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Letter: Don't change inflation calculation

President Barack Obama gestures as he speaks to

President Barack Obama gestures as he speaks to reporters in the White House briefing room in Washington, following a meeting with congressional leaders regarding the automatic spending cuts. (March 1, 2013) Credit: AP

President Barack Obama's proposal to change how the Social Security cost-of-living increases are measured is a drive-by shooting of seniors, disabled veterans and everyone else living on a fixed income from Uncle Sam ["Obama budget plan: Change for Social Security," News, April 6].

He wants to replace the Consumer Price Index with a "chained CPI." It should be called a chain-saw CPI, because it will shred the income of those who can least afford it.

The chained CPI is based on the idea of alternative purchases. For example, if meat prices soar, you buy chicken instead. But if your rent rises, do you move? If your medical costs increase, do you find a new doctor?

To lower the deficit, eliminate tax loopholes for the 1 percenters, as the president has recommended in his budget. The carried interest rate that enables private equity pirates and hedge fund hustlers to pay half of what they really owe should be discarded. Why should we pay for their Park Avenue apartments, Hamptons homes and expensive art collections?

Richard Reif, Flushing

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