The debate over fiscal austerity and entitlement programs has just entered a new stage. Yes, Alan Simpson has managed to defend cuts to Social Security by invoking a rather distorted image of 1990s-era youth culture.
In an appearance on Fox News, the co-chairman of President Obama's deficit commission criticized the elderly for complaining about potential cuts to their Social Security benefits:
If they care at all about their children or grandchildren, and sometimes I doubt that--I think, you know, grandchildren now don’t write a thank-you for the Christmas presents, they’re walking on their pants with the cap on backwards listening to the enema man and Snoopy Snoopy Poop Dogg, and they don’t like them!
As Politico, which first posted the Fox News clip, points out, the former Republican senator of Wyoming previously landed in hot water when he compared Social Security to a "milk cow with 310 million tits."
Twitter users have moved in swiftly to parse Simpson's words.
Talking Points Memo's Brian Beutler, for example, steps in to translate: "Snoopy Snoopy Poop Dogg is a rapster, and walking on your pants with the cap on backwards is a sign of ruditude."
Colleague Josh Marshall, meanwhile, crunches some dubious math: "Alan Simpson is only 78, which is weird since he was already in his seventies back during the Reagan administration."
At the newly created hashtag #shitalansimpsonsays, Matt Berman suggests that the adult underwear company Depend may have a new spokesman in Snoopy Snoopy Poop Dogg, while Joe Delaney thinks Simpson needs to get with the times: "if Alan Simpson had any idea what kids were really doing, his head would probably explode."
There's also some disagreement about who Simpson was referring to when he mentioned "enema man." Beutler thinks Simpson was referencing Method Man, but Ben Adler disagrees: "I'm almost certain it's Eminem. No way Alan Simpson has heard of Method Man."
And then some assessments are more sober. As Alex W. notes, "Alan Simpson's comments were amusing- esp. his words about Snoop Dog. Nevertheless, I agree that social security has to be made solvent."