The story from Fortune alleged that the administration covered up a study that unveiled a $44.2 trillion gap in current dollars between payments and income of the government. This huge hole includes $36.6 trillion for Medicare and $7 trillion for Social Security system. The article described the research as based on "generational accounting" technique pioneered by Larry Kotlikoff, who is the head of economics department at Boston University.
The article went on to say $44 trillion is "more than four times the size of our GDP, and 1 1/2 times the size of the entire world's GDP. If we had a fire sale of all our nation's assets today—stocks, bonds, and real estate—we could just about pull in $44 trillion." It also discussed some potential fixes but concluded that there is no perfect fix (someone has to pay) and seeminly no politician will be willing to take huge risk to overhaul the system.
Yes, $44 trillion is scary enough, and the deficit-running economy and fiscal policy too.