Many more Americans are getting Social Security disability payments today than before the Great Recession, nearly two million. But that upturn also reflects long-term trends. About 5.4% of the civilian workforce ages 25 to 64 are on disability insurance, according … read more
Social Security’s actuaries have released a preliminary analysis of how the immigration reform plan would affect the program’s finances. Advocates for the plan are touting it as helping save Social Security. Is that that whole story? 1. Why does immigration … read more
At the New York Times Room for Debate section, I talk about why we shouldn’t raise Social Security’s “tax max”—the $114,000 cap upon which both taxes and benefits are calculated—to fix the system’s solvency. For those who like it short and sweet, here it is: read more
So could immigration help entitlements and the budget? Sure, if it was principally high-skill, high-earning immigration. But is that the deal on offer? No. read more
President Obama’s fiscal 2014 budget plan includes some significant steps towards restraining federal entitlement spending, including indexing Social Security benefits to the chained CPI and increasing premiums for high-income Medicare beneficiaries. Of course, some people believe that the president’s modest … read more
The issue is a program that induces even high income Americans to get a third of their retirement income from the government and spend a third of their adult lives in retirement. Reform doesn’t mean indiscriminate cuts like the chained CPI. But it doesn’t mean uninformed defenses of the current program, either.
Here are three central concerns with the negative income tax. read more
Looks like we have at least a partial explanation for the continued decline in US labor force participation. And it’s not just all those baby boomer retirements. The Wall Street Journal: Michael Feroli, chief U.S. economist for J.P. Morgan, estimates that since … read more
Kudos to Jackie Calmes of the The New York Times for a piece that highlights a simple but powerful statistic: Medicare beneficiaries, on average, pay about $1 for every $3 in benefits. To flesh that out, a single male who earned the … read more
It’s something of a Washington tradition to form entitlement commissions—and to mock them when they’re formed. That’s especially true when the sponsor of the latest one, Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, states that the group would be “patterned after … read more
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