Sunset Social Security or wage world war

Currently we are hearing a great deal of consternation from the left about the planned sunsetting of Social Security and Medicare.  To them, this signifies Republicans stealing food from the mouths of their babies.  Can you not feel the pathos?

For those who are not in the grips of emotion, conservatives have been warning about these entitlements, or payments made to citizens instead of to an agency, since they began with the income tax in 1913.

Our forefathers back then told people that any free program becomes an alternative to the responsible way of doing things, so people shift their costs to the free program, and soon demands expand toward infinity.  Infinite demand leads to Soviet-style collapse.

Since the income tax began and funded the entitlements, government spending in this sector has risen over a hundredfold and now is the major item in our budgets.  Our economy changed since 1950 from being free-market to being government-directed because such a huge part of our economy consists of payments from D.C.  A quick look at our budget shows that of our $4.8T mandatory spending every year, $4T of it comprises three programs — Social Security, Medicare, and welfare — and that this swelling has caused our inflation crisis by diluting our money supply since WWII.

Fast-forward a few decades, and we have $32T in debt, almost all of it from entitlements.  We can repay war loans, but no one can stop the slow, grinding advance of the free stuff from government, and a sensible observer will note that leftism has risen along with the entitlements.  The more people who depend on the free stuff, the more people vote leftist, especially among the young.

Over the past half-century, America has systematically neglected its infrastructure to the point where, according to the WEF, another $12T will be required to rebuild what has decayed while we were busy paying for FDR's New Deal and LBJ's Great Society, the two programs that built up our entitlements state.

As a last Hail Mary, in 1965, our elected leaders decided to open the floodgates of immigration with the Ted Kennedy–sponsored Hart-Celler Act, figuring in the wisdom of a first-semester MBA that if they brought in warm bodies, they could tax them and pay off the already rising debt for all the social programs promised to the generation that fought in WWII.

Europe did the same thing starting in the 2000s, but where is Europe now?  In the U.K., strikes have paralyzed industry as the political class slowly thinks the unthinkable — namely, that they never could afford their socialized medicine system, the National Health Service (NHS), or their generous welfare state and state-subsidized council housing.  France is trying to raise the retirement age — as the U.K. and Spain did — in order to keep its entitlements funded.  Germany is facing the fact that it cut costs so much that it has no functional military.  Even importing millions of new taxpayers did not stave off the coming bankruptcy and default of all the first-world governments, and Russia-China sees this as an opportunity to seize control.

The last time we had conditions like this, the Great Depression was raging because that income tax in 1913 led to rapid inflation, which caused speculation to rage out of control, culminating in a stock market crash and a run on the banks.  America got out of that depression only by going to war, and humanity saw how world war makes big winners.  Whoever wins gets to keep their economy, while everyone else starves, as Europe did up through the 1960s.

You can complain about Republicans sunsetting Social Security, Medicare, and welfare if you want, but you are in effect voting for us to go to war.  We are out of money, and our obligations are piling up.  We are headed for default.

Alternatively, we could "sunset" or stop future signups to these entitlements, then gradually pay them down and then pay down our debt once we eliminate the $4T in socialist programs that weighs down our budget every year.

We could escape the programs that are wrecking our economy just like how communism destroyed the Soviet Union, or follow the path to war.  Do you want your kid to have low-quality expensive "free" health care or die on the battlefields of a bankrupt Europe?

Image: SSA.

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