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Thread: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

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    Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/bu...rssnyt&emc=rss

    If you wanted to help the economy and you had $14 billion to bestow on any group of people, which group would you choose:

    a) Teenagers and young adults, who have an 18 percent unemployment rate.

    b) All the middle-age long-term jobless who, for various reasons, are not eligible for unemployment benefits.

    c) The taxpayers of the future (by using the $14 billion to pay down the deficit).

    d) The group that has survived the Great Recession probably better than any other, with stronger income growth, fewer job cuts and little loss of health insurance.

    The Obama administration has chosen option d — people in their 60s and beyond.

    The president has proposed sending a $250 check to every Social Security recipient, which sounds pretty good at first. The checks would be part of his admirable efforts to stimulate the economy, and older Americans are clearly a sympathetic group. Next year, they are scheduled to receive no cost-of-living increase in their Social Security benefits.

    Yet that is largely because they received an artificially high 5.8 percent increase this year. For this reason and others, economists are generally recoiling at the proposal.
    Just about everybody agrees that solving the deficit depends on reducing the benefits that current law has promised to retirees, via Medicare and Social Security. That’s not how people usually put it, of course. They tend to use the more soothing phrase “entitlement reform.” But entitlement reform is just another way of saying that we can’t pay more in benefits than we collect in taxes.

    “If the long-term issue is entitlement reform,” says Joel Slemrod, a University of Michigan economist, “the fact that the political system cannot say no to $250 checks to elderly people is a bad sign.”
    He's completely right on this. If we don't have the stones to refrain from passing this special bonus, how are we going to have the courage to make necessary cuts in our already failing entitlement programs? To me, this is reason #1 why I'm strongly opposed to the creation of another entitlement program.
    Last edited by RightinNYC; 10-28-09 at 05:53 PM.
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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    If we don't have the stones to [B]refrain from passing this special bonus, how are we going to have the courage to make necessary cuts in our already failing entitlement programs? To me, this is reason #1 why I'm strongly opposed to the creation of another entitlement program.
    I strongly agree.

    That's exactly the issue with the so-called "doctors fix" with respect to Medicare. The federal government seemingly cannot muster the courage to save a mere $24 billion a year in that case. Now, it cannot resist circumventing the lack of increase in Social Security benefits with a proposed $250 per senior citizen payout.

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    It's so much money across the board, and for such a little payout per person. I don't see the point. What can $250 get you these days?

    I'm no conspiracy theorist but stupidity like this makes me wonder if the Fed is trying to spend the nation into bankruptcy on purpose.

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/bu...rssnyt&emc=rss

    a) Teenagers and young adults, who have an 18 percent unemployment rate.

    b) All the middle-age long-term jobless who, for various reasons, are not eligible for unemployment benefits.

    c) The taxpayers of the future (by using the $14 billion to pay down the deficit).

    d) The group that has survived the Great Recession probably better than any other, with stronger income growth, fewer job cuts and little loss of health insurance.



    He's completely right on this. If we don't have the stones to refrain from passing this special bonus, how are we going to have the courage to make necessary cuts in our already failing entitlement programs? To me, this is reason #1 why I'm strongly opposed to the creation of another entitlement program.
    a) Can get out and earn $250 at any time.
    b) Can get out and earn $250 at any time.
    c) False choice
    d) Cannot get out and earn $250..

    A society which cuts its costs on its elders, on those who had been getting out and earning $250 for all their life and putting a good part of it in SS and MC, on those who were promised but robbed now, such a society is no different than a society of cannibals, and here we see the same people expressing the same ideas.
    Last edited by justone; 10-29-09 at 08:24 PM.

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by justone View Post
    a) Can get out and earn $250 at any time.
    b) Can get out and earn $250 at any time.
    If they could, they wouldn't be unemployed.

    c) False choice
    How is that even remotely a false choice?

    d) Cannot get out and earn $250..

    A society which cuts its costs on its elders, on those who had been getting out and earning $250 for all their life and putting a good part of it in SS and MC, on those who were promised but robbed now
    I'm sorry, we must be talking about different societies. See, here in America, the current generation of retirees has received and will continue to receive benefits far in excess of what they paid into the system.

    If you picked an average senior citizen and totaled up every penny they paid into SS and MC and then compared that to the money being spent on them from SS and MC, the discrepancy would be mindboggling.


    such a society is no different than a society of cannibals, and here we see the same people expressing the same ideas.
    I could make an equally absurd comparison by calling you a baby murderer because you don't support using that $14b to save the lives of sick and starving children. See how useless that like of argument is?
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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    I'm sorry, we must be talking about different societies. See, here in America, the current generation of retirees has received and will continue to receive benefits far in excess of what they paid into the system.

    If you picked an average senior citizen and totaled up every penny they paid into SS and MC and then compared that to the money being spent on them from SS and MC, the discrepancy would be mindboggling.
    That is even if they paid in to the system in the first place.

    My great-grandmother never held a paying job in her life. Not ONCE did she earn a paycheck. Yet, when she hit the magic age, she drew a social security check. She did this for the rest of her life (which was a while, since she hit 97 years old before she died), all because my great-grandfather held a job for 50 years. He paid in to the system, she didn't.

    Yeah, for what reason should my great-grandmother have received a check? She never paid in to the system, so she never should have received anything from it.

    “Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.” ~George Bernard Shaw

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by justone View Post
    A society which cuts its costs on its elders, on those who had been getting out and earning $250 for all their life and putting a good part of it in SS and MC, on those who were promised but robbed now, such a society is no different than a society of cannibals, and here we see the same people expressing the same ideas.
    No, quit comparing government spending to compassion. It's not.

    Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false, and does not swear deceitfully. Psalm 24
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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by phattonez View Post
    No, quit comparing government spending to compassion. It's not.

    The choice was not that but a,b,c,d

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by justone View Post
    The choice was not that but a,b,c,d
    But you said not giving money to these people is uncompassionate. Government cannot be compassionate.

    Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false, and does not swear deceitfully. Psalm 24
    "True law is right reason in agreement with nature . . . Whoever is disobedient is fleeing from himself and denying his human nature [and] will suffer the worst penalties . . ." - Cicero

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    Re: Economic Scene - $250 Checks for Social Security Recipients Overlook Reality

    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    If they could, they wouldn't be unemployed.
    This is the key point. They can, I always have some work to do at my house. I get one guy, he shows up for a day I pay him $10 or $12 per hour cash, he disappears, another one – the same story and the work is always done through your butt, and these guys are Americans. Illegal Mexicans here make $10, if they can speak ˝ English and have some skill $12 cash. They would hire you to help them for $8. It is only 31.25 hours. ( I don't hire illegals but some people have their ways) And that is justone way out of many to make $250 in the US.




    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    I'm sorry, we must be talking about different societies. See, here in America, the current generation of retirees has received and will continue to receive benefits far in excess of what they paid into the system.

    If you picked an average senior citizen and totaled up every penny they paid into SS and MC and then compared that to the money being spent on them from SS and MC, the discrepancy would be mindboggling.
    I see no number saying that. I see a blanket statement.




    Quote Originally Posted by RightinNYC View Post
    I could make an equally absurd comparison by calling you a baby murderer because you don't support using that $14b to save the lives of sick and starving children. See how useless that like of argument is?
    If the children are sick and starving and I have 14 and it is the way to save them I would be a baby murderer, absolutely.
    Last edited by justone; 10-29-09 at 09:08 PM.

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