Believing In The Tooth Fairy & Government Projections
I now know how docta ignoranti (6) grows inside the “higher education system”. Professors at LSU digest government manufactured propaganda and repeat it is our Lord’s gospel, then use it as cudgel to wade into state electoral politics with. Robert Mann is a professor at LSU’s Manship School of Mass Communication, Maybe the school should be called Mass Indoctrination (1).
In predicting the outcome(2) of Senator Landrieu’s upcoming re-election bid, professor Mann chastises Rep Bill Cassidy for tweaking her over the infamous “Louisiana Purchase-Pt II”(3). Why? Because, Mann mis-informs us, the GOVERNMENT says that “ObamaCare” is going to work the miracle Nancy Pelosi famously said it would once it was passed. Besides, the GOVERNMENT is already reporting miracles that would make Jewish carpenters from Nazereth hang up their sandals. Why, “In Maryland, [health insurance] rates will be 33 percent less than expected!” Why, “under ObamaCare, the roughly 70 percent of Louisianans with health insurance will experience absolutely no change in their health coverage.” Wow, professor! Can you talk Ms Landrieu into having Obama & Co. take over auto insurance too!?
Our nutty professor might want to consider that when Medicare was cooked up(3) in 1965 it was projected to cost $12 billion by 1990. In reality, it cost about $110 billion an 800% mis-calculation and by 2010, the cost was $523 billion. Not to be outdone, when FDR created Fannie Mae & then Bride of Frankenstein sibling Freddie Mac, they were supposed to prevent mortgage monopolies and turn profits. By mid 2010 the two monsters were $310 BILLION in the red (4).
And if that’s not enough, here’s one more GOVERNMENT program’s projection gone nuclear. From 1970 to 2012 Social Security Disability Insurance payments “(adjusted for inflation) rose more than ninefold [over what was projected].” Finally, the grandaddy of all government projections gone bad is the 1913 Federal Reserve charter’s promise to “stabilize prices.”(5) That’s strange a gallon of gas cost 0.18 in 1913 while an oz. of gold $18.92, so much for stability.
If professor Mann wants to play LSU’s ObamCare Apostle he should at least be required to not use his own employer, the government’s, wildly inaccurate figures to do so.
Between fiscal years 1970 and 2012, DI expenditures on benefits (adjusted for inflation) rose more than ninefold. The DI program’s rapid expansion and the projected gap between its spending and dedicated revenues in the future raise questions about the financial sustainability of the program. Since 2009, the program has paid out more each year in benefits than it received in dedicated revenues (which come primarily from the Social Security payroll tax). In 2012, total DI expenditures were $135 billion, or 0.87 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), while the program’s dedicated tax revenues totaled $102 billion, or 0.65 percent of GDP. In 2023, CBO projects, the program’s spending will be 0.82 percent of GDP, and dedicated tax revenues will be 0.66 percent of GDP.
6. See New With A View, 13 August, 2013.
“A miracle is happening right before our very eyes yet most don’t see it. This is the miracle of “docta ignorantia” Latin for “learned ignorance” a liability we have ample supply of in the U.S. and in Louisiana.”