Friday, January 25, 2013

The time for hard choices is...later

Here's Robert Samuelson with "President Make-Believe":
In 2000, there were 45 million Social Security recipients; by 2025, the Social Security Administration projects the number at 79 million. Already, paying for retirees is the largest source of federal spending. In 2012, Social Security ($762 billion) exceeded defense ($651 billion) by 17 percent; Medicare and Medicaid together ($720 billion) also topped defense. (Two-thirds of Medicaid goes to the elderly and disabled.)
Excluding these programs from even modest budget cuts -- as Obama seems inclined to do -- imposes huge costs on the young. Their taxes will rise, big deficits will persist or spending cuts will be concentrated on other programs more important to the working population (for starters, grants to state and local governments). There's no honest way around these conflicts, but Obama pretended they don't exist.
I tried to warn you kids that a vote for Obama is a vote against your own future.  As I've said before, there's not a scintilla of evidence that Obama will address entitlements which are already swallowing every cent of revenue that flows into Washington:
Now, here’s the problem. Pretend we didn’t even have the federal government. In other words, pretend we had no military, no Department of Justice, no Department of Health and Human Services, etc. You eliminate the entire federal government, and just pay nondiscretionary programs and interest. (There would be no employees to issue the checks, but it’s a thought experiment.) You would have to pay $2.5 trillion. But our total revenues are less than that, at $2.47 trillion.
So you use up all our tax revenue, and you still haven’t quite paid entitlements. After you deal with entitlements, every cent of discretionary spending is now borrowed.
Obama says "relax" - it's all gonna work out....hey, what are these repo men doing here?

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