People who want to gut SS and Medicare often cite how much greater our modern life expectancy is. But this is a distorted application of the data. Say you retire at age 66 (SS age)- it does not matter how many of your age cohort died in childhood, young adulthood or indeed any time up to age 66. What counts is how much longer age 66 people can be expected to live compared to generations going back to those who were young adults during WW2 or so.
While any additional years beyond age 66 are nice to have, they are very small in comparison with things like earlier retirement ages in public employment, various forms of pension padding, etc. My former wife as a teenager and young woman lived many years in Italy. She said that a small but signifcant number of public workers rarely even showed up on the job, likely by virtue of easy disablity qualifications. I think this type of work pattern, though perhaps no longer so flagrant, is sometimes seen in Southern Europe. Not exactly unknown here either.
IMO, the only way this stuff gets stopped once it really gets going is a miltary takeover. Then there will still be a class than takes care to feather its nest, but that class will be smaller.
It would not surprise me to see political unrest in any of those Southern countries. We tend to think that the status quo is somehow natural, but if things don't get fixed pretty fast, and without ruffling too many groups, anything can happen. It's not like these places are 200 year old democracies. I don't even think representative government in any real sense is necessarily written in stone even in a 200 year democracy.