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Over 18.3% of personal income now comes from government assistance.

post #1 of 112
Thread Starter 
What. the. fk. The baby boomers haven't even really retired yet.

And when did USA Today actually begin printing interesting news?

Quote:
Americans depend more on federal aid than ever
By Dennis Cauchon, USA TODAYUpdated 58m ago |

A record 18.3% of the nation's total personal income was a payment from the government for Social Security, Medicare, food stamps, unemployment benefits and other programs in 2010. Wages accounted for the lowest share of income — 51.0% — since the government began keeping track in 1929.

The income data show how fragile and government-dependent the recovery is after a recession that officially ended in June 2009.

The wage decline has continued this year. Wages slipped to another historic low of 50.5% of personal income in February. Another government effort — the Social Security payroll tax cut — has lifted income in 2011. The temporary tax cut puts more money in workers' pockets and counts as an income boost, even when wages stay the same.

STORY: New Yorkers lead pack in government benefits
MORE: State rankings for assistance
From 1980 to 2000, government aid was roughly constant at 12.5%. The sharp increase since then — especially since the start of 2008 — reflects several changes: the expansion of health care and federal programs generally, the aging population and lingering economic problems.

Total benefit payments are holding steady so far this year at a $2.3 trillion annual rate. A drop in unemployment benefits has been offset by rises in retirement and health care programs.

Americans got an average of $7,427 in benefits each in 2010, up from an inflation-adjusted $4,763 in 2000 and $3,686 in 1990. The federal government pays about 90% of the benefits.

"What's frightening is the Baby Boomers haven't really started to retire," says University of Michigan economist Donald Grimes of the 77 million people born from 1946 through 1964 whose oldest wave turns 65 this year. "That's when the cost of Medicare will start to explode."

Accounting for 80% of safety-net spending in 2010: Social Security, Medicare (health insurance for seniors), Medicaid (health insurance for the poor) and unemployment insurance.
post #2 of 112
This is very clear evidence of how a slash-and-burn budget would damage economic recovery.

You can't trash personal income and not expect demand to take a hit.
post #3 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by FLMountainMan View Post
What. the. fk. The baby boomers haven't even really retired yet.

And when did USA Today actually begin printing interesting news?

If we include "income not confiscated by the IRS" as government assistance (you know, the way Obama likes to think of it) then the number is actually closer to 100%.
post #4 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by NameBack View Post
This is very clear evidence of how a slash-and-burn budget would damage economic recovery.

You can't trash personal income and not expect demand to take a hit.

Straw man is made of straw.
post #5 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by montecristo#4 View Post
Straw man is made of straw.

...?
post #6 of 112
It says New York leads in benefits. Is there a chart that lists states in order?
post #7 of 112
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by StephenHero View Post
It says New York leads in benefits. Is there a chart that lists states in order?

Impossible. Everyone knows red staters are the top teatsucklers.
post #8 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by FLMountainMan View Post
Impossible. Everyone knows red staters are the top teatsucklers.

That's sort of a separate question, though.

And I mean, NY is not a federal debtor state, anyway. That doesn't mean it doesn't have a more generous state compensation program.
post #9 of 112
I would be interested to see how much that 18.3% income redistribution actually costs. I have always harbored a suspicion that the various programs set up to redistribute money by the government are terribly inefficient. I would not be surprised if it were on a 5 to 1 or greater magnitude, such that every $1 redistributed costs $5 in government nonsense. Anyone have any actual figures on this? EDIT - It's from a Libertarian Journal, so it's obviously a lie, but http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sourc..._VMk0Q&cad=rja suggests it might be as much as 3/4 of every dollar is diverted to bureaucracy.
post #10 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by harvey_birdman View Post
I would be interested to see how much that 18.3% income redistribution actually costs.

I have always harbored a suspicion that the various programs set up to redistribute money by the government are terribly inefficient. I would not be surprised if it were on a 5 to 1 or greater magnitude, such that every $1 redistributed costs $5 in government nonsense.

Anyone have any actual figures on this?

Wouldn't that be sort of, uh, impossible? the 5-1 ratio, I mean. That would mean that government was, between tax revenue and borrowing, collecting revenue equal to nearly 100% of all personal income. And that would still be ignoring defense spending, etc.
post #11 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by harvey_birdman View Post
I would be interested to see how much that 18.3% income redistribution actually costs.

I have always harbored a suspicion that the various programs set up to redistribute money by the government are terribly inefficient. I would not be surprised if it were on a 5 to 1 or greater magnitude, such that every $1 redistributed costs $5 in government nonsense.

Anyone have any actual figures on this?

EDIT - It's from a Libertarian Journal, so it's obviously a lie, but http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sourc..._VMk0Q&cad=rja suggests it might be as much as 3/4 of every dollar is diverted to bureaucracy.

I've had some thoughts on Medicare vs. private health insurance. Medicare is always held out as a gold standard for low overhead. My thought on this is this is because they have next to zero utilization reivew, ergo no overhead to speak of. Private insurance has tons of utilization review and is also full of lawyers, etc., to protect from other lawyers in everything from med-mal to business practices...so it makes total sense they will have higher over head. The action is in a question such as:

Take two patients with the exact same condition and health profile. What tends to be the overall cost of Patient A treated under Medicare and Patient B treated under a program with heavy utilization review?

Now, Medicare does have a primitive form of utilization review, namely they force providers to self-police for fear of Medicare audits. So basically they offload the cost of this overhead onto the provider. Genius, huh? Medicare can do this due to the nature of federal programs, things private providers just can't do.
post #12 of 112
piobaire do you have an MPH? if so you should PM me, have a few q's for you (unrelated to this thread)
post #13 of 112
Would you mind detailing your thoughts on Obamacare vs medicare vs a fully private system? I'm dreading being employed by the state as a doctor in the UK, and would really like to hear your views on the merits of each system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Piobaire View Post
I've had some thoughts on Medicare vs. private health insurance. Medicare is always held out as a gold standard for low overhead. My thought on this is this is because they have next to zero utilization reivew, ergo no overhead to speak of. Private insurance has tons of utilization review and is also full of lawyers, etc., to protect from other lawyers in everything from med-mal to business practices...so it makes total sense they will have higher over head. The action is in a question such as:

Take two patients with the exact same condition and health profile. What tends to be the overall cost of Patient A treated under Medicare and Patient B treated under a program with heavy utilization review?

Now, Medicare does have a primitive form of utilization review, namely they force providers to self-police for fear of Medicare audits. So basically they offload the cost of this overhead onto the provider. Genius, huh? Medicare can do this due to the nature of federal programs, things private providers just can't do.
post #14 of 112
A very sad statistic no matter how you slice it. We simply have way too much govt in this country.
post #15 of 112
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artisan Fan View Post
A very sad statistic no matter how you slice it. We simply have way too much govt in this country.

Thank you for this reasoned, logical, well-thought out argument.
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