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Author Topic: Largest Ponzi On Earth.  (Read 2705 times)
CJGoodings
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September 16, 2012, 02:47:52 PM
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Wouldnt the largest ponzi scheme on this blue rock we stand on be the US government's social security & medicare programs?

If the ever expanding income of new younger workers weren't pumped into the system on a yearly basis, wouldnt the entire thing crumble?
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Severian
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September 16, 2012, 02:50:43 PM
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The Federal Reserve/IRS system itself is a hybrid ponzi/strongarm scam. Social security and medicare are the sub-ponzis created in order to strengthen the original scam.
CJGoodings
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September 16, 2012, 02:52:56 PM
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With 300 million strong, i dont see any other scam that would compete on this mass scale.
Severian
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September 16, 2012, 02:54:11 PM
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Once you own the government, any scam'll do. Smiley
miln40
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September 16, 2012, 04:15:07 PM
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Well the whole free market economy is giant Ponzi. New credit relies on old credit being paid regularly. When a large proportion of the debtors cannot pay, the whole system crumbles. Greece is a fresh example of that.

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ildubbioso
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September 16, 2012, 04:21:35 PM
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Well the whole free market economy is giant Ponzi. New credit relies on old credit being paid regularly. When a large proportion of the debtors cannot pay, the whole system crumbles. Greece is a fresh example of that.

A nice example of free market  Roll Eyes
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September 16, 2012, 04:47:53 PM
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Well the whole free market economy is giant Ponzi. New credit relies on old credit being paid regularly. When a large proportion of the debtors cannot pay, the whole system crumbles. Greece is a fresh example of that.

A nice example of free market  Roll Eyes

It seems to me the market is quite free - taxes on the biggest players in the market (corporations) are pretty low outside of Europe, so the corporations are free to pursue the most profitable exchanges they can without hindrance of import duties or taxation. Of course, interventionist measures like state healthcare and pensions are an aberration of the system, but this only happens on national level. The world economy is pretty much a not-regulated jungle  where the strongest prevail
Would you elaborate why you consider the current (world) economic system not to be a true free market?

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September 16, 2012, 05:37:23 PM
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Wouldnt the largest ponzi scheme on this blue rock we stand on be the US government's social security & medicare programs?

If the ever expanding income of new younger workers weren't pumped into the system on a yearly basis, wouldnt the entire thing crumble?

Nope.  Social security is solvent by any sane measure.  Medicare needs fixing. 

The actual issues with the solvency of Social Security are extremely minor. The massive Social Security trust fund will allow the program to pay out benefits at the current level until 2038. At that point — absent modifications to the program — revenues will only be able to pay out 81 percent of promised benefits. That is to say, if the federal government did absolutely nothing over the next 27 years to shore up Social Security, a one time cut of 19 percent in 2038 would make the program solvent into the infinite horizon. This would be a sub-optimal way forward, but it underscores how solid Social Security is: even at 1.9 workers per retiree, the program could pay out at 81 percent of the current, inflation-adjusted rate without increasing revenue at all.

http://mattbruenig.com/2011/08/16/the-myth-of-social-security-insolvency/

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September 16, 2012, 08:41:11 PM
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Wouldnt the largest ponzi scheme on this blue rock we stand on be the US government's social security & medicare programs?

If the ever expanding income of new younger workers weren't pumped into the system on a yearly basis, wouldnt the entire thing crumble?

International banking is the largest that we know of, but I believe there to be those individuals behind the scenes that do the most damage.

You know, the place all the wealth of the world is always transfered/disappeared to.

Printing presses never stop, yet more and more wealth and property are transfered.

More and more money and wealth is created every minute of every day. Instead of getting richer, the people get poorer.
Severian
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September 16, 2012, 09:13:54 PM
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even at 1.9 workers per retiree

That's the ponzi.
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September 16, 2012, 11:47:37 PM
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even at 1.9 workers per retiree

That's the ponzi.

Really?  1.9 is in FAVOR of the system.  It might be (wrongly) considered a ponzi if there were less workers then retirees like police and firefighters manage to happen due to early retirement. 

Having payouts to people 65 to death which is always less people then from working age to 65.  The amount changes because of things like the baby boomers but apparently even that is not even enough to screw it up.  What screws it up is people living longer.  Changing the retirement age while politically unpopular will fix it even for the 2037 problem, that or cutting benefits.  

Severian
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September 16, 2012, 11:55:41 PM
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Really?  Actually that is from having payouts to people 65 to death which is always less people then from working age to 65. 

If it takes an increased number of contributors to pay off the earlier contributors, it's the mark of a ponzi. Also:

Quote
A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to its investors from their own money or the money paid by subsequent investors, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ponzi_scheme
Littleshop
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September 16, 2012, 11:58:39 PM
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Really?  Actually that is from having payouts to people 65 to death which is always less people then from working age to 65. 

If it takes an increased number of contributors to pay off the earlier contributors, it's the mark of a ponzi. Also:

Quote
A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to its investors from their own money or the money paid by subsequent investors, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ponzi_scheme

That alone should tell you it is not a Ponzi. 

Two hallmarks...  One is that it is not sustainable.  Social security obviously is.   Second is that social security is not pretending to have nor does it rely on profits.  There are no investors. 

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September 17, 2012, 12:01:53 AM
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That alone should tell you it is not a Ponzi. 

Two hallmarks...  One is that it is not sustainable. 

It would be utterly unsustainable without the power of the state to back it.

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Second is that social security is not pretending to have nor does it rely on profits.  There are no investors. 

It has compulsory payments, again backed by threat of the power of the state.
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September 17, 2012, 12:15:08 AM
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No company in the United States is allowed to run a retirement program the same way as social security is run. If they were, then, instead of having a managed pension account that is reconcilled against benefits, the companies could just make an assumption of future size and people paying into the program and at what levels, and then rely on those future workes to pay for the people retiring today. There would be some savings from overpayment of the workers, but then the company would be able to borrow against those to pay for ongoing operations. Meanwhile, the company itself would be taking on debt in excess of 5 times revenue.

It's a completely ridiculous system, and you can show all the articles you want about the solvency of the system" it is still a ponzi backed by the force of law. It is more stable than private ponzis because they have the ultimate two things every ponzi operator wants: 100% control over when people can begin withdrawing, 100% subscriber-ship with no option to back out.

On top of all of this, the system itself pays out far less than it really should. Taking the dollar value invested into Treasury bonds over the same period, taking out regular disbursements for life and disability insurance, and then converting at the end to an inflation adjusted annuity, gives a far greater monthly benefit than SS pays.

And yet it still seems they need to give an 18% haircut in 2038.
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September 17, 2012, 12:36:16 AM
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That alone should tell you it is not a Ponzi. 

Two hallmarks...  One is that it is not sustainable. 

It would be utterly unsustainable without the power of the state to back it.

Quote
Second is that social security is not pretending to have nor does it rely on profits.  There are no investors. 

It has compulsory payments, again backed by threat of the power of the state.

Logical fallacy there.  It DOES have the power of the state to back it, it is compulsory.  You may not like it but it is not unsustainable nor it is a Ponzi.   

bb113
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September 17, 2012, 12:55:21 AM
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A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to its investors from their own money or the money paid by subsequent investors, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation.


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Social security is an investment operation that pays benefits to its participants from their own money or the money paid by subsequent participants, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation.
Littleshop
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September 17, 2012, 01:06:12 AM
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Social security is an investment operation that pays benefits to its participants from their own money or the money paid by subsequent participants, rather than from profit earned by the individual or organization running the operation.
[/quote]

No, not really. Social security is a TAX not an investment.  Social security never claims to make any profit.  Ponzis are not sustainable, Social Security is. 

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September 17, 2012, 01:16:35 AM
 #19

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Although I cannot believe it is necessary to point this out, the difference between Social Security and actual pyramid schemes is that Social Security never runs out of new enrollees to sustain the system: people continue to have children.
http://mattbruenig.com/2011/08/16/the-myth-of-social-security-insolvency/

People need to continue to have children at a minimum rate and, as a group, those children need to be at least equally as wealthy as the parents to provide for both themselves and the older generation. So it is some kind of ponzi that includes contributions via childbirth.
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September 17, 2012, 01:27:24 AM
 #20

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Although I cannot believe it is necessary to point this out, the difference between Social Security and actual pyramid schemes is that Social Security never runs out of new enrollees to sustain the system: people continue to have children.
http://mattbruenig.com/2011/08/16/the-myth-of-social-security-insolvency/

People need to continue to have children at a minimum rate and, as a group, those children need to be at least equally as wealthy as the parents to provide for both themselves and the older generation. So it is some kind of ponzi that includes contributions via childbirth.

Just like the people who accuse bitcoin of being a Ponzi, you do not understand what one is. 

If people have less kids, Social Security needs to reduce benefits or raise the retirement age.  If people have MORE kids then they can increase benefits.   

It is clear that some people  do not like Social Security.  Fine, just call it what it is.  Social Security is both a tax and it is wealth re-distribution.  It is not financially efficient.  It takes away choice. 

It is not a Ponzi. 

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