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Bubba's Corner: New [CBO] Study Warns of US Long-Term Debt Problems

Alexa's picture

Just heard on XM Radio’s “Midday Briefing” with Tim Farley, that CBO has released a new study.

New study warns of US long-term debt problems

September 17, 2013 11:43 AM ET

WASHINGTON (AP) – A new government study says that federal health care and retirement programs threaten to overwhelm the federal budget and harm the economy in coming decades unless Washington finds the political will to restrain their inexorable growth. The long-term pressures promise to quickly reverse recent improvements in the deficit.

Tuesday’s Congressional Budget Office report says that government spending on health care and Social Security would double relative to the size of the economy in 25 years and that spending on other programs like defense, transportation and education would decline to its smallest level by the same measure since the Great Depression.


The share of federal spending devoted to health care would rise from 4.6 percent of gross domestic product today to 8 percent in 2038; spending on Social Security would rise as well, as the number of people receiving benefits rises to more than 100 million in 25 years, compared with 57 million people taking benefits now.

The rise in costs for the popular benefits programs has been apparent for many years and budget hawks says it’s best to tackle their unsustainable growth immediately rather than be forced to make more draconian cuts later.

But Washington — whether government is divided or controlled by one party — has been unable to agree on ways to curb the growth of these programs.

Democrats prefer a mix of tax increases and relatively small cuts in Medicare, Social Security and other spending. [Or the so-called "Grand Bargain."]

Republicans have proposed more dramatic long-term cuts to Medicare but are dead set against further taxes, especially after President Barack Obama won rate increases on upper-bracket earners in January.

“The unsustainable nature of the federal government’s current tax and spending policies presents lawmakers and the public with difficult choices,” CBO said.

"To put the federal budget on a sustainable path for the long term, lawmakers would have to make significant changes to tax and spending policies.” . . .

More "fear mongering" just in time for Debt Ceiling/Grand Bargain negotiations!!!

Comments

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

but this time, "cards are being held VERY close to the vest."

Other than "Tweeting" (which is now my most serious activism endeavor--if I can ever figure out how it works, that is) and calling the WH and our Senators and Congressperson, I'm fresh out of ideas on how to "fight back."

[I'm not against petitions, but for privacy reasons, don't get involved with them.]

I suspect it's a "done deal" [the Grand Bargain], but if enough light is shone on this issue, maybe our lawmakers will back down.

IMO, every year that lawmakers are thwarted, is a "win" for the American People.

This may be the "real" thing.

I've always believed that when it actually comes down, it will be under the radar and fast-tracked.

Alexa's picture
Submitted by Alexa on

of the video--the "original" ABC video, not a YouTube reproduction.

And this ABC post by Byron Wolf has a positive tone, IMO, regarding both Senator Ron Wyden and Former President Clinton.

BTW, when I post the next video, similar to the (C-Span) Elmendorf video above, I will post the contact numbers of C-Span--or CNBC or Bloomberg News--so that if there is a question of authenticity, it will be easy to check it out.

In the past, I've always "clipped" videos--mostly for the convenience of the readers and for "optics."

But it is very time consuming, and I'll be very short of time through the rest of this year, so from now on I will post the "entire video"--giving both the "start" and "end " points that I'm referencing in my post.

[It is not always possible to "clip" the business channel videos, so it will be more consistent if done in this manner.]

Here's a link to the webpage from ABC News:

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/2012/08/when-paul-ryan-met-bill-cli...