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hanleyclifford
03-03-2013, 11:41 AM
Amid all the rhetoric about who had a surplus and who had a deficit we should keep focused on the SS Trust Fund and looming crisis. I know, Keith tells us just a small tax adjustment can fix it. But when did the government last get something like this done? http://news.investors.com/020613-643479-social-security-kitty-is-drying-up-faster-cbo-forecast-finds.aspx?p=full

wardd
03-03-2013, 11:50 AM
it's been going to ruin the nation since 1936, ask the republican party

hanleyclifford
03-03-2013, 07:10 PM
The answer: in 1983, when Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neill worked in a bipartisan manner to increase Social Security taxes (and raise the retirement age by a year) so that the SS Trust Fund would increase in preparation for a demographic bump we call the 'baby boomers'.

Two guys at opposite ends of the political and ideological spectrum working together cooperatively...... whooda thunk it? :)

Unfortunately, their solution fell a bit short of the mark, but, as I've said before, SS is the EASIEST national problem to solve, if only we still had Reagan and O'Neill..... all it takes is small adjustments to the parameters of Social Security (contributions, benefits, etc) to make the program solvent in perpetuity.

In fact, one economist had what I think is a brilliant and simple idea (assuming his math is correct): you just raise the retirement age by just one month, each year, for the next 12 years..... and the problem is completely solved. So the question becomes, how do we find another Reagan and another "Dapper"?

Shang
03-03-2013, 07:42 PM
http://nhlabornews.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/What-was-I-thinking-meme.png

Gerarddm
03-03-2013, 10:14 PM
The answer: in 1983, when Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neill worked in a bipartisan manner to increase Social Security taxes (and raise the retirement age by a year) so that the SS Trust Fund would increase in preparation for a demographic bump we call the 'baby boomers'.


Yes, remember when 2013 was "the future"?

Keith Wilson
03-03-2013, 11:04 PM
But when did the government last get something like this done? When the Republican party did not control the House, and was at least somewhat interested in actually governing effectively, having not yet gone completely insane. Let us be perfectly clear: "the government" is not the problem, it's the Republicans in the House.

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 08:41 AM
All of these financial 'crises' we have had to deal with, since Obama was first elected, have been purely political, and purely manufactured.... And largely the fault of the influence of the Tea Party faction of the right wing, which has forced otherwise potentially sensible Republicans to fear for their political lives, via the threat of primary challenges from the far right..Exactly. This is a very succinct statement of the problem.

John Smith
03-04-2013, 10:39 AM
I fear our collective tunnel vision has surfaced again. Imagine if middle class wages had been going up over the last three decades in proportion to the higher income wages, the shape Social Security would be in today. Remember the payroll deduction is a percentage of the wage. If the wage is higher the contribution to Social Security is higher.

We are told people are living longer and the age to collect should be raised. I turn 68 this year, and the list of people I knew that I've outlived is sobering, to say the least.

For all of those who long for Reagan, I remind you he ushered in the concept that we can go deeper and deeper into debt and no one would ever have to pay the bill. It is, to my mind, impossible to long for Reagan and, at the same time, believe our debt is a problem. It's a farther stretch to think Social Security is responsible for our debt and/or that is is the solution.

This really is a question of where we put the burden: do we take from the lower incomes or do we close tax deductions for the toys of the wealthy? That may be an oversimplification, but if a debt needs to be paid, and one person pays more, someone else pays less.

Higher wages for the working class over the last 30 years would be generating considerably more in tax revenue, Social Security revenue, and Medicare/Medicaid revenue

ccmanuals
03-04-2013, 10:43 AM
Currently you only pay SS on income up to $113,700. I heard several economists say raise it to $150,000 and it solves the problem llike for the next 100 years.

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 10:59 AM
I fear our collective tunnel vision has surfaced again. Imagine if middle class wages had been going up over the last three decades in proportion to the higher income wages, the shape Social Security would be in today. Remember the payroll deduction is a percentage of the wage. If the wage is higher the contribution to Social Security is higher.

We are told people are living longer and the age to collect should be raised. I turn 68 this year, and the list of people I knew that I've outlived is sobering, to say the least.

For all of those who long for Reagan, I remind you he ushered in the concept that we can go deeper and deeper into debt and no one would ever have to pay the bill. It is, to my mind, impossible to long for Reagan and, at the same time, believe our debt is a problem. It's a farther stretch to think Social Security is responsible for our debt and/or that is is the solution.

This really is a question of where we put the burden: do we take from the lower incomes or do we close tax deductions for the toys of the wealthy? That may be an oversimplification, but if a debt needs to be paid, and one person pays more, someone else pays less.

Higher wages for the working class over the last 30 years would be generating considerably more in tax revenue, Social Security revenue, and Medicare/Medicaid revenue Loopholes for toys for the wealthy should be closed no matter what else is done in tax reform. The absurdity of a corporate yacht should be self evident. As for the tax burden: how the tax code will be reformed is going to be a function of whether the anti tax populist movement grows faster than the left wing free stuff constituency. In fact, more than tax codes may be riding on that outcome.

Concordia 33
03-04-2013, 11:46 AM
The answer: in 1983, when Ronald Reagan and Tip O'Neill worked in a bipartisan manner to increase Social Security taxes (and raise the retirement age by a year) so that the SS Trust Fund would increase in preparation for a demographic bump we call the 'baby boomers'.

Two guys at opposite ends of the political and ideological spectrum working together cooperatively...... whooda thunk it? :)

Unfortunately, their solution fell a bit short of the mark, but, as I've said before, SS is the EASIEST national problem to solve, if only we still had Reagan and O'Neill..... all it takes is small adjustments to the parameters of Social Security (contributions, benefits, etc) to make the program solvent in perpetuity.

In fact, one economist had what I think is a brilliant and simple idea (assuming his math is correct): you just raise the retirement age by just one month, each year, for the next 12 years..... and the problem is completely solved.


If that is an accurate appraisal then it is certainly an elegant solution and not much of a sacrifice at all. Do you have a link for this?

John of Phoenix
03-04-2013, 11:51 AM
Ronald Reagan must be spinning in his grave with disgust at what his political party has become.I'm sure Reagan never remotely imagined anything like what the Republican Party has become. Even Rove didn't envision the t party when he was spouting about his "permanent republican majority". Now he's trying to kill it before it takes his party to oblivion.

Concordia 33
03-04-2013, 12:05 PM
Unfortunately, I don't.... I heard it on an NPR interview, and don't remember who said it... which is why I provided the qualifier (when I said 'if his math is correct').

However, the other proposed fixes aren't particularly odious, either: raising or lifting the cap on contributions, changing the cost of living index slightly, a small change in retirement ages... it wouldn't take much to simply end the Social Security argument for once and for all..... a little bitof each of them...

....but it would require the spirit of Reagan and O'Neill to accomplish.

Translation: it won't happen. No Republican who wants to hold onto his seat in the next election would even remotely consider it, for fear of a Tea Party candidate attack from the right.


Yes I agree that there is too much partisanship for both sides to actually come together and solve a problem.

Concordia 33
03-04-2013, 12:21 PM
The problem is NOT symmetrical.

On that we part company. I do not believe that the Democrats want solutions any more than the Republicans. Both sides want to win with with very little regard for what is actually best.

Liberals are not the well intentioned do-gooders that think they are, any more that the conservatives wish to push grandma off a cliff.

Even Malcom X understood this.....


The white liberal differs from the white conservative only in one way: the liberal is more deceitful than the conservative. The liberal is more hypocritical than the conservative.

Both want power, but the white liberal is the one who has perfected the art of posing as the Negro’s friend and benefactor; and by winning the friendship, allegiance, and support of the Negro, the white liberal is able to use the Negro as a pawn or tool in this political “football game” that is constantly raging between the white liberals and white conservatives.

Politically the American Negro is nothing but a football and the white liberals control this mentally dead ball through tricks of tokenism: false promises of integration and civil rights. In this profitable game of deceiving and exploiting the politics of the American Negro, those white liberals have the willing cooperation of the Negro civil rights leaders. These “leaders” sell out our people for just a few crumbs of token recognition and token gains. These “leaders” are satisfied with token victories and token progress because they themselves are nothing but token leaders….


The white liberals hate The Honorable Elijah Muhammad because they know their present position in the power structure stems form their ability to deceive and to exploit the Negro, politically as well as economically.

ccmanuals
03-04-2013, 12:25 PM
On that we part company. I do not believe that the Democrats want solutions any more than the Republicans. Both sides want to with with very little regard for what is actually best.

Liberals are not the well interdictioned do-gooders that think they are any more that the consrvatives wish to push grandma off a cliff.

Even Malcom X understood this.....


Are you talking about their personal feelings or the policies they promote?

Durnik
03-04-2013, 12:45 PM
Currently you only pay SS on income up to $113,700. I heard several economists say raise it to $150,000 and it solves the problem llike for the next 100 years.

Or, remove the cap & maybe fund single payer..




The problem is NOT symmetrical.

Well - it might be - the conservatives just have a bigger half.. ;-)



Seriously, raising the retirement age is so obviously a problem I'm surprised any even mention it. First, only the lower paid segments of the working class will rely on SS. Let's look at some possibilities..

A) the people who most destroy their bodies for society will be required to work for more years with an already destroyed body while the Mitt Romneys (to use an example) not only never work, but effectively 'retire' whenever they want & vacation or travel to their hearts content.. living on the work of others is soo nice a 'job'.. if you can get it.

B) there will be less 'jobs' available for new, younger & enthusiastic workers coming into the work force.. Since jobs are created by the availability of liquid capital to purchase end products.. & our 'winner take all' approach to money means there is less & less available.. well, it don't take a rocket scientist (or an economist..)..

C) (keep in mind the conservatives will see this as a plus) Working retirees will have less of life in front of them after they retire.. meaning they'll be sick/injured, losing their pensions/savings to big business.. er, pharmaceuticals.., er Health Care, I meant Health Care! ;-) & then die and 'get out of the way' as they are no longer 'productive'..


So, if life is all about the slaves.. er, working class working & dying to enable a few wealthy to live like kings, then go for it - WTH, raise the retirement age to 'he died yesterday'.

If, OTOH, life is meant for ALL (anybody remember any references to this in the DOI/Constitution?) to enjoy, then let's stop the stupid 'winner take all' game & put some sanity into governance.

tho I've long since quit 'holding my breath'..

peace
bobby

ccmanuals
03-04-2013, 01:01 PM
I am personnally an advocate for removing the CAP completely and increasing benefits.

Dan McCosh
03-04-2013, 01:05 PM
I am personnally an advocate for removing the CAP completely and increasing benefits. Can you imagine the shock Mitt Romney would have when he got a bill for his payroll tax that was higher than his income tax?

wardd
03-04-2013, 01:33 PM
Can you imagine the shock Mitt Romney would have when he got a bill for his payroll tax that was higher than his income tax?

i bet most everything mitt pays for is more than his income tax

Durnik
03-04-2013, 01:39 PM
Can you imagine the shock Mitt Romney would have..

Works for me. Those who work to support his excesses 'get a shock' every time they look at their diminishing pay-stub.. & increasing bills.

enjoy
bobby

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 01:56 PM
Even Malcom X understood this.....My, Concordia quotes Malcolm X in his Nation of Islam period as an authority on "white liberals"! Who next, Eldridge Cleaver? Mao Zedong? Lenin?


Can you imagine the shock Mitt Romney would have when he got a bill for his payroll tax that was higher than his income tax?Me Romney's income is almost entirely from investments, on which he pays no Social Security tax at all. Zero.

Social Security can be made solvent for the foreseeable future by modest tax increases, raising the income cap, or some combination. This would be a good idea. I do NOT favor raising the retirement age; that just screws over the poor one more time.

Waddie
03-04-2013, 02:15 PM
SS has no money. It now pays out more than it takes in. But SS defenders insist it ain't broke, and technically they're correct. SS calls upon the general fund to provide for the shortfall. However, the general fund is running a big deficit, so it will borrow from the Fed to pay SS.

But the actual SS shortfall is only a drop in the bucket. 10,000 baby boomers retiring every day, for the next 20 years. Around 80 million. Some don't even have SS. About half have nothing but their meager SS check to retire on. That half will depend on increased safety net spending, above and beyond SS. A lot of it. And most retirees will expect some level of public services. That means a huge cost to the working taxpayer ( and labor participation rates keep falling, btw.).

So we have a tsunami of a financial problem headed our way. Couple that with so many younger workers making far less, paying less taxes as well, and often needing public assistance themselves, and it's "Houston, we have a problem".

regards,
Waddie

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 02:22 PM
So we have a tsunami of a financial problem headed our way.This is completely wrong. We do have a real problem, but it's not Social Security That can be brought into balance by relatively modest tax increases, benefit cuts, or both. The problem with Social Security is not in the mathematics of the real world, but in the minds of the House Republicans. Our real problem over the the long term is medical costs and Medicare/Medicaid.

wardd
03-04-2013, 02:24 PM
SS has no money. It now pays out more than it takes in. But SS defenders insist it ain't broke, and technically they're correct. SS calls upon the general fund to provide for the shortfall. However, the general fund is running a big deficit, so it will borrow from the Fed to pay SS.

But the actual SS shortfall is only a drop in the bucket. 10,000 baby boomers retiring every day, for the next 20 years. Around 80 million. Some don't even have SS. About half have nothing but their meager SS check to retire on. That half will depend on increased safety net spending, above and beyond SS. A lot of it. And most retirees will expect some level of public services. That means a huge cost to the working taxpayer ( and labor participation rates keep falling, btw.).

So we have a tsunami of a financial problem headed our way. Couple that with so many younger workers making far less, paying less taxes as well, and often needing public assistance themselves, and it's "Houston, we have a problem".

regards,
Waddie

time we tried something other than the old failed policies the republicans are so attached to

Waddie
03-04-2013, 02:33 PM
This is completely wrong. We do have a real problem, but it's not Social Security That can be brought into balance by relatively modest tax increases, benefit cuts, or both. The problem with Social Security is not in the mathematics of the real world, but in the minds of the House Republicans. Our real problem over the the long term is medical costs and Medicare/Medicaid.

You didn't even read the post, yet you parrot the same old line. SS CAN be easily fixed - it's not the big problem. And Medicare isn't the big problem, though it's not so easily fixed. The BIG problem is that we will have 40 million retirees in poverty, and needing someone to buy them housing, food, transportation, communication, long term nursing home care, eye glasses, dentures, and pay their Medicare premiums and copays. In short, just about everything. Add to that a very low labor participation rate among younger workers, who will themselves need that safety net of services, the trend to lower paying jobs which means less revenue overall, and more and more people on disability, and yeah, I think it qualifies as a financial Tsunami. You really think this all can be "easily fixed"?

http://money.msn.com/now/post.aspx?post=8c4e2d12-debd-4e0d-b6a5-bf2505b1543e

regards,
Waddie

Waddie
03-04-2013, 02:34 PM
time we tried something other than the old failed policies the republicans are so attached to

like what?

regards,
Waddie

wardd
03-04-2013, 02:46 PM
how many ss tsunamis have we had since 1936

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 03:04 PM
Excuse me? If you want unwavering commitment to a strongly left-of-center cause, you don't want a liberal, you want a radical. That's what the terms mean.

First you criticize liberal polices from a conservative point of view. Then you criticize liberals for being insufficiently committed to the policies you oppose. Sorry, but you can't have it both ways. One or the other, please.


If you are willing to get paid to shoot people on camera . . . Eh? I hate to break it to you but they don't really shoot people in movies, it's all make-believe. An actor plays characters; that's their job; impersonation. Some of the characters are good, some bad, some do dreadful things. The idea that playing a character and pretending to shoot people somehow precludes an actor from honestly supporting controls on firearms in real life is total flaming nonsense.

__________________________________

Well, lookathat; it's gone!

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 08:19 PM
Excuse me? If you want unwavering commitment to a strongly left-of-center cause, you don't want a liberal, you want a radical. That's what the terms mean.

First you criticize liberal polices from a conservative point of view. Then you criticize liberals for being insufficiently committed to the policies you oppose. Sorry, but you can't have it both ways. One or the other, please.

Eh? I hate to break it to you but they don't really shoot people in movies, it's all make-believe. An actor plays characters; that's their job; impersonation. Some of the characters are good, some bad, some do dreadful things. The idea that playing a character and pretending to shoot people somehow precludes an actor from honestly supporting controls on firearms in real life is total flaming nonsense.

__________________________________

Well, lookathat; it's gone!Acting violence does not preclude opposition to firearms controls in real life but it sure reveals hypocrisy.

Shang
03-04-2013, 08:37 PM
...We are told people are living longer and the age to collect should be raised. I turn 68 this year, and the list of people I knew that I've outlived is sobering, to say the least...


Raising the age to collect will not be of much comfort to my own physician, who has been diagnosed with a fatal illness. He is ten years younger than I am.

Tom Montgomery
03-04-2013, 08:41 PM
This is completely wrong. We do have a real problem, but it's not Social Security That can be brought into balance by relatively modest tax increases, benefit cuts, or both. The problem with Social Security is not in the mathematics of the real world, but in the minds of the House Republicans. Our real problem over the the long term is medical costs and Medicare/Medicaid.Correct.

The answer to the second problem is a single payer health care system along the lines of the most successful models.

The problem in 2013 is that the Democrats do not have a good faith partner on the other side of the aisle. The ideologues in control of the 21st Century GOP have no interest in compromise. They intend to gut all Federal social welfare programs (Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, and "Obama care") in the name of taming the Federal budget deficit. This is all Socialism and should be abolished.

The Defense budget is, of course, sacrosanct.

Peter Malcolm Jardine
03-04-2013, 08:53 PM
So the question becomes, how do we find another Reagan and another "Dapper"?


This issue, if you didn't know, is part of a larger revenue/deficit/economic growth picture. The reality of the article is, at this point, fantasy.

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 08:57 PM
This issue, if you didn't know, is part of a larger revenue/deficit/economic growth picture. The reality of the article is, at this point, fantasy. You're right, Pierre; in fact my question was rhetorical fantasy. We cannot afford another Reagan, nor a Dapper for that matter.

Shang
03-04-2013, 08:59 PM
not much comfort to my wife either, who has Parkinson's. At age 60, the question is will she make it to SS and Medicare before the effects of this progressive chronic disease renders her unemployed, and We lose her health benefits (although ObamaCare is a great relief to the both of us... It won't be cheap, though, when we have to pick up the entire tab ourselves)

My lady and I are in a similar situation. She is ill, but isn't quite ready for Medicare, and my retirement and SS picture suggest that I will probably die in harness to cover the costs of health insurance.

Do the Republicans appreciate why we spit on the ground where they walk?

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 09:53 PM
Acting violence does not preclude opposition to firearms controls in real life but it sure reveals hypocrisy. Complete nonsense. So someone who plays the role of Macbeth or Hamlet would be a hypocrite if he supported laws against murder? Someone who played Othello would be a hypocrite if he supported laws against domestic violence? Actors pretend to do things all the time on stage and in film they oppose doing in real life. That's their job.

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 10:01 PM
Complete nonsense. So someone who plays the role of Macbeth or Hamlet would be a hypocrite if he supported laws against murder? Someone who played Othello would be a hypocrite if he supported laws against domestic violence? Actors pretend to do things all the time on stage and in film they oppose doing in real life. That's their job. Elegant argument, Keith, but totally lost on the young who are influenced by what they see acted out. We reap (sometimes) what others sow.

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 10:09 PM
Actors by definition play characters; they pretend to be people they're not. Some of the characters are awful people and do despicable things; that's one element of drama. Claiming that it's somehow hypocritical for an actor to oppose in real life the things his or her character does on stage or film makes absolutely no sense.

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 10:12 PM
Actors by definition play characters; they pretend to be people they're not. Some of the characters are awful people and do despicable things; that's one element of drama. Claiming that it's somehow hypocritical for an actor to oppose in real life the things his or her character does on stage or film makes absolutely no sense. The problem arises when said actor attempts to preach the contrary, especially to the young who in youth and (relative) innocence see right thru us.

pcford
03-04-2013, 10:19 PM
not much comfort to my wife either, who has Parkinson's. At age 60, the question is will she make it to SS and Medicare before the effects of this progressive chronic disease renders her unemployed, and We lose her health benefits (although ObamaCare is a great relief to the both of us... It won't be cheap, though, when we have to pick up the entire tab ourselves)

Oh boy. Did not know that Norman...best wishes to you both.

Keith Wilson
03-04-2013, 10:24 PM
The problem arises when said actor attempts to preach the contrary, especially to the young who in youth and (relative) innocence see right thru us.Not at all. It might be a bit odd if an actor who made a whole career out of portraying violence, say Chuck Norris, were to go around preaching pacifism, but OTOH it might be surprisingly effective. One way or another, portraying villains on stage or in film certainly does not make one a hypocrite for opposing villainy in real life; the idea is nonsensical.

Those who are young and innocent, rather than "seeing right through us" tend to be more easily taken in, and have a harder time separating the fantasy of the screen from the real world.

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 10:28 PM
Not at all. It might be a bit odd if an actor who made a whole career out of portraying violence, say Chuck Norris, were to go around preaching pacifism, but OTOH it might be surprisingly effective. One way or another, portraying villains on stage or in film certainly does not make one a hypocrite for opposing villainy in real life; the idea is nonsensical.

Those who are young and innocent, rather than "seeing right through us" tend to be more easily taken in, and have a harder time separating the fantasy of the screen from the real world. In my experience it is the educated who have the greater difficulty separating fantasy from reality. The Bilge is exemplary in this regard.

ccmanuals
03-04-2013, 10:50 PM
In my experience it is the educated who have the greater difficulty separating fantasy from reality. The Bilge is exemplary in this regard.

sounds like introspective analysis

hanleyclifford
03-04-2013, 10:57 PM
sounds like introspective analysis The best kind.

Waddie
03-05-2013, 12:31 AM
Two points:

1) We, and countless experts, are saying the Social Security can be easily fixed. None of us have made the same claim about Medicare, so you're polluting the thought stream here.

2) Social Security does NOT resolve the problem of poverty... and was never meant to. When we say that Social Security can be easily fixed, we're referring to fixing the demographic problem by minor changes which preserve the system and pay the promised benefits... this does NOT mean that we won't have 40 million retirees living in poverty, since that many, or more, might have nothing saved or reserved for retirement other than Social Security. Social Security was NEVER meant to combat poverty.

#1. They are interconnected, and the entire problem of caring for the baby boomers in retirement is interconnected. SS isn't in a vacuum.

#2. See #1.

BTW; the fix for SS isn't so easy. The SS tax was pumped into the general fund and has been spent long ago. So it may look like SS has a large cash balance on the books, but those books are an accounting fiction. In reality, every penny it sends out beyond what it takes in comes from the general fund. How will the general fund cover this increasing deficit? Increase revenues or borrow, or both. It's future obligations are huge, and will have to be met from the general fund, if they are met at all.

From 2011, but still relevant;


Social Security added $1.4 trillion in obligations, partly reflecting longer life expectancies. Federal and military retirement programs added more to the financial hole, too.

Corporations would be required to count these new liabilities when they are taken on and report a big loss to shareholders. Unlike businesses, however, Congress postpones recording spending commitments until it writes a check.
The $61.6 trillion in unfunded obligations amounts to $528,000 per household. That's more than five times what Americans have borrowed for everything else mortgages, car loans and other debt. It reflects the challenge as the number of retirees soars over the next 20 years and seniors try to collect on those spending promises.



http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/washington/2011-06-06-us-owes-62-trillion-in-debt_n.htm

regards,
Waddie

johnw
03-05-2013, 12:45 AM
#1. They are interconnected, and the entire problem of caring for the baby boomers in retirement is interconnected. SS isn't in a vacuum.

#2. See #1.

BTW; the fix for SS isn't so easy. The SS tax was pumped into the general fund and has been spent long ago. So it may look like SS has a large cash balance on the books, but those books are an accounting fiction. In reality, every penny it sends out beyond what it takes in comes from the general fund. How will the general fund cover this increasing deficit? Increase revenues or borrow, or both. It's future obligations are huge, and will have to be met from the general fund, if they are met at all.

From 2011, but still relevant;



http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/washington/2011-06-06-us-owes-62-trillion-in-debt_n.htm

regards,
Waddie

Either Ronald Reagan was an honest man, and there is a trust fund we've been paying into for all these years, or he was a dishonest man who cut taxes on the rich and raised taxes on Social Security, which are regressive, and it was all a scam.

If there is no trust fund and all the money was spent as the general fund, it's not a Social Security funding problem, it's a general fund problem, and since SS taxes have been putting in more than has been spent for most of my lifetime, I don't see why Social Security taxes should be used to solve a general fund question.

But then, I prefer to believe that Reagan was an honest man, and there is a trust fund, in which case, we have enough savings to deal with it for some time to come, but since the people who live longest on average tend to be in the higher income brackets, the logical way to fix the problem is to raise or remove the cap on income taxed for Social Security.

Raising the retirement age again is a silly thing to propose. Why should stonemasons work longer so corporate lawyers can collect benefits for longer?

Waddie
03-05-2013, 01:11 AM
Reagan was a politician, by definition dishonest. But so was Lyndon Johnson, who first incorporated SS into the general fund in order to hide the huge (for the 60's) deficits run up fighting a war in Vietnam and a War on Poverty at home. (We lost both, btw). There is no "SS Trust Fund". It is an accounting fiction. It is part of the general fund, and all benefits will be paid out of that fund. We do have a tax we call SS but it now fails to cover outlay. That will be made up out of the general fund. Either through increased revenues or borrowing.

If you remove the cap would you increase benefits to those affected? Isn't the benefit based on how much is individually put in?

regards,
Waddie

johnw
03-05-2013, 01:21 AM
Reagan was a politician, by definition dishonest. But so was Lyndon Johnson, who first incorporated SS into the general fund in order to hide the huge (for the 60's) deficits run up fighting a war in Vietnam and a War on Poverty at home. (We lost both, btw). There is no "SS Trust Fund". It is an accounting fiction. It is part of the general fund, and all benefits will be paid out of that fund. We do have a tax we call SS but it now fails to cover outlay. That will be made up out of the general fund. Either through increased revenues or borrowing.

If you remove the cap would you increase benefits to those affected? Isn't the benefit based on how much is individually put in?

regards,
Waddie

So,are you saying the deal between Tip and Ronald was a scam to lower taxes on the rich and hide the resulting deficit by increasing taxes on the working stiffs? If so, did you send out the alarm before the SS taxes stopped being more than the benefits, or were you part of the cover-up?

Durnik
03-05-2013, 01:23 AM
If .. the money was spent as the general fund, it's not a Social Security funding problem, it's a general fund problem..

Exactly - Meaning Congress can now get off its collective a$$ & replace the funds with tax raises on those with the money.. namely, all those who benefited from the SS funds inclusion in the General Fund. Liberals are ok with this. Conservatives, who claim there is a problem with the SSI Fund, are the ones who refuse to fix what they broke.

As Shang said -


Do the Republicans appreciate why we spit on the ground where they walk?



Why should stonemasons work longer so corporate lawyers can collect benefits for longer?

Well said.

peace
bobby

Durnik
03-05-2013, 01:28 AM
If you remove the cap would you increase benefits to those affected?

No. It's not a retirement account. It's a social security net for those in need. Funds should most come from those who have most - and are in least need.

The present basing of the benefit is a scam. The Mitt Romney's (as an example) of the country should not be able to draw SSI at any time. They have no need.

peace
bobby

johnw
03-05-2013, 02:03 AM
No. It's not a retirement account. It's a social security net for those in need. Funds should most come from those who have most - and are in least need.

The present basing of the benefit is a scam. The Mitt Romney's (as an example) of the country should not be able to draw SSI at any time. They have no need.

peace
bobby

Almost no one has a pension any more. Perhaps, in the interest of labor mobility, we should decide that pensions need to be part of the social net. I know that's a bit off-topic, right now it's just insurance in case your other retirement plans go awry.

Waddie
03-05-2013, 03:40 AM
No. It's not a retirement account. It's a social security net for those in need. Funds should most come from those who have most - and are in least need.

Then it's a welfare program. Make up your mind...

It wasn't Reagan that put SS into the general fund, it was your boy Johnson. Ironically, it was liberal New York Democrat Patrick Daniel Monyihan who fought against the idea.

regards,
Waddie

Keith Wilson
03-05-2013, 09:38 AM
So it may look like SS has a large cash balance on the books, but those books are an accounting fiction.God help us, another zombie idea that should have long since been laid to rest groans and lurches up into the light of day. http://forums.snapstream.com/vb/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif

http://pelfind.com/images/bl3/28926/4th.jpg

Keith Wilson
03-05-2013, 09:50 AM
Waddie does seem unusually determined to let no small ray of hope penetrate his despair.

Waddie
03-05-2013, 11:28 AM
Waddie does seem unusually determined to let no small ray of hope penetrate his despair.

I suffer no despair.. you are making an unwarranted assumption. But I do believe in realistically looking at our problems. If we can't handle a meager 5% cut in the budget we're screwed long term, as we're going to need those dollars later to feed the baby boomers. And we need to close the loop holes as Obama proposes. In short, do what the Republicans want, and what the Democrats want. It's not mutually exclusive. Do "all of the above'.

Treasuries must eventually be redeemed by the taxpayer. They are a form of IOU. There is no money in any SS "trust fund".

regards,
Waddie

Concordia 33
03-05-2013, 12:24 PM
It is seemingly impossible to combat this foolishness... and no amount of fact or logic can combat the loonies.

The one I especially like is the abuse of the term 'unfunded liability', which, correctly applied, refers to liabilities for which either no future funding, or too little future funding, can be expected. In reality, every single penny you or I expect to spend in the next several decades is an unfunded liability, since we haven't earned that money yet... but we DO expect to. The absurdity in the quote, about over a half a million dollars of unfunded liability for each household, presumes that not a single penny in tax revenues will be collected in the future!

The crazies have been applying the term to pretty much anything under the sun. Consider the congressional absurdity of forcing the post office to fund the 'future liabilities' of potential employees that haven't even been born yet! :)


What you say is correct (though I do not agree with calling them or anyone else here "crazies" or "zombies"), but if I understand it, much of the rhetoric behind this it the realization that the money to cover the trust is under the full faith and credit of the USA. What happens when the notes come due and Social Security needs to dip into the trust. Will the Government need to raise taxes to pay the money back? Will they have to slash spending elsewhere? I don't believe they have budgeted for it with the exception of accrued interest on the notes. If I understand it correctly, they aren't setting aside money to pay the trust back and when needed the money has to come from somewhere. Unfunded liability may not be an accurate term, but like all debts, they must eventually come to book. How is that supposed to work exactly without increasing revenues or cutting spending elsewhere as I am a little unclear on this? Seriously, I don't understand why I should rest easy on that one but I am open to having it explained to me.

Concordia 33
03-05-2013, 01:12 PM
You shouldn't 'rest easy' at all. There is no magic source of money; we have to pay for our benefits.

Right now, SS is paying benefits with current SS tax revenues, as well as actually saving some of it in the trust fund. We are well aware that the trust fund projections show that there will be a shortfall by 2037 or thereabouts, and if NOTHING is done, benefits will either have to be cut, OR the shortfall will have to be paid out of general revenues, OR some combination thereof.

So, what is the 'sensible' thing to do? Scream about SS 'going bust'? Or should we do exactly what Reagan and O'Neill did in 1983, and make the appropriate adjustments so that by 2037, there will be no shortfall?

This is a 'no-brainer', to me.... and numerous economists and students of the SS system have pointed out a number of ways in which the non-crisis can be averted. ALL of them will piss off one side or the other, but NONE of them are really all that big of a deal. Personally, I prefer a 'balanced' approach, which would be a combination of a little bit of each of the following: a reduction in the way COLA is calculated for benefit increases, an increase in the cap on contributions, a very small change in the retirement age, etc. We are NOT talking here about anything all that dramatic or life-changing; frankly, the annual increase in health care costs is a far bigger hit on most pocketbooks and represents a vastly greater threat. The changes to SS being advocated are NOT, comparison, all that big a deal.

As I mentioned previously (and I wish I could find a reference to it) one economist has said that if we did nothing else but raise the retirement age by just one month, each year, for the next 12 years,SS would be solvent into perpetuity.

So, why is it so hard? Because Democrats won't accept a reduction in the COLA calculation, and Republicans won't accept in increase in the maximum threshold for SS withholding, etc.

Obama is a centrist, and he's demonstrated a willingness to buck his own party and accept a compromise. What he DOESN'T have is a compromise partner on the other side, since the right wing of the Republican party doesn't want to fix Social Security, they want to ELIMINATE it.

Thanks for confirming my thoughts on this. The money isn't sitting in a vault waiting for Social Security to summon it. In that way it is an unfunded liability and as you accurately pointed out, so are many other things that the government spend money on. However, the government does use a baseline budget and so future increases to programs that congress have passed are a part of the budget (this is why cutting the budget can still result in an increase in actual spending). It might make sense and more accurately represent the budget if they were to include the anticipated expenditures to repay the trust fund in the appropriate fiscal years as the budgets come up for CBO scoring. I realize it would be complex and not entirely accurate, but it might create a better understanding and urgency to this.

As someone facing retirement very soon, I don't mind some sacrifice in the way of slightly less benefits or a slightly attenuated age of retirement or a combination thereof. I too like the one-month-per-year plan if it would truly fix things. I don't know if I really see Obama as a centrist, but I cannot deny that he has said that he is willing to consider cutting Social Security and Medicare to keep the programs viable and it will produce significant scorn from his own party. If he really does this I will have to acknowledge it despite my current feeling that he is sorely lacking as a commander and chief. Admittedly I am tough to please and expect a lot from my presidents. Bush (43) was probably the worst one in the last century if not ever......... I always felt that Bush invaded the wrong counties (I always believed that North Korea and Iran were a bigger threat) and recent events make me even more certain of this.

Durnik
03-05-2013, 01:45 PM
So it may look like SS has a large cash balance on the books, but those books are an accounting fiction.

As usual, that's backwards.. SSI is well funded.. the funds were 'saved' by being used in the General Fund (& elsewhere). They still belong to the SSI Fund. The accounting fiction is that the SSI Funds are gone. Hint, when you borrow money from a bank (friend etc..) & spend it - 'it' may be gone, but you still owe 'it' to the lender.



But I do believe in realistically looking at our problems.

'Our' problem is a Congress bent on destroying social safety nets & eliminating taxes for the wealthy.. IE, you are most assuredly _not_ looking 'realistically' at our problems.



What happens when the notes come due and Social Security needs to dip into the trust.

You have it backwards.. Monies that we, the people, paid into SSI for the sole purpose of funding a social safety net have been taken (by Congress) to be used for their pet projects. The 'IOU' they left in place of the funds will someday need to be replaced.


Will the Government need to raise taxes to pay the money back?

Ah, slowly the light of awareness shines in front of you! The funds were borrowed to fund projects of the wealthy.. projects which were supposed to create a profit. Those profits need now be taxed to replace SSI funds.

Short answer, Yes.

Let me emphasize - those taxes should _not_ be a further burden on the working majority..
A) they should be a burden on the under taxed wealthy & large corporations.
B) The 'cap' on SSI needs to be eliminated - the 'excess' funds being used for single payer, etc..
C) (what the hey) Marginal rates need to go up to at least what they were in the 50's.. & interest income should be taxed at (least) twice the level of earned income.

However, the foxes now 'guard' the henhouse so none of that is likely. BTW, all those who claim the title 'Fiscal Conservative' should really love Obama (as well as Clinton).. the most fiscally conservative presidents in recent memory (back to Kennedy).


..despite my current feeling that he (President Obama) is sorely lacking as a commander and chief.

Just as a 'chair of a board' does not order the board on what to think/do, the president has no authority to 'order' Congress etc in what to do - as the chair of a board responds to the board, the President must respond to Congress1. 'Presidents' whom completely support the MIC (which 'owns' Congress) not surprisingly receive nearly blanket approval from Congress. Presidents who support we, the people, do not receive that same support from Congress. Being one of the people, it would seem logical (hah! ;-)) that you recognize President Obama does not receive the support Cheney did precisely because he (Obama) is working more for you than for the MIC - or at least more for you (we) than previous Presidents.

peace
bobby

1: the correlation is not complete, but is representative. BTW, I would categorize President Obama as more of a true leader than most.. as Cheney etc simply followed along with a compliant & complicit Congress.. No 'leading' in 'going with the pack', eh? "Even a dead fish goes with the flow".. Hardly compelling praise for Cheney/Bush..

Concordia 33
03-05-2013, 01:57 PM
As usual, that's backwards.. SSI is well funded.. the funds were 'saved' by being used in the General Fund (& elsewhere). They still belong to the SSI Fund. The accounting fiction is that the SSI Funds are gone. Hint, when you borrow money from a bank (friend etc..) & spend it - 'it' may be gone, but you still owe 'it' to the lender.




'Our' problem is a Congress bent on destroying social safety nets & eliminating taxes for the wealthy.. IE, you are most assuredly _not_ looking 'realistically' at our problems.




You have it backwards.. Monies that we, the people, paid into SSI for the sole purpose of funding a social safety net have been taken (by Congress) to be used for their pet projects. The 'IOU' they left in place of the funds will someday need to be replaced.



Ah, slowly the light of awareness shines in front of you! The funds were borrowed to fund projects of the wealthy.. projects which were supposed to create a profit. Those profits need now be taxed to replace SSI funds.

Short answer, Yes.

Let me emphasize - those taxes should _not_ be a further burden on the working majority..
A) they should be a burden on the under taxed wealthy & large corporations.
B) The 'cap' on SSI needs to be eliminated - the 'excess' funds being used for single payer, etc..
C) (what the hey) Marginal rates need to go up to at least what they were in the 50's.. & interest income should be taxed at (least) twice the level of earned income.

However, the foxes now 'guard' the henhouse so none of that is likely. BTW, all those who claim the title 'Fiscal Conservative' should really love Obama (as well as Clinton).. the most fiscally conservative presidents in recent memory (back to Kennedy).



Just as a 'chair of a board' does not order the board on what to think/do, the president has no authority to 'order' Congress etc in what to do - as the chair of a board responds to the board, the President must respond to Congress1. 'Presidents' whom completely support the MIC (which 'owns' Congress) not surprisingly receive nearly blanket approval from Congress. Presidents who support we, the people, do not receive that same support from Congress. Being one of the people, it would seem logical (hah! ;-)) that you recognize President Obama does not receive the support Cheney did precisely because he (Obama) is working more for you than for the MIC - or at least more for you (we) than previous Presidents.

peace
bobby

1: the correlation is not complete, but is representative. BTW, I would categorize President Obama as more of a true leader than most.. as Cheney etc simply followed along with a compliant & complicit Congress.. No 'leading' in 'going with the pack', eh? "Even a dead fish goes with the flow".. Hardly compelling praise for Cheney/Bush..

I don't know who else you quoted here, but you pretty much took my to comments out of context. Hardly a reasonable action from someone who claims to accurately represent that status of the social security trust.

Durnik
03-05-2013, 03:14 PM
I don't know who else you quoted here, but you pretty much took my to (sic) comments out of context.

Your claims otherwise, I stand by my statements.. A thought, 'clarify' the context of your comments.

FWIW, your comments show you do not understand the nature of 'problems with SSI' with respect to Congress. While, from your comments, you seem to recognize there are funds to be repaid


"It might make sense and more accurately represent the budget if they were to include the anticipated expenditures to repay the trust fund in the appropriate fiscal years as the budgets come up for CBO scoring."

you also, from your context -


"I too like the one-month-per-year plan if it would truly fix things."

seem to not realize that is not a problem with SSI.. There is nothing to 'fix' with regards to SSI. It is solely a Congress bent on destroying it which needs 'fixing' - unless you feel also SSI needs destroying.. In which case, you, too, are part of the problem. I feel compelled here to point out the similarity of the SSI 'problem' & the U.S. Post Office 'problem'.. They are both artificial 'problems' created by a Congress intent on destroying both entities.


Short answer - no, I did not take you out of context.

You apparently don't understand what I am saying any more than you understand what others are saying - or what you are saying.

peace
bobby

johnw
03-05-2013, 03:20 PM
I suffer no despair.. you are making an unwarranted assumption. But I do believe in realistically looking at our problems. If we can't handle a meager 5% cut in the budget we're screwed long term, as we're going to need those dollars later to feed the baby boomers. And we need to close the loop holes as Obama proposes. In short, do what the Republicans want, and what the Democrats want. It's not mutually exclusive. Do "all of the above'.

Treasuries must eventually be redeemed by the taxpayer. They are a form of IOU. There is no money in any SS "trust fund".

regards,
Waddie

So, if I put money in an account for my kid's education, and I have a mortgage on my house, I really have no money in my kid's college fund?

Makes no sense at all. When we designate funds for a specific purpose, that's accounting. It is not fiction. If the rest of the budget has been over spent, that's a problem with the rest of the budget, not with Social Security.

Keith Wilson
03-05-2013, 03:29 PM
. . . though I do not agree with calling them or anyone else here "crazies" or "zombies"Nor do I. Waddie isn't a zombie, merely mistaken about something, a nearly universal condition with human beings. What I call a "zombie idea" is one that has been refuted countless times and should be dead, yet refuses to go away, in this case the idea that the SS trust fund is an "accounting fiction", and doesn't really exist. Another might be the idea that cutting top marginal tax rates increases tax revenue.

Durnik
03-05-2013, 03:59 PM
...Concordia is being reasonable about this issue, listening to points and agreeing with the valid ones.

...


Ok, paw.. ;-)

peace
bobby

Concordia 33
03-05-2013, 04:21 PM
Your claims otherwise, I stand by my statements.. A thought, 'clarify' the context of your comments.

FWIW, your comments show you do not understand the nature of 'problems with SSI' with respect to Congress. While, from your comments, you seem to recognize there are funds to be repaid



you also, from your context -



seem to not realize that is not a problem with SSI.. There is nothing to 'fix' with regards to SSI. It is solely a Congress bent on destroying it which needs 'fixing' - unless you feel also SSI needs destroying.. In which case, you, too, are part of the problem. I feel compelled here to point out the similarity of the SSI 'problem' & the U.S. Post Office 'problem'.. They are both artificial 'problems' created by a Congress intent on destroying both entities.


Short answer - no, I did not take you out of context.

You apparently don't understand what I am saying any more than you understand what others are saying - or what you are saying.

peace
bobby

You're right I don't understand what you are saying. It seems to be cloaked in all your snarky comments. None-the-less, you took the two quotes of mine out of context.

Cuyahoga Chuck
03-05-2013, 05:30 PM
Thanks for confirming my thoughts on this. The money isn't sitting in a vault waiting for Social Security to summon it. In that way it is an unfunded liability and as you accurately pointed out, so are many other things that the government spend money on. However, the government does use a baseline budget and so future increases to programs that congress have passed are a part of the budget (this is why cutting the budget can still result in an increase in actual spending). It might make sense and more accurately represent the budget if they were to include the anticipated expenditures to repay the trust fund in the appropriate fiscal years as the budgets come up for CBO scoring. I realize it would be complex and not entirely accurate, but it might create a better understanding and urgency to this.

As someone facing retirement very soon, I don't mind some sacrifice in the way of slightly less benefits or a slightly attenuated age of retirement or a combination thereof. I too like the one-month-per-year plan if it would truly fix things. I don't know if I really see Obama as a centrist, but I cannot deny that he has said that he is willing to consider cutting Social Security and Medicare to keep the programs viable and it will produce significant scorn from his own party. If he really does this I will have to acknowledge it despite my current feeling that he is sorely lacking as a commander and chief. Admittedly I am tough to please and expect a lot from my presidents. Bush (43) was probably the worst one in the last century if not ever......... I always felt that Bush invaded the wrong counties (I always believed that North Korea and Iran were a bigger threat) and recent events make me even more certain of this.

The idea SS funds were ever in a actual strongbox is another dopey idea. The funds were lent out the same way any bank lends out it's deposits. In this case the borrower is the US Treasury which must pay back with interest all they borrowed.
The idea the US government would stiff it's own citizens by not paying SS benefits is not in the cards. If the US government did stiff it's own citizens it's credit rating would fall drastically and our entire economy might collapse.
The US government is the "payer of last resort". It can and will pay when all others can't because they have the power to print money. That is not a desireable outcome but for those that get paid something is better than nothing.

Waddie
03-05-2013, 11:56 PM
Once again, there is no SS Trust Fund...... It is a fiction...... The "Zombie idea" is that there is any way that SS is self-funding over the next two decades. Right now it must pay out more than it takes in - and that difference is made up from the general fund, either through taxes or borrowing.


Social Security status-quo defenders have assured us for the past 25 years that Social Security is fully funded—for the next 25 years, or 2036. So if there are real assets in the Social Security Trust Fund—$2.6 trillion allegedly—then how could failure to reach a debt-ceiling agreement possibly threaten seniors’ Social Security checks?

Guess who agrees with me!!! Why, no other than President Obama..... (discussing the debt ceiling).


“I cannot guarantee that those checks [he included veterans and the disabled, in addition to Social Security] go out on August 3rd if we haven’t resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it.”

Who am I to argue with the President of the United States.......

http://www.forbes.com/sites/merrillmatthews/2011/07/13/what-happened-to-the-2-6-trillion-social-security-trust-fund/


regards,
Waddie

johnw
03-06-2013, 12:17 AM
Once again, there is no SS Trust Fund...... It is a fiction...... The "Zombie idea" is that there is any way that SS is self-funding over the next two decades. Right now it must pay out more than it takes in - and that difference is made up from the general fund, either through taxes or borrowing.



Guess who agrees with me!!! Why, no other than President Obama..... (discussing the debt ceiling).



Who am I to argue with the President of the United States.......

http://www.forbes.com/sites/merrillmatthews/2011/07/13/what-happened-to-the-2-6-trillion-social-security-trust-fund/


regards,
Waddie

Do you think that if you keep repeating an untrue thing, it becomes true? You must, you've given up on logical argument.

Waddie
03-06-2013, 12:56 AM
Do you think that if you keep repeating an untrue thing, it becomes true? You must, you've given up on logical argument.

Truth can never become un-truth. Except in your fantasy .....

regards,
Waddie

Concordia 33
03-06-2013, 10:28 AM
The idea SS funds were ever in a actual strongbox is another dopey idea. The funds were lent out the same way any bank lends out it's deposits. In this case the borrower is the US Treasury which must pay back with interest all they borrowed.
The idea the US government would stiff it's own citizens by not paying SS benefits is not in the cards. If the US government did stiff it's own citizens it's credit rating would fall drastically and our entire economy might collapse.
The US government is the "payer of last resort". It can and will pay when all others can't because they have the power to print money. That is not a desireable outcome but for those that get paid something is better than nothing.


Of course it isn't in a strong box but the part that doesn't get talked about is how Social Security gets paid back when they need it. We all know it is backed by the full faith and credit of the USA, but exactly how do they raise the funds to repay it when it becomes due and payable?


In addition, what adjustments need to be made so that it will remain solvent while easing the future burden on the government's coffers. More people are entering retirement then there are workers entering the work force, Unless this trend changes, there will not be enough proceeds from social security taxes to keep it afloat. That being the case it is possible that the one day the US will need to repay all of the $2.5 Trillion that it owes Social Security.

Concordia 33
03-06-2013, 10:51 AM
I'm not sure what you're getting at. How does ANY debt assumed by the US Government get paid back?

There's simply no significant difference between the assets of the SS Trust Fund, and and any other Treasury bill or note; taxes go to paying back both the principal as well as the interest. The fact that there is a deficit DOES mean that the country has more outstanding obligations than there is revenue to pay those obligations.... but so do you and I, assuming we have a mortgage and not enough investments to cover the debt. My older daughter has a $300K mortgage, and sufficient income to pay the payments, but the bulk of the $300K is essentially an 'unfunded liability'...she hasn't earned the money to cover the debt.... YET... but she will.

At any given time, the Treasury has outstanding bills and notes which mature, and have to be paid off, and new ones which are bought. Revenue is expended to pay the notes that are due, and revenue is brought in by new notes and bills being sold. Were it not for the deficit, we could sustain a substantial debt in perpetuity. I am NOT suggesting that it's a good thing to carry a large debt, forever.... but what matters is the ability to both pay off the notes as they come due, and sell NEW notes at the same time.... and the rest of the world, as well as many US investors, are happy to buy Treasury securities, yielding virtually nothing.... for the sake of the security they represent.

If we start defaulting, THEN you'll see disaster happen, for sure.


Not suggesting default. But I am asking what the plan is to raise the funds to repay it when the time comes? We talked about this yesterday. The government would need to cut somewhere else, increase taxes or a combination of the two. I think you and I can agree that there is no plan other than to say that it is covered by the full faith and credit of the us government and that when the time comes they will make sure that SS get's it's needed cash infusion. I guess I am saying that there should be an articulated plan more than simply saying "The idea the US government would stiff it's own citizens by not paying SS benefits is not in the cards.". It's not that I disagree with that but the devil is in the details. If you just print more money it has one sort of consequence, as does raising taxes or cutting the budget elsewhere. If there is a plan, please tell me because I am unaware of it.

wardd
03-06-2013, 11:23 AM
Once again, there is no SS Trust Fund...... It is a fiction...... The "Zombie idea" is that there is any way that SS is self-funding over the next two decades. Right now it must pay out more than it takes in - and that difference is made up from the general fund, either through taxes or borrowing.



Guess who agrees with me!!! Why, no other than President Obama..... (discussing the debt ceiling).



Who am I to argue with the President of the United States.......

http://www.forbes.com/sites/merrillmatthews/2011/07/13/what-happened-to-the-2-6-trillion-social-security-trust-fund/


regards,
Waddie

and you don't have any money in the bank, it's a fiction

Concordia 33
03-06-2013, 11:29 AM
You are absolutely correct. It's not at all difficult to find analyses and suggestions for a plan to deal with the expected shortfall.... what CANNOT be found is a bipartisan coalition of legislators willing to compromise with each other to implement a plan.



There is no plan. There is no bipartisan cooperation. There is no willingness to compromise, and I'm sorry to have to repeat this, but the unwillingness comes primarily from the right, not the left. While there are indeed some Democratic legislators who might not be willing to agree to ANY tax increases on SS, or ANY diminishment of benefits, the fact remains that the Democratic leadership has demonstrated a willingness to compromise... and it's done so repeatedly, on big issues, since Obama was elected. This is NOT because of any intrinsic virtue.... it's because there are no credible extreme leftist threats to sitting Democratic legislators in potential primary battles.

Sadly, on the Republican side, there has been a 70 year antipathy towards the very concept of Social Security, as well as a pack of wolfish Tea Party types willing to assault sitting Republican legislators from the right if they give even a single ideological inch to compromise. Interestingly, the only Republican congressman who has, at least selectively, been willing to buck the trend is Boehner, who abandoned (temporarily, he says) the 'Hastert Rule', for the benefit of the long term interests of the party.... but his ability to do this is very limited.

Do you think the Simpson-Bowles committee had good recommendations? Seems to me that what they had would close the deficit gap more effectively than most including putting Social Security on better footing.

ccmanuals
03-06-2013, 11:37 AM
Now the House GOP and Ryan are upping the stakes by continuing in their attempt to kill medicare.



According to several sources, a handful of centrist GOP lawmakers attending a recent Tuesday Group luncheon erupted when Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) broke the news.
After agreeing to write a budget resolution that will balance the budget over the next decade, Ryan conceded that he might have to adjust the age to as high as 59.


Read more: http://thehill.com/homenews/house/286161-centrists-balk-at-ryan-medicare-shift#ixzz2MmJVHeod
Follow us: @thehill on Twitter (http://ec.tynt.com/b/rw?id=bNYbpAvBir4Pxiacwqm_6l&u=thehill) | TheHill on Facebook (http://ec.tynt.com/b/rf?id=bNYbpAvBir4Pxiacwqm_6l&u=TheHill)

Concordia 33
03-06-2013, 11:45 AM
Now the House GOP and Ryan are upping the stakes by continuing in their attempt to kill medicare.

Is that a big deal to adjust Medicare's age up to 59?

ccmanuals
03-06-2013, 12:02 PM
Is that a big deal to adjust Medicare's age up to 59?

Looks like you might have fell for the headline as most people will do. If you recall during the campaign Ryan said over and over (with his mother standing next to him as a prop) that "no changes to medicare will affect anyone under the age of 55." Now he is proposing that changes will effect people under the age of 59. So, what do you think, is that a big deal if you were 57, 58 or 59 years old?

Waddie
03-06-2013, 12:04 PM
Norman Bernstein; The 'real assets' that Krauthammer and others claim don't exist, actually DO exist; they are Treasury securities, the world's safest investment.
The only way that the checks don't get sent is if the US decides to default on its obligations..... i.e., the boneheads in Congress decide to flush the credit-worthiness of the US down the tubes.


A Treasury is simply an IOU backed by the taxpayer. So in essence you are admitting there is no money in the account, just IOU's to be redeemed by the taxpayer. The idea that any actual money is available is a fiction. President Obama an I agree on that.

regards,
Waddie

wardd
03-06-2013, 12:05 PM
what is that iou backed by?

i just loved it when bush made a big photo op of holding up those iou and declaring them worthless pieces of paper, when it turned out he had money invested in tbills

ccmanuals
03-06-2013, 12:06 PM
A Treasury is simply an IOU backed by the taxpayer. So in essence you are admitting there is no money in the account, just IOU's to be redeemed by the taxpayer. The idea that any actual money is available is a fiction. President Obama an I agree on that.

regards,
Waddie


If you go to your bank account from the internet and transfer money from your savings account to your checking account do you think someone in the bank takes cash out of one box and puts it in another box. :)

johnw
03-06-2013, 12:45 PM
Truth can never become un-truth. Except in your fantasy .....

regards,
Waddie

So, now all you have are assertions and insults. You've failed to produce evidence for your view or to make a logical argument that stands up to scrutiny, so you're falling back on your faith in the eternal truth of your talking points.

Lame.

Durnik
03-06-2013, 12:53 PM
It's just more of the same, from Ryan:

The truly bizarre thing is the regressive's don't ever see that it is always 'more of the same'..


it amazes me that he's got the brass ones to keep trying to sell the idea of 'open markets and competition are what's needed in medical care'

It amazes me that people keep trying to 'sell the idea' that 'medical care' & 'insurance to cover costs of medical care' are the same thing - let alone the idiocy that there should be any 'free market' in either.


an aside, it's interesting to note that Concordia is not paying attention - but (along with the stalwart waddie (Go Waddie! ;-))) is continuing to push the same 'zombie' points.. good luck with your edumacating of they! ;-)

meanwhile, I've some wood in the shop that needs 'working'.. It's off to a better place I go! ;-0

enjoy
bobby

johnw
03-06-2013, 12:58 PM
A Treasury is simply an IOU backed by the taxpayer. So in essence you are admitting there is no money in the account, just IOU's to be redeemed by the taxpayer. The idea that any actual money is available is a fiction. President Obama an I agree on that.

regards,
Waddie

our entire economy is based on IOUs. What do you think money is? And you keep calling an accounting identity a fiction, without telling us in what way it is fictional. Do you think bank deposits are a fiction because banks follow the goldsmith principle? Savings could not pay interest if the money wasn't loaned.

We will eventually need to tweak the Social Security system, as we have before. But the deficit problem didn't start there, it started in the general fund, and instead of defaulting on Social Security, we need to fix the general fund problem.

Where did the debt really come from? Read 'em and weep:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/files/2013/02/parfait.jpg

Defense spending alone increased by 81% (http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2011/04/11/157596/military-spending-doubled-since-2001/?mobile=nc) between 2001 and 20011. Do you think Social Security spending increased by a similar amount in the same period? Why should we raid the trust fund to pay for tax cuts and ill-advised foreign adventures? We know how to balance the budget, Bill Clinton did it. He cut spending and increased taxes, which is what Obama proposes to do.

Waddie
03-06-2013, 02:52 PM
Bill Clinton did it. He cut spending and increased taxes, which is what Obama proposes to do.

Bill Clinton was dragged kicking and screaming all the way by Newt Gingrich and a Republican Congress.

At some point the taxpayer has to pony up to pay those IOU's.

regards,
Waddie

Keith Wilson
03-06-2013, 02:57 PM
Newt and the GOP were responsible for the tax increases?Gee, that's not what they said at the time. Those increases were going to destroy the American economy, IIRC.

wardd
03-06-2013, 02:57 PM
i thought clinton got his budget passed without a single rep vote

wardd
03-06-2013, 02:58 PM
Gee, that's not what they said at the time. Those increases were going to destroy the American economy, IIRC.

what do you think happened in 2007-8?

it just took a little longer than expected

johnw
03-06-2013, 10:17 PM
Bill Clinton was dragged kicking and screaming all the way by Newt Gingrich and a Republican Congress.

At some point the taxpayer has to pony up to pay those IOU's.

regards,
Waddie

Couldn't you even manage to read the Wikipedia article?


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omnibus_Budget_Reconciliation_Act_of_1993
Ultimately every Republican in Congress voted against the bill, as did a number of Democrats. Vice President (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vice_President_of_the_United_States) Al Gore (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al_Gore) broke a tie in the Senate (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate) on both the Senate bill and the conference report (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Congress_Conference_committee#The_co nference_report). The House bill passed 219-213 on Thursday, May 27, 1993.[1] (http://clerk.house.gov/evs/1993/roll199.xml) The House passed the conference report on Thursday, August 5, 1993, by a vote of 218 to 216 (217 Democrats and 1 independent (Sanders (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bernie_Sanders) (I-VT)) voting in favor; 41 Democrats and 175 Republicans voting against).[2] (http://www.govtrack.us/congress/vote.xpd?vote=h1993-406) The Senate passed the conference report on the last day before their month's vacation, on Friday, August 6, 1993, by a vote of 51 to 50 (50 Democrats plus Vice President Gore voting in favor, 6 Democrats (Lautenberg (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Lautenberg) (D-NJ), Bryan (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Bryan) (D-NV), Nunn (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sam_Nunn) (D-GA), Johnston (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bennett_Johnston_Jr.) (D-LA), Boren (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_L._Boren) (D-OK), and Shelby (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Shelby) (D-AL) now (R-AL)) and 44 Republicans voting against). President Clinton signed the bill on August 10, 1993.

But I suppose your preconception will again be the "truth."

Do your homework, man.