Ad Supported Blogging

You may have noticed over the last few days I have been playing around with advertising…I’m not really expecting much, but the IRS is going to take me behind the woodshed if my home office doesn’t start generating some tax revenue, so I guess this means we are moving from the “really crappy hobby” realm to the “unsuccessful small business” realm….baby steps right?

I have joined the Amazon Affiliate Program…if you aren’t familiar with it, here is how it works. If you click on an Amazon ad from my site, then purchase anything from Amazon within 24 hours, supposedly I get a small commission that doesn’t cost you a penny. So next time you are thinking about purchasing a Bugatti Veyron from Amazon…read my review again, click on an ad, and proceed to make me the happiest US deficit blogger in the country.

4/11/2013 Daily US Cash Deficit

The US Daily Cash Deficit for 4/11/2013 was $0.4B bringing the April 2013 total deficit through 10 days to $73B. This is likely the peak, as strong “tax month” revenues should continue to roll in, pushing the current $73B deficit close to the $59B surplus we saw last year.  2013 still has a $22B hole to climb out of to match or exceed 4/2012, but a combination of slightly lower outlays, strong revenues (+10% or so) and an extra business day could easily bridge that gap….or not.

2013-04-11 USDD

4/10/2013 Daily US Cash Deficit

The US Daily Cash Deficit for 4/10/2013 was $9.5B bringing the April Deficit through 10 days to $73B. We do see tax deposits continue to edge up, now about 6% over last year, but net revenues are only up 3%. Not that it matters in the big picture, but it is worth noting that 4/2013 will have one more business day than 2012, which should help revenue a bit at the end, but hurt cost. There is one promising metric…Taxes not withheld from paychecks…for example taxes due paid by check (because you didn’t withhold enough) are up 17% compared to last year, good for $2B. It’s not much in the big picture, but if we extrapolate it, it could mean some big revenue gains next week… or it could mean nothing at all.

2013-04-10 USDD

Social Security Demographics Guarantee US Bankruptcy


“I cannot afford to have my Social Security cut by one penny! Plain & simple.”


“I doubt that one government official can begin to live on what the average senior citizen does,” wrote one 77-year-old woman. “I hope that Pres. Obama truly understands the dire straits that his plan could cause senior citizens.”

As discussed a few days ago the latest discussion to fix the deficit has to do with changing the annual inflation adjustments from regular CPI to “chained cpi”, which supposedly runs a few fractions of a % under CPI. Both numbers are laughably bogus…CPI has been running around 2% or year….gasoline has more or less doubled in the last 4 years…you do the math. Actually…the government gets to do the math, and make the number whatever they want anyway…not sure why they need to pretend about using a different made up number, but I digress. That we are even discussing such miniscule cuts and pretending they will save us is a testament to the rampant financial stupidity present in DC.
Back to the article, which basically has a bunch of seniors discussing whining about the potential impact of losing a few dollars a year…you know, throwing them back into poverty ect… They are all pretty pissed at Obama for even allowing the discussion. This is one of the main reasons I firmly believe we are incapable of fixing our problems….In a democracy, it is possible for a powerful voting block to demand, and get free stuff from a weaker voting block. And please don’t send me anything about how you paid into Social Security so you are owed. The truth is, every penny you ever paid into social security was stolen and spent years ago by politicians you elected…
Regardless, with 300k seniors retiring every single month (netted against the 200k or so that pass), I suspected that the demographics are getting close to if not already past a point where it is likely impossible to actually make any real changes to the program. I mean what are the odds of anyone on social security supporting any reduction at all? Pretty close to zero I’d say, and I completely understand that. If I was living off$1400 a month of government cheese, and hadn’t saved a dime of my own money, I suppose I might feel the same way.
So I looked at the US population, finding that in 2011, the population over 20 (sorry…no breakdown of 18+) was 223M. Of that population, 44% was over 50, and I assume not willing to vote to make any voluntary cuts to social security. Then, I looked at some other statistics and determined that the over 50 crowd has a voter participation rate of about 66% compared to the under 50 rate at ~50%. After adjusting for participation, on a straight vote, Over 50 has 51% of the vote to 49%, and thus the power of the majority to do whatever it takes to prevent benefit cuts for themselves, and even raise taxes on the under 50 crowd to pay for it. So absent a moral uprising against the blatant generational theft that is the Social Security/Medicare program, the demographics of democracy virtually ensure we will go full speed over the cliff. No matter what the  politicians say, or the jokesters at the CBO predict…there is no way in hell the hundred trillion or so of promises made by the federal government won’t be defaulted on in one way or another, so you might as well get ready for it. If you can’t afford the $3 a month cut being proposed, you’re going to be in for a rude awakening when the checks stop coming altogether.

4/9/2013 Daily US Cash Deficit

The US Daily cash Deficit for 4/9/2013 was $2.8B pushing the April deficit through 9 days to $63B. Revenues are starting to pick up a bit…I guess not everybody is waiting until the 15th, but no significant pattern changes over last year…still sitting at 5% YOY revenue increase. Expect a large deficit tomorrow with round 2 Social Security Payments..then sit and wait for the 4/15 number next Tuesday. I have a few drafts in process I hope to put out in the meantime to keep it interesting…no promises though… in real life I’m a corporate accountant knee deep in quarter end close 🙁

2013-04-09 USDD