Discussion: Medicare, Social Security Forecasts Show No Sign Of Trump's Promised Growth


“…the biggest factor is that there are more people retiring and depending on the program than there are taxpaying workers to replace them.”

 Procreation of Homo Sapiens is vastly overrated as a priority.

Tuesday’s report shows, however, that not only has that promised growth failed to materialize, the deep tax cuts are causing the federal trust funds to deplete faster — though the biggest factor is that there are more people retiring and depending on the program than there are taxpaying workers to replace them.

To me, this says we should recruit immigrants to work here in the US.


OK, but NO IRISH!!


And you didn’t mention the money the Republican budget takes out of Medicare and Social Security–probably to offset the millions and billions given to the Pentagon to (1) buy more toys that don’t work and (2) stuff their pockets with money taken from fraudulent or missing accounting records. Can you say “Panama Papers”?


The insolvency date for Social Security stayed steady, with a projection of 2034. That does not mean, however, that the funds will be exhausted by those dates. Rather, those are the dates that the programs’ costs will exceed the tax revenue coming in.

This is incorrect. It is projected that in 2034 the trust fund reserves will be depleted (exhausted is another phrase for it). There will still be payroll tax revenue coming in, enough to fund 79% of benefits, but there will no balance in the trust fund, no interest being earned.

The report also states that the total program costs now exceed total program revenue ( including interest from the trust fund) in 2018 and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future unless there are policy changes. So the trust fund of 2.8 some odd trillion is at its maximum and will be drawn down to 0 between now and roughly 16 years from now (give or take a few years since the projections are obviously uncertain).


The Great Southern Plague of 2022 will take care of the problem.


Increase the payroll tax a smidge and eliminate the Trump tax cuts. Then work on a “medicare for all” healthcare" system.


Too French.


The types of predictions about how tax cuts would lead to growth are the type of bullshit pronouncement you make in a political document like the budget. That shit is not allowed in the trustees report (despite the fact that the trustees are cabinet members) and the Trustees have always taken a much more conservative (small “c”) view toward long term growth. Basically if productivity is not going up and the size of the labor force is growly much more slowly, growth will be slower.

As for the direct effects of the tax cuts, here is what the trustees say about it:

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Public Law 115-97, was enacted on December 22, 2017. This law will have several effects on the actuarial status of the OASDI program. The law reduces tax rates for individuals, alters the tax brackets and their indexing, and repeals the individual mandate of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The repeal of the individual mandate is expected to cause some individuals to drop their employer sponsored health insurance, which is estimated to increase OASDI covered wages and taxable payroll slightly. The tax rate and tax bracket changes will affect income to the trust funds from taxation of Social Security benefits. Because the law reduces tax rates through 2025, and the tax bracket thresholds will grow more slowly in the future due to the change in indexing, income from taxation of benefits relative to last year’s report is decreased through 2025 and increased thereafter. In addition, temporary changes for certain small businesses will have effects on reported self-employment income. As a whole, the law has a significant net negative effect on the financial status of the OASDI program over the short-range projection period and a negligible net positive effect over the long-range projection period.


Hush! You’re talkin’ crazy now!




Yeah, but rich folk get richer with those tax cuts. Solvency be damned.


In 2026 the last of the baby boomers will be hitting medicare age. Perfect timing.

And somehow it will still be the democrats’ fault.


…he said. “Social Security and Medicare are the federal government’s two largest programs, and millions of Americans heavily rely on their benefits. Robust economic growth will help to ensure their lasting stability.” (“Too damned many millions,” he added under his breath)

Serious question: With regard to the money that has, over the years, been borrowed from the trust funds for the general budget: Does that get counted as part of the trust funds or is it removed from calculations since it technically doesn’t exist???


They always planned to bring out ugly numbers, creating a piece justicative for the abolition of the safety net through “privatization” and slashed coverage. “We’d love to have Social Security, but we Just Can’t Pay For It.”

Charles Koch wants the total elimination of Social Security, Medicare, the VA, SNAP, CHIP, and every other life-saving, life-enhancing government program designed for the benefit of those dealing with illness, joblessness, veterans’ issues, or just plain old age. The Republicans are pledged to give him everything he wants.

Worth noting: the generation of young, overwhelmingly white, mostly male converts to reactionary politics the dark money right is rallying on the nation’s campuses are very open to the false logic of the reactionary position on social welfare benefits—that it is a matter of the old stealing from the young, the black stealing from the white, women stealing from men. The Koch apparatus has very neatly adapted their war on the safety net to the language of generational, racial, and gender rage.


republicon voters are one of three things:

  1. Selfishly greedy
  2. Willfully ignorant
  3. Fucking STUPID

It exists just as much as any other treasury bond does. And that’s (kinda) how it’s been done, because the trust funds are only allowed to stash their credit balances in treasury obligations. Otherwise they would have ended up owning most of the stock market, which would have been Socialism.


As expected, this will be the excuse to “reform”… and by “reform” the Republicans mean “destroy”.


Its a bit of a mixed bag. Income gains above the taxable maximum (~120K) do not help solvency. To the extent those gains raise the “average” wage (but not the typical wage) it will also raise benefits. I think people would rather have their own wages rise instead.