Julia isaacs 2009 of the brookings institution did

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Julia Isaacs (2009) of the Brookings Institution did research an all govern- ment spending (federal and local) on the children and the elderly in 2004. One would predict that with spending on education at the state level, gov- ernment spending on children and the elderly would even out. However, Isaacs’s estimates were that public “spending on children averaged $8,942 per child under age 19 in 2004,” whereas in “the same year, public spending on the elderly was $21,904 per elderly person, or 2.4 times as high as that on children” (Isaacs, 2009, p. 1). In the same article, Isaacs pointed to other studies (one carried out by the Congressional Budget Office finds an even higher ratio of spending on the elderly compared to children). In a related article, Isaacs, Vericker, Macomber, and Kent (2009) projected the nature of inequalities in spending on children compared to the elderly through 2019. They noted that there were increases to spending on children in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) in 2009, especially related to Medicaid and other programs. However, the longer-term outlook for the children’s share of the federal budget does not look as promising. As the provisions of ARRA expire, we project that spending on children will shrink over the next decade, falling to 1.9 percent of GDP by 2019. In contrast to the projected decline in spending on children, spending on the elderly and disabled is projected to rise steadily. Over the next 10 years, the non-child portions of Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are expected to increase 2.3 percentage points (from 8.0 to 10.3 percent of GDP). In other words, the increase in spending on these three programs will exceed total spend- ing on children. There is a growing danger that the escalating costs of these major entitlements, as well as growing interest payments on the national debt, will crowd out spending on children’s programs. (Isaacs, et al. 2009, p. 33) Do these differences mean we are spending too much on the elderly? No. Actually these differences show the success of these programs, especially Medicare, as people are living longer lives because of advanced medical Copyright ©2018 by SAGE Publications, Inc. This work may not be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without express written permission of the publisher. Draft Proof - Do not copy, post, or distribute
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320 PART FOUR: Children, Social Problems, and the Future of Childhood technology. Further, the elderly are deserving of social security pensions given their investments in society over their lives. However, the large inequity in government spending on the elderly compared to children does suggest we need to control the costs of Medicare and health care more generally in the United States. Aaron (2009), in response to Isaacs, argued that the main problem is the high and growing costs of health care in the United States, especially for the elderly; that these costs need to be better managed; and that any fraud in Medicare should be eliminated. He argued, however, that this inequity in spending is not unjust, because it is logical that there would be more need for health care spending on the elderly than on children.
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