Monday, June 14, 2010

Social Security cash flow suddenly negative

"Here’s something I didn’t know, from financial blogger Bruce Krasting (via John Ellis): Social Security tax receipts for the first half of 2010: $346.9 billion; Social Security benefits payments for the same period: $347.3 billion. Before this year, projections have always been that Social Security wouldn’t cross that line into negative cash flow for five years or so. Now it’s a reality. Congress has been spending Social Security’s positive cash flow for years. Now there’s no positive cash flow to spend." -Michael Barone, The Washington Examiner

Michael Barone is a political commentator who has recently taken to giving his opinion on economic matters, of which he knows little. (Certainly not versed in MMT!)

What is remarkable about this piece is that none of the deficit terrorists like Barone had anything to say about why these SS checks, written on "insufficient funds" never bounce.

But I'm sure I know what they WOULD say...they'd tell you that the money was borrowed.

Then you ask them, "What, exactly was borrowed?"

You mean, dollars were borrowed? Well, let's see...the Federal Gov't of the U.S. is the monopoly issuer of the dollar.

The Chinese don't issue dollars, the Japanese don't issue dollars, the Saudis don't issue dollars, nor does Germany, France, England, you, me or anyone else, which begs the question...where did those dollars come from that were "borrowed" by the U.S. government?

The answer is, they had to be spent into existence in the first place for anyone to have them to "lend" to us. The truth of the matter is, sir, that you don't need to borrow what you can create without limit. There's really no borrowing going and that's why there's never any default or solvency risk and why, the checks for SS will never bounce!


Mike Sandifer said...

There's no economic activity without spending. That is point seems so often missed is a reflection of how counter-intuitive the intuitive can be.

googleheim said...



Japan central bank to launch $33B credit program
Seeking economic growth, Japan central bank to start new $33 billion lending scheme

Buzz up! 0 Print
Topics:International Tomoko A. Hosaka, Associated Press Writer, On Tuesday June 15, 2010, 1:54 am
TOKYO (AP) -- Japan's central bank on Tuesday unveiled details of a new $33 billion low-interest lending scheme intended to fuel economic growth and fight deflation.

The plan accompanied the Bank of Japan's decision to keep its key interest rate near zero.

As widely expected, the eight-member policy board voted unanimously to leave the overnight call rate target at 0.1 percent. The bank has not touched the rate since December 2008.