It is a national tragedy that people may be willing to put aside the issue of Social Security reform because Congressional Leaders on the Democrat side – such as Dick Durbin and Harry Reid – have been standing behind the position that Social Security is not a problem. While discussing the impending "fiscal cliff" negotiations last week, Harry Reid proclaimed (yet again), that
"Social Security is not part of the problem, That's one of the myths the Republicans have tried to create," he said. "Social Security is sound for the next many years.
Reid justifies this outrageous and distorted view by asserting that Social Security is not adding to the current deficit since the the cash in and out is roughly the same. While that may technically true, it is technically true only in the sense that it is analogous to an individual who is running up millions in credit every day -- and then that person says that since he doesn't have to pay it back right away till next year or the year after, it doesn't affect his immediate budget.
The fallacy of this logic is that although the Social Security cash in may be equal to the cash out, the cash in includes everything we are getting, while the cash out doesn't include the responsibilities due to come. The cash out formula they are referring to excludes the trillions that are being promised to existing workers in the future while their Social Security tax is being collected today. As the years go by we are continuing to incur the deep cost of future payment obligations that the Democrats are conveniently not accounting for – and it's going to get impossible to pay those bills when they come due. Yet, those obligations are every bit as real as charges on a credit card.
Equally disturbing is the fact that the media is complicit in promoting this fable. Each year that that passes without fixing the system creates trillions of additional deficit to be paid by our children and grandchildren. Our media is feeding the Democrats' incompetence by promoting their sham and failing to report the truth about the insolvency of Social Security.
(crossposted at alanjoelny.com)