Monday, April 23, 2012

Social Security Trustees Change Arbitrary Assumptions About Future, Get Different Results

More disturbing than the results about Social Security is the fact that apparently we're going to all be poorer than they thought.
In explaining the changes in their Social Security projection, the trustees cited slower growth in average earnings of workers, lower earnings from interest on the trust fund’s holdings of federal debt, and the persistence of unemployment during the slow recovery from the recent recession.

In particular, they projected a lower estimate of average real earnings in the future, primarily because of a surge in energy prices in 2011 that is expected to “be sustained,” as well as slower assumed growth in average hours worked per week after the economy has recovered.

Mark Warner's on the twitter machine lying to everyone saying this means it "runs dry" in 2033. I can't find the new report on the website yet, but the sentence to find is the one that reads something like "After 2033, without changes to the program Social Security will only be able to pay out X% of promised benefits" where X will be something between 75-80 or so and X% will be "higher benefits in real terms than current beneficiaries receive."

So, uh, not running dry, asshole.

...and there's the summary statement, "Thereafter, tax income would be sufficient to pay only about three-quarters of scheduled benefits through 2086. "

Alternatively we could make people retire later and cut everybody's benefits now and give the money to rich people. Just a thought.