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The $16 Trillion Question

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Posted

Good article.

But it doesn't blame either side, and it doesn't have anything about racism, secret cabals or teleportation, so I doubt it will get much interest here.

But this is a very serious problem. Assuming Obama wins re-election, its going to take some flexibility on the part of republicans, and some humility on the part of the administration to solve it.

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Posted

once we reach the point that we cannot pay the interest on our debt, we begin "printing" money to "stave off" the inevitable default on our fiscal obligations. those promises started 100 years ago were predicated on a growing populace that is productive at the same or better ratios. that type of promise is not sustainable and is why such systems are correctly referred to as ponzi schemes. my only hope is that we deal with this inevitability in my lifetime rather than my son's.

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Posted

Thats not true, Social Security is in vs. out based on the amount of people involved. We are tight now because of some bonehead congressional moves with the money that should have been left alone as well as a one time surge of baby boomers. A Ponzi scheme needs more and more people because more and more of the money goes to a few at the top of the scheme, which is definitely not how SS works.

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Posted

Thats not true, Social Security is in vs. out based on the amount of people involved. We are tight now because of some bonehead congressional moves with the money that should have been left alone as well as a one time surge of baby boomers. A Ponzi scheme needs more and more people because more and more of the money goes to a few at the top of the scheme, which is definitely not how SS works.

The people at the top are the ones that live long enough to actually get it.

In many ways it is worse than a Ponzi scheme because you'll never realize anything close to what you'd actually invested. The only ones that win are the politicians who decided to raid the fund like it was their own personal piggy bank and then decided to casually run inflation without appreciating our "investments" to make it break even in the event that we actually live to what is now likely to be a rising retirement age.

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Posted

Again, not true. Yes, if you stay healthy then die young, you don't get what someone else might get, which is kind of the point.

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Posted

I fail to see how that is the point. If the idea is so great, then why is it mandatory?

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Posted

Thats not true, Social Security is in vs. out based on the amount of people involved. We are tight now because of some bonehead congressional moves with the money that should have been left alone as well as a one time surge of baby boomers. A Ponzi scheme needs more and more people because more and more of the money goes to a few at the top of the scheme, which is definitely not how SS works.

also

The actual issues with the solvency of Social Security are extremely minor. The massive Social Security trust fund will allow the program to pay out benefits at the current level until 2038. At that point — absent modifications to the program — revenues will only be able to pay out 81 percent of promised benefits. That is to say, if the federal government did absolutely nothing over the next 27 years to shore up Social Security, a one time cut of 19 percent in 2038 would make the program solvent into the infinite horizon. This would be a sub-optimal way forward, but it underscores how solid Social Security is: even at 1.9 workers per retiree, the program could pay out at 81 percent of the current, inflation-adjusted rate without increasing revenue at all.

Contrary to the doomsday naysaying of the right wing, any number of small modifications could be made to completely close the forthcoming Social Security shortfall without dramatic one-time benefit cuts. According to the Congressional Budget Office, increasing the FICA payroll tax from 6.2 percent to 7.8 percent right now would completely close the coming gap. So a revenue-only solution which kept the current regressive payroll tax structure in place would only require levying a 1.6 percent tax. Ending the payroll tax cap which exempts every dollar made over $106,800 from payroll taxes would, by itself, close the shortfall.

http://mattbruenig.c...ity-insolvency/

i have to wonder if people who say things like "social security will soon be bankrupt" and "social security is a ponzi scheme" either

a ) haven't stepped outside of the right wing media echo chamber to realize that what fox news tells them isn't exactly true

b ) are repeating known falsehoods because they're not actually interested in the truth when it conflicts with their broken ideology

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Posted

if you think that what people will get in social security will be anything close to what they put in you cannot do math. moreover, if you think that what the payout today will be worth a damn, then you have blatently ignored inflation over the past century. if you are counting on those funds to sustain you, then you haven't paid attention to what is happening in europe at this time.

again, if the program were so great, why is it mandatory?

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Posted

also

http://mattbruenig.c...ity-insolvency/

i have to wonder if people who say things like "social security will soon be bankrupt" and "social security is a ponzi scheme" either

a ) haven't stepped outside of the right wing media echo chamber to realize that what fox news tells them isn't exactly true

b ) are repeating known falsehoods because they're not actually interested in the truth when it conflicts with their broken ideology

Matt Breunig isn't far left or anything.... Why did you even post his bullshit?

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Posted

Matt Breunig isn't far left or anything.... Why did you even post his bullshit?

um because he cites his sources

unless you think the CBO is in on the conspiracy too (of course because it doesn't align with what fox news tells you to think)

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Posted

seriously what is it with republicans and crying about well sourced articles that contradict their poorly sourced beliefs

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