Democratic Underground Latest Greatest Lobby Journals Search Options Help Login
Google

If you want to feel better about the United States...

Printer-friendly format Printer-friendly format
Printer-friendly format Email this thread to a friend
Printer-friendly format Bookmark this thread
This topic is archived.
Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (01/01/06 through 01/22/2007) Donate to DU
 
brmdp3123 Donating Member (336 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 04:52 PM
Original message
If you want to feel better about the United States...
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
Towlie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 04:55 PM
Response to Original message
1. Which parts should we feel good about?
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 05:35 PM
Response to Original message
2. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. Bullshit. Folks have been peddling that viral meme for decades.


The post-WW2 workforce size has been pretty consistently about 1/2 of the population. At the end of 2005, the size of the workforce was about 150,000,000 workers - close to where it is today. That means that half of the people in this country work to support themselves and the other half. That's better than the 19th century when the whole reason for schools to be closed during summer was so the children could work in the fields; when "social security" was having eight children so those that lived might care for the parents; when houses held three generations and people without children died in the streets as soon as they couldn't work.

Let's talk about who works and who can't/won't work, OK?

We have people too young to work. They're called "our children."
We have people too old to work. They're called "our parents."
We have people too disabled to work. They're called "our veterans, our brothers, and our sisters."
We have people too rich to work. They're called the "ownership class."

Just like the plantation owners once killed off the slaves too old to work because they wanted more of the wealth created from labor for themselves, we have an "owership class" today who are more and more jealous of sharing the wealth created by labor ... wanting more for themselves and letting workers keep less.









Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
brmdp3123 Donating Member (336 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 07:18 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. Are you actually saying
Edited on Sat Oct-28-06 07:20 PM by brmdp3123
that there has not been a decline in the ratio of workers to beneficiaries?

The URL at the bottom of your first chart does not get to the chart that you posted. Accurate data can be found here:

http://www.socialsecurity.gov/legislation/testimony_020...


The data for the years that you presented are probably accurate, but you conveniently left off earlier years and the SSAs own projections for the future.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
TahitiNut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. I'm fairly familiar with the slight-of-hand being performed ...
Edited on Sat Oct-28-06 08:18 PM by TahitiNut
... in order to spread TERROR! TERROR! TERROR! about the Social Security sky falling.

I suggest you look at the major changes in Social Security programs (OASDI) in the last 60 years, and particularly look at the major changes in how a "covered worker" is defined. That's one key to comprehending the charts used in the 'testimony' regarding the actuarial projections. Another key to comprehending the actuarial projections are the assumptions regarding future minimum wages and other equitable employee compensation issues. Another historical trend to examine is the institution (and abandonment) of defined benefit (and defined contribution) employer-provided pension programs that came into vogue in the 50s and lasted for about 30-40 years.

The URL at the bottom right-hand corner of the graph identifies the location of the Social Security Administration's data regarding the Average Wage Index which they develop and use to determine both the adjustment to benefits and the adjustment to the annual "wage cap." As a part of the development of this index, the SSA tallies the number of people for whom one or more W-2s were filed by their employer(s) during the year. These are the people who actually worked and paid FICA 'taxes.' It includes "covered workers" and other workers - including guest (and other visa) workers and workers not "covered" for various reasons.

But that only accounts for the numerator of the ratio. The denominator is the number of beneficiaries of OASDI. I obtain that number from http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/STATS/OASDIbenies.html

You're welcome to run the calculations yourself ... instead of letting others do your analysis for you. I heartily recommend that folks do their own analysis. You never know the agenda of someone doing it for you, do you?


But perhaps you still miss the point. When half the people in the country work and the other half don't, then (to one degree or another) the ratio of workers to those supported by a worker is approximately ONE-TO-ONE! Unless we keep this firmly in mind, we get distracted by the statistical slight-of-hand that focuses on one manner in which one category of workers support one category of non-workers.

Let me just try to make one point that may serve shed light on this. After WW2, we had the so-called "baby boom." Does it ever occur to people that the workers at this time were not only supporting the Social Security beneficiaries but were also supporting those very "babies" themselves?

When was the last time you saw a discussion of public policy where we tried to 'manage' the ratio of workers to children???

Funny thing about that.

Again, the central issue of our economy (or any economy, really) is the equitable systemic distribution of the wealth that's generated by labor. (I call it "economic justice.") How equitable is the worker's share? How many people know that workers have been getting a smaller and smaller share for the last thirty years?

What the "investor class" does NOT want to focus upon is the degree to which workers are supporting "The Life Styles of The Rich and Powerful." The 'villain du jour' in the melodrama played out on the corporate media stage is "those geezers" ... those evil, dastardly boomers.


Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
pinto Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 08:50 PM
Response to Reply #2
8. Geez, Poppyseedman, I suspect you'll have a Soc. Sec. benefit if
Edited on Sat Oct-28-06 08:51 PM by pinto
the program isn't dismantled and de-funded by the Republicans.

(aside) Call me when you're a geezer, too. You might see things differently, then.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
GeorgeGist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 06:25 PM
Response to Original message
4. Banal, sophomoric, arrogant and...
willfully ignorant.

"What are the morals of these recitations?
Two leap to mind.

The first is, whenever you start thinking that this country is screwed up beyond redemption, it pays to travel beyond our borders. It's amazing how often the not-so-wonderful realities that we think of as terrible problems constitute other people's dreams.

The second is, demographics may not be destiny. But the numerical study of who we are and how we got that way does have a refreshing habit of focusing our attention on what's important, long-term, about our culture and valueswhere we're headed, and what makes us tick."


You betcha!
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
brmdp3123 Donating Member (336 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 06:59 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. Yeah, you're right
Smithsonian Magazine is such a banal, sophomoric, arrogant rag.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-28-06 09:04 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. No, but that's a banal, sophomoric, arrogant article, which
ignores the fact that most immigration these days comes not from the developed world but from Third World dictatorships and hellholes.

Most Western Europeans and Japanese have no interest in moving here. They talk about high crime rates, poor schools, lack of health care, and other things that they don't have to worry about at home.
Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
 
DU AdBot (1000+ posts) Click to send private message to this author Click to view 
this author's profile Click to add 
this author to your buddy list Click to add 
this author to your Ignore list Wed Oct 01st 2014, 12:58 AM
Response to Original message
Advertisements [?]
 Top

Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (01/01/06 through 01/22/2007) Donate to DU

Powered by DCForum+ Version 1.1 Copyright 1997-2002 DCScripts.com
Software has been extensively modified by the DU administrators


Important Notices: By participating on this discussion board, visitors agree to abide by the rules outlined on our Rules page. Messages posted on the Democratic Underground Discussion Forums are the opinions of the individuals who post them, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Democratic Underground, LLC.

Home  |  Discussion Forums  |  Journals |  Store  |  Donate

About DU  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy

Got a message for Democratic Underground? Click here to send us a message.

© 2001 - 2011 Democratic Underground, LLC