I guess PBS decided that "Fix the Debt" campaign's Steve Rattner wasn't getting quite enough air time, what with his near daily appearances on MSNBC's Morning Joe, because Charlie Rose and his producers gave him some unfettered air time Monday evening.
Rose asks why President Obama should care about the "Democratic wing of the Democratic party" thinks about his policies, and whether he's willing to go after our social safety nets. I'd love to know the last time Rose asked whether a Republican president should just ignore the base of his party and suggested that what they think doesn't matter all that much. To his credit, Rattner did admit that President Obama has good reason to pay attention to those that just reelected him, and that they should not be ignored.
He also briefly alluded to the conversation he had during the panel segment on This Week, where his fellow guest Steve Brill rightfully pointed out that lowering the Medicare age would actually save money, but rather than getting into the weeds on that discussion, Rattner only admitted that maybe raising the age might not be "such a good idea." Heaven forbid anyone might actually discuss the heart of Brill's arguments, because it runs counter to the Villager narrative that we must raise the Medicare eligibility age in order to control our health care costs.
Instead, the conversation turned to whether President Obama is entitled to change his mind on the issue or not and with Rattner again pushing for "significant changes to entitlements" as long as there "was a reasonable response from the Republicans on revenues." The idea that Republicans are ever going to come around on taxes seems pretty ridiculous, and as Karoli noted here on our health care costs, the problem is not with the cost to administer Medicare or with the consumers out there, it's with the providers Congress refuses to reign in.
Rose and Rattner were also extremely dismissive of Paul Krugman, who has written extensively about the fact that the debt and the deficit are not urgent issues now and not what we should be focusing on, with Rose calling him "a Nobel Prize winner, but also a minority opinion."