bdlessans: "Could it be beneficial/possible to recognize unnecessary Social Security expenditures and end them."Defining them and then using the political capital to enact such reform is the daunting task.Have you ever seen the Dan Rostenkowski pictures after a medicare meeting in Chicago in 1989?"For Dan Rostenkowski, D-Ill., then powerful chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, it all boiled over on a hot day in August when he failed to sell the new coverage to elderly activists at a seniors' center on Chicago's North Side. Brandishing canes, some waving signs saying "Rottenkowski," they chased the sweating, panicked lawmaker to his car. When they surrounded his car, he got out and ran down the street. Within months, Congress had repealed the law."http://www.commondreams.org/headlines03/1123-11.htm"Currently, 20% of our budget is spent on Social Security with another 23% on Medicare and Medicaid. How are we ever supposed to get out of debt with such a high percentage of our spending there?"Social securityis off-budget."So, to sum up:1- Social Security was off-budget from 1935-1968;2- On-budget from 1969-1985;3- Off-budget from 1986-1990, for all purposes except computing the deficit;4- Off-budget for all purposes since 1990."http://www.ssa.gov/history/BudgetTreatment.htmlFurthermore, given that SS has been running surplus since 1983, it has actually obsucred the size of the real deficit.Regards, JAFO
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