Biggest US scandal is generational theft

newsroom@islandpacket.comMay 28, 2014 

It happens with frequency. The president comes out to say how outraged he is, that his administration will get to the bottom of the current scandal, and people will be held accountable. From Fast and Furious to Benghazi to the IRS targeting political foes, it is always the same refrain.

But the biggest scandal in this government is the obscene spending and ballooning government programs, resulting in generational theft.

The cost of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security are soaring and unsustainable. In less than 10 years, these programs will cost $3 trillion annually. Not a single one of these programs will be financially solvent in the next 20 years.

Today, these programs and our interest payments account for 85 percent of all the revenue the government collects. To keep Social Security and Medicare going for the next 75 years would take $40 trillion.

Socialist governments could tax us all at 100 percent and never raise enough to keep these programs going. Many more Americans will soon be retired, and the retired are living a lot longer than when these programs were adopted. Adding another program, Obamacare, increases the problem.

Relatively modest but serious structural reforms can mitigate this problem and extend the life of these programs. When Paul Ryan and the Republicans made proposals to deal with them, they were branded as extremists. Democrats, however, are unwilling to deal with this problem.

We need leaders willing to make tough decisions before we reach a full-blown catastrophe.

Richard Courreges

Callawassie Island

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