“At this point in time, the chickens have finally come home to roost.”

www.texasenterprise.utexas.edu www.texasenterprise.utexas.edu

Over at Texas Enterprise, professor in the Department of Finance at the University of Texas, Austin Lew Spellman traces our government’s long history of using Social Security’s surpluses to foot the bill for general spending.

And the ingenious accounting sleight-of-hand that keeps the spending covert, obscures the extent of our debt, and allows opponents of Social Security a convenient scapegoat once those debts pile too high.

According to Spellman, the whole transaction is remarkably similar to a parent dipping into his childrens’ college fund–only to require a loan from the bank when the time comes to make the first tuition payments.

Spellman’s comparison serves both to illustrate how this system works–or doesn’t work given a long enough time–and why it’s critical the health of Social Security shouldn’t be viewed as an issue affecting strictly senior Americans.

He concludes his analysis with bleak projections for Millennial workers, exhorting them to turn their attention to altering the current course of Social Security before the funding shortfall results in higher taxes and ballooning federal debt.