Pay to Plale.



September 6, 2010 - 2:11pm