Geithner Admits Obama Budget Leaves America With "Unsustainable" Entitlement Commitments

During congressional testimony today, Obama administration Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner touted the alleged deficit savings in President Obama's new budget proposal. But under questioning, he admitted that even if that budget were to pass, the country would still be left with a totally unsustainable fiscal burden thanks to the two big health entitlements, Medicare and Medicaid: "Even if Congress were to enact this budget, we would still be left with—in the outer decades as millions of Americans retire—what are still unsustainable commitments in Medicare and Medicaid," he said.

Given continued warnings from the Congressional Budget Office about the nation's treacherous long horizon fiscal path, this is not exactly a surprise. Indeed, it's not even a new admission from the administration: As the Free Beacon's Andrew Stiles, who flagged the exchange, notes, Geithner admitted the same thing to Congress last year. Essentially, the administration's position seems to be: Sure, we know these programs are huge long-term budget busters—but don't expect us to do anything about it. 

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  • ||

    If they're unsustainable, then we need to stop doing what we're doing in order to make them sustainable.

    If this government can't manage that, we need one that can.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I know how to solve this problem. Why, we'll vote for a new government!

  • ||

    Can we do that? Is that legal? [Looks at Constitution.] My God, man, you've found a loophole! Problem solved!

    Hey, everybody, we can vote most of these fuckers out of office! This year! Man, I wish I'd known this all along.

  • ||

    OMG! We can vote in Romney or Gingrinch and replace a bunch of congressmen with their sycophants!

  • ||

    No, see, we can vote for other people! There are even other parties and something called, hold on, independents!

  • Ska||

    Man, I'm not voting for Jeff Goldblum.

  • American Voter||

    I'm not votin' for an unelectable loser! I wanna choose the winner baby! I got money riding on this! (OK, it's your money not mine, what's the difference really.)

  • anon||

    dude I'm totally voting for that Gary guy... what's his name?

  • WWNGD?||

    "Government needs to stop." That is soooooo cute.

  • wsd||

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  • austrian||

    GET OUT THE STOSSEL SCISSORS!

  • Dúnadan||

    Sure, we know these programs are huge long-term budget busters—but don't expect us to do anything about it.

    IOW, with fingers in ears, "LALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALA!!!"

  • William J. Le Petomane||

    We have to protect our phoney baloney jobs here, gentlemen! We must do something about this immediately! Immediately! Immediately! Harrumph! Harrumph! Harrumph!

  • Hedley Lamar||

    Give the governor a harumpff!

  • Hugh Akston||

    You forgot the part in his testimony where he said "Ask me about the consequences for my career LOL."

  • Mr Meow||

    This. With great tax evasion comes great responsibility.

  • Joe M||

    "Even if Congress were to enact this budget, we would still be left with—in the outer decades as millions of Americans retire—what are still unsustainable commitments in Medicare and Medicaid," he said.

    Is that where the Outer Gods come from?

  • ||

    I used to watch The Outer Decades. The episode that stuck with me the most was the one where the earwig ate through the guy's brain, causing him great agony, then he survived only to find out that it had laid thousands of eggs in his brain. Then he became Secretary of the Treasury. Really horrible stuff.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I kinda prefer the relaunched series. Especially the episode where Beau Bridges discovered a sentient species of hive-minded fiddler crabs, and after they got out of control the only way he could destroy them was to force them to pass a medical care benefit with no payment limit.

  • ||

    That was a good one.

  • ||

    My favorite where the reporter runs into the senate chamber waving a copy of ObamaCare shouting "Stop! Stop! It's a cookbook!" But it was too late...

  • ||

    That's the one with Darth Panel, right?

  • Loki||

    mmmmm, Soylent Green...

  • Ska||

    Bill Clinton did love his furniture.

  • BakedPenguin||

    My personal favorite was where the politician wished for total power and couldn't be removed from office. Then it turned out he was every US politician for the past 60 years.

  • Hadna Seanet||

    ** uncontrollable shivering **

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

  • Tman||

    Obama won't go anywhere near entitlements until after the election. He knows that the minute he gets serious about dealing with this fiscal disaster his entire house of cards he's built up will come crashing down on top of him.

    He's just going to ignore this whole issue until after the election, and I doubt he does anything substantial then. This is further evidence that we will continue to see non-issues or non-fiscally important issues such as the contraception mandate to busy up the airwaves.

  • Joe M||

    He's just going to ignore this whole issue until after the election, and I doubt he does anything substantial then.

    Yeah, pretty much every president does that.

  • Tman||

    True. That's why we're in this mess to begin with.

    Bitch about Bush all you want (and I'll probably agree with most of it) but he was the last president to push for privatization of SSI, which may not be the answer but it was SOMETHING.

  • Joe M||

    Yes, I remember those halcyon days right after his reelection. That lasted, what, two months before being abandoned?

  • ||

    He took heaps of abuse for suggesting it and backed off knowing that he could do nothing. One of the few things Bush did right, though maybe he should've kept trying.

    Resident lefties jumped on the talking points, big time: "Nothing to see here, folks, Social Security will be solvent for a million years!"

  • Bush Basher||

    In defense of Bush-bashing, the market DID tank. So people probably would have plowed right back into the government program anyway.

  • ||

    If Obama somehow manages to cling to office, he will never do anything but double-down. If he were going to try to fix things, he'd have already done it.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I would bet that whoever occupies the White House 12 months from now, they will take decisive action on entitlement reform by attacking Iran.

  • ||

    Can we eliminate welfare through the prudent use of drones?

  • Loki||

    War on Poverty?

  • Tim||

    If they win, they'll want it for themselves.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Saying 'prudent' implies that there is such a thing as an imprudent use of drones.

  • ||

    I accept correction.

  • Rich||

    whoever occupies the White House 12 months from now, they will take decisive action on entitlement reform by attacking Iran.

    No can do. CBO assumes military spending will decrease.

    /sarc

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    "Even if Congress were to enact this budget, we would still be left with—in the outer decades as millions of Americans retire—what are still unsustainable commitments in Medicare and Medicaid," he said.

    On the plus side, he might be wrong. Geithner ain't always so good with numbers.

  • cw||

    That is a double-edged sword, you know.

  • Ska||

    "I want to be.....a dentist!"

  • Tim||

    Massive inflation, it's what's for dinner.

  • Brazil||

    It comes with rice and beans, at least it did for us.

  • Cuba||

    You get rice AND beans?? IN THE SAME MEAL????

  • North Korea||

    You get *meals*???

  • Raston Bot||

    Berkeley grad portrayed racial stereotype in Hoekstra ad. What's the word for why I love this story?

    http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/cu.....50793.html

    In 2010, Chan, who studied sociology at the University of California Berkeley, launched The Strive, a 501 c(3) charity organization "geared towards empowering at-risk youth through inspiration and improved public education."

    According to the San Francisco Chronicle, which profiled her in 2007, Chan won Miss San Francisco's Outstanding Teen pageant that year with a platform of "empowering the youth toward an educational revolution" while maintaining a 4.2 grade-point average.

    And here it is...

    In the ad, which ran in Michigan during the Super Bowl, Chan portrays a young Asian woman riding a bike through a field of rice paddies and speaking broken English...

  • ||

    You think that young Asian women in Asia speak American English fluently? Or that the ad agency had to travel to China to shoot the ad to find Asian women who really cannot speak English?

  • Id||

    You know, I'm amazed this guy has kept his job for this long. He can't even lie properly.

  • Loki||

    In other news, Obama will soon be looking for a new spineless yess-man Treasury Secretary.

  • ||

    Ron Paul?

  • Loki||

    That depends, did Paul cheat on his taxes?

  • ||

    Shoot. Probably not.

  • Inigo Montoya||

    "Unsustainable." You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

  • T||

    Let's try something hard. Can we get Geithner to admit the sky is blue?

  • ||

    Unsustainable,
    In every way.
    And forevermore,
    That's how you'll stay.
    (And forevermore, that's how you'll stay.)

  • Jeffersonian||

    Nat King Collapse?

  • NeonCat||

    Kicking the can down the road is the American political pastime.

    Well, after grandstanding, campaigning, rumor-mongering and knee-jerking. Okay, kicking the can down the road is in the top ten.

  • EscapedWestOfTheBigMuddy||

    Remember: the press assures us---assures us I tell you---that these people are the responsible adults in the room when it comes to making fiscal policy.

  • ||

    I think I will have whatever that dude is smoking lol.

    www.anon-dot.tk

  • Invisible Finger||

    "Outer decades"?? Dude, it's THIS decade that the problem exists.

  • BC||

    I think my favorite part of Timmy's testimony was when he told Paul Ryan: "We're not becoming before you to say we have a definitive solution to our long-term problem. What we do know is that we don't like yours."

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