The country’s aging population and low fertility rate jeopardizes the solvency of Social Security and the Medicare program, according to a new study by Brookings

The immigration crisis  has become a recurring theme in social gatherings and political debates, and is the main issue of the U.S. presidential election. Amid this discussion, one certainty stands out: while it’s well known that migrants have a need to live in the United States, a study has highlighted that the country needs them too.

Twenty percent of U.S. workers were not born in the United States, and it is expected that in the near future more than seven million more migrants will be needed for the labor market. That’s according to a study by Brookings, which warns about how the higher-than-expected increase in pensioners following the Covid-19 pandemic will affect the U.S. economy.

As the baby boomer generation approaches age 80, two challenges are facing the U.S. economy: providing staff to care for the elderly and ensuring the solvency of Social Security and the Medicare program.

  • Flying Squid@lemmy.world
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    23 days ago

    I can’t think of a more fitting punishment for all of those elderly MAGA boomers who have alienated their entire families by being hateful and disgusting dying because of a lack of good elder care due to their hatred of immigrants.

    • DominusOfMegadeus@sh.itjust.works
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      23 days ago

      I would rather see them live, and suffer the constant knowledge that they can do nothing without the help of their immigrant caregivers; who I hope are LGBTQ as well.

      • Kraven_the_Hunter@lemmy.dbzer0.com
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        23 days ago

        My mom is one of these hateful MAGAts, but loves the “nice Mexican lady” that cleans her apartment for such a reasonable price.

        Don’t worry, they have enough cognitive dissonance to not be bothered by this in the least.

        • Graphy@lemmy.world
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          23 days ago

          Yeah I was about to say these people spent a lifetime using immigrant labor. They probably still get kicks out of having someone beneath them wipe their asses

        • root_beer@midwest.social
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          20 days ago

          On the contrary, they don’t have any cognitive dissonance, that’s why they’re not bothered—dissonance suggests they feel discomfort in holding their opposing views

          They’re just really good at doublethink

        • root_beer@midwest.social
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          20 days ago

          On the contrary, they don’t have any cognitive dissonance, that’s why they’re not bothered—dissonance suggests they feel discomfort in holding their opposing views

          They’re just really good at doublethink

      • skulblaka@startrek.website
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        21 days ago

        Funny for us, maybe. I wouldn’t want to inflict them on the poor immigrant workers though. There’s only so much hate crime a 90 year old man can get up to but by gee by golly he’s gonna put the effort into it.

  • IrateAnteater@sh.itjust.works
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    23 days ago

    Huh. Maybe if there weren’t profit sucking leeches built into the entire healthcare system, prices wouldn’t be so high and Medicare wouldn’t be at risk of becoming insolvent.

  • Sgt_choke_n_stroke@lemmy.world
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    22 days ago

    “The United States needs 7 million immigrants to keep the blood of the capitalist machine running or else it’ll have to add taxes to the rich 😱”

    • littleblue✨@lemmy.world
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      21 days ago

      You know the ones who, at the same time, want to pay people to “support boomers” a non-livable wage are many of the same ones who need the boomers’ vote to stay in power… Something tells me the solution to both problems is in there… 🤷🏼‍♂️

  • irotsoma@lemmy.world
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    22 days ago

    Or eliminate the cap on the tax so they actually pay their fair share. That would fix all the problems that Social Security and Medicare have in an instant.

    • Skyrmir@lemmy.world
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      22 days ago

      Removing the cap would go a long way, but it’s not enough by itself. We’ll still need more people, or a time machine with a fertility clinic in it. From what I can tell, boomers seem to be thinking we’re going to find that time machine somehow.

      • irotsoma@lemmy.world
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        21 days ago

        I’ve never seen any math that disproved that. Now if you’re looking at actual federal income tax paid, maybe, but social security tax is based on income, it doesn’t get reduced by often fraudulent deductions and credits. So a lot more income is taxable under social security tax than federal income tax which is laden with loopholes and complexities. So when Jeff Bezos in 2007 paid $0 in income tax, he likely would have paid tens or hundreds of millions in Social Security tax if there wasn’t a cap, because he did have income. Of course, we aren’t legally able to get the actual numbers because of privacy laws, but there have been some leaks recently if you want to see some of the numbers.

        • Skyrmir@lemmy.world
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          21 days ago

          https://www.pgpf.org/blog/2022/11/social-security-reform-options-to-raise-revenues

          There’s a ton of right wing sites that would tell you eliminating the cap is a complete waste of time horrible for the economy, bringer of the end of days, etc.

          Bezos, like many ultra wealthy, most likely paid himself some token amount in wages. Many CEO’s used to pay themselves $1, just to say they had an income. They have accountants that decide how much he should claim as wages, just to maximize the returns from Social Security, without paying into it any more than needed.

        • zbyte64@awful.systems
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          21 days ago

          And the guy who leaked the tax info of the billionaires got sentenced to prison beyond the maximum threshold - because the judge explicitly wanted to make an example of him.

      • Facebones@reddthat.com
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        21 days ago

        That’s why abortion has been under fire for decades and contraceptives are next, which i bet wil make the Korean 4b movement explode here.

        Which then begs the question of will we back off cause birth rates are generally unaffected but with less “for fun” sex or go full handmaids tale.

    • roscoe@lemmy.dbzer0.com
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      22 days ago

      I make a little more than double the cap. I’m in favor of increasing or eliminating the cap but that would double my check in the future. (Not quite, I haven’t made double the cap my entire working life, but it would increase it a lot.) That would still help a bit because not all of our withholdings go to basic social security. Some goes to disability, spousal benefits, etc. Increasing taxes and benefits proportionally, which is the way benefits are structured now, doesn’t solve anything.

      I believe social security has a lot of value so I’m in favor of not just fixing the funding, but expanding it as well. But if you want to make it healthier just with payroll taxes they would have to be progressive, like income tax, without increasing benefits.

  • Bye@lemmy.world
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    23 days ago

    Why do they need immigrants? There are people here now who need jobs, they can do it.

    If I hear “immigrants will accept lower wages” one more fucking time I’m going to lose it, that’s just an intentional creation of a lower class, it’s feudalistic and coercive. Same thing with farm labor. Pay a reasonable amount and local people will do it.

    • Bassman1805@lemmy.world
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      23 days ago

      Because unemployment isn’t really that low. When we talk about “people here now who could use those jobs”, we’re usually talking about people in dead end jobs that could use a career job.

      So great, pull them into our elder care system, give them a career level up…now their old jobs are still unfilled. And while we’re super shitty as a country towards entry level service workers, we also as a country really want those jobs to be filled. So we’d need to fill that gap in the employment pool somehow.

      • almar_quigley@lemmy.world
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        23 days ago

        Maybe we shouldn’t have the idea of a dead end job in the first place. Almost all work should be valid and provide livable wages. There shouldn’t be a class of jobs “just for kids”. As if their time is less valuable anyways. This is a super late stage capitalist viewpoint.

        • treadful@lemmy.zip
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          23 days ago

          A job can be well paid and still be considered “dead end”. Just means there’s no room for advancement or growth. Has nothing to do with capitalism or wages, really.

          • Eldritch@lemmy.world
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            21 days ago

            Only if constant growth and expansion of capital IE capitalism is your goal. If it’s a job you simply enjoy or people you enjoy working with Etc there may not be room for advancement. But why would you want to? Granted many people do not have that. They’re wage slaves for capitalists. Point is the whole concept of a dead-end job is inherently a capitalist thing. If a job takes care of your needs and is Pleasant enough. Who cares if there’s room for advancement.

            • treadful@lemmy.zip
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              21 days ago

              You’re hearing what you want to hear. “Growth” is not financial growth. It’s not wages, I thought that was made clear in the end sentence. Growth is like personal growth or professional growth. Learning things. Becoming more. No stagnating.

              But hey, if you’re happy in a “dead end” job more power to you. I wasn’t necessarily arguing against it. I was just trying to clarify that “dead end” does not refer (solely) to wages.

    • Flying Squid@lemmy.world
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      23 days ago

      It also gets corporations of the hook and uses immigrants as a scapegoat. The argument shouldn’t be “immigrants will accept lower wages,” it should be “companies should be paying higher wages.” Even for immigrants.

      • Snot Flickerman@lemmy.blahaj.zone
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        23 days ago

        It’s the same shit with offshoring. They do it because they can pay people less.

        It’s always fucked with me.

        Because no, no human is worth less than others based on geographic location or local economy or where you came from originally.

        If you’re educated enough to do the same job as a US citizen, and you’re working for a company based in the US, you should get equivalent pay to your US counterparts. You’re not worth less as a human because you’re from a different area.

        It’s fucking disgusting, I’ve thought it was disgusting my whole life. It’s nothing but exploitation.

        It hurts people in the USA by driving down wages and it hurts people internationally because these companies pat themselves on the back for “lifting up” these people and economies when the real reason they’re doing is they’re cheap fucking bastards. If they really wanted to lift up those economies, they’d pay people equivalent US wages in the local currency.

        If that means you make a society of local millionaires overnight, oh well. This whole paying people less because their local economy is smaller is fuckstupid hateful hurtful bullshit.

        See also: how orchard owners don’t pay minimum wage to harvest, they pay “by the tree” to skirt minimum wage laws.

    • vxx@lemmy.world
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      22 days ago

      Our whole capitalistic system is built around endless growth. That’s the reason population has to grow endlessly too.

    • MelonYellow@lemmy.ca
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      22 days ago

      Right! Long-term care sucks for a myriad of reasons - low pay, chronic short staffing, physical demand, dealing with combative demented patients, wiping asses all day. But if you PAY people enough, they will work it.

    • CobblerScholar@lemmy.world
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      23 days ago

      Increasing social security taxes would be very unpopular, increasing the age for retirement would be very unpopular. There’s no way to reduce the amount of money social security costs without pissing a lot of people off.

      The obvious solution to the problem is to make more citizens out of people who want to work here and benefit from everything our taxes pay for. Even aside from how much they would be paid (which should be a fair honest wage) the taxes off the top would go up faster than social security costs as long as people kept coming in and costs stayed stagnant

      • Bye@lemmy.world
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        22 days ago

        How about a wealth tax for people with over $10 million dollars of assets

        How about tripling the size of the IRS (or more) so that the government actually gets what it’s supposed to

        How about cutting foreign defense spending

        How about increasing the corporate tax rate even just a little bit

        Or only paying social security to people who need it

        Or getting rid of insanely wasteful farm subsidies

        But yes, I think we actually agree, that people who come here need to be paid a fair wage. That was really my point. When people talk about immigration to fix labor shortages, they almost always mean minimum wage or thereabouts (or even lower like for farm workers).

        • IHeartBadCode@kbin.run
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          22 days ago

          But, but, that would be … ˢᵒᶜⁱᵃˡⁱˢᵐ

          GASP

          How about cutting foreign defense spending

          We could, but remember that a lot of that defense spending are people in the US’ job. About 2M would be on the block for chopping.

          Or getting rid of insanely wasteful farm subsidies

          I mean don’t stop there. Especially at just that point. Relax the restrictions for crop insurance. Reduce the barriers between farmers and grocers. Literally break up the giant grocery stores. Kroger’s is a fucking bitch ass. One of the reasons we have to pay massive subsidies is because there’s distinctly a lack of a free market in the farming and grocery business.

          And while we’re at it. Tell John Deere to fuck off.

  • Chef_Boyardee@lemm.ee
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    22 days ago

    Old age support programs? Ah, I thought that was just called “I had to quit my job 7 months ago to take care of my father.”

      • LaunchesKayaks@lemmy.world
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        22 days ago

        My mom spent 6 months giving her mother around the clock care before my grandmother died. Afterwards, my mom told me to put her ass in a care facility if she ever needed care like that. I said okay, but didn’t tell her that I had already planned on doing that.

  • Tikiporch@lemmy.world
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    23 days ago

    Tangential to the topic, these photos choices are wild. The out of focus grammy photo bomb, and what does tobacco farming have to do with the problem?

  • Coffee Addict@lemmy.world
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    23 days ago

    According to this 2022 YouGov poll, respondents over the age of 65:

    • 31% want to provide a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants.
    • 22% support increasing the number of legal immigrants vs 36% who want to decrease the number of legal immigrants. 42% either want no change or are not sure.
    • 61% think that immigrants detained at the Mexico border are being treated humanely.

    Overall, it looks like the plurality (42%) of Americans believe immigration has made the U.S. better. A minority (25%) of Americans believe immigration has made the US worse, and less than that (16%) believe it has not made much of a difference.

    So for boomers specifically, it looks like around two-thirds are digging their own grave here.

  • greenskye@lemm.ee
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    22 days ago

    Am I crazy or does that not even sound like much? I’m not even sure if I’d notice 7 million immigrants coming into the country, at least if they were relatively spread out. The US is big and we already have lots of different types of people.

  • Furbag@lemmy.world
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    21 days ago

    “We need 7 million migrants!”

    “Sorry, best I can do is a border wall made out of shipping containers. Promises made, promises kept.”

    • root_beer@midwest.social
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      20 days ago

      Don’t forget the abortion bans and the push from people like Elon Musk to have more children (with no financial incentive to do so, of course)

  • fireweed@lemmy.world
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    23 days ago

    Well, it’s extremely unfortunate then that the last half-century of zoning and building policies have put us two million homes in the hole. Where y’all plan on putting millions of surplus people, broken down RVs in the Walmart parking lot? (Except now it’s also illegal to be homeless in many places… It’s hard to pay into social security when you’ve been fired for your job after getting arrested for “loitering”!)

  • werefreeatlast@lemmy.world
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    21 days ago

    Okay okay, but no body will bring up the pose on the photo? WTF people! What are those fools doing? It’s like a hybrid between tobacco harvesting and processing and maybe some sort of naughty yoga thing for TikTok or the P hub? … Free use tabaco leave processing?..hey Pedro! I see you’re hard at work!.. Well you don’t mind if…

    Anyway, I don’t know what the guys are supposed to be doing just by looking at the photo. It’s missing some sort of explanatory legend.