To the peanut gallery that don’t “get it”: There is zero risk of Social Security and Medicare checks not going out if the debt ceiling is not raised for the next three years.
Got it? Zero.
How? Here’s how:
That total debt number is the amount subject to the limit, more or less.
But the “Intragovernmental Holdings” is the amount that the Social Security and Medicare trust funds are “owed” by the general fund.
The Treasury can redeem those by selling new bonds into the market in a 1:1 ratio and if they do so they now have dollars in an exactly equal amount.
That’s $4.6 trillion dollars.
How much is Social Security and Medicare every year? That’s easy – we can look at the Trustee report, which says that in 2010 the total expenditures were $1.235 trillion.
Note that these funds also receive tax monies and in 2010 they took in $1.267 trillion.
Wait a second…… they took in more than they spent? Indeed, which means that the only reason the Treasury has a problem in the present tense is that they have been stealing the tax revenues and replacing them with yet more IOUs.
(Note that due to the boomers retiring and medicare cost advances, which are relentless, both of these funds are bankrupt in the intermediate term. We’re talking about whether the money exists to pay benefits here and now, not in the future.)
But since those IOUs are counted in the total debt outstanding there is no reason whatsoever to state that Social Security “might” or “would” not be paid, other than as an intentional act of screwing Senior Citizens by Treasury and President Obama, for which they would both be personally responsible.
Let’s make sure you understand this:
THERE IS NO SHORTAGE OF FUNDS TO PAY SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE UNDER THE EXISTING DEBT CEILING. IN FACT, TREASURY COULD PAY THOSE BENEFITS EVEN IF THERE WAS ZERO TAX COLLECTED FROM ANYONE IN THIS COUNTRY FOR SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE – SUCH AS IF UNEMPLOYMENT WAS 100% – FOR A PERIOD OF MORE THAN THREE YEARS, AND NOT VIOLATE THE DEBT CEILING.
President Obama and Tim Geithner are lying and their own data, from their own web sites and the Trustees proves it beyond a shadow of a doubt.
Do not allow the fraudmasters of Washington DC to run their “tanks in the streets” lie once again.
This is simple: Raise the debt ceiling by as little as one dollar, lose your f%$#ing job.