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Not A Magical Number

Updated on April 17, 2014

The number is 86,429,000 and according to the 2012 census it represents the number of Americans who got up every morning, wiped the sleep out of their eyes and went off to the salt mines to earn their daily bread. In other words they went to work. The number is refined to count "private sector" workers only - the producers of the nation.

Our government once again seeks to mislead the American public. Well maybe the producers rather than the moochers. That 86+ million figure is buried deep within the census findings but it's there. I remember Obama's outrageous statement that what the producers have built they didn't really build.

Empty Rhetoric Then And Now

"Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive." That quote is part of what this article is about. The unbelievable, at times, becomes unsustainable. What then?

Those 86+ million people are the ones who built this nation but somehow that fact escapes Obama. That group of people are the ones who can sustain our freedoms when push comes to shove. That may happen sooner rather than later the way the expansion of the welfare state is progressing under this administration. That group of people seems to be morphing into another endangered species.

Lets examine the make up of the work force as outlined in the census data first. The first part of this might give you cause to cheer but hold the applause. 103,087,000 people had full time, year round employment in 2012. That is defined as "a person who worked 35 or more hours per week (full time) and 50 or more weeks during the previous calendar year (year round), People working in schools have their summer vacation counted as weeks worked if they return to their job in the fall."

Take the 103,087,000 number and subtract 16,606,000 who worked for the government. 12,597,000 worked for state and local governments. A whopping 4,009,000 worked for the federal government.

So back to the private sector analysis. Of the 86,429,000 Americans who worked full-time, year-round in the private sector there were 77,392,000 employed as wage and salary workers for private-sector enterprises. Another 9,037,000 worked for themselves.

The Opposite Side Of The Coin

The benefit receiving population will now become the focus and the census has two categories. There are those who receive benefits for public services they performed and those who have paid year after year their entire working life. Categories include receiving veteran's benefits, those on unemployment and those getting Medicare and Social Security.

The next category includes those who get "means-tested" government benefits — also known as welfare. Included there are those who get Medicaid, food stamps (SNAP), Supplemental Security Income, public housing, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and Women, Infants Children.

What the Census Bureau found out is that In the final quarter of 2011 there were 82,457,000 people residing in households where one or more people were on Medicaid. Another 49,073,000 lived in households were someone got food stamps. Add in another 23,228,000 lived in households where one or more got WIC. Plus side 20,223,000 lived in households where one or more got SSI. While another 13,433,000 lived in public or government-subsidized housing.

There was no differentiation in determining how many households were comprised of people who are receiving more than one of the freebies in life. To compensate for this leave it to bureaucrats. The Census Bureau summed it up as follows: "There were 108,592,000 people in the fourth quarter of 2011 who lived in a household that included people on 'one or more means-tested program.'"

Free She Says?

The ratio was 1.3 to 1 doing the statistical math. There were 1.3 persons who are on the dole for every one American working full time. That''s upside down math and unsustainable.

Lets now examine the first category of benefit receivers I mentioned above. 49,901,000 people were receiving Social Security in that final quarter of 2011. 46,440,000 were receiving Medicare. Another 5,098,000 getting unemployment compensation and that number has grown since. 3,178,000 veterans were receiving benefits with 34,000 veterans receiving educational assistance.

Totaling up both welfare recipients and non-welfare receivers you come up 151,014,000 in that final quarter. Subtract out 3,212,000 veterans, who served this nation to insure our freedoms which leaves 147,802,000 non-veteran benefit takers.

Contrast 147,802,000 non-veteran benefit takers against the 86,429,000 full-time private sector workers and the ratio increases upward to 1.7 to 1.

What Flavor Is Your Koolaid?

There is no magic bullet to kill the problem this presents or magic Obama elixir to drink. Facts are facts. The baby boomers are coming of age. They are the ones who propped up this illusion the politicians of today want us to believe. We now want back those monies we paid into the various systems along the way of being the producers.

So along comes a snake oil salesman named Obama who shoved Obamacare down our throats so factor that into the baby boomers retiring. Use you head for once if you have to. the Medicaid rolls are bulging now and people earning below the 400 percentile of the poverty level are going to receive subsidies under Obamacare. Where is that money going to come from? The number of takers already surpasses the number of givers.

Thank about it before you answer.

Will I mind if you share this with others in your network? Not in the least.

As Always,

The Frog Prince


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      Stu 3 years ago

      Hi Hxprof,

      I think you hit the point on the head. By waiting so long, we have put ourselves in a position where we are getting dangerously close to the point where no fiscal solution to our debt will work. Once total non-cancelable federal debt becomes too high a percentage of GNP, there is no "solution" except default or monetization (substantive default).


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      Hxprof 3 years ago from Clearwater, Florida

      The Concord Coalition was working on this problem - an aging country with an unsustainable transfer payment system. In the early to mid 90's the Coalition had some influence and then it fizzled. The economy was doing well and most Americans didn't give a rip. Now the gig is up and people are in panic mode. Hey folks, we were warned about this years ago. We failed to hold our politicians accountable, so here we are.

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      Stu 3 years ago

      Frog, right on. The math is unsustainable. Some experts believe that federal off balance sheet liabilities, most of which are for transfer systems, may possibly be more than double the official estimate, due to rosy assumptions in calculating the reserves. And the number will balloon, along with rapidly rising cash payments, as 10,000 baby boomers per day are already going onto Social Security and Medicare as a result of retirement. Foreign countries are becoming sick of lending us money to finance federal spending that can't be paid back in sound dollars. In the end, either benefits are going to have to be cut significantly (allowing for much lower cash payments and major abrogation of transfer system liabilities and the T-bonds "backing them"), or we're just going to have to print more money to liquidate federal entitlement "assets" (the special issue treasury bonds). Such monetization could easily destroy the dollar, most private savings, and even the American economy in general. We are getting very close to the point where each worker is supporting two non-workers. This cannot be maintained over the long term. As Baroness Thatcher was fond of saying, "Socialism collapses when you run out of other people's money to spend."

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      Old Poolman 3 years ago

      If they don't like the results, they just manipulate the numbers. This administration has their own form of "new math" that most of us will never understand.

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      breakfastpop 3 years ago

      The money will be squeezed from Medicare. By the time this government is finished with Medicare, Patients will have the choice of either getting better on their own or dying. As far as the Census Bureau is concerned, we will never learn a thing from their stats because the Obama Administration has taken over the bureau to ensure that Obamacare comes up smelling like a rose. Voted up useful, interesting and awesome.