You are right. The most spending is done on social security and federal pension funds.
But there are two different types of spending in the federal budget, mandatory and discretionary spending. Mandatory spending is for funding programs that were put into effect by law and usually are funded by dedicated taxes for the purpose, especially payroll taxes for social security.
Discretionary spending are for programs or departments that the White House can fund at it's own discretion, such as for the military, housing, labor or welfare.
So comparing social security to the military is like comparing apples to oranges. Military spending takes up about 50% of discretionary spending, and is by far the largest spending in that budget. All told this year there will be about 700 billion dollars for the military, which doesn't include the interest we pay from previous military debt.
Social security runs about 750 billion a year and receives around 900 billion from payroll taxes for the program. The surplus is then used to reduce the budget deficit, which makes the actual deficit appear smaller than it actually is. All the surpluses from social security have been applied to deficit, and will never be available to the public.
And not one penny of our federal debt comes from social security; it is almost exclusively from the military. Our government doesn't go into debt for social programs; it borrows to fund the military.
The federal pension fund is not openly shown in the federal budget, but it is hidden in the "misc" section. I believe we spend around 200 or more billion per year on federal pensions. Hm, the feds never talk about privatizing their pensions? They never even get mentioned...
· 1 decade ago