Friday, July 25, 2014

We could fund Social Security with the output gap

Via the Economic Policy Institute
This was going to be part of a larger post, but I think it's so striking that it deserves a post of its own.

Very briefly, the estimated output gap in the U.S. economy in 2013 was $868 billion. According to the Congressional Budget Office, Social Security outlays that year were $808 billion.

In other words, we could pay in full for our single largest federal program, and have billions of dollars left over, with all the wealth we're not generating because we can't get our economy running properly.

That's something to keep in mind the next time you hear someone going on about how extravagant and unsustainable our retirement programs are.

Last month, I wrote a post called "Every year, we waste Spain." I should probably title this one, "Last year, we failed to produce Turkey." (Its nominal GDP in 2013 was $821 billion.)

Egemenlik, kayıtsız 
şartsız Milletindir. 

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