Sep 18, 2015

Not Happening Here

     There have been suggestions that the United States should emulate the Netherlands which was able to dramatically "cut" the costs of the disability benefits it pays. Elaine Fultz, at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), has done a report showing how implausible this is. Dutch disability expenses were several times higher than in the U.S., leaving far more space for cutting than would be possible in the U.S. Even after the Dutch "cuts", their costs remain vastly higher than in the U.S. The biggest problem is that the Dutch "cuts" weren't really cuts. The most important way that the Netherlands "cut" costs was by shifting the costs from the government to private employers. Employers were also burdened with the trouble and expense of trying to rehabilitate disabled workers. This had the effect of making it harder for people with health problems to find employment. Many with health problems were shifted to temporary jobs to get around the rules.
     I think there are those on the right who read that the Netherlands dramatically cut its expenditures for disability benefits and read no further. That's the problem. All they were interested in was cutting. They had no concern for the details. Just cut. The right has no Social Security experts much less Social Security disability experts to warn them off something so unworkable in the U.S.


Anonymous said...

Calling what the Dutch did as "cuts" is misleading--it should be called "shifting the burden." And, that is to the private sector as a mandatory program--something which the American right would resist.

Anonymous said...

It looks like the right are emulating itself after the Netherlands because all the right wants to do is cut everything anyway. The one thing they don't cut on is cruelty.

Anonymous said...

What's another whopper of a lie to a politician? They are pandering to folks who have already drunk the cut all benefits Koolaid, most of whom will believe any claim that supports that goal, whether true or not.