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wreck ship

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: November 16, 2012, 05:07:42 PM

I found the following post on...wait for it, Saints Report. I know, I know, but the political discussion is better over there.



Despite the revisionist efforts of Republican supporters and "conservatives" to cast it as such, the recent presidential election was never presented as a referendum on entitlement. Quite simply, this was never about Obama (a government who gives everyone "things") and Romney (who will stem the tide of the entitlement society).

The reason why is that it remains political suicide to truly advocate entitlement reform. And this is because nearly every family (extended) in America receives some kind of Government benefit . . . and they don't want to give it up. First, nearly 2/3 of all entitlement spending is to seniors. Medicare and Social Security were originally intended to be a "safety net" but are now programs that all American seniors build into their retirement planning. It is believed that fear of real reform to social security and Medicare cost the GOP in Florida. And when the GOP starts losing old people, the election truly is lost.

A new book from the American Enterprise Institute describes the statistics of the modern American welfare state in detail. Here are some of the conclusions:
- More than 60% of entitlement spending goes to seniors.
- Nearly every American over 65 takes advantage of a Government program.
- Medicare and social security are not "need-based" . . . in other words, everybody gets it regardless of financial condition.
- 2/3 of all federal spending is on some form of "transfer" (i.e. an entitlement program). In 1955, it was only 1/5.
- Entitlement spending is bi-partisan and in fact has grown by greater percentages under Republican administrations than Democratic over the last 50 years.

A Nation of Takers | Templeton Press
Is America becoming a nation of takers? - Society and Culture - AEI
Robert Samuelson: It

It seems quite clear that "payments" are what is driving the huge federal budget and the massive deficits that come with it. It is also quite clear that the bulk of these payments go to seniors without consideration of whether the particular recipient "needs" what was originally supposed to be a safety net.

So what I'm wondering is why isn't there more generational conflict in this country? - Clearly, the entitlement system is breaking the bank and we're having to borrow - which means that repayment will have to come from younger Americans and future generations. We know that social security and medicare are both in jeopardy of becoming insolvent in the relatively near-term, which will require restructuring.

Yes, we should respect seniors and appreciate what they have done. But how far does this go? Yes, seniors paid into these programs but their receipts far outstrip their contributions and younger Americans are paying into these programs even though it is unlikely that they'll ever get that money back, dollar-for-dollar. So basically, seniors are getting better than dollar-for-dollar and younger Americans won't see dollar-for-dollar . . . so this means that when younger Americans have withholdings taken from their check, those go directly to seniors and the younger Americans won't see that same money when they're old, along with the fiscal problems generated by massive borrowing.

Why is nobody talking about this with any seriousness? Why aren't younger Americans demanding reform? I keep hearing from Republicans that this election was about entitlement but it wasn't and that view is distortion and revisionist (with health care being the exception).

Do you think younger Americans (under 50) should become more active in demanding reform? Or is it "disrespectful" and we should just continue on doing the damage we're doing?

philosophy is questions that may never be answered
religion is answers that may never be questioned

spartan

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#1 : November 16, 2012, 05:47:04 PM

What's more seniors are by enlarge the richest demographic in the country and vote in droves. The rest is easy to work out.

wreck ship

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#2 : November 16, 2012, 06:21:06 PM

What's more seniors are by enlarge the richest demographic in the country and vote in droves. The rest is easy to work out.
yea my grandma keeps nothing but $20's and $50's in her bra. She's at the mall with the great grands spending money like she grows it.

philosophy is questions that may never be answered
religion is answers that may never be questioned

spartan

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#3 : November 16, 2012, 07:15:05 PM

What's more seniors are by enlarge the richest demographic in the country and vote in droves. The rest is easy to work out.
yea my grandma keeps nothing but $20's and $50's in her bra. She's at the mall with the great grands spending money like she grows it.

I was very nearly very snippy, but instead I will rephrase what I said, just in case you misunderstood.

Generally speaking, Seniors as a group,  have more disposable income and spending power than any other single demographic. Of course "generally speaking" does not means every senior is rich or financially independent. What it does means that there are a whole bunch of seniors with no mortgage, college fees, families to support etc and so forth. They also come out in droves to vote at every election which means very few people better mess with their fun and games.

wreck ship

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#4 : November 16, 2012, 10:24:46 PM

I understood you the first time and responded in kind. Sounds like you're fishin for an argument.

philosophy is questions that may never be answered
religion is answers that may never be questioned

spartan

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#5 : November 16, 2012, 10:55:01 PM

Nope, otherwise I would have stayed with the original snippy response.

You're sarcasm was noted but I wasn't sure if you were trying to be funny or a smartass.

wreck ship

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#6 : November 16, 2012, 11:43:57 PM

What's more seniors are by enlarge the richest demographic in the country and vote in droves. The rest is easy to work out.
yea my grandma keeps nothing but $20's and $50's in her bra. She's at the mall with the great grands spending money like she grows it.
Generally speaking, Seniors as a group,  have more disposable income and spending power than any other single demographic...

They also come out in droves to vote at every election which means very few people better mess with their fun and games.
If they come out in droves to vote every election, what politician would mess with their benefits?

philosophy is questions that may never be answered
religion is answers that may never be questioned
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