Don’t look now, but the federal budget deficit is at its lowest level since Obama took office

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) announced on Monday that the federal government's  budget deficit will shrink this year to its lowest level since President Barack Obama took office.

The CBO says the deficit will be $468 billion for the budget year that ends in September 2015, slightly less than FY2014’s $483 billion deficit. As a share of the economy, CBO says this year’s deficit will be slightly below the historical average of the past 50 years.

Study: Gov’t figures off by $1 trillion; Social Security trust funds will be gone by 2033

New studies by Harvard and Dartmouth Universities have concluded that the SSA’s trust funds will be depleted by 2033.

From CNBC:

The Social Security Administration projects that its trust funds will be depleted by 2033—not an optimistic forecast. But it may be even bleaker than that.

New studies from Harvard and Dartmouth researchers find that the SSA’s actuarial forecasts have been consistently overstating the financial health of the program’s trust funds since 2000.

“These biases are getting bigger and they are substantial,” said Gary King, co-author of the studies and director of Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science. “[Social Security] is going to be insolvent before everyone thinks.”

The Social Security and Medicare Trustees’ 2014 report to Congress last year found trust fund reserves for both its combined retirement and disability programs will grow until 2019. Program costs are projected to exceed income in 2020 and the trust funds will be depleted by 2033 if Congress doesn’t act. Once the trust funds are drained, annual revenues from payroll tax would be projected to cover only three-quarters of scheduled Social Security benefits through 2088.

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“…have been consistently overstating”

When I lie to the government about how much money I have, they call it “perjury” and I go to jail. When the government lies to me, they call it “overstating” and nothing happens.

And by how much have they been “consistently overstating” it? About $1 trillion. Look, even if you love love love all things government and support the current social security system, this should make you angry. If it doesn’t, ask yourself why. They’ve been lying to you.

Look, something’s got to give when it comes to Social Security. It’s simple math. It simply cannot continue on its current trajectory and remain solvent. Of course, the only real solution is to stop forcing people to pay into an inefficient, bloated, flailing government program and instead allow them to privately invest their money as they see fit. But very few politicians would ever agree to that. It would give them less power.

So what are the “solutions” being thrown around at the beginning of this election cycle? Let’s examine one from prominent “Republican” Chris Christie:

In other words, we’ll soak the rich. We’ll redistribute the money. We’ll tell all the people who have paid into Social Security (in many cases against their will) over decades that they won’t be getting that money back, in spite of the “lock box” promises, etc. From what I hear, Hillary Clinton’s “solution” (for the purposes of getting elected, of course) is to scoff at the notion that there’s anything wrong and hit Christie for wanting to take money from little old grandmas. Sheesh. Politicians have ruined this country.

Federal Budget Deficit Falls to Smallest Level Since 2008

“The federal budget deficit fell precipitously to $680 billion in the 2013 fiscal year from about $1.1 trillion the year before, the Treasury Department said Thursday. That is the smallest deficit since 2008, and marks the end of a five-year stretch when the country’s fiscal gap came in at more than a trillion dollars a year.”

Shrinking deficits are impossible for Conservatives to comprehend. They do not even know how to report on them.

Yes, Obamacare Is Cutting The Deficit

“… all the ‘deficit hawks’ out there who are deeply concerned about too much borrowing and the terrible choices our grandchildren will confront might want to write a letter of thanks to one Barack Hussein Obama…. The reasons for the slowdown [in the deficit] in Medicare spending are complicated. But a big part of it is — you guessed it — the Affordable Care Act. The ACA has found direct savings in Medicare with things like cuts to some provider payments…. Medicare is still the biggest driver of future deficits, but the next time you hear a conservative say we have to 'rein in entitlements,’ you can remind them that nothing any president has done to achieve that goal has been nearly as effective as the reforms contained within the hated Obamacare.” - Paul Waldman in the Washington Post

You will never hear a Republican/Conservative say thank-you. They are too caught up in a hate-spiral of name-calling and victim-blaming.


A common dove tale…

This youngster is suffering from calcium deficiency. These birds are often mistaken for birds that have “fallen from their nests”. This species suffer from it very commonly at this time of year. They are originally native to India, where breeding all year round is not an issue for them! They were not an introduced species, but have gradually spread across Europe by themselves!

Sadly there are not enough hours of sunlight in the UK to metabolise the calcium and Vitamin D properly. So they get calcium deficiency at this time of year, which is seen when they try to leave the nest and fledge.

You can always spot them by the fact they crouch close to the ground rather than standing tall, as their legs are weak. They have bendy soft beaks and tail feathers that are full length but still “in pin” (the sheath still attached). They often pant or breathe rapidly, as their hearts are not functioning properly due to the lack of calcium.

Untreated, the prognosis is poor for these birds, as they cannot fly and will weakly sit on the ground until predators get them. Here at the hospital they are given a calcium supplement, and the majority make a full recovery.

Spread the word - if you see young doves looking like this - get them to a wildlife rescue centre quickly!
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