Please understand: we are not actually cutting Medicare, we are merely slowing the growth of Medicare, because if we don’t it will bankrupt our country.
This is no longer a trust fund of Medicare. Medicare had only $325 billion of assets in December 2011. Medicare spent $542 billion in 2011. In 1990, 62 percent of the revenue for Medicare came from payroll taxes. That number has fallen to 38 percent. If we do not rise income taxes immediately, the trustees1 would have to deposit $27 trillion into the Medicare Trust Fund and $11 trillion into the Social Security Trust Fund. If cost controls are not exercised for healthcare under the Affordable Care Act, and all indication say they will not be, the trustees would also have to add an additional $12 trillion to the Medicare Trust Fund. (What is the total so far? 27+11+12 = 50 TRILLION)
Oh, by the way, the trustees are only using a 75 year life expectancy so the numbers above are MUCH higher.
To add insult to injury a recent study done by the Institute of Medicine determined that 30 cents of every Medicare dollar is wasted. How much is that annually? $750 billion. What are we (collectively) doing?
If we do not find a way to deliver quality healthcare at an affordable price that encourages health care providers rather than driving them away in drove, we will bankrupt our country. This will not occur by shuffling around how we pay for healthcare – Affordable Health Care Act. The entire system needs to be re-examined and redone. In the meantime, you are at risk of being hurt by the makeshift, stopgap methodologies being used by both parties to delay the inevitable.
Here are your options: a) pay higher taxes? b) enjoy lower benefits? c) allow inflation to destroy your financial future and all the wealth you have work so long to create?
Choice is yours; all of the above or explore the possibilities with me.