Even our President - God bless him - is considering the so-called 'chained CPI' the Republicans offer, apparently to shut those obstreperous persons up and get something done. For seniors like me, it is an idea that leads to a bleak future, with benefits dwindling just when we need them most.
You see, this so-called 'chained CPI' isn't the only thing the Bureau of Labor Statistics has come up with recently. According to the Institute: America's Future, they also developed an Experimental Consumer Price Index for Americans 62 Years of Age and Older. Interestingly, it indicates that the cost of living for the elderly is rising faster than it is for the overall population.
This shouldn't really be a surprise, because everybody knows the elderly have more medical expenses. Right now, I am a luckier than average senior, because I take only one medication that is not generic. If I did not have Medicare Part D Supplemental coverage (for which I pay $40-some a month), I would have to pay about $145 for a 30 day supply. With my supplemental coverage, I pay around $40.
This Part D Supplement is not the only one I've had to buy, since Medicare covers only 80% of non-hospital costs. My Medicare Supplement costs nearly $145 a month - and that's not counting the Medicare premium taken out of my Social Security. These premiums cover eye examinations but not glasses and do not cover hearing aids or dental problems at all.
The chained CPI works on the assumption people can make substitutions when prices rise. This completely ignores the decreased mobility of seniors. I pray for my car every day; I don't think I could walk to the bus line in bad weather. Many seniors have greater mobility problems than I do. After a stroke and ovarian cancer, I'm just a little clumsy and tire easily.
Senior also have to maintain their homes, contending with plumbing bills and fallen trees just like the rest of the population. Social Security is virtually the only savings vehicle that provides inflation protection for life and helps us take these things in our stride.
Of course, we seniors can't afford to pay senators $60,000 or more to look after our interest. That's why we have to appeal to you not only for our own lives - but for future security for our children.