Many folks seem fixated on solving the long-term budget deficit, RIGHT NOW.  And of course that means focusing in on the big problems of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.  Thus, the so-called deficit hawks say that we must cut these entitlement programs now.

But other economists say this is a mistake because the economy is still fragile and we should not focus on significant deficit-cutting until the economy has recovered.

What seems to have been also missed in this discussion is that increase in economic growth really help the long-run balance of the trust funds for Social Security and Medicare.  For example, each 0.5 percentage point increase in wage growth improves the balance of the trust funds for Social Security by 0.77 percentage points.  

So likely the best thing we can to improve the entitlement programs is to get the economy moving.