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Spot The Unsustainable Entitlement

Tyler Durden's picture



In the words of Sesame Street, one of these spending components of the long-run budget plan is not like the others; one of these entitlements is not the same; can you spot which one? As BofAML notes, "no long-run budget plan would likely be effective if this rapidly growing program is not significantly constrained. This cost reflects growth in the economy, an aging population and an 'excess' growth factor that includes both medical advances and presumably inefficiencies."



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Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:51 | 2764382 mjorden
mjorden's picture

Would 'other' include Veteran's benefits and Veteran's disability?

Because Veterans Benefits aren't getting any cheaper ...  Medical Technology, they are living longer and costing more to take care of .... 


Not to mention, they are learning that they can collect disability after 10 years of service and retire early.  Go to a military town and see how many Nice Brand New trucks have the "DV" on the license plate!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:56 | 2764405 docj
docj's picture

Veterans are something like 1.2% of the population - even if you excluded/included them here it wouldn't "bend the curve" for Medicare one bit.

Nope - this is Ageing America drinking deeply from the font of "free healthcare".

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:58 | 2764408 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



....and that's how you tie your shoes lil Linsay.


....and when that guy comes on the TV this is the finger you flip at him.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:03 | 2764428 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

The medicare line does not account for a large dose of hollow points!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:18 | 2764508 Nothing To See Here
Nothing To See Here's picture

And I would say that the social security line assumes an average return of about 8% on a typical allocation mixture of stocks and fixed income...

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:30 | 2764550 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture



here is a quik video...about 4 minutes long including commentary on the true state of the situation

watch and learn

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:46 | 2764622 I am more equal...
I am more equal than others's picture

Up! Up! and away..... says Superman.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:51 | 2765385 smiler03
smiler03's picture

Behold! A forecast upto 2082 and beyond!


It's all irrelevant. By 2082 we will all have personal jetpacks, flying cars, faster than light travel, death will be voluntary, electricity too cheap to meter and vacations on Mars.

What an absurd chart.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:18 | 2764735 CrimsonAvenger
CrimsonAvenger's picture

And at a more fundamental level - this chart is based on percentage of GDP. What's their assumption for GDP growth going forward 50+ years - 3%? 5%?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:15 | 2764500 MrPalladium
MrPalladium's picture

I paid into the medicare fund for over 40 years and now what I paid for is to be taken away? I didn't screw up the program, yet I and others in my position are to be denied medical care?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:19 | 2764511 Nothing To See Here
Nothing To See Here's picture

Ponzi scheme bitchez!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:20 | 2764737 Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

and not just a run of the mill Madoff ponzi, it's a COERCED participation ponzi scheme...

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:52 | 2765400 smiler03
smiler03's picture

and shit happens.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:25 | 2764536 tonyw
tonyw's picture

You didn't pay in for yourself, you paid in to cover the ongoing costs. You are reliant on the enxt generation doing the same.

It would help if the laws were not written for the benefit of large corporations so that health costs were around half, i.e. in line with other countries with good health systems.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:31 | 2764551 greyghost
greyghost's picture

where does the bottomless pit called the pentagon fit in this chart? does anyone else notice that the talk is always about social programs, never about the budget of the generals? even as a republican i am getting sick of all this nonstop chatter about medicare/soc. sec. trillions for defense...trillions for bankers....nothing for soc. sec. or medicare? yes, i know, neither of these two programs pays for themselves or were they just looted by bankers and generals? inquiring minds want to know?

and if romney is elected in nov. what is left for the bain model of business to loot?

GUNS or BUTTER anyone.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:55 | 2764657 Vince Clortho
Vince Clortho's picture

Greyghost, you beat me to the punch.  +1

The largest Banks, Investment Firms, Corporations can go bankrupt but somehow receive funding to go back into business. Sovereign European Nations are going belly up, but somehow funding is "discovered" to save them.  We fight non-stop wars that run into untold trilliions $$$$$.  (Don't even bother to ask what the US is doing in Afghanistan, or what the plans are for Iran).  The US can support billions of $$ in aid programs to illegal aliens and foreign aid.

But it may be necessary to cut back on medicare and SS to sustain the above-mentioned programs.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:35 | 2765038 tenpanhandle
tenpanhandle's picture

it's simply the "we have to close the parks, libraries and fire stations unles you pay more taxes scheme".  It's never the graft and waste that gets cut, it's the public services that the public actually sees and feels that get offered up to the chopping block.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:38 | 2764590 fattail
fattail's picture

They are taking anything away.  You didn't pay in enough.  Average person takes out over 2X what they paid in.  Unsustainable.  Should have saved more money. 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 16:02 | 2765643 ozzzo
ozzzo's picture

No, the average person does not take out over 2X what they put in. For the "average" to take out over 2X what they put in, there would have to be a small number who put in much more than they take out. That would be the rich people right? The rich people pay lots of taxes to support the rest of us? Is that what you're claiming?

In fact the "average" person, who in today's America is lower-middle-class or poor, pays significantly more into the system than what they take out. The "average" person pays over half his income in taxes. Don't only look at income tax. We are taxed to death. The average American pays over 100 taxes. Every time you buy or pay anything, besides personal cash or barter transactions, you are paying a tax. Sales tax, property tax, water tax, license "fees" (fees are taxes), fines (fines are taxes), etc. The system is designed to extract resources from the "average" person and funnel them to the "job creators" at the top, and that is what it does. Only a very small group gets out more than they put in; that is the purpose of the system.

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 02:28 | 2767175 natew
natew's picture

Bzz...all incorrect.  For Medicare, the median income earner retiring today, will have paid about $30k to Medicare, and get that back in benefits within two to three years as Medicare cost average per benefitiary is $12K.  Just stroll over to wikipedia for details.   The NET benefits for lower income earners is $200K+.  Non-working spouse reaches $500K.  Even those making around $100K per year will get a net benefit surplus over $100K.   Now that's a serious out of control program.  And it's not including Medicare part d from general funds, thus borrowed from future generations to pay the interest.

The "average" person does not pay over half his income in taxes.  And totalling up all taxes (highly diverse by state) the lower incomes still pay lower taxes by %, although less progressive.  Take a look at any tax orgs data.  The distortion is all this is measured by %, not the individual or based on purchasing power.

..and you missed the greatest "secret" tax of all, inflation and artifitially low interest rates.  

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:55 | 2764660 DOT
DOT's picture

It's simple.

There is no "fund".

Your money has been spent on other things.

You have been lied to.

Doesn't you ass hurt?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:03 | 2764680 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

" I didn't screw up the program, yet I and others in my position are to be denied medical care?"

Yet, your generation did vote in the policiticians who created this policy.  You most certainly do have responsibility for the legacy problems YOUR elected officials left us, just as those who voted for Obama have the responsibility for the long-term damage he has done (thankfully, some of that was one-time stimulus and some is fixable).  If your net worth was enhanced by the creation of the debt bubble, then you certainly benefitted already from the centrally planned bank ponzi cartel.  Now that it is time to take your medicine (or actually pay for it) you complain that you paid in and want your fair share.  Take responsibility, recognize that these issues didn't just magically show up, that they have been building since 1906 and 1913, got exponentially worse under FDR, and then became a feeding trough for every policitian since WW2.  Own the fact that your generation has continuously elected a bunch of crooks, while you reaped the benefits and pretended nothing was wrong.

If my generation does the same, and it appears that they are at least equally blind, then I'll be living in the Caribbean and laughing.  I certainly won't be standing around, selling my vote to the crook who claims he represents me best, hoping for the next handout, and complaining when my social security (which I have paid into) gets decreased, eliminated, or inflated away.

Rant over and I hope I didn't offend.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:40 | 2764817 sskid
sskid's picture

Medicare was established in 1965, I was 10 years old at the time.   My parents seemed to have not much of an opinion about it, they would have been in their mid thirties, but my gandmother sure was excited about it.    It was all she talked about for months on our Sunday visits to grandma's house.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 15:18 | 2765493 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

My understanding was that LBJ had pretty much free reign to pass anything that year because the nation was still in mourning over JFK.

Sort of reminds me of the free-for-all giveaways of the Dems in 2008 when they swept the elections.  I'll never forget the look of manic joy on Pelosi's face.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:45 | 2764818 sskid
sskid's picture


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:59 | 2764881 wagthetails
wagthetails's picture

The Boomers - the worst generation. 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:26 | 2765299 TriggerFinger
TriggerFinger's picture

are you the offspring of Jim Quinn?  

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 16:57 | 2765788 fattail
fattail's picture


You offended all the over 55 crowd who want to slam the entitlement door behind them before any entitlement reform takes place.  The Boomers new this problem was coming for decades but chose to ignore it because they thought they would be closer to death.  The Ponzi blewup before they could age out and die.  Now they want to whine about paying in. 

Side note....the average person does pull roughly twice the amount of benefits compared to what they pay in.  National Review article from this summer.

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 04:09 | 2767297 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

That is pretty much my point.  They knew the math long ago yet did nothing about it.  My?  I'm outa here in the next two years.  I'll be called un-patriotic, which cracks me up.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 17:29 | 2765864 jemlyn
jemlyn's picture

Stop blaming some generation for electing a bunch of crooks.  It's easy for you to say but most of the elections in the past have been just like this one, the two heads of one snake.  Ross Perot did give us an alternative.  Too bad more didn't pay heed to his prediction of "that giant sucking sound". 


Thu, 09/06/2012 - 04:16 | 2767301 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

I'm pretty sure I didn't "blame" any generation.  I simply pointed out that that those who voted in elected officials who made promises that couldn't be kept have no basis to demand that the next generations honor those "promises".  Do I think today's politicians are any better?  Absolutely.  Today's politicians have taken the art form of lying and making unsustainable promises to brand new levels.  Our crooks are really good at what they do.

The difference between me and those who are older and demanding their "fair share of benefits they have paid into" is that I get the fact that I've been screwed and am planning on doing something about it.

I was young when Perot ran, and biased in his favor (as a Texan born lad), but don't recall his platform well enough to give an intelligent comment.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:09 | 2764921 gckings19
gckings19's picture

we'll give you your $1000 back and call it even.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 15:53 | 2765610 ozzzo
ozzzo's picture


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 16:45 | 2765757 ncdirtdigger
ncdirtdigger's picture

My kids didn't sign up to pay for your healthcare old man. For years you had a chance to vote it out, but you sat your fat ass on the couch and thought it would all work out. Well tuff chit, life happens, shortly thereafter, death follows.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 20:26 | 2766474 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

You fscked up, you TRUSTED THEM!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:13 | 2764489 Hal n back
Hal n back's picture


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:32 | 2764557 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

its the invisible line

but heres a vid link on how obamacare is intended to work

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:34 | 2764564 slaughterer
slaughterer's picture

Lots of disabled army servicemen living high-on-the-hog with their titanium knee replacement on the West Coast of Florida.  But, if you spend time with some of them, they will confess they are afraid of losing their vet benefits soon under new US austerity BS.  

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:23 | 2765278 AGuy
AGuy's picture

Vets are really the only group that should get federal entitlements. They put there life on the line.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:22 | 2764749 Abiotic Oil
Abiotic Oil's picture

What happens when the entitlements stop?



We have seen them all before, and we shall see them all again as history rhymes along regardless of the century or the generation of humankind nominally in control of events. But the next time we are visited by widespread, large-scale urban riots, a dangerous new escalation may be triggered by a new vulnerability: It’s estimated that the average American home has less than two weeks of food on hand. In poor minority areas, it may be much less. What if a cascading economic crisis, even a temporary one, leads to millions of EBT (electronic benefit transfer) cards flashing nothing but zeroes? Or if the government’s refusal to reimburse them causes supermarket chains to stop accepting them for payment? The government can order the supermarkets to honor the cards, but history’s verdict is clear: If suppliers are paid only with worthless scrip or blinking digits, the food will stop.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:58 | 2764383 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture



"With this law, we bribe old folks for votes, using their children's money, for generations.  Genius!"

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:00 | 2764417 machineh
machineh's picture

There's ol' Hubert Humphrey in the back.

But who is the bloated Mr. Creosote at left, with the 'HELLO, I'm ...' nametag?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:34 | 2764569 greyghost
greyghost's picture

mr. creosote i believe is rep. miller who latter went on to have an affair with a hooker in one of the fountains in washington...very public! i believe it was a rep. miller...that was a galaxy far far away.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:00 | 2764418 Urban Roman
Urban Roman's picture

Actually Johnson knew he would be losing generations of votes for the Southern Fried Democrats. Not for medicare, but for some of his other programs.

There ain't no Great Society,

As it applies to you and me.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:34 | 2764561 odatruf
odatruf's picture

And the GOP raised the Great Society's voter graft with the 2005 Part D drug bribe. Of course, just one year after putting half a trillon dollars aside in the budget, these hoped-for grateful voters dumped the GOP in the 2006 Congressional rout.

Now, Obama has gone all in by turning more people into takers than givers, so we'll see how that works out come November.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:18 | 2764731 Karlus
Karlus's picture

"President Johnson, this is a big f**king deal!"

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 17:18 | 2765848 Heyoka Bianco
Heyoka Bianco's picture

And this is the very same crackerass Texas hillbilly who initiated the "unified" budget, so as to use SS "trust" funds to cover the the yawning abyssal deficits created by Vietnam, the Great Society, and the space program. Only Nixon did more damage to the US economy in the long term.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:51 | 2764384 SeverinSlade
SeverinSlade's picture

Elmo likes insolvency, don't you?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:52 | 2764385 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

By 2082 I'll be dead. It's somebody elses problem then........seriously these people couldn't see the housing crisis right in front of their face. Do they expext us to believe they can extrapolate out to 2082?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:59 | 2764412 Whatta
Whatta's picture

Politicians can only extrapolate to the next voting day. Beyond that is irrelevant.

We need to throw politicians out of government and put in elected people to serve, and not rule.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:20 | 2765269 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Your position contradicts itself, my work is done.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:38 | 2764653 greyghost
greyghost's picture

exactly...just like that idiot man child ryan and his thirty year budget. does one cry or laugh at his proposal. does he take it seriously? why is the baininite taking the week off? is this an insult to votors because he believes he can buy the campaign in the last thirty days? since these two fools can't help digging their own hole deeper and deeper with every word maybe this is the best road to the white house! don't say anything and you can't piss anyone off!!!!!!! run romney run, run ryan run. the road to the baininite capital is well lit with examples of baininite business practices. run romney run. run ryan run.

the great william banzai needs to do a piece on the baininite capital while the evil twins run go for it william

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:42 | 2764822 JimBowie1958
JimBowie1958's picture

By 2082 I'll be dead.

Dont be so sure, Doc.

Medical technology is advancing so fast we may have 'actuarial escape velocity' by 2030.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:33 | 2765339 AGuy
AGuy's picture

"Medical technology is advancing so fast we may have 'actuarial escape velocity' by 2030."

It will be incredible if the any human lives beyond 2030. Consider what happned during the 1930s and 1940s when the world slipped into a global depression: WW2. I doubt that this crisis will pass by without WW3.

Medical Tech has limits, and we are slow approciating a tipping point as the old panademic diseases are now becoming drug resistant. Its likely that over the next 10 to 20 years that many treatable inflections will be complete resistant and untreatable.

Another issue besides a debt crisis, will also be an energy crisis as all of the Cheap and easy to produce oil is depleted. This will make food costs rise leading to poor diets and people are forces to trade calories for nutrietion. Then there is also the issue with the rapidity depleting aquifiers that many nations depend on for agraculture.




Thu, 09/06/2012 - 16:32 | 2769344 JimBowie1958
JimBowie1958's picture

In a world of nuclear weapons, no one wins a global war, so that aint happenin. Our cattle drivers are greedy and evil but they are not insane and they love their children just like the rest of us. Smaller regional wars that stay controled and nonnuclear? Sure, but nothing beyond that will ever happen again.

Medical technology is already capable of wiping out disease using something called 'phage therapy'. It works but pharmaceuticals cant make money off of it.

As to energy, the development of LENR technology is going to solve all that over the next twenty years along with the food shortage as well.

Medical tech will let you live as long as you want, barring violent damage being done, and to look like any age you want with full mobility.



Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:49 | 2765387 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

LOL.  We can't afford that.

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 16:33 | 2769352 JimBowie1958
JimBowie1958's picture

Sure we can, in fact it will be the saving factor to Social Security insolvency if we allow people to collect a small amount of their retirement eligability and they still work to earn some kind of income.

We are talking full productive years, not bed ridden in some hospital.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:51 | 2764386 Deep79
Deep79's picture



Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:51 | 2764387 Frastric
Frastric's picture

The Medicare expenses are underestimating the obesity epidemic and the likely 70% obesity come 2020 in America.

Cue parabolic USA debt-to-GDP...

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:09 | 2764460 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

I would also love to see what considerations were used to determine "realistic baseline" as it relates to this chart. 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:10 | 2764474 A Man without Q...
A Man without Qualities's picture

and yet you can't do anything, you can't even SAY anything about the lifestyle choices that are massively contributing to this....


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:34 | 2764566 odatruf
odatruf's picture



Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:22 | 2765275 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Yes, make it everyones' problem and then don't let anyone complain.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:53 | 2765409 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Lifestyle choices are already being factored in.  For example, if you are over 65, you smoked regularly and have lung cancer, you will be given hospice and a morphine drip.  The checklist will be expanded up over time. 

However, you may have to guess now what will be on the checklist when it is your turn.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:11 | 2764478 owensdrillin
owensdrillin's picture

How about the schools start having two mandatory hours of PE per day and get the younger generation in shape. Teach them to eat right and learn lifestyles that will take the pressure off the the system. Maybe they will take some of these ideas home with them and get their fat parents to re-think their lifestyles.

I know government is rarely a solution but in this case maybe it can give the new generations a chance. First off, fire all the fat teachers so they quit setting brutal examples. It's time to shape up. Being obese in 95% of the cases is a lifestyle choice and it's hardly the children's fault when it is indoctrinated from birth to eat shit and do nothing.

Also, take all wifi out of schools. Unplug the fucking i-shit.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:04 | 2764683 Mr.Bigfoot
Mr.Bigfoot's picture

Actually obesity is secondary to lifestyle choices in 99.9% of cases. The problem is Medicare does not require the beneficiaries (ie patients) to take any responsibility in their healthcare. How many times have I seen a guy come in for coronary artery bypass surgery (>100k expense paid for by joe taxpayer) then start eating fast food before they even leave the hospital and continue to smoke after they leave. There is NO way to reign in costs if Americans are not asked to take care of themselves.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:56 | 2765420 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Take a look at the Cuban health model.  Health care professionals are empowered to intervene directly in the lifestyles of patients.  Very invasive and perhaps UnAmerican to most.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 15:47 | 2765585 Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

No medicare for individuals who exceed their "ideal body weight" by 10%.   boom...done

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:47 | 2764842 LoneCapitalist
LoneCapitalist's picture

Maybe if people had to work for a living, they would be healthier. Or dead, either way it solves the problem.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:24 | 2765288 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Putting your children in public schools is wrong. Asking someone else to solve your problems is foolish. Both end up with the same result: disappointment.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:53 | 2764389 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

I just figured out why they needed a billion hollowpoints...

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:53 | 2764390 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Last time I looked, my employees and I pay for social security.  Ergo, it isn't an "entitlement" you stupid motherfucker.


Perhaps it is time to stop paying for it then.  Of course the big pharma whores will then require a bailout. stupid fucking sheep.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:05 | 2764415 Meatballs
Meatballs's picture

Couldn't have said it better myself. Neither is Medicare. The use of the word 'entitlement' with regard to those two programs make me sick while our 'leaders' vote themselves the most lavish of entitlements and rob the rest of us. Until Wall St. is eliminated from the health care equation we will remain on the road straight to hell. As Carlin said: "They're coming for your SS & Medicare and the'll get it sooner or later- they don't give a fuck about you." Truer words have never been spoken.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:04 | 2764436 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

No, you're not paying for your own SS, which if you were, might make sense and in your case, you might actually pay enough to match what you collect -maybe.

But read the law, that's not how it was written.  It's an up-front ponzi with "pay as you go", the young's money paying the current outflow for the old.  It's right there on the paper, man.

And the problem is, of course, demographics.  This can't work without growth of population in the working age - what I call the makers vs the takers who are both the very old and very young.

I know plenty of people who know how to work the system and who get disability who might have paid in for 5 years out of a lifetime.

You don't pay enough for medicare as it is - that's obvious.  When it's your turn to collect, there will be far fewer paying in much less, so don't expect much.

Thinking it's your own money you're getting back is just wrong, it's simply not how the system was setup, designed, and legislated.  My grandmother called it for what it was at the time for crying out loud.

Don't mistake this for me supporting this idiocy, I don't.

Not only are you misinformed about this, but it turns out that for a lot of years, SS actually had more income than outflow, and congress shoved that into the general fund and spent it, and put IOUs in the SS file cabinet to take it's place - in other words, they set up a ponzi, then stole from it on top - so the money you're paying in isn't even necessarily going out to retirees - it might be funding a war at the moment.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764453 Meatballs
Meatballs's picture

Agreed, and I do understand it. If they didn't misappropriate the problem would be near minor. What's your point?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:22 | 2764521 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Where the fuck did I say I was "paying for my own SS".

Open your fucking eyes and read what I wrote. I said "paying for SS"  If I was paying for my own I would not be deducting anything to contribute to the fucking ponzi to begin with you dumb shit.  That's the whole point, that money would be better spent reinvesting in my company, my employees and our innovation because it leads to our own future security.

What are you some eCONomics graduate student? 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:25 | 2764762 francis_the_won...
francis_the_wonder_hamster's picture

" I said "paying for SS""

The fact that we have no segregated SS account yet our W-2's and 1099's show it as a separate line item is just another illustration of how they try to fool us (unsuccessfully).  Because there is no tangible SS asset that you are purchasing, you are not "paying" for anything.  You are having YOUR money appropriated by the government with a false promise that you might get some benefit in the future.  It is theft.  This isn't just semantics, and I happen to fully agree with you about you being able to decide what to do with your own money.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:39 | 2764811 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Exactly, even more so when there is fundamentally no rule of law (where the fuck is John corzine).  One simple rule moving forward, if you can not physically touch or defend the "asset" or "investment", you don't own it.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:26 | 2765301 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

Yes you have elucidated your apocalyptic macho fantasies for us many times, but tell me, are you ever not on your period, captain?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:53 | 2764650 odatruf
odatruf's picture

Minor quibble, DCFusor - the problem really isn't the demographics. Had we kept the paid-out benefits in line with what the actuarial tables demand we collect, there wouldn't have been a problem at all. We have known all along that the boomers were going to retire, that they were going to live ever longer lives and that our population growth was going to slow. We knew all these things, all along.  The minor increase in life expectancy above the rate that was expected is rather negligible. If you read the SS Trustees report 10, 20 or even 30 years ago, none of this is a surprise.

We just didn't have the courage to tell people they need to pay more into the system. We have been unwilling to allow assets to be held in any form other than US Treasury Notes. And we have allowed policies that have driven down the rate of return paid to SS for the use of funds by the government.

Maths are a bitch.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:07 | 2764446 Shameful
Shameful's picture

Maybe you missed the Supreme Court rulings, SS tax has nothing to do with SS, and they are free to change the schedule of payments at their leisure as it does not create a contract and property right between you the taxpayer and the government.

As to the big pharma, in our lovely system of corporatism there is all of 0% chance the big industries don't get their beak wet.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764451 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

SS withholding is a tax. Pure and simple. I've always been amazed that "we" continue to believe that all those promises will be kept when every year CONgress "spends" the SS "surplus".

My philosophy is simple. Talk is cheap. Watch what they do and ignore what they saw. Action speaks so much louder than words and CONgress has been acting quite clearly for decades regarding SS.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:12 | 2764480 Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

Perhaps it is time that Tyler starts a religious organization in which we can all be annoited as Clergy.  This is one of the only ways to stop the withholdings of SS/Medi.

We just need a really cool name for our church.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:00 | 2764675 The Navigator
The Navigator's picture

Let's make it an Amish church so we can also get a waiver from ObamaCare.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 14:17 | 2765253 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

pity the "Church of Bob" is already taken. . .

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 23:34 | 2766924 Anti Psychotic
Anti Psychotic's picture

I rarely post, mostly because if I read the entire thread most of my questions are answered somewhere.  Maybe fashion the ZH church along these lines.


P.S.  ZH has been the best education I've had so far.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:40 | 2764816 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

The whole point being that people need to start calling things what they fucking are, which brings up the whole cognative dissonance issue as one man's tax is another man's revenue.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:32 | 2764559 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

You pay for other people's Social Security, same as it ever was.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:51 | 2764629 DOT
DOT's picture

So that means I "own" a highway some where or mabe a jet fighter.   COOL !

Just because the government TOOK your "payment" doesn't mean jack shit.


Thanks LoP you have kept me (more than once) from bashing my laptop.






Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:41 | 2764819 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Hey dipshit, the point is, stop bullshitting me and my employees, call it what it is, a fucking tax.

Stupid sheep.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 17:12 | 2765827 fattail
fattail's picture

SSI is not a pension plan or a retirement plan... It was meant for widows and orphans which is why it was a much lower tax at the begining..  It is social insurance.   You pay up front and the next generation will pay for you.... they haven't adjusted for the declining Demographics or longer life spans.  Which makes it a Ponzi scheme...

Actually it is worse than a Ponzi, because a Ponzi actually gives you the option of "investing" with the schemer. 

There is no option to being part of the Entitlement Ponzi.... besides prison. 

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 00:08 | 2766976 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

If you have no income, you don't have to pay.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:53 | 2764393 fuu
fuu's picture

The light blue one is going down?

The red one is at a 45o angle?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:55 | 2764404 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

quick ~ go get your friends from the Career Builder commercial to turn that chart upside down...

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:00 | 2764414 fuu
fuu's picture

Career Builder commercial? wtf?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:51 | 2764646 fuu
fuu's picture

I know we all look alike to you but that ape is unarmed.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:56 | 2764394 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

"This cost reflects growth in the economy, an aging population and an 'excess' growth factor that includes both medical advances and presumably inefficiencies."

The sickcare industry has had very few roadblocks to yearly increases in (gvt, insurance and private) spending on sickcare for the last 25 years. You can bet your sweet bippy there are inefficiencies in that complex.'s_Laugh-In

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:56 | 2764406 Stuck on Zero
Stuck on Zero's picture

Yep.  We pay four times as much as some other countries.  And those countries have better healthcare.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 15:37 | 2765546 smiler03
smiler03's picture

And ZHers love to call those other countries "Socialists".

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:09 | 2764467 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

The obvious reason is that insurance, which is now improperly equated with health care access (never had it and been sick at the same time, myself) - is a cost plus operation.

The have every reason on earth to let costs rise, as thent he few percent they siphon off is a bigger nominal number.  Cost plus fixed fee (their model in effect) always raises costs to get that fixed percent fee up in total bucks.  And here we just handed the "solution" to the very guys who caused the problems.

If you had to see, figure out, and pay your own bills as I do, you'd be putting unreal pressure on the system to get costs down, believe me.  That's even without the fact that the med business tries to rip you off, deliberately, at every turn if you're uninsured - did you know my wife was seen by 26 doctors in an emergency room visit that only lasted 45 min, and for which I was there for 30 and no one saw her during that time at all?  Try sorting that out sometime.  A good lawyer helps, but tort IS the biggest part of the problem.

I've even had their biling agents tell me yes, we charge the insurance companies a lot less than you.  While they have negotiating power, they have no motive to really use it most of the time - they're making a percent, so the more "under management" they have - the bigger that 2 of the 2 and 20 is for them.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:54 | 2764396 tmosley
tmosley's picture

All of them?

What happens to that chart when their GDP growth forecasts prove to be wildly optimistic, and we seem real GDP decline for the next 40 years?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:53 | 2764397 Sofa King
Sofa King's picture

Can you also plot "Federal Employee Expenses and Benefits" on there? That should be an eye opener.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:54 | 2764398 foodstampbarry
foodstampbarry's picture

I got mine bitchez! Screw future takers, they don't vote.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:54 | 2764399 The worst trader
The worst trader's picture

How long can rumors prop the market up?

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:55 | 2764400 not fat not stupid
not fat not stupid's picture

Obesity is good. medical darwinism.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764450 sluggo
sluggo's picture

Except, even the obese reproduce.  They may die young, but they have already spawned.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:39 | 2764595 giovanni_f
giovanni_f's picture

Obese people don't die young. They leave us only after having had their fair share

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:56 | 2764403 Urban Roman
Urban Roman's picture

As I have paid into SS for several decades now, IMNSHO it is not an "entitlement".You young punks owe me.

Is JPM/Corzine entitled to keep the $billions he stole from MFG? Is MERS entitled to foreclose on homes for which "the dog ate its homework"? ... You can find a lot of unrealistic entitlements if you just look around.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:01 | 2764421 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

Like you say, 1. It is not an entitlement, it has been  paid for from our wages. 2. Fraud is the main driver of these increases, by doctors and non-citizens. Waste in the system driven by idiot bureaucrats unable to read and write which is in turn driven by the ho politicians writing the laws they have been paid to write by CEO's. Alas, I doubt very seriously that anything will change no matter who the next president is.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:30 | 2764547 bagehot99
bagehot99's picture

There is actually very little outright fraud, but there is staggering inefficiency and counter-incentives baked into the system (by dimwits in Washington DC, who think they can control and fine-tune 1/6 of the economy through regulatory fiat and diktats). The answer with healthcare is far less government, which is usually the answer for everything that's broken. Sadly, that won't happen until a significant breakdown in the model occurs - the likelihood of which has been increased by the addition of 13,000 pages of new regulations created with the laughably-named Affordable Care Act. (Yes, the original act ran to 2,500 pages or so, and the DHHS has added another 10,000 pages, to 'simplify' and 'streamline' things; you couldn't write a comedy with that kind of content, people would say it was too silly).

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:18 | 2764733 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

I guess it depends on the the definition of "little" is. Google it, Bing it or whatever, there are several recent instances of groups defrauding in the 100's of millions. Course when the debt is 16 trillion, deficits over 1 trillion and rising annually and the black pool of cds's is 8 or 900 trillion, it's all 0 in the end.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:02 | 2764425 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Back the fuck up, how is something that you pay for an entitlement?  Stupid fucking sheep.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:09 | 2764469 Winston of Oceania
Winston of Oceania's picture

Easy they really have no choice but to pay and since the whole thing is just a ponzi scheme excuse for raising taxes under the guise of protecting the elderly, aw screw it... Stupid sheep.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:42 | 2764601 DOT
DOT's picture

Just another "redistribution" at the point of a gun.

Fuck SS and the Socialist Asshole it rode in on.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:41 | 2765061 Disenchanted
Disenchanted's picture



Even if you do pay via FICA the SCOTUS in 1960 decided this:


The United States Supreme Court decided in Flemming v. Nestor (1960) that no one has an accrued property right to benefits from Social Security.


So how is SS being defined as an entitlement? 




An entitlement is a guarantee of access to benefits based on established rights or by legislation. A "right" is itself an entitlement associated with a moral or social principle, such that an "entitlement" is a provision made in accordance with legal framework of a society. Typically, entitlements are laws based on concepts of principle ("rights") which are themselves based in concepts of social equality or enfranchisement.


In a casual sense, the term "entitlement" refers to a notion or belief that one (or oneself) is deserving of some particular reward or benefit[1]—if given without deeper legal or principled cause, the term is often given with pejorative connotation (e.g. a "sense of entitlement").


We who have paid in(FICA) on a long term basis, have been on the receiving end of an extended ass raping. Does your butt hurt? Mine does.


This society is dead to me. The fuckers tell me I don't have an "accrued right" to SS benefits, but they goddamned sure keep taking money from my income and from my employer under color of law implying that I will receive said benefits upon my turning 62 years of age.. As far as I'm concerned it's fraudulent theft. I don't expect to receive squat.


btw...say I would receive any SS benefit when I turn 62, I will not get back what I've paid into it in four months as I've seen some morons implying around these parts. It would take me approx 11 years to recoup what I and my employers have paid in. That's using the monthly amount the the SS admin said I would receive per month at 62 on my last SS statement. I doubt that I'll live that long.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:05 | 2764438 machineh
machineh's picture

Sorry, the amounts you paid were not invested to produce a return, as would be done in an HONEST pension fund.

Instead, they were stolen and SPENT -- every last penny -- by Depublicrat politicians. SS now has a multi-trillion negative net worth.

Those who invested with Bernie Madoff feel the same outrage. But that doesn't mean innocent bystanders like you and me OWE THEM for their misfortune of being crime victims.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:28 | 2765009 JimBowie1958
JimBowie1958's picture

Current year expenses are paid from current Social Security tax revenues. When revenues exceed expenditures, as they have in most years, the excess is invested in special series, non-marketable U.S. Government bonds, thus the Social Security Trust Fund indirectly finances the federal government's general purpose deficit spending. In 2007, the cumulative excess of Social Security taxes and interest received over benefits paid out stood at $2.2 trillion...Others argue that it has specific legal significance because the Treasury securities it holds are backed by the "full faith and credit" of the U.S. government, which has an obligation to repay its debt.

The US government owes plenty of cash to the SS program and they had damned well better pay on those bonds.

Cause if they reneg on those bonds the US government crashes.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:07 | 2764445 Winston of Oceania
Winston of Oceania's picture

You young punks owe me - Hardly, nobody owes you anything.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764458 dwdollar
dwdollar's picture

Any "entitlement" which is 40-50 years in the future is unrealistic. No one can see that far into the future with any certainty.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:12 | 2764481 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I can tell you I'm 50 years old and I don't owe you a nickle. The generation coming up behind me doesn't owe me anything either.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:54 | 2764655 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Like every pyramid, this requires infinite population growth i.e. each emerging layer of the pyramid's base is wider than the last.  

Unfortunately, people keep living longer.  This is an ironic statement but a true one because in western society, they don't just live longer, they keep spending at the same or accelerating rates.  They travel to foreign places, get plastic surgery, viagra, harley davidson's with sidecars for their beer guts, etc.

I have a short bucket list myself.  JOIN A BUDDHIST MONASTERY AND CONTEMPLATE MY INEVITABLE DEATH.  Of course I talk a good game, I understand that midlife crisises rattle lots of cages.

Pyramids seem to some kind of Jungian symbol of great societies ironically falling under their own ponderous weight. 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:12 | 2764681 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture




That's funny because that was similar in nature to my mid life crisis. Except I was wife was not amused.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 12:13 | 2764712 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

I can tell you that I agree with you, I don't owe anybody either, It would be nice to get back what I and my employer paid in to both schemes, however, it is my realization that the ho politicians, of both parties have long since spent the fiat and hypothecatd the so-called trusts to so many 0's, the funds are worth 0.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:02 | 2764409 GeezerGeek
GeezerGeek's picture

Anticipated increases in overall Medicare expenditures are transitory. Obamacare's death panels will see to it.

Seriously: No one can accurately predict anything 70 years out, or even 30 years out. Medical technology may save the day - look how personal computers radically lowered the price of so many things that affect our lives. War or famine or some medical pandemic may significantly reduce the population. Who, in 2004, would have predicted our debt reaching $16T by 2012, just eight years later? 

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 10:59 | 2764411 Imminent Collapse
Imminent Collapse's picture

Overlay military budget increases on that chart and let's see what difference that would make.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:02 | 2764426 Winston of Oceania
Winston of Oceania's picture


Says it all. It's not left vs right it's YOU against the State. -Ludwig von Mises

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:11 | 2764477 rehypothecator
rehypothecator's picture

Not that military spending is beyond the legitimate (i.e. Constitutional) purview of the federal government, while entitlement spending is within it.  

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:00 | 2764419 Jason T
Jason T's picture

don't get sick

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:00 | 2764420 pazmaker
pazmaker's picture

an individual making  105,000 annually will pay $4253.00 in SS tax and $1468 in Medicare Tax for the year

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:20 | 2764520 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

and if they are making 105k prolly pay another 5k for health insurance and 5-10k into their 401k


for a net return of........of...fuck you, i believe will be the return over the next 10 years

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:22 | 2764528 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

an individual making 2,105,000 annually will ALSO pay $4253.00 in SS tax and $1468 in Medicare Tax for the year

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 15:06 | 2765452 odatruf
odatruf's picture

Incorrect.  Only SS has an earning cap against which the tax is applied.  The Medicare piece has no such cap.  Using your example, that person would pay the Medicare piece on every dollar all the way to $2,105,000.  Look it up.


Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:03 | 2764431 Mercury
Mercury's picture

There won't be no freaking 2082.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:21 | 2764525 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

2082 will come and go, just like it has before, and yet again one will be counting

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 13:45 | 2765075 TeresaE
TeresaE's picture

On that, you are 100% correct provided you add an asterisk


"There won't be no freaking 2082*."

* for any of us, due to the human reality, we will all be dead long before 2082. For our kids and grandkids, well now, they may wish that year never came, but we can't know that until 2083 - at the earliest.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:05 | 2764433 gojam
gojam's picture

Why did they stop the chart at 2082 ?

I predict a Mayan Calender like panic as we approach 2082 and this chart will be to blame.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:15 | 2764502 pazmaker
pazmaker's picture

12/12/12 baby ...look out!!!!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:55 | 2764658 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Nonsense Gojam, there will be plenty of calendars around in 2082.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:05 | 2764439 Brazillionaire
Brazillionaire's picture

This just made me realize that, at 57, my life is almost half over!

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764457 SMFStreetTrader
SMFStreetTrader's picture

United States Economy At Risk? Fedex Earnings Miss & Downside Guidance

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:08 | 2764459 1eyedman
1eyedman's picture

the GOP boomers demand their medicare, "we paid into it, it was promised"....want to police the world....want to reduce (their) taxes....and to top it off, want to reduce/eliminate the deficit.    apparantly math standards have decreased across all levels of age and society over the years, not just among children, unless you consider boomers infantile....

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:10 | 2764475 Obnoxio
Obnoxio's picture

Personally I'd be for increasing Social Security payments and getting rid of medicare, medicaid and all medical insurance. Make Medical treatment cash only and our debt problems would be gone. Those that live healthy will survive.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:14 | 2764495 pdl
pdl's picture

2022? 2032? Ha, I doubt they'll last that long

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:14 | 2764496 nowhereman
nowhereman's picture

OK, let's not talk about farm subsides, corporate handouts, subsides on investment income, mortgage interest rate subsides, and all the rest of the tax loopholes for drug companies and the well to do.  Yea let's go after the sick, they're an easy mark.  After all it's always someone else who gets something for nothing.

Grow up people.  You're letting yourself to be led by the nose again.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:37 | 2764586 DOT
DOT's picture

the following symbol indicates "larger than" :   >

As in Medicare is larger than all of that.  

Thought you would like to know.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 16:08 | 2765656 nowhereman
nowhereman's picture

If the government had invested the taxes collected to fund this program, it would have been self sustaining for a long time to come.  But the government stole those monies, just like they are going to steal your 401K and your gold.

But that's OK, at least it seems to be all right with you.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:58 | 2764665 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

for some strange reason, there are a lot of people here at ZH that love entitlements for corporations but hate entitlements for those that need it.

I suspect many people here have a deep seeded hatred for their mothers and grandmothers.

It's just a theory...but a theory that seems to be supported by many of the posts I see on threads like this one.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 16:05 | 2765648 nowhereman
nowhereman's picture

Alien; You noticed that too. 

As many here have reported, earnings are taxed to pay for this "entitlement" yet no-one seems to care that the government has stolen the funds set aside.  I just can't understand how people buy into the "entitlement" meme.  It just goes to prove the axiom that if you repeat a lie often enough, it gets accepted as truth.

Wed, 09/05/2012 - 11:19 | 2764516 edifice
edifice's picture

The graph should go to zero on every measurement by 2040, just when I go to collect them. Bummer, guess I'll have to actually provide for myself...

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