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US Government Entitlements - The Sixth Biggest Economy On Earth
Zero Hedge ^ | 7-30-2016 | Tyler Durden - David Stockman

Posted on 07/30/2016 4:53:34 PM PDT by blam

Tyler Durden
July 30, 2016

Excerpted from David Stockman's forthcoming book "Trumped! A Nation On The Brink... And How To Bring It Back"

Because the main street economy is failing, the nation’s entitlement rolls have exploded. About 110 million citizens now receive some form of means tested benefits. When social security is included, more than 160 million citizens get checks from Washington.

The total cost is now $3 trillion per year and rising rapidly. America’s entitlements sector, in fact, is the sixth biggest economy in the world.

Yet in a society that is rapidly aging to the tune of 10,000 baby boom retirees per day, this 50% dependency ratio is not even remotely sustainable. As we show in a later chapter, social security itself will be bankrupt within 10 years.

Still, there is another even more important aspect of the mainstream narrative’s absolute radio silence about the monumental entitlements problem. Like in the case of the nation’s 30-year LBO, the transfer payments crisis is obfuscated by the economic blind spots of our Keynesian central banking regime.

Greenspan, Bernanke, Yellen and their posse of paint-by-the-numbers economic plumbers have deified the great aggregates of consumer, business and government spending as the motor force of economic life. As more fully deconstructed below, however, this boils down to a primitive notion of bathtub economics.

In this bogus economic model, it is assumed that the supply-side of the economy is always fully endowed or even over-provided. By contrast, the perennial problem is purportedly a shortfall of an ether called “aggregate demand”.


(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: entitlements; governmentshandouts; welfare

1 posted on 07/30/2016 4:53:35 PM PDT by blam
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To: blam

Trump has promised to maintain middle class entitlements.

No one wants their benefits cut and any politician talking about it can expect to be shown the door.

We may see incremental reforms here and there but no radical overhaul.

2 posted on 07/30/2016 4:58:04 PM PDT by goldstategop ((In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever))
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To: blam

When the deadbeats discovered they could vote themselves more freebies, we were finished.

3 posted on 07/30/2016 5:02:24 PM PDT by LouAvul (Freedom without responsibility is anarchy.)
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To: LouAvul
what do you mean deadbeats?...when the govt workers found out all they had to do to sustain their obscene pensions and wages and bennies was to keep voting for the candy man....

I blame the govt workers for their greed....

4 posted on 07/30/2016 5:04:03 PM PDT by cherry
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To: blam

“On a long enough timeline

the survival rate for

everyone drops to Zero”

5 posted on 07/30/2016 5:06:05 PM PDT by Zeneta
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To: blam

It is not an economy, it is a drag on the economy. Anyone who tells you that GDP can grow with only government spending is a jOkeass.

6 posted on 07/30/2016 5:14:19 PM PDT by depressed in 06 (If you like your part-time job, you can keep your part-time job. Vote Bolshecrat.)
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To: cherry

I agree they are a big part of the problem.

7 posted on 07/30/2016 5:19:03 PM PDT by Rusty0604
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To: blam

This is concrete proof - the progressive-left nanny state is supported solely by a fiat, unbacked currency, and massive debt and fake interest rates courtesy of the Federal Reserve.

The Federal Reserve is destroying the Republic

8 posted on 07/30/2016 5:43:25 PM PDT by PGR88
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To: blam


9 posted on 07/30/2016 6:04:40 PM PDT by gibsosa
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To: blam; All
Thank you for referencing that article blam. Please note that the following critique is directed at the article and not at you.

Patriots, this post will first explain why most federal entitlements not related to being employed by the federal government are unconstitutional imo. It will then provide a rough estimate of the federal budget as the Founding States had probably envisioned that budget.

The key to understanding unconstitutional federal entitlements is to understand how FDR’s state sovereignty-ignoring activist justices tortured the Founding States’ intentions for the Constitution’s General Welfare Clause (GWC; 1.8.1) so that the feds could establish unconstitutonal federal spending programs like Social Security.

From a related thread . . .

Unconstitutional federal taxing and spending went into high gear when state sovereignty-ignoring FDR was president. This is because FDRs thug justices wrongly ignored that the Constitution’s GWC, which the 74th Congress used to justify programs like Social Security, was not intended to be a delegation of specific power to Congress. This observation is evidenced by the excerpt from the writings of James Madison, Madison generally regarded as the father of the Constitution.

The excerpt is actually from the constitutionally required veto explanation (1.7.2) which Madison wrote to the House of Representatives (House) when the 14th Congress tried to use the GWC to justify its federal public works bill of 1817.

In his veto letter Madison explained that the GWC is not a delegation of specific power to Congress, but only an introductory clause for the clauses which follow it in Section 8 which are specific delegations of power.

”To refer the power in question to the clause "to provide for common defense and general welfare" would be contrary to the established and consistent rules of interpretation, as rendering the special and careful enumeration of powers which follow the clause nugatory and improper. Such a view of the Constitution would have the effect of giving to Congress a general power of legislation instead of the defined and limited one hitherto understood to belong to them, the terms "common defense and general welfare" embracing every object and act within the purview of a legislative trust.” - Veto of federal public works bill, 1817

The post-17th Amendment ratification 74th Congress made the same mistake with the GWC when it used that clause as its excuse to establish Social Security, the 111th Congress likewise walking in the misguided footsteps of the 14th and 74th Congresss when it established unconstitutional Obamacare.

And not only did FDRs activist justices ignore Madison’s clarification of the GWC when it declared Social Security to be constitutional in Helvering v. Davis, but activist justices likewise wrongly gave the green light to unconstitutional Obamacare, no clause in Section 8 giving Congress the specific power to regulate, tax and spend for INTRAstate healthcare purposes.

The rest of this post concerns the federal budget as the Founding States had probably intended for it to be understood and comes from the following thread.

$765,645,000,000: FY2016 Taxes Set Record Through December; $5,107 Per Worker; Feds Still Run…

Four times the amount shown in thread title is over three trillion dollars. And this is a major constitutional problem, imo, as indicated by the following material, previously mentioned in related threads.

Note that a previous generation of state sovereignty-respecting justices had clarified that Congress is prohibited from appropriating taxes in the name of state power issues, essentially any issue that Congress cannot justify under its constitutional Article I, Section 8-limited powers. This is evidenced by the excerpt below.

”Congress is not empowered to tax for those purposes which are within the exclusive province of the States.” - Justice John Marshall, Gibbons v. Ogden, 1824.

In fact, based on the Court’s statement above, here is a rough approximation of how much taxpayers should be paying Congress annually to perform its Section 8-limited power duties.

Given that the plurality of clauses in Section 8 deal with defense, and given that the Department of Defense budget for 2015 was $500+ billion, I will generously round up the $500+ billion figure to $1 trillion (but probably much less) as the annual price tag of the federal government to the taxpayers, not the $5 trillion now benig projected for that budget.

In other words, the corrupt media, including Obama guard dog Fx Noise, should not be reporting multi-trillion dollar annual federal budgets without mentioning the Supreme Court’s clarification of Congresss limited power to appropriate taxes in budget discussions.

Trump supporters need to get him up to speed on the idea that a good percentage of the federal taxes that he and his rich friends have been paying throughout their lives are probably unconstitutional.

Remember in November !

Patriots need to suppoort the Trump / Pence ticket by also electing a new, state sovereignty-respecting Congress that will not only work within its Section 8-limited powers to support Trump’s vision for making America great again for everybody, but will also put a stop to unconstitutional federal taxes and likewise unconstitutional interference in state affairs.

Also, consider that such a Congress would probably be willing to fire state sovereignty-ignoring activist justices.

10 posted on 07/30/2016 6:17:54 PM PDT by Amendment10
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To: blam

The way around the problem requires US government revenues to take a major hit. This is because the entitlement are a major fraud, whose purpose was to double the income tax so the government would have more money to spend on other things.

So the first order of business is to stop admitting new people into the entitlements, while keeping the fraudulent taxation, but redirecting it into personal accounts that the government *never* touches, tied to things they dare not touch. This legitimizes FICA to benefit those who pay it.

At the same time, the people already receiving benefits from the entitlements continue to get what they paid for, in the crafty manner that it is done today: by saying that as long as the monthly payments are made, the system is “solvent”.

This alone guarantees that eventually the entitlement programs will die out. So the next phase is to speed it up in its path to destruction.

This comes by making a deal with those who are paying into the entitlements right now, but not getting benefits. Their choice: they can leave the system and for every years payments they put into a private account, they get a rebate of a second year to put into the account as well, paid for with income tax reductions; or they can stay in the system and get what they were promised.

In either case, the federal government’s revenues return to what they are *supposed* to be, which means massive reductions in the size and authority of the government.

An added side benefit.

11 posted on 07/30/2016 6:44:53 PM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy ("Don't compare me to the almighty, compare me to the alternative." -Obama, 09-24-11)
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To: Amendment10

As a retired federal employee, I’m glad I’m collecting a federal pension. I read these horror stories about state and municipal pensions being underfunded and shudder.

12 posted on 07/30/2016 6:47:37 PM PDT by Poundstone (A recent Federal retiree and proud of it!)
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To: Amendment10

Kill the Federal Reserve and you simply enforce economic reality on all social-engineers and progressives who would use GWC to grow government.

13 posted on 07/30/2016 7:05:03 PM PDT by PGR88
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To: blam
US Government Entitlements - The Sixth Biggest Economy On Earth

That's not an economy - IDIOTS!

14 posted on 07/30/2016 8:14:54 PM PDT by AndyJackson
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To: AndyJackson
economy, def. - "the wealth and resources of a country or region, especially in terms of the production and consumption of goods and services.

It isn't an economy if you just redistribute and consume. You have to produce those goods and services to have an economy. But of course within the Tsar Bomba kill zone around with the Washington DC mall as ground zero no one gets this point one bit.

15 posted on 07/30/2016 8:21:17 PM PDT by AndyJackson
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To: Poundstone; All
"As a retired federal employee, I’m glad I’m collecting a federal pension."

Several federal pension laws since the Revolutionary War. So you’re safe.

I read these horror stories about state and municipal pensions being underfunded and shudder."

This is where we get into problems with unconstitutional federal taxes, taxes that Congress cannot justify under is constitutional Article I, Section 8-limited powers.

More specifically, although there is probably corruption behind problems with state pension programs, if the post-17th Amendment ratification feds weren’t stealing state revenues by means of unconstitutional taxes as evidenced by Gibbons excerpt from previous post, then the states would probably not be having as many problems with pensions.

16 posted on 07/30/2016 9:45:28 PM PDT by Amendment10
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To: PGR88; All
Note that the delegates to the Constitutional Convention had decided not to give Congress the specific power to regulate banking. This is evidenced by the following excerpt from the writings of Thomas Jefferson.
“A proposition was made to them to authorize Congress to open canals, and an amendatory one to empower them to incorporate. But the whole was rejected, and one of the reasons for rejection urged in debate was, that then they would have a power to erect a bank, which would render the great cities, where there were prejudices and jealousies on the subject, adverse to the reception of the Constitution [emphasis added].” —Jefferson’s Opinion on the Constitutionality of a National Bank : 1791.

So no federal or private entity has the constitutional authority to regulate INTRAstate banking imo.

In fact, note that FDR unconstitutionally confiscated gold without constitutionally required amendment to repeal clause below. The Founding States drafted this clause to prohibit the states from using anything but gold and silver coin for legal tender.

Article I, Section 10, Clause 1: No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts [emphases added]; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

17 posted on 07/30/2016 10:07:05 PM PDT by Amendment10
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