Thursday, November 21, 2013

Fact Check: Social Security Does Not Increase the Deficit

From AlterNet:

Taking money out of people's pockets, which is what cutting Social Security would do, actually could have the perverse effect of increasing the deficit because it means that people can’t buy the stuff they would normally buy with this money, like food and healthcare. What that happens, the businesses trying to sell those items have to scale back and lay off employees, which means less tax revenue for the government. And so on. Not exactly a recipe for a booming economy.

More here.

Yeah, simple stuff, and I've known it for a long, long time.  Social Security is on a completely different accounting system from the one that covers the federal budget.  I mean, it even has a separate tax system that funnels tax dollars straight into the SS trust fund.  In no way can Social Security be considered part of the deficit, or the debt, or any of those other words that strike fear in the hearts of people who are very serious about the way the world works.

This is why it continues to weird me out when I hear what seem to be perfectly rational grownups, including the freaking "liberal" President of the USA, talk about the need to cut SS benefits during deficit discussions.  This is beyond apples and oranges.  It's like telling me I should quit listening to jazz because Robin Thicke is so sexist.  Huh?  Yeah, it's that stupid.  But this is the conversation our leaders, on both sides of the aisle, are having.

I continue to be terrified by the fact that I, a lowly restaurant server, understand this stuff better than the people who get paid to understand this stuff.  It's amazing this country still exists at all.