Wednesday, May 24th, 2017 6:45 PM

The PBS Newshour recently aired a piece that included some discussion of the Social Security Disability Insurance program.  This program is under attack by lawmakers who either are unaware of or are content to disregard the truth about the financial viability of the program and the “validity” of claims.  I posted the following on the Newshour website in response to the piece:

I wonder how many pages of medical records of Social Security Disability recipients Mr. Edwards has read, and what his medical training is to declare their disabilities “moderate?”

Social Security Disability recipients are currently able to, and do, work, but they are only permitted to earn very limited amounts or they risk losing benefits entirely. And one of the biggest losses they face is being kicked off Medicare, for which recipients are eligible after two years of Social Security eligibility.

This is one more argument in favor of a “Medicare for all” system. The national drain represented by health insurance costs is unsustainable. We already have a more efficient, more cost-effective system than private health insurance, and it has been up and running for decades. It is called Medicare. Don’t think you can kick people off of Social Security Disability, and therefore also Medicare, and have them magically reintegrate into the economy. Wages in the kinds of jobs that people long out of the workforce could possibly get are hopelessly low, and employment benefits–like health insurance–are nonexistent.

It’s easy to think that lots of others are “getting away with something.” But spend some time with these individuals, and get to know how their lives work–having serious disabilities looks pretty hard to me.