One-third of U.S. wages are provided by the government 

The average U.S. citizen currently has one-third of their wages made up government payouts, an all time record.

This comes at a time of record government debt totaling $1.5 trillion for fiscal year 2011 and projected to grow to $7 trillion over the next ten years. So right when people are most aware of the need to cut government spending to avoid a financial meltdown, is the time that people are most dependent on the government for their day to day living. 

The majority of these handouts come in the form of healthcare spending and social security. According to a Heritage Foundation report, Social Security and Medicare alone represented 36% of the total federal budget in 2010. These numbers are expect to grow as our Baby Boomers continue to go into retirement. These numbers also don't reflect future projections for the new open-ended entitlement of Obamacare.

Original projections slotted Obamacare at $900 billion over ten years.

Then it came closer estimate of around $950 billion after some of the kinks were worked out. But after taking one more look, the Congressional Budget Office decided that it would need an additional $115 billion on top of that to make the program work, putting the cost at well over $1 trillion. And these numbers fail to reflect the cost of the individual mandate, since it is considered private spending, which could add an additional $1.5 trillion in expenditures.

So while entitlement spending and handouts to Americans are going up, and as the rise of the Tea Party is showing that people increasingly care about the depth of government spending, attitudes about cutting the most expensive of these programs remains hostile. According to a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll less than a quarter of Americans support cutting Medicare or Social Security. Then again, Obamacare has shown to be less than popular, with a Kaiser Health Tracking Poll showing that just 25% of people expect their family will be better off under the reform, overturning the bill is still a long work in progress.

This is the core problem when it comes to relying on the government for too much.

Sure, the perks are be nice, but as with everything else in life at the end of the day you still have to pay the bill. The time for collection seems to be coming up soon for America. But with so much of our lives now wrapped up in government handouts, cutting what we've come to rely on will not be an easy political task.

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Staff Report

Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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