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View Diary: Hell, No! Social Security Contributes Nothing To Deficit (119 comments)

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  •  Yes, they made projections (1+ / 0-)
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    Tim DeLaney

    I agree that they made actual projections based on the factors you mentioned.  What I’m saying is that these projections are extremely difficult to make accurately, and the Trustees haven’t had a stellar record of accuracy.  I’m not saying they’re incompetent, corrupt or have a slanted political ideology.  It’s their job not to be overly optimistic and to identify problems that can be addressed.  But their intermediate projections are based on assumptions of a permanently weak economy, in my opinion.  The decades-long weak economy is marked in their assumptions by a long-term decrease in the average number of hours worked by employees; a relatively low, flat rate of productivity increase (apparently discounting any effects of innovations such as alternative energy); a long-term decrease in the average number of hours worked; an assumption that employer contributions to retirement plans would grow faster than employee compensation, thus reducing the percentage of compensation taxed for Social Security (highly doubtful); and average annual GDP growth of only 2.1%.  Average GDP growth this low over such a long period of time seems like recession to me.  Now, the Trustees’ projections might be right.  But I highly doubt it.

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