Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

The Most Recent Tax Deferral and Social Security: Dean Speaks, You Listen

In their coverage of that $70 billion addition to the Federal debt, the Washington Post adds: House Majority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said that holding the line on spending while allowing the low tax rates to spur the economy will close the gap. But the spending problem lies not so much with the federal […]

Is Social Security the Worst Government Program Ever?

Human Events lists its top ten. I hate to agree with these rightwing zealots but farm subsidies and earmarking should make this list. And I’ll give credit to Human Events for placing some of the blame on the Republican Party. #3 on their lists confuses income tax withholding with income tax rates – and perhaps […]

Misreading the Social Security Trustee’s Report

I’m a little surprised that the National Review has yet to comment on yesterdays’ release of the Social Security 2006 Trustee Report, but I guess they have outsourced spin manufacturing to Patrick Wetherille of Human Events Online: The Social Security trustees yesterday released their annual report on the state of the Social Security system. Surprise, […]

Social Security 2006 Trustees Report

It has finally been released and its highlights include: The 2006 Social Security Trustees Report shows little change in the projected financial status of the Social Security program over last year. The Trustees Report projects that the Social Security Trust Funds will be exhausted in 2040 – one year sooner than last year’s projection. And, […]

Luskin on Social Security: The Zombie That Will Never Die

Donald Luskin performs a public service – sort of. He warns us that the Bush White House still wants to deform the current Social Security system: But reform isn’t dead. It can’t die. Reform is inevitable, because the Social Security system really is in crisis, in the sense that the accounting mirage of the Trust […]

Immigration and the Politics of the Left

The issue of immigration has been well-documented as exposing a rift among Republicans in recent days; articles in the Washington Post, The Economist, and the Financial Times are but a few examples. But the political left seems to me to be nearly as split on the issue. Numerous readers of this blog have expressed serious […]

Social Security Privatization: a Crapo Proposal

Mike Crapo has joined James DeMint, Rick Santorum, Lindsey Graham, and Tom Coburn with another spin on Social Security privatization that Phil Kerpen endorses: The DeMint-Crapo amendment puts the possibility of meaningful, pro-worker Social Security reform back into play. If the Democrats are smart they will latch onto it before the train leaves the station. […]

Social Security: Should We Applaud a Sneaky Proposal?

Kevin Drum writes: Like the creature that won’t die no matter how many bullets you put through its heart, Social Security privatization is back for an encore in President Bush’s 2007 budget proposal … The full faith and credit of the United States government is just an “empty promise.” It’s sort of like listening to […]

Guest Workers and Social Security Solvency

Eduardo Porter’s New York Times article entitled Illegal Immigrants Are Bolstering Social Security With Billions describes how one Mexican citizen – along with perhaps seven million other “illegal immigrant” workers: are now providing the system with a subsidy of as much as $7 billion a year … Most immigration helps Social Security’s finances, because new […]

Social Security Semantics: “Bankruptcy”

Was President Bush technically correct when he declared the Social Security Trust Fund (SSTF) bankrupt? In one corner, we have Victor and Andrew Samwick who defend Bush’s use of this term. In the other corner, we have Max Sawicky warning Professor Samwick about his Kool-Aid and Brad Setser extending the definitions to the discussion over […]