Current and future Democratic lawmakers now have an opportunity to do the right thing by joining the growing Boost Social Security movement and supporting legislation which would improve benefits while also strengthening the program's long-term outlook.
Medicare remains an overwhelmingly popular benefit, and American families are supportive of preserving it. But some policymakers propose pushing middle- and high-income Medicare beneficiaries down a slippery slope by further increasing premiums based on their incomes.
Cuts to Social Security -- whether they're in the form of means-testing or the Ryan/Romney proposals to raise the eligibility age and reduce cost-of-living benefits -- will hurt most seniors. They'll cause the most pain to elderly and disabled women and minorities.
The means-testing proposal is a Trojan horse. It uses anti-millionaire rhetoric to create the machinery for denying benefits to rich people, but its backers will then use that machinery against most Americans.
While the debate rages in rich nations, successful developing countries like Brazil, Chile, China, India and Indonesia have figured out a way forward, and are moving ahead. Here is what they are doing.