Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman has one word to describe the specifics offered by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to deal with the so-called fiscal cliff: “pathetic.” Among the austerity measures McConnell has offered are “raising the Medicare age, charging higher premiums to affluent Medicare recipients, and changing the price indexing of Social Security.”

Not only are these proposals not enough to balance the budget, Krugman writes, they could also have dire consequences for seniors.

Paul Krugman via The New York Times:

So, if we take all of McConnell’s ideas together, we get a bit more than $300 billion. Getting this would, by the way, impose substantial hardship – seniors would be forced into inferior private insurance, and there are good reasons to believe that the true inflation rate facing seniors is actually higher, not lower, than the CPI. Still, what we’re looking at overall is a saving equal to only about one-fifth of what Obama is proposing to raise by higher taxes.

And that’s it; has anyone heard even a peep from the GOP about what else they’d like to cut?

This is pathetic – and these people are definitely not serious.

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— Posted by Tracy Bloom.

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