Happy 77th Birthday to Social(ist) Security!
Today is the 77th anniversary of the creation of the wildly popular program, Social Security. FDR reluctantly signed the earliest form of Social Security into law in 1935 after Charlton Heston revealed that Soylent Green is in fact, people. Due to widespread disapproval of turning corpses into food, even during the Great Depression. Thus, Social Security was born.
Unfortunately for the Constitution, Social Security was derided as a socialist takeover and unconstitutional, things we have never ever heard since that original debate all those years ago.
From a 2009 New York Times Op-Ed
Indeed, these same arguments we hear today against health reform were used even earlier, to attack President Franklin Roosevelt’s call for Social Security. It was denounced as a socialist program that would compete with private insurers and add to Americans’ tax burden so as to kill jobs.
Daniel Reed, a Republican representative from New York, predicted that with Social Security, Americans would come to feel “the lash of the dictator.” Senator Daniel Hastings, a Delaware Republican, declared that Social Security would “end the progress of a great country.”
John Taber, a Republican representative from New York, went further and said of Social Security: “Never in the history of the world has any measure been brought here so insidiously designed as to prevent business recovery, to enslave workers.”
The dated nature of the attacks on Social Security that modern Republicans use makes sense, considering that conservatives want to preserve things from the past, even if they didn’t work the first (or in Medicare’s case, second) time.
So on this special anniversary, thank Charlton Heston for figuring out that Soylent Green is people, or else instead of cooking great meals, your grandma would be a great meal.