generational equity

Younger people bellyache about paying for Social Security, but the cost of kindergarten through college is an entitlement too. To pay for the education of the young that provides a lifetime of gains, today’s elderly experienced a net loss:

Using historical data and future projections, Lee and his research team calculated the net value of Social Security, Medicare and public education at all levels – minus taxes – for Americans born from 1850 through 2090.

They found that people ages 38 and younger – including those born 20 years from now – will make net gains in earnings of 4 to 6 percent over their lifetimes.

By contrast, those now aged 63 to 80 will have paid out more in taxes than they will have received in Social Security, Medicare and public education benefits, losing 1 to 2 percent in net earnings over their lifetimes.