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View Diary: Alan Simpson, Erskine Bowles come to Super Congress (99 comments)

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  •  No. SS dollars come from the general budget now. (6+ / 0-)

    It used the be the case that it didn't (and would not until around 2036), but Obama signed a bill that cut payroll taxes and made up the money from the general fund.  That's right, thanks to CONgress and Obama Social Security is no longer separate from the general budget anymore.  

    There is no saving throw against stupid.

    by Throw The Bums Out on Tue Nov 01, 2011 at 09:20:17 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Kinda right. And a huge mistake by Obama. (0+ / 0-)

      But while those dollars in some sense come from the General Fund and on a cash flow basis have to come from somewhere and do show up as a separate line item on Social Security Trust Fund  Monthly Reports, it is much less cler that they are actually scored as "outlays" as defined by OMB. They may, they may not.

      And if not are not quite as tied to the 'general budget' as you might assume, although certainly tied to the 'general fund', something that oddly is much different.

      Federal budgeting is just weirder than most people cn imagine, a fact that ultimately derives from the fact that the U.S. almost uniquely in the world has the ability to pay its debts in its own paper. And at current interest rates essentially free except the cost of ink or pixels.

      For example Treasury doesn't score redemption of the Special Treasuries in the Trust Fund as "cash transactions". How can that be? Well it seems that Treasury has the luxury of being able to maintain Full Faith in Full Faith and Credit. Which lets them do things, and once you wrap your mind around them, perfectly legitimate things, that would get U.S. States and even most other foreign Sovereign States in deep voodoo.

      That is America is Exceptional. Just maybe not in the way the jingoistic pinheads of the Right define it. God may or not have blessed the U.S.A. But the FSM or somebody has managed to ensure that it's credit is still good. Whether that would survive another Republican Presidency being a very open question. Keep your fingers crossed.

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