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The Dependent and the Independent

by Bionic Mosquito

Predicting the future is at best an educated guess. The one trend that can be reasonably reliable, absent some significant external shock, is that of age demographics.

In the year 2050, experts predict more than 80 million Americans will be over the age of 65, or double current levels. In the same timeframe, the number of “working age” Americans – those between 18 and 64 – will rise just 17%.

In other words, the problem we have today of too few workers trying to support too many retirees is going to get worse – much worse – in the decades ahead.

This, of course, is not a problem only in the United States, but throughout the west and even much of the rest of the world. When I think about the ultimate victory of the laws of economics, it is to this issue that I lean.

However, the problem is much more significant than that of “working age” vs. those “over the age of 65.”

How many of working age are on some form of government support? How many of working age are employed by the government? How many of working age are employed in industries (such as banking or military contractors) that exist in their current form only due to government support? How many are in the 1% solely due to personal and corporate proximity to the Fed and the Treasury?

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