Bob Dole's Latest Embarrassment

How useful is it to have Bob Dole scolding us? Do we need this?
Need it or not, there he is on radio and TV as spokesman for the recently-launched National Retirement Planning Coalition. Dole -- a former Republican senator, a losing presidential candidate, and now a corporate pitchman for everything from Pepsi to Viagra -- is scolding us Americans for our failure to save enough money for retirement. "Our message is that you have to take more responsibility on yourself," grumped Bob.

How nice. Here's a guy who spent his entire professional life on the Congressional payroll and who now enjoys a fat retirement check, plus cadillac health-care coverage, courtesy of us taxpayers -- and he's telling us to take personal responsibility for our retirement?

Maybe Bob thinks we don't remember him in his congressional days. He backed the kind of lobbyist-written legislation that loosened the rules so that the Enrons and the WorldComs could loot the pensions of their employees. He favored the policies that shifted American workers into low-wage jobs with no health care, no job security, and no pensions -- creating an economy in which millions of Americans have to work two or three jobs just to make ends meet, much less set anything aside for the "golden years."

And, please, Bob, don't sit there wagging your tongue about how our Social Security benefits won't be enough to sustain us in old age, since you and your party have long been proponents of cutting those benefits, raising our retirement age to 70, and turning our Social Security trust funds over to the finaglers of Wall Street.

Indeed, who exactly is Dole fronting for? It turns out that the coalition pushing this "retirement readiness" campaign is made up of corporations that profit from managing retirement accounts.

If Ol' Bob really wants to help people save, he could start lobbying Bush and the Congress for policies that bring good jobs, good wages, good health care, and good pensions back to America. Otherwise, shut up, Bob.

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