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(WRCB)   Social Security not deal it once was for workers, reports Ric Romero   (wrcbtv.com) divider line 164
    More: Obvious, Ric Romero, social security, Andrew Biggs, private prisons, Urban Institute, Chinese dissidents, martian atmosphere, Standard & Poor  
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6766 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Aug 2012 at 5:14 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-08-05 04:59:20 PM
This is the deceptive headline. The writer of this story was not an individual named Ric Romero as is stated by submitter but instead one written by Stephen Ohlemacher which can be noticed in the byline of this. It is this type of deceptive practice upon which causes the confusion. Please do not let this happen again.

Now about the article it seems so very much obvious. It reminds me of this writer from Los Angeles who did the reporting for KABC. He always reports the most obvious things. I cannot remember the name of this individual for the life of me but this just seems like the type of article he would do the writing of.
 
2012-08-05 05:18:18 PM
Everyday I'm more and more certain that FDR is going to go down as one of history's greatest monsters, alongside Jimmy Carter and Reagan.
 
2012-08-05 05:18:20 PM
They have altered the deal, pray they do not alter it any further.
 
2012-08-05 05:22:44 PM
You mean the legal, gubmint supported Ponzi scheme doesn't work? I'm shocked I tell you. Good thing we've won the war on poverty and are taking aim at health care!!
 
2012-08-05 05:24:37 PM
Headline written by caveman.
 
2012-08-05 05:27:38 PM
So how is it that Social Security is unsustainable?
Sounds like a win-win for the taxpayers that put into it.

Remember Bush/Cheney wanted to privatize it??
They wanted to do what my employer did to me.

Yea, I had my company pension pulled out from me and now I am left with the Casino/401k stock market.
 
2012-08-05 05:30:43 PM
Mean Daddy: You mean the legal, gubmint supported Ponzi scheme doesn't work? I'm shocked I tell you. Good thing we've won the war on poverty and are taking aim at health care!!

Pretty much. If you're in the workforce now, and don't understand that social security will not exist for 'our' generation (that is, the 20-30s going in now), I'm so sorry. Even my 60 year old parents get a few hundred dollars a month and that's about it.

I second the 'yay federal health care' thing, cause America as a whole has a really shiatty track record with this stuff. It works in other countries because they are other countries, and are set up differently on a lot of aspects.
 
2012-08-05 05:31:47 PM
I have yet to hear of anyone buying a similar retirement plan with both survivor and disability insurance for a lower cost.
 
2012-08-05 05:34:30 PM
That headline was painful to read.
 
2012-08-05 05:35:28 PM
Wait... 12.4% of salary for 40 years giving a paltry payout on retirement is a bad deal?
 
2012-08-05 05:37:03 PM
Early investors make out better than later investors. Eventually the system collapses. That sounds very similar to some other kind of scheme. What was it called? Just can't put my finger on it.
 
2012-08-05 05:37:15 PM
FTFA: Because of spousal benefits, most married couples with only one wage earner will continue to get more in benefits than they pay in taxes for the foreseeable future.

i1.ytimg.com

This is also one reason why gay marriage matters.

And no, I don't feel sorry for the people (gay or straight) who want to never get married and wind up paying more in taxes. Just think of it as the price you pay for your freedom.
 
2012-08-05 05:39:13 PM
PillsHere: That headline was painful to read.

This
 
2012-08-05 05:39:24 PM
Oldiron_79: They have altered the deal, pray they do not alter it any further.

static.guim.co.uk

wut?
 
2012-08-05 05:44:43 PM
1.bp.blogspot.com
 
2012-08-05 05:46:32 PM

jigger: Early investors make out better than later investors. Eventually the system collapses. That sounds very similar to some other kind of scheme. What was it called? Just can't put my finger on it.


Romney's economic plan.
 
2012-08-05 05:48:24 PM
Summary:

Boomers kept the taxes low while they worked, and now will live off of any thing that left in the bank, which will run dry just at about the same time they should be dying off.

Good plan.
 
2012-08-05 05:49:46 PM
If everyone under age 20 just murders someone between the ages of 45 and 65 we'll be fine...

graphics8.nytimes.com
 
2012-08-05 05:50:53 PM

LemSkroob: Summary:

Boomers kept the taxes low while they worked, and now will live off of any thing that left in the bank, which will run dry just at about the same time they should be dying off.

Good plan.


You know what would be even better? Grant amnesty for illegals.
 
2012-08-05 05:51:12 PM
All they needed to do (or at least it would have helped) was to not PAY OUT immediately, as the very first people got thousands without contributing (as I understand it but may be wrong). In other words, there should have been a generation of collection to set it up before the payouts started, so that people would have more truly contributed to their own retirements. But I guess there would have been a lot of opposition, as some would have fared worse than others and to the goodie train needed political support to push off.

Another problem is the children of deceased getting payments in some cases. I know of a couple who had both lost former spouses, who married and together could QUIT WORK because the blended family had enough children to make out fairly well with the combined payments. Both were able bodied but the rest of us now have to support them. How does that make sense?

And disability is always a potential leakage point. It is notoriously stiff to sign onto, for good reason. It's too tempting for discouraged workers, who might have been happy to find a job but when they can't, they uncover some disability (that would not be prohibitive) as it seems like a way out. I don't have a problem with deserving people getting disability but also hope the government doesn't yield on its standards. Again, I've read that thousands more have swollen the rolls in the recession (beyond what would be expected). So either we've had a strange increase in disabilities or else we had a lot of disabled people who were hidden in the (former) workforce.
 
2012-08-05 05:54:10 PM
Is this the thread where we use projections of 80 years to make it seem like social security is going to fold next Tuesday?

So we need to radically change it now. Because people in 1932 obviously knew what the world economy was going to look like in 2012?

Everything I've read says there's some small issues in about 50 years if we do nothing to shore it up, and adjust some payouts. 50 years ago was 1962... I'm sure we can think of something that doesn't involve privatizing it and giving investment banks free access to the elderly security net.

They've done so well being steward of the 21st century world economy after all; with the bank failures, market crashes and general douchbaggery.
 
2012-08-05 05:56:59 PM
1) Means test the payout
2) Eliminate the withholding cap
3) Raise the social security "retirement age"

/1 & 2 will never happen
 
2012-08-05 05:58:20 PM
On top of this, you already paid this out in taxes, at almost 25% of your gross income (counting the employer side). If like my mom, you planned well and have income available to deal with "end-of-life" (which may be many years), the Social Security Income is taxable yet again.
 
2012-08-05 05:58:52 PM
I wonder if I would be ahead today had I put all my social security payments in a shoebox under the bed rather than give them to Uncle Sam.
 
2012-08-05 06:00:49 PM

fromafar: Again, I've read that thousands more have swollen the rolls in the recession (beyond what would be expected). So either we've had a strange increase in disabilities or else we had a lot of disabled people who were hidden in the (former) workforce.


My hypothesis: There is always a segment of the working population that suffers from back pain or [tolerable] injuries with only some impairment, but they put up with it because it's not too distracting, and they just can't afford not to work. Then the economy tanks, these people (along with millions of other folks, of course) can't find jobs, and then unemployment checks stop coming. With no viable employment in sight, these folks play up their "disabilities"---something they were able to live with and work around before---to get on the disability rolls, since even SSI is better than nothing.
 
2012-08-05 06:01:31 PM
Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.
 
2012-08-05 06:03:49 PM

Kumana Wanalaia: Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.


HAH
 
2012-08-05 06:05:54 PM
lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels
 
2012-08-05 06:06:04 PM
As soon as the Baby Boomers are dead there is no problem with Social Security, says this Generation Xer whose peers are greatly outnumbered by future payroll taxpayers.
 
2012-08-05 06:07:51 PM
I'm confused, subby. Are you telling me it's no longer a Ponzi scheme?
 
2012-08-05 06:07:58 PM

studebaker hoch: I wonder if I would be ahead today had I put all my social security payments in a shoebox under the bed rather than give them to Uncle Sam.



It's pretty simple math
 
2012-08-05 06:12:48 PM

Four Horsemen of the Domestic Dispute: So how is it that Social Security is unsustainable?


Because it requires a population growth rate that is higher than what we have, a life expectancy that is lower, or economic growth an order of magnitude higher than is possible for a developed nation in order to pay what it has promised. That's kind of the definition of unsustainable.

Sounds like a win-win for the taxpayers that put into it.

Yeah, bubbles are always nice until they burst.

Yea, I had my company pension pulled out from me and now I am left with the Casino/401k stock market.

Sounds like you're better off. Your company probably couldn't have stayed solvent if they kept your pension. It's much better that you are getting your money up front and can plan accordingly. 401ks don't require you to assume your company will be flush with cash 50 years down the line.
 
2012-08-05 06:17:06 PM

kroonermanblack: I second the 'yay federal health care' thing, cause America as a whole has a really shiatty track record with this stuff. It works in other countries because they are other countries, and are set up differently on a lot of aspects.


Why do you think other countries are better than America?

Love it or leave it.
 
2012-08-05 06:24:22 PM

stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels


spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.
 
2012-08-05 06:25:45 PM

Dafatone: Why do you think other countries are better than America?


Empirical evidence?
 
2012-08-05 06:26:36 PM
I am 29. I see it as a pretty unfair tax levied on m me I can only take so listen the fact that some of the money is helping some people I can only take solace in the fact that some of the money is helping some people who need it today. I consider it a form of disability insurance and not any part if my retirement.
 
2012-08-05 06:27:28 PM
Quaint. I can't imagine the types of lives you guys lead where this is your plan for retirement. I feel sorry for you people.
 
2012-08-05 06:27:37 PM

HawkEyes: I am 29. I see it as a pretty unfair tax levied on m me I can only take so listen the fact that some of the money is helping some people I can only take solace in the fact that some of the money is helping some people who need it today. I consider it a form of disability insurance and not any part if my retirement.


That's why I never post from my phone. Sorry.
 
2012-08-05 06:29:47 PM
The good news is that a Totino's pizza costs about the same amount as a healthy serving of cat food for an adult, so they can eat a little better. Not much, cause it's Totinos, but at least it's not cat food.
 
2012-08-05 06:32:07 PM
Social Security is not the deal it once was for workers, reports Ric Romero

Done this subby, with how long some of these headlines are. Few words.
 
2012-08-05 06:35:43 PM

Let's set some things straight:

1. Social Security is insurance, not an investment plan

Social Security... The Fundamental Truth

If you don't understand this, you don't understand Social Security. If you do understand it, all the rest is minor technical detail... or utter nonsense.

Social Security is not welfare. Social Security is not an investment plan. Social Security is insurance... to avoid welfare if your investment plan doesn't work out as well as you hope.

Because of the complexity of the modern economy Social Security is insurance that is needed more often than not. It does what the family used to do under the guidance of "Honor your father and your mother."
But even there you have to understand that while "you" helped out your parents in their old age, they "paid for" that help, first by paying for their own parents in their turn; and second, by paying for you when you were very young; and third, by building the "infrastructure" that made it easier for you when it came your turn to work for a living.

There is nothing about Social Security that guarantees you will always have higher benefits than your parents, or pay lower "taxes." The world changes. There are fat years and lean years.

2. Social Security has been an enormous force for good

Social Security and Elderly Poverty
Elderly poverty in the U.S. decreased dramatically during the twentieth century. Between 1960 and 1995, the official poverty rate of those aged 65 and above fell from 35 percent to 10 percent, and research has documented similarly steep declines dating back to at least 1939. While poverty was once far more prevalent among the elderly than among other age groups, today's elderly have a poverty rate similar to that of working-age adults and much lower than that of children.

www.nber.org

3. Social Security is needed now more than ever

Study: Nearly half of Americans die with 'virtually no financial assets'
How much do senior citizens rely on Social Security? Even more than you might think. A new study finds that more than 46 percent of Americans die with less than $10,000 in financial assets, with many spending the end of their life strongly dependent on the government."

"Many of these households also have no housing wealth and rely almost entirely on Social Security benefits for support," says the study, co-authored by MIT's James Poterba, Dartmouth's Steven Venti, and Harvard's David Wise.


SOCIAL SECURITY KEEPS 20 MILLION AMERICANS OUT OF POVERTY: A STATE-BY-STATE ANALYSIS (pdf)
Social Security benefits play a vital role in reducing poverty. Without Social Security, according to the latest available Census data (for 2008), 19.8 million more Americans would be poor. Although most of those kept out of poverty by Social Security are elderly, nearly a third are under age 65, including 1.1 million children. (See Table 1.) Depending on their design, reductions in Social Security benefits could significantly increase poverty, particularly among the elderly.

4. Social Security is not insolvent, bankrupt, or anything of the kind

Before you write that Social Security is bankrupt....
The most important take-away points from the 2012 Trustees Report will be that Social Security has a large and growing surplus; that without any Congressional action, Social Security will continue to pay benefits to America's eligible working families for decades; and that with modest legislated increases in revenue, it will continue to pay those benefits for the next century and beyond.


Are we clear?
 
2012-08-05 06:36:28 PM

xl5150: Quaint. I can't imagine the types of lives you guys lead where this is your plan for retirement. I feel sorry for you people.


So should I buy or sell?

/Thank you
 
2012-08-05 06:42:09 PM

The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.



LOL I'm a blue collar guy expected to work (real physical labor) till I'm 72 and you call me entitled.
Now I've heard it all. you are an idiot
 
2012-08-05 06:43:38 PM
FizixJunkee: fromafar: Again, I've read that thousands more have swollen the rolls in the recession (beyond what would be expected). So either we've had a strange increase in disabilities or else we had a lot of disabled people who were hidden in the (former) workforce.

My hypothesis: There is always a segment of the working population that suffers from back pain or [tolerable] injuries with only some impairment, but they put up with it because it's not too distracting, and they just can't afford not to work. Then the economy tanks, these people (along with millions of other folks, of course) can't find jobs, and then unemployment checks stop coming. With no viable employment in sight, these folks play up their "disabilities"---something they were able to live with and work around before---to get on the disability rolls, since even SSI is better than nothing.


Getting SS disability payments is no easy task. Most of the time you need to file multiple appeals and even go to court to get it. People scamming disability is even more rare than the mythical welfare queens, because you need collusion for a media professional AND have to go through the court system in most cases. Even when you get it, the payments are tiny. You are not going to get disability for "back pain".

Most people screaming about fraud "disability" is actually from public jobs and pension abuse, not SS disability. Like Firefighters that get put on disability and get a fat pension payment while also working a desk job (if at all), and doing side jobs outside that make you question why they're on disability. That's not the same thing, and it's much easier to do because it's a form of pension fraud with public service unions protecting them in most cases. That is a problem, and states / the law should come down hard on those freeloaders.
 
2012-08-05 06:44:15 PM

BMFPitt: Four Horsemen of the Domestic Dispute: So how is it that Social Security is unsustainable?

Because it requires a population growth rate that is higher than what we have, a life expectancy that is lower, or economic growth an order of magnitude higher than is possible for a developed nation in order to pay what it has promised. That's kind of the definition of unsustainable.


it would have been sustainable, but the boomers used the surplus they ran for 40 years to give themselves tax cuts. the trust fund is a gigantic IOU.
 
2012-08-05 06:45:58 PM
Ya well people always want something for nothing and then biatch if they can't have it. If we want to have long retirements, then we have to pay more in to a retirement account when we work. Just how it goes.

People seem to forget that when SS was formed people didn't live much longer, on average, than the retirement age. So it didn't have to pay out for many years in most cases. That left plenty for the few who did live longer, those who got disabled and got SS for that reason, and so on.

Not the case anymore. People tend to live quite a while, and they want to retire and enjoy it. Fair enough, but the amount paid in has to go up for that to work. You can't pay out many more years on average and not change what you collect.

However while voting in increases to SS payouts makes people happy, voting in increases to SS taxes makes them mad, hence the current shortfall problem.

Unfortunately, nothing is likely to be done. Politicians will simply keep letting it lie for future generations, until it is a crisis. Then either payments will drop to about 60% of promised levels (it is funded by taxes, it'll never 'go broke'), taxes will be increased a whole bunch to cover the difference, or some combination. Sad because the sooner we act, the less drastic and increase/cuts have to be but it just won't happen until it is a crisis.
 
2012-08-05 06:46:09 PM
Social Security was turned into a supplemental welfare program during the Carter administration. Now benefits are given from SS funds rather than state or fed welfare programs. People getting full benefits without ever paying a dime is the primary problem. Removing SS funds from the separate line item outside the Fed budget in order to appear to have a balanced budget was the beginning of the end of self supporting SS.
 
2012-08-05 06:46:38 PM

stirfrybry: The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


LOL I'm a blue collar guy expected to work (real physical labor) till I'm 72 and you call me entitled.
Now I've heard it all. you are an idiot


you expect the rest of us to pay for your living expenses.
that's why I call you entitled.
 
2012-08-05 06:46:50 PM
So instead of eating cat food when I retire I will have to eat cats?

/time to brush up on my asian cooking skills
 
2012-08-05 06:46:53 PM

DoctorCal: 1) Means test the payout
2) Eliminate the withholding cap
3) Raise the social security "retirement age"

/1 & 2 will never happen


Yup. Want to make the tax code more progressive and better fund SS? Eliminate that cap
 
2012-08-05 06:47:10 PM
Name another insurance plan that pays everyone more than they paid into it. You can't? Guess what: That's not how insurance works!

Social security is insurance against the possibility that you will become disabled, too old to work, or lose a breadwinner in a family.

If SSI were an investment plan rather than an insurance plan, it would not work. Most people are not able to save enough money to see them through all possible outcomes, from becoming disabled in your 30s to living into your 90s.
 
2012-08-05 06:47:11 PM

Unobtanium: On top of this, you already paid this out in taxes, at almost 25% of your gross income (counting the employer side). If like my mom, you planned well and have income available to deal with "end-of-life" (which may be many years), the Social Security Income is taxable yet again.


But 15% only equals "almost 25%" for very large values of 15....

**http://www.ssa.gov/oact/progdata/taxRates.html
 
2012-08-05 06:47:52 PM
Also it's cool that the Boomers have set this up so well. They benefited tremendously from the sacrifices their parents made for them, and they're benefiting tremendously from the sacrifices they're demanding from us. must be nice
 
2012-08-05 06:48:03 PM

Kumana Wanalaia: Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.


Amen bro!
(Thanks for the depressing article subby. At least I know now?)
 
2012-08-05 06:48:40 PM

The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


Most of the increase in life expectancy has been achieved by reducing infant mortality and disease burden earlier in life. One's life expectancy once one reaches 65 has risen much less rapidly. It has also risen much less among the poor, who depend on Social Security more than the rich.

Men in the bottom half of the earnings distribution saw their life expectancy at age 65 rise only 1.1 years from 1982 to 2006. Over the same period, the retirement age - under current law - rose 8 months.

Trends in Mortality Differentials and Life Expectancy for Male Social Security-Covered Workers, by Average Relative Earnings (via Krugman)
 
2012-08-05 06:49:56 PM
1. Decrease cigarette taxes.
2. Eliminate smoking restrictions in public places.
3. Legalize marijuana.
4. Watch the mortality rate rise for the 45 to 65 demographic.

Problem solves itself.


.
 
2012-08-05 06:51:59 PM
stirfrybry: The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


LOL I'm a blue collar guy expected to work (real physical labor) till I'm 72 and you call me entitled.
Now I've heard it all. you are an idiot


Actually you're an idiot, and since you're an idiot you'll probably rely on SS at some point.

Raising the required age to collect social security doesn't mean you have to work until that age to collect... in fact you only need to work (pay in) 10 years total to be eligible for some benefits. You can and should retire whenever you are ready to.

Second, it isn't a retirement plan. It's only there to help supplement your other retirement savings, and an insurance stop gap if you really screwed up on that.

Is this really that hard people?
 
2012-08-05 06:52:39 PM

He_Hate_Me: Social Security has a large and growing surplus;


lmao

It's already in deficit. Right now, as we speak.
 
2012-08-05 06:52:52 PM

superdude72: Name another insurance plan that pays everyone more than they paid into it. You can't? Guess what: That's not how insurance works!

Social security is insurance against the possibility that you will become disabled, too old to work, or lose a breadwinner in a family.

If SSI were an investment plan rather than an insurance plan, it would not work. Most people are not able to save enough money to see them through all possible outcomes, from becoming disabled in your 30s to living into your 90s.


that's really really stupid.
 
2012-08-05 06:53:38 PM

Krieghund: FTFA: Because of spousal benefits, most married couples with only one wage earner will continue to get more in benefits than they pay in taxes for the foreseeable future.

[i1.ytimg.com image 480x360]

This is also one reason why gay marriage matters.

And no, I don't feel sorry for the people (gay or straight) who want to never get married and wind up paying more in taxes. Just think of it as the price you pay for your freedom.


In my case, I'll not be retiring. I fully expect to die in harness. On the other hand, my wife just turned 60 and filed for disability so we may have a chance to make it through the next couple years with a minimum of pain.
 
2012-08-05 06:55:59 PM
SS is not a retirement plan. Its to make sure you aren't eating dry Purina when you're eighty.

It succeeds at its goal.
 
2012-08-05 06:56:16 PM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: 1. Decrease cigarette taxes.
2. Eliminate smoking restrictions in public places.
3. Legalize marijuana.
4. Watch the mortality rate rise for the 45 to 65 demographic.

Problem solves itself.


.


Thanks for the suggestions, Martin J. Barrington.
 
2012-08-05 06:56:36 PM

The_Original_Roxtar: when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


If you made it out of childhood back then your life expectancy was greater than the retirement age.
 
2012-08-05 06:58:03 PM

mesmer242: If everyone under age 20 just murders someone between the ages of 45 and 65 we'll be fine...


Hmm, you don't have a red wig and a bunch of ammo in your stash, do you?
Anyone paying attention to this guy? Fark, government, anyone?
You shouldn't cheerlead for evil, it brings bad things.
 
2012-08-05 06:58:26 PM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: Watch the mortality rate rise


There is a reason military PX cigarette prices were kept low for so long. Retirement benefits don't cost much if no one is alive to claim them.
 
2012-08-05 06:58:30 PM

He_Hate_Me: The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.

Most of the increase in life expectancy has been achieved by reducing infant mortality and disease burden earlier in life. One's life expectancy once one reaches 65 has risen much less rapidly. It has also risen much less among the poor, who depend on Social Security more than the rich.

Men in the bottom half of the earnings distribution saw their life expectancy at age 65 rise only 1.1 years from 1982 to 2006. Over the same period, the retirement age - under current law - rose 8 months.

Trends in Mortality Differentials and Life Expectancy for Male Social Security-Covered Workers, by Average Relative Earnings (via Krugman)


and the math was farked up and unsustainable in 1982 too.
in 1930, the life expectancy was less than 60 years. now, it's almost 79 years.


compare the person-months of required payout for people retiring at age 65 in 1935 and 2012.
far more people are living far longer now than they were when SS was put into place.
small percentage of the population collects any SS at all vs just about everyone collects at least some SS.
 
2012-08-05 06:59:53 PM
Monthly benefits average $1,235 for retired workers

Damn! That is about what it takes to exist provided your house is paid for. You guys need to start investing now.
 
2012-08-05 07:00:34 PM

sycraft: Ya well people always want something for nothing and then biatch if they can't have it.


How am I getting something for nothing if I spend my entire working life paying for insurance that pays a benefit when I turn 67, and then I turn 67 and I receive the benefit?


People seem to forget that when SS was formed people didn't live much longer, on average, than the retirement age. So it didn't have to pay out for many years in most cases. That left plenty for the few who did live longer, those who got disabled and got SS for that reason, and so on.


That's bullshiat. For the lower income 50 percent of workers, life expectancy at retirement has only increased by about 2 years since 1972,

Social Security Myths

And it's also bullshiat that people in the '40s, '50s, and '60s didn't observe population trends. It's was the mid-20th century, not the Pleistocene! These people invented the atom bomb and the integrated circuit. Maybe you're not as much smarter than them as you think.
 
2012-08-05 07:01:20 PM

mesmer242: If everyone under age 20 just murders someone between the ages of 45 and 65 we'll be fine...


Until you hit age 45.

Your cunning plan, etc.
 
2012-08-05 07:03:39 PM
"American Enterprise Institute"
"free money"

Read the Internet in just minutes with my patented system!
 
2012-08-05 07:03:48 PM

DrewCurtisJr: The_Original_Roxtar: when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.

If you made it out of childhood back then your life expectancy was greater than the retirement age.


yep. if you were paying into SSI, you had a life expectancy to make it to retirement.
 
2012-08-05 07:09:39 PM
Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?

/appreciating the holiday
//international beer day or something
///so bear with me
 
2012-08-05 07:10:18 PM

stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels


You do know the retirement age is the same as 1932. And in 1932, the average survival age was 62. And there were 126 people paying in for every one person withdrawing. Now its 3:1.
 
2012-08-05 07:11:06 PM

relcec:

it would have been sustainable, but the boomers used the surplus they ran for 40 years to give themselves tax cuts. the trust fund is a gigantic IOU.


If Treasury Bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the USA are just IOUs, you might as well start burning your $100 bills for heat because they're backed by the same thing.
 
2012-08-05 07:13:41 PM

The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


That is exactly it. When it was founded, there were over 20 people paying into the system for each person drawing. Now we're getting close two 2:1 which means that while grandad paid $.05 for each dollar out, you are paying $.50 for each buck.

There's a couple of things driving ths. In Grandad's day, a big chunk of the labor force entered at 16 or younger, now many are delaying entry until 25 or later. Then there's the obvious increase in longevity.

Raising the retirement age to 75 over the next 15 to 20 years and then changin the SS laws to fix the retirement age based on a 10:1 payor/payee ratio would fix SS forever.

Of course fixing it is political suicide since everyone under age 75 would immediatly vote those scumbags out of office.
 
2012-08-05 07:14:20 PM

clyph: Dafatone: Why do you think other countries are better than America?

Empirical evidence?


I mean, yeah. They have healthcare, for one.

But "healthcare works in other countries and not America because we're different" is defeatist and unamerican.
 
2012-08-05 07:15:43 PM

ladyfortuna: Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?

/appreciating the holiday
//international beer day or something
///so bear with me


I would bet the guys that mow my grass does not even pay taxes, they prefer that I pay in cash. Plus they speak no English.
 
2012-08-05 07:19:30 PM

ladyfortuna: Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?


Because at some point they will also receive benefits. The working poor, especially those with children, use a lot more in services than they pay in taxes.
 
2012-08-05 07:19:34 PM

Dafatone: I mean, yeah. They have healthcare, for one.

But "healthcare works in other countries and not America because we're different" is defeatist and unamerican.


Get rid of Air Ambulances, MRI, and all the other medical advances and medical care is affordable.
 
2012-08-05 07:22:10 PM

ladyfortuna: Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?

/appreciating the holiday
//international beer day or something
///so bear with me


because the vast majority of these low skilled people cost way f*cking more than they ever contribute. even an immigrant earning near median income for 45 straight years ends up costing about 135k more than they put in in medicare payments. for all 12 million illegal immigrants you are looking at a liability of close to 1.5 trillion we don't have. and they aren't a net benefit even for social security. they don't pay in enough.
think about it. if importing low skilled immigrants was even a net contributer the whole world would do it, and do it a lot. it is the one resource we have in abundance on this planet.

importing poor people only makes your poor people poorer, and your rich people richer. that's a universal truth.
 
2012-08-05 07:26:41 PM

The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: The_Original_Roxtar: stirfrybry: lol I love the ignorant "raise the retirement age" statement... as if they haven't already farking done that to ridiculous levels

spoken like a lazy, entitled douche.

when SS was instituted, the life expectancy was LOWER than the "retirement age". now, life expectancy exceeds retirement age by 15+ years. Social security has not kept pace with life expectancy.


LOL I'm a blue collar guy expected to work (real physical labor) till I'm 72 and you call me entitled.
Now I've heard it all. you are an idiot

you expect the rest of us to pay for your living expenses.
that's why I call you entitled.


nice spin, douchebag. I paid my whole life expecting benefits at 65 only to have dicks like you say I can just work longer. I earned what I paid in, you retard
 
2012-08-05 07:27:21 PM

superdude72: For the lower income 50 percent of workers


Guess what? The upper income 50% of workers collect benefits too! And at a higher rate!
 
2012-08-05 07:28:23 PM

relcec: importing poor people only makes your poor people poorer, and your rich people richer. that's a universal truth.


Poor ignorant people make for reliable Democratic voters.
 
2012-08-05 07:28:42 PM

superdude72: If Treasury Bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the USA are just IOUs


That's exactly what it is, because the left hand of the government was loaning its right hand money
 
2012-08-05 07:35:09 PM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: 1. Decrease cigarette taxes.
2. Eliminate smoking restrictions in public places.
3. Legalize marijuana.
4. Watch the mortality rate rise for the 45 to 65 demographic.

Problem solves itself.


.

Legalize Drunk driving and really solve the problem. Legalizing marijuana couldn't possibly help kill enough people, it will slow things down, because the alcohol stops flowing heavily where marijuana is readily available. Once all the drunks have killed themselves taking X number of innocents, then legalize marijuana and lets celebrate life.
 
2012-08-05 07:37:43 PM

He_Hate_Me: The most important take-away points from the 2012 Trustees Report will be that Social Security has a large and growing surplus; that without any Congressional action, Social Security will continue to pay benefits to America's eligible working families for decades; and that with modest legislated increases in revenue, it will continue to pay those benefits for the next century and beyond.


Your article pretends surplus means something other than "we brought in more money than we paid out."

Here's what the report actually says. "Social Security's expenditures exceeded non-interest income in 2010 and 2011, the first such occurrences since 1983, and the Trustees estimate that these expenditures will remain greater than non-interest income throughout the 75-year projection period."

"While the combined OASDI program continues to fail the long-range test of close actuarial balance, it does satisfy the test for short-range financial adequacy. The Trustees project that the combined trust fund assets will exceed one year's projected cost for more than ten years, through 2027.

However, the Disability Insurance (DI) program satisfies neither the long-range test nor the short-range test. DI costs have exceeded non-interest income since 2005, and the Trustees project trust fund exhaustion in 2016, two years earlier than projected last year. The DI program faces the most immediate financing shortfall of any of the separate trust funds; thus lawmakers need to act soon to avoid reduced payments to DI beneficiaries four years from now."

And don't forget that this basically ignores the "temporary" FICA tax cut that will never expire.

Link

relcec: it would have been sustainable, but the boomers used the surplus they ran for 40 years to give themselves tax cuts. the trust fund is a gigantic IOU.


So what you're saying is that Social Security would be just fine in an alternate universe with a trustworthy Congress? That's good to know.

(Of course, they would have borrowed that money regardless of making up IOUs, so we'd just have differently labeled debt if that hadn't happened and we'd be just as insolvent.)
 
2012-08-05 07:38:56 PM

He_Hate_Me: Let's set some things straight:
,,,

Are we clear?



No, those are just your opinions.
Citing a blog called "The Angry Bear" doesn't make those opinions any more true.
 
2012-08-05 07:40:33 PM

BigJake: superdude72: If Treasury Bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the USA are just IOUs

That's exactly what it is, because the left hand of the government was loaning its right hand money


They're based on an assumption that tax rates will be raised in the future on regular income. If the govenment can't raise tax revenue, then the money will have to be borrowed by the treasury which will just serve to balloon the debt more.
 
2012-08-05 07:41:00 PM
I love how Social Security's detractors equate the mid-twentieth century with the 13th. Everyone started working when they were 8 and died before their 40th birthday! Men were 5 feet tall! Actuarial tables were written on papyrus!

In truth, if we had kept some of their banking regulations in place, we might have prevented the current economic crisis.
 
2012-08-05 07:41:36 PM

meow said the dog: This is the deceptive headline. The writer of this story was not an individual named Ric Romero as is stated by submitter but instead one written by Stephen Ohlemacher which can be noticed in the byline of this. It is this type of deceptive practice upon which causes the confusion. Please do not let this happen again.

Now about the article it seems so very much obvious. It reminds me of this writer from Los Angeles who did the reporting for KABC. He always reports the most obvious things. I cannot remember the name of this individual for the life of me but this just seems like the type of article he would do the writing of.


You make me want to re-up my TF
 
2012-08-05 07:42:03 PM
And if you're self employed you get double raped. I have spent most of my career working for myself and I won't even see half what I payed in.
 
2012-08-05 07:45:07 PM
upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-08-05 07:45:46 PM

BigJake: superdude72: For the lower income 50 percent of workers

Guess what? The upper income 50% of workers collect benefits too! And at a higher rate!


They live as much as 7 years longer. Not exactly a sea change. We currently tax only the first $105,000 or so of income. Raise the cap a little and the problem goes away,
 
2012-08-05 07:47:13 PM

Kurmudgeon: mesmer242: If everyone under age 20 just murders someone between the ages of 45 and 65 we'll be fine...

Hmm, you don't have a red wig and a bunch of ammo in your stash, do you?
Anyone paying attention to this guy? Fark, government, anyone?
You shouldn't cheerlead for evil, it brings bad things.


What you call evil some may call greater good...

/not that I agree.
 
2012-08-05 07:52:26 PM

Kurmudgeon: mesmer242: If everyone under age 20 just murders someone between the ages of 45 and 65 we'll be fine...

Hmm, you don't have a red wig and a bunch of ammo in your stash, do you?
Anyone paying attention to this guy? Fark, government, anyone?
You shouldn't cheerlead for evil, it brings bad things.


I think your sense of humor is broken. You might want to get that checked out.

Next time I'll be sure to add SOYLENT GREEN... IS... PEOPLE at the end of my post. Or is that movie cheerleading for evil as well? Sometimes pointing out the worst solutions to problems can be a good way to avoid them.
 
2012-08-05 07:52:45 PM

superdude72: relcec:

it would have been sustainable, but the boomers used the surplus they ran for 40 years to give themselves tax cuts. the trust fund is a gigantic IOU.

If Treasury Bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the USA are just IOUs, you might as well start burning your $100 bills for heat because they're backed by the same thing.


that is exactly what they are. wtf did you think they were backed by? tangible assetts? they are IOUS backed by the most tax resistant coutnry in world history's ability to raise taxes or cut services in the future to come up with the cash. instead of raising taxes to keep benefits stable, they'll cut benefits. SS will *get* its money back, but over 50 years, and the massive surplus won;t be used to retain existing benefits.
 
2012-08-05 07:53:11 PM

fromafar: Another problem is the children of deceased getting payments in some cases. I know of a couple who had both lost former spouses, who married and together could QUIT WORK because the blended family had enough children to make out fairly well with the combined payments. Both were able bodied but the rest of us now have to support them. How does that make sense?


This seems extremely unlikely (both the scenario and the amount of money). I'm curious as to the payment per child and how many kids it takes to cover the entire family with those combined payments.

Anybody else getting an ad at the top of the screen for social security attorneys? You go, AdSense!
 
2012-08-05 08:01:07 PM

Kumana Wanalaia: Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.


That is exactly what the boomers intended. They wanted roads, bridges, parks, and all kinds of other crap but didn't want raise taxes for them. Instead they saw this gigantic pile of money sitting around "doing nothing" and decided it would be good to take. By the time the SS money pile actually runs out and the IOU's need to paid back (by raising whatever tax that should have been raised in the first place) the boomers will be dead and couldn't care less. At that point the bridges will be junk and need to be replaced and the kids living then will have to raise taxes to pay for both it AND the one the boomers shoved up their collective ass.
 
2012-08-05 08:02:16 PM
When I enrolled in 2009, they tried EVERY WAY IN HELL to talk me out of it: You will get a bigger check if you wait till age 66, and so forth and so on and blah blah blah-----

I said at the time, no way I could survive four more years, if the circumstances are right, I will re--file.

Well, since then I have come into some money, so I can refund all 48 payments I have received, re--file at age 66, and guess what? The right to re--file has been taken away.

Amerika is bankrupt, but like a very big snake with the head cut off, it doesn't know it is dead yet, and the tail keeps thrashing around.
 
2012-08-05 08:02:57 PM

BMFPitt: He_Hate_Me: The most important take-away points from the 2012 Trustees Report will be that Social Security has a large and growing surplus; that without any Congressional action, Social Security will continue to pay benefits to America's eligible working families for decades; and that with modest legislated increases in revenue, it will continue to pay those benefits for the next century and beyond.

Your article pretends surplus means something other than "we brought in more money than we paid out."

Here's what the report actually says. "Social Security's expenditures exceeded non-interest income in 2010 and 2011, the first such occurrences since 1983, and the Trustees estimate that these expenditures will remain greater than non-interest income throughout the 75-year projection period."

"While the combined OASDI program continues to fail the long-range test of close actuarial balance, it does satisfy the test for short-range financial adequacy. The Trustees project that the combined trust fund assets will exceed one year's projected cost for more than ten years, through 2027.

However, the Disability Insurance (DI) program satisfies neither the long-range test nor the short-range test. DI costs have exceeded non-interest income since 2005, and the Trustees project trust fund exhaustion in 2016, two years earlier than projected last year. The DI program faces the most immediate financing shortfall of any of the separate trust funds; thus lawmakers need to act soon to avoid reduced payments to DI beneficiaries four years from now."

And don't forget that this basically ignores the "temporary" FICA tax cut that will never expire.



they get a check from the general revenue fund and on the bottom it says from the social security trust fund. there is no trust fund. there is no account with 2.5 trillion dollars in it earning money. there is nothing but a liability that needs to be paid for by future tax increases, or by benefit cuts so SS doesn;t run as big of a defecit.


compare this profligacy and government mismanagement with say, the Norway national pension fund:


The Government Pension Fund - Global (Norwegian: Statens pensjonsfond - Utland, SPU) is a fund into which the surplus wealth produced by Norwegian petroleum income is deposited. The fund changed name in January 2006 from its previous name The Petroleum Fund of Norway. The fund is commonly referred to as The Oil Fund (Norwegian: Oljefondet). As of the valuation in June 2011, it was the largest pension fund in the world, although it is not actually a pension fund as it derives its financial backing from oil profits and not pension contributions. As of 31 March 2012 its total value is NOK 3,496 billion [1] ($613 bn), holding 1 per cent of global equity markets.[2] With 1.78 per cent of European stocks,[2] it is said to be the largest stock owner in Europe.[3]

The purpose of the petroleum fund is to invest parts of the large surplus generated by the Norwegian petroleum sector, generated mainly from taxes of companies, but also payment for license to explore as well as the State's Direct Financial Interest and dividends from partly state-owned Statoil. Current revenue from the petroleum sector is estimated to be at its peak period and to decline over the next decades. The Petroleum Fund was established in 1990 after a decision by the country's legislature to counter the effects of the forthcoming decline in income and to smooth out the disrupting effects of highly fluctuating oil prices.
 
2012-08-05 08:04:53 PM

Benjimin_Dover: Kumana Wanalaia: Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.

That is exactly what the boomers intended. They wanted roads, bridges, parks, and all kinds of other crap but didn't want raise taxes for them. Instead they saw this gigantic pile of money sitting around "doing nothing" and decided it would be good to take. By the time the SS money pile actually runs out and the IOU's need to paid back (by raising whatever tax that should have been raised in the first place) the boomers will be dead and couldn't care less. At that point the bridges will be junk and need to be replaced and the kids living then will have to raise taxes to pay for both it AND the one the boomers shoved up their collective ass.


the surplus days are over. SS has been running a deficit and getting the balance needed from the general revenue fund for some time now.
 
2012-08-05 08:04:57 PM

Oldiron_79: They have altered the deal, pray they do not alter it any further.


img.photobucket.com
 
2012-08-05 08:10:30 PM

Benjimin_Dover: Kumana Wanalaia: Social Security would be fine if congresscritters stopped stealing the money.

I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.

That is exactly what the boomers intended. They wanted roads, bridges, parks, and all kinds of other crap but didn't want raise taxes for them. Instead they saw this gigantic pile of money sitting around "doing nothing" and decided it would be good to take. By the time the SS money pile actually runs out and the IOU's need to paid back (by raising whatever tax that should have been raised in the first place) the boomers will be dead and couldn't care less. At that point the bridges will be junk and need to be replaced and the kids living then will have to raise taxes to pay for both it AND the one the boomers shoved up their collective ass.


It was President Johnson that discovered the IOU gold mine, he was no Boomer. It paid for the war on poverty.
 
2012-08-05 08:17:20 PM
I if headline could't clear if I was reading it out loud three times hope subby gets over aphasia help for things.
 
2012-08-05 08:22:18 PM
Article makes as much sense as Anthony Rossomando giving a speech about Pende languages to John Francis Rigaud..
 
2012-08-05 08:22:47 PM

superdude72: If Treasury Bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the USA are just IOUs, you might as well start burning your $100 bills for heat because they're backed by the same thing.


Sure they are. But why would you burn perfectly good IOUs that are accepted as currency everywhere?

Anyway, whether or not the bonds are backed by full faith and credit is irrelevant since the whole program can be cancelled by Congress at any time.

Benjimin_Dover: Kumana Wanalaia: I say the coffer is full of IOUs, and those IOUs damn well better get payed back.

That is exactly what the boomers intended. They wanted roads, bridges, parks, and all kinds of other crap but didn't want raise taxes for them. Instead they saw this gigantic pile of money sitting around "doing nothing" and decided it would be good to take.


hall.hdfillms.netdna-cdn.com
 
2012-08-05 08:33:42 PM

ladyfortuna: Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?

/appreciating the holiday
//international beer day or something
///so bear with me


Coming to the US is not that hard. We let more people come here legally than the entire rest of the world combined let's into their countries.
 
2012-08-05 08:34:16 PM

Mr. Eugenides: If the govenment can't raise tax revenue, then the money will have to be borrowed by the treasury which will just serve to balloon the debt more.


you know we're both correct, right

superdude72: They live as much as 7 years longer. Not exactly a sea change.


Considering that's about a 40-ish % increase in the amount of time collecting benefits, yes, yes it is
 
2012-08-05 08:48:38 PM

BigJake: Mr. Eugenides: If the govenment can't raise tax revenue, then the money will have to be borrowed by the treasury which will just serve to balloon the debt more.

you know we're both correct, right

superdude72: They live as much as 7 years longer. Not exactly a sea change.

Considering that's about a 40-ish % increase in the amount of time collecting benefits, yes, yes it is


Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy, no it is not. It is already accounted for in the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033 without changing a damn thing.
 
2012-08-05 08:54:17 PM
My father spent 20 years in the Navy, and retired in 1967. He died in 2007, so he had 40 years of retirement for 20 years of work. It would have been 45 years, but he sat out the 5 years between wars.

My best friend retired from civil service in 1967, and he is 82 now; 45 years retirement on 20 years service. His father retired in 1955 and died in 1980.

Multiply it by millions of people nationwide, and the picture is clear: we cannot afford so many people sucking off the system with ever fewer people paying in.

At some point it will collapse.
 
2012-08-05 08:59:17 PM

superdude72: Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy


Considering that SS benefits have been pegged to an overstated inflation measure for decades, yes it is

superdude72: the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033


you literally believe this means there's not a problem, don't you
 
2012-08-05 09:20:01 PM
Oh. look - it's the thread where all the paunchy, balding white boys come to cry about having to support a society they couldn't survive fifteen seconds without.
 
2012-08-05 09:23:48 PM

BigJake: superdude72: Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy

Considering that SS benefits have been pegged to an overstated inflation measure for decades, yes it is

superdude72: the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033

you literally believe this means there's not a problem, don't you


Are you saying the projections are wrong? We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period. All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.

Taking into consideration all the other problems in the country at the moment, the Social Security "crisis" barely rates. We ought to think about *lowering* the retirement age as a fiscal stimulus.
 
2012-08-05 09:25:10 PM

olddinosaur: When I enrolled in 2009, they tried EVERY WAY IN HELL to talk me out of it: You will get a bigger check if you wait till age 66, and so forth and so on and blah blah blah-----

I said at the time, no way I could survive four more years, if the circumstances are right, I will re--file.

Well, since then I have come into some money, so I can refund all 48 payments I have received, re--file at age 66, and guess what? The right to re--file has been taken away.


That was a pretty sweet scam. Get money from the government, invest it for a profit, decide you didn't want to start collecting SS at 62, give back the money you got (without interest) and refile for a larger benefit.

I knew that was still available a couple of years ago.
 
2012-08-05 09:27:39 PM

Uh Oh Chongo Danger Island!: 1. Decrease cigarette taxes.
2. Eliminate smoking restrictions in public places.
3. Legalize marijuana.
4. Watch the mortality rate rise for the 45 to 65 demographic.

Problem solves itself.


.


If you get rid of the seat belt laws and lower the penalties for drunken driving you may be on to something
 
2012-08-05 09:27:56 PM
I can't help but noticing that the the fictious couple are making average incomes but living above-average life expectancies. In 2012, the State with the highest average life expectancy is Hawaii, at a combined ALE of 81.5. This slight imbalance between pay-in and pay-out is posited on the man living to 82 and the woman to 85. The difference in this case is minus $45,000--and that was in 2011.

FTA: "A married couple retiring last year after both spouses earned average lifetime wages paid about $598,000 in Social Security taxes during their careers. They can expect to collect about $556,000 in benefits, if the man lives to 82 and the woman lives to 85, according to a 2011 study by the Urban Institute, a Washington think tank."

In reality, however, the average American does not live that long and they get a much worse deal as a consequence. And most of that money is going to the woman, who is likely to have worked outside of the home less than her man (or men) and to be get survivor benefits.

Furthermore, social security is not paid out to every person. The working lower and middle classes may need social security just to survive in old age, but the better off workers will have private savings, pensions, and investment income, not to mention things like stock options, while the rich will not be paying payroll taxes on any significant portion of their income.

In the real world, the workiing man is making even less money (a LOT less money) than the average person and being paid for a much shorter retirement during which his needs will be much higher because of health problems.

In terms of preparing people for unemployment, ill health and retirement, social security and other problems are even worse than they appear in such studies. American payroll taxes are simply among the lowest in the world, as are income taxes and (recently) corporate taxes. In Europe, people are forced to save through the tax system and consequenly anybody who works a full career will have more money to pay for a full retirement. Much, much, more money is paid out in government transfers because much more money is taken in by taxes.

In the bootstrapy USA and Canada, you are on your own, and because the whole system is posited on less wealth transfer and much higher GINI coefficient, you are left to fend for yourself without resources to meet even modest needs.

Grotesque inequality is not only the norm, it is actually encouraged by politicians, corporations and voters, plus a giant array of special interest "think tanks" designed to promote the interests of those who can afford to own special interest think tanks and to get legislation and judicial judgements such as the heinous Super-rich Citizens United vs. Everybody Else decision in which the plaintiff and the judges were all owned by the same deep treasuries of private wealth, namely the people who could swim in their money like Scrooge McDuck.

And they did say average--did they mean "average", which is pumped up by the wealth of the rich and the super-rich or did they mean "median", which isn't. If the couple in question is truly average, they are much better off than the people at the very middle of the population because average is much higher than median.

Of course, there is a lot of fear-mongering about social security. It isn't really in the kind of trouble that propagandists would have you believe. For one thing, there's plenty of money floating around in the undertaxed wealth and income of the rich and well-to-do. In fact, by world standards (everybody else, except maybe Japan), Americans are seriously undertaxed, so you are pissing away a lot of money that you should be saving for retirement if you were foresightful or had anything worth putting it into. Bank accounts are a cruel joke and so are most investments. They pay negative income for the most part. Americans and Canadians do not save enough, either voluntarily or through government and corporate foresight and forced savings.

But all the same, the system could be solvent. In Canada, it is solvent, at least for the next 75 years or so.

In the US, the money going out is going to overwhelm the money going in regardless of how many people are screwed in the interim by employers and the government alike.

But tha just means that instead of being encouraged or forced to save for your retirement, you will be forced to pay taxes or accept even lower benefits.

The article goes on to explain that social security offers benefits that private savings and corporate pensions don't. Basically it is part insurance--protecting widows who didn't work, children, and so forth. This is true. But as an insurance scheme, it leaves you seriously under-insured.

If you want the kind of social security that everybody else has, Americans and Canadians would have to get used to higher payroll taxes, on more people (richer people and on younger workers), and more incentives to save, or more forced savings. The rich would have to give up a lot more (rather than giving up less and less every year as their privately owned politicians and lobbyists service their private interests) and the whole economy would have be a whole lot more, shall I say, socialist and democratic, or social democratic.

The banking system, the privileges of super-wealth, and many other things would have to be reformed to a very great degree. You would have to take the vote away from unions as well as other corporations (especially other corporations) by limiting political donations to what middle class people can theoretically afford to give (small donations only, by real citizens, not corporate persons--in Canada, the Liberals did a big part of this job at their own expense, as it turns out).

In some ways the situation is both better and worse than it is painted, but for the large majority of Americans and Canadians, it is worse.
 
2012-08-05 09:31:25 PM

superdude72: BigJake: Mr. Eugenides: If the govenment can't raise tax revenue, then the money will have to be borrowed by the treasury which will just serve to balloon the debt more.

you know we're both correct, right

superdude72: They live as much as 7 years longer. Not exactly a sea change.

Considering that's about a 40-ish % increase in the amount of time collecting benefits, yes, yes it is

Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy, no it is not. It is already accounted for in the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033 without changing a damn thing.


Right, then after 2033 when I start collecting benefits there won't be anything left, but the boomers will be happy in their gold lined coffins. Awesome plan!

SS is sort of like if Global Warming (tm) comes as a worst case scenario. By the time the problems really show up it's way to late. Saying we have another 20 years untill we smash into a brick wall with Social Security when modest changes can move that wall far down the road or remove it totally doesn't accomplish anything with a society that refuses to delay gratification.
 
2012-08-05 09:35:17 PM

superdude72:

Are you saying the projections are wrong? We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period. All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.



That is incorrect. Your SS benefit is based on your contribution to the program. If you raise that cap, that just means the high earners get more benefits when they eventually retire. It's just another "lets kick the problem down the road" solution.
 
2012-08-05 09:40:54 PM

superdude72: Are you saying the projections are wrong?


Are YOU saying 2033 is somehow adequate?

superdude72: We ought to think about *lowering* the retirement age


holy lmao
 
2012-08-05 09:42:36 PM
"I DO NOT UNDERSTAND HOW PENSIONS OR ACCOUNTING WORK, BUT LET ME ASSURE YOU SOCIAL SECURITY IS JUST FINE" - Superdude72, 2012

_____________________________/
i.imgur.com
 
2012-08-05 09:45:51 PM

Mr. Eugenides:

Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy, no it is not. It is already accounted for in the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033 without changing a damn thing.

Right, then after 2033 when I start collecting benefits there won't be anything left, but the boomers will be happy in their gold lined coffins. Awesome plan!


Er... no. After 2033 the program can still afford to pay 75 percent of benefits. Not a brick wall so much as an uphill gradient.
 
2012-08-05 09:49:40 PM

superdude72: Are you saying the projections are wrong? We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period. All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.


I think SS could have been fixed before it was broken by having the money stay in an account someplace. Even if it earned a measly 1% or less in interest, I would bet that the interest alone by this time could pay for the benefits going forward. Hell, just having that chunk of change sitting in banks would have been a pretty big pot of capital that could have been lent out to businesses and such making more than 1%.
 
2012-08-05 09:54:06 PM

BigJake: superdude72: Are you saying the projections are wrong?

Are YOU saying 2033 is somehow adequate?


I'm saying that being able to pay 100% of benefits until 2033, and 75% thereafter, without changing anything at all, is not exactly a crisis.
 
2012-08-05 09:56:22 PM
Last year was the turning point. The first year that the payouts exceeded the revenue. And because that will continue until the cap of $110000 is raised or the cap is eliminated altogether, we can expect deficits to increase.if only congress had saved and not spent the prior 70 years of surpluses, it would have been solvent for the next century. Congress is bad.
 
2012-08-05 10:00:44 PM

Benjimin_Dover: Coming to the US is not that hard. We let more people come here legally than the entire rest of the world combined let's into their countries.


I would consider a 10 year waiting list to be hard. But I guess protectionist farktards think differently.

superdude72: Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy, no it is not. It is already accounted for in the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033 without changing a damn thing.


I am always astounded to see this statement said as if it was a positive thing. As long as you seem fine with an implicit 25% cut in 20 years, why not take a 10% cut now to avoid it?

We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period.

If by 'fix' you mean kick the can again.

All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.

Not sure if serious. It's been taken into account that the people making decisions will be dead by then, anyway, so who cares?

Taking into consideration all the other problems in the country at the moment, the Social Security "crisis" barely rates. We ought to think about *lowering* the retirement age as a fiscal stimulus.

PLEASE tell me you're trolling. I mean I've seen some incredibly stupid things said on Fark, especially when it comes to economics. But can anyone really be THAT stupid?
 
2012-08-05 10:04:09 PM

BMFPitt: Benjimin_Dover: Coming to the US is not that hard. We let more people come here legally than the entire rest of the world combined let's into their countries.

I would consider a 10 year waiting list to be hard. But I guess protectionist farktards think differently.



I would measure how hard it is by how many people actually get in as compared to the rest of the world. If anybody is protectionist, it isn't us.
 
2012-08-05 10:08:43 PM
"IS" and "THE" learn them use them!
 
2012-08-05 10:10:52 PM

Benjimin_Dover: Even if it earned a measly 1% or less in interest, I would bet that the interest alone by this time could pay for the benefits going forward. Hell, just having that chunk of change sitting in banks would have been a pretty big pot of capital that could have been lent out to businesses and such making more than 1%.


That opens up a whole 'nother can of worms though. For starters, there's no way the government would allow those funds to be lent out on the same basis as the banks' other funds. This is a reasonable position but it opens the door for all manner of tomfoolery - the government would then have a giant pool of capital whose investments it could effectively direct through regulation, allowing it an even greater influence on our economy, and I guarantee that after awhile return + safety wouldn't be the two highest priorities anymore. A pool of capital that large is another bubble waiting to happen.

If you take that money and invest it in the stock market, then the government essentially owns large chunks of the economy while simultaneously seriously boosting share prices beyond reason. Once that capital flow reverses, watch out. In the meantime you'd have one of the most socialist economies in the world (in the literal sense, not the Palin sense) and all its attendant long-term sclerosis.

Individual accounts solve the socialization problem but do not solve the capital flow problem, while introducing a funds cutoff to those currently receiving benefits.

It's a fine little pickle
 
2012-08-05 10:11:31 PM

Benjimin_Dover: I would measure how hard it is by how many people actually get in as compared to the rest of the world. If anybody is protectionist, it isn't us.


I find it fascinating that you would claim to not understand the concept of difficulty rather than admit that you're a protectionist.
 
2012-08-05 10:14:48 PM

BMFPitt:
superdude72: Considering that per capita income has increased by much more than life expectancy, no it is not. It is already accounted for in the projections that say we can pay 100 percent of benefits until 2033 without changing a damn thing.

I am always astounded to see this statement said as if it was a positive thing. As long as you seem fine with an implicit 25% cut in 20 years, why not take a 10% cut now to avoid it?


I'm not OK with a 25% cut in 20 years. I think we should raise the cap to avoid it.

If by 'fix' you mean kick the can again.

How is it "kicking the can"? There is no reason Social Security cannot be sustained indefinitely with occasional tweaks. You can either cut benefits or increase revenue. I prefer to increase revenue. Call me crazy, but I think it's freaking insane that in the wealthiest country in the history of the world, we force people to work into their 70s. It doesn't have to be like this.
 
2012-08-05 10:16:37 PM

superdude72: I'm saying that being able to pay 100% of benefits until 2033


This is based on the accounting fiction of the Social Security Trust Fund though. Benefit taxes were spent when they were raised, and benefits are and continue be paid in real time out of the annual budget. SS's "dedicated" taxes are already raising less money than is being paid out in benefits.

Even if cutting to 75% were somehow a solution, how can you say tha's not a big deal to the folks He Hate Me was going on about? Seems like it'd be a huge deal to them. Living on $1,200 a month? Let's cut it to $900, NBD, right?
 
2012-08-05 10:18:22 PM

relcec: ladyfortuna: Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?

/appreciating the holiday
//international beer day or something
///so bear with me

because the vast majority of these low skilled people cost way f*cking more than they ever contribute. even an immigrant earning near median income for 45 straight years ends up costing about 135k more than they put in in medicare payments. for all 12 million illegal immigrants you are looking at a liability of close to 1.5 trillion we don't have. and they aren't a net benefit even for social security. they don't pay in enough.
think about it. if importing low skilled immigrants was even a net contributer the whole world would do it, and do it a lot. it is the one resource we have in abundance on this planet.

importing poor people only makes your poor people poorer, and your rich people richer. that's a universal truth.


[citationneeded.jpg]

Also there are plenty of skilled professionals (medical, professors, etc) that would be happy to fast track to US citizenship if they could only get their licenses and certifications transferred over in a reasonable amount of time instead of the years and years it currently takes.
 
2012-08-05 10:32:49 PM
I'm so happy railworkers are exempt from social security. Sucks for y'all.
 
2012-08-05 10:33:54 PM

jigger: Early investors make out better than later investors. Eventually the system collapses. That sounds very similar to some other kind of scheme. What was it called? Just can't put my finger on it.


Facebook?
 
2012-08-05 10:35:35 PM

OMG! We're All Gonna Die!: I'm so happy railworkers are exempt from social security. Sucks for y'all.


You're still on the hook for an ever-increasing share of the cost paid from the general fund. Enjoy.
 
2012-08-05 10:38:33 PM
BigJake: superdude72: I'm saying that being able to pay 100% of benefits until 2033

This is based on the accounting fiction of the Social Security Trust Fund though. Benefit taxes were spent when they were raised, and benefits are and continue be paid in real time out of the annual budget. SS's "dedicated" taxes are already raising less money than is being paid out in benefits.

Even if cutting to 75% were somehow a solution, how can you say tha's not a big deal to the folks He Hate Me was going on about? Seems like it'd be a huge deal to them. Living on $1,200 a month? Let's cut it to $900, NBD, right?


Whats fair and whats reasonable are not always the same thing.

Further, it's going to hit a constituency that largely doesn't vote. Maybe if 18-30's get off their butts and go vote, they can get people into congress that will reform it in a much more fair way before the generational weighted options are all that's left. Looking how they stayed home in 2010, somehow I doubt that's going to change.
 
2012-08-05 10:39:23 PM

BigJake: superdude72: I'm saying that being able to pay 100% of benefits until 2033

This is based on the accounting fiction of the Social Security Trust Fund though. Benefit taxes were spent when they were raised, and benefits are and continue be paid in real time out of the annual budget. SS's "dedicated" taxes are already raising less money than is being paid out in benefits.


If the Trust Fund is a "fiction," then our entire economy is based on the fiction that little green pieces of paper have value because they're backed by the faith and credit of the US government. Yes, the government can cut benefits as much as it likes, but historically this has not been very popular with the voting public. If the rest of the government has a problem repaying the Trust Fund, that's a problem with the rest of the government, not proof that Social Security itself is somehow unsound.


Even if cutting to 75% were somehow a solution, how can you say tha's not a big deal to the folks He Hate Me was going on about? Seems like it'd be a huge deal to them. Living on $1,200 a month? Let's cut it to $900, NBD, right?

As a worst-case scenario, it's far less apocalyptic than the "Social Security is a Ponzi Scheme!" fear mongers would have us believe.
 
2012-08-05 10:40:01 PM

valkore: fromafar: Another problem is the children of deceased getting payments in some cases. I know of a couple who had both lost former spouses, who married and together could QUIT WORK because the blended family had enough children to make out fairly well with the combined payments. Both were able bodied but the rest of us now have to support them. How does that make sense?

This seems extremely unlikely (both the scenario and the amount of money). I'm curious as to the payment per child and how many kids it takes to cover the entire family with those combined payments.

Anybody else getting an ad at the top of the screen for social security attorneys? You go, AdSense!


I know someone whose spouse died and left her a widow with a young boy. Although she was a well-paid manager, and soon remarried another well-paid manager, the son continued to receive SS benefits till he was 18. His mother kept the money in a bank account for him and gave it to him for his birthday.

Yeah, your tax money bought him a really nice brand new Mustang.
 
2012-08-05 10:41:25 PM

smitty04: It paid for the war on poverty.


Good thing we declared war on poverty, or we'd still have poverty!
 
2012-08-05 10:50:09 PM

superdude72: If the Trust Fund is a "fiction," then our entire economy is based on the fiction that little green pieces of paper have value because they're backed by the faith and credit of the US government. Yes, the government can cut benefits as much as it likes, but historically this has not been very popular with the voting public. If the rest of the government has a problem repaying the Trust Fund, that's a problem with the rest of the government, not proof that Social Security itself is somehow unsound.


You are the 1%. Of the densest people on the planet
 
2012-08-05 10:51:06 PM

superdude72: If the Trust Fund is a "fiction," then our entire economy is based on the fiction that little green pieces of paper have value


it is

superdude72: As a worst-case scenario


it's not
 
2012-08-05 10:56:01 PM
My great-grandfather was born in 1870, retired in 1936, got monthly social security checks until he died in 1972. Never paid any SSWT.
 
2012-08-05 10:56:37 PM
I love how everyone keeps talking about how SS is disability insurance, well it sucks as disability insurance. Say I make $50k that means that about $7k is being spent for my shiny government disability insurance (approx 7% from me and my employer) well for $7k I can buy a a top notch disability insurance program form a private insurer (hell I work a "construction" field and will get 85% of my $100k'ish income and I only pay about $4500 a year)
 
2012-08-06 12:09:39 AM

ladyfortuna: Social Security is one of the reasons I have no problem with allowing anyone who wants to, to immigrate to the US. Just require that they hold an above-board job which takes out all the applicable SS and other taxes for at least 3 years starting from date of citizenship. If they fail to maintain that level of employment, revoke or at least threaten the citizenship till they put in the time (don't deport, just tell/help them to get another job). Speaking as a mostly near minimum wage earner for my entire adult life, they should be able to clear this hurdle.

Lots of people want to come to the US, why do we keep making it harder for them when many actually WANT to come work and pay taxes?




Americans need to take care of Americans before taking care of anyone else. If Americans were taking care of Americans, your near minimum wage earnings would be a little higher, because there wouldn't be illegals and others depressing the wages under the table. Folks with no high school, or a GED or some college wouldn't have to to get scammed by for-profit mills to get a college degree to do minimum wage work, because the jobs would be there. Unless they were outsourced, in which case nothing matters.
 
2012-08-06 12:15:08 AM

valkore: fromafar: Another problem is the children of deceased getting payments in some cases. I know of a couple who had both lost former spouses, who married and together could QUIT WORK because the blended family had enough children to make out fairly well with the combined payments. Both were able bodied but the rest of us now have to support them. How does that make sense?

This seems extremely unlikely (both the scenario and the amount of money). I'm curious as to the payment per child and how many kids it takes to cover the entire family with those combined payments.

Anybody else getting an ad at the top of the screen for social security attorneys? You go, AdSense!


It's not unlikely at all. It's a fact of life. I take a little part of it back... the remarriage part. From my understanding, remarriage fks up the gig. So the best option is to shack up.. which is what a bunch of older Boomers and Greatest Generationers and Silent Generationers do. So yeah, all the kids get a surviving child pay out until they're 18. Social Security has not kept up with the times, it's still operating under 'women never work and need a lifeline' as well as 'men are the sole breadwinners and will pick up tthe slack.'
 
2012-08-06 12:21:34 AM

brantgoose: I can't help but noticing that the the fictious couple are making average incomes but living above-average life expectancies. In 2012, the State with the highest average life expectancy is Hawaii, at a combined ALE of 81.5. This slight imbalance between pay-in and pay-out is posited on the man living to 82 and the woman to 85. The difference in this case is minus $45,000--and that was in 2011.

FTA: "A married couple retiring last year after both spouses earned average lifetime wages paid about $598,000 in Social Security taxes during their careers. They can expect to collect about $556,000 in benefits, if the man lives to 82 and the woman lives to 85, according to a 2011 study by the Urban Institute, a Washington think tank."

In reality, however, the average American does not live that long and they get a much worse deal as a consequence. And most of that money is going to the woman, who is likely to have worked outside of the home less than her man (or men) and to be get survivor benefits.

Furthermore, social security is not paid out to every person. The working lower and middle classes may need social security just to survive in old age, but the better off workers will have private savings, pensions, and investment income, not to mention things like stock options, while the rich will not be paying payroll taxes on any significant portion of their income.

In the real world, the workiing man is making even less money (a LOT less money) than the average person and being paid for a much shorter retirement during which his needs will be much higher because of health problems.

In terms of preparing people for unemployment, ill health and retirement, social security and other problems are even worse than they appear in such studies. American payroll taxes are simply among the lowest in the world, as are income taxes and (recently) corporate taxes. In Europe, people are forced to save through the tax system and consequenly anybody who works a full career will have m ...


I'll take the forced savings over the ponzi shiat. But this is America, some asshole rich fk/career gubmint worker fk would just look at all the money and decide to play 'rob peter pay paul' games with it, so all the money saved up would be gone anyway.
 
2012-08-06 12:50:42 AM

kroonermanblack: Even my 60 year old parents get a few hundred dollars a month and that's about it.


My property taxes alone are more than that, and I have a less than average house.
 
2012-08-06 12:57:57 AM
I worked for nearly fifty years. To have two pensions pulled out from under me and lose half my retirement fund in 2008. All I have is SS.

Thank you FDR.
 
2012-08-06 01:56:26 AM

alfuso: I worked for nearly fifty years. To have two pensions pulled out from under me and lose half my retirement fund in 2008. All I have is SS.

Thank you FDR.


Defined benefit pensions are much more tenuous than self directed 401-K type plans as you've found out. You may have lost value in your retirement fund, but you still have something there and it's under your control. Once a company declares bankruptcy a defined benefit pension is worthless. Even the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation which is supposed to insure pensions in the event of a company default is mostly broke. A lot of people who think they're sitting pretty on a pension are going to get royally screwed if the economy dips back into recession.
 
2012-08-06 07:22:29 AM

superdude72: Name another insurance plan that pays everyone more than they paid into it. You can't? Guess what: That's not how insurance works!

Social security is insurance against the possibility that you will become disabled, too old to work, or lose a breadwinner in a family.

If SSI were an investment plan rather than an insurance plan, it would not work. Most people are not able to save enough money to see them through all possible outcomes, from becoming disabled in your 30s to living into your 90s.


In fact investment plans on that scale would be very bad for the economy even if people could afford it - saving that much money at a rate to protect yourself so that you will be financially stable for every single future bad/good outcome would require such a massive level of savings that it warps the economy - if you have so much in savings chasing investment opportunities, you will get massive booms and asset bubbles as all the investment funds continually try and chase the best investments. You also massively shift the balance from consumer spending being about equal to income, to being only a fraction of income. If no one is buying much, the economy slows down and you have to carry massive levels of unemployment.

You also always have the issue of what happens to the people that fall through the cracks - if you are willing to let them starve on the street if there isn't enough charity to keep them afloat during hard times, then the government has to step in. And if the government steps in it needs to tax everyone else to pay for it, and if the benefits are enough to get people by you have the chance of people free riding on it. If conversely you require virtually everyone to contribute to an insurance plan to ensure a basic level of income no matter the situation, you save yourself all of the above problems without damaging the economy.

The only people who would have problems with this solution is rich investment bankers that lose out of trillions of dollars of investment funds being under their control, making them 10s of billions in bonuses every year they do well (and meaning they have to swap to a different fund/bank if they screw up, getting only 10s of millions in parachute payments for not being lucky in their gambling that year). Of course those people have lots of money to buy positive media coverage of their cause, or to directly influence the law in countries like the US where political corruption and bribery is normal (or even protected as "free speech").
 
2012-08-06 08:29:47 AM

Mr. Eugenides: superdude72:

Are you saying the projections are wrong? We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period. All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.



That is incorrect. Your SS benefit is based on your contribution to the program. If you raise that cap, that just means the high earners get more benefits when they eventually retire. It's just another "lets kick the problem down the road" solution.


What if we raised the cap on contributions, and in addition put a maximum cap on benefits, perhaps whatever the maximum benefit is presently, and/or add a means test for benefits?
 
2012-08-06 09:54:52 AM

FarkerinMN: I love how everyone keeps talking about how SS is disability insurance, well it sucks as disability insurance. Say I make $50k that means that about $7k is being spent for my shiny government disability insurance (approx 7% from me and my employer) well for $7k I can buy a a top notch disability insurance program form a private insurer (hell I work a "construction" field and will get 85% of my $100k'ish income and I only pay about $4500 a year)


And what if you have a pre-existing condition? Then how much does that top notch disability insurance program cost? Will it even cover you for that condition? With SSDI, there is no such thing as a pre-existing condition.
 
2012-08-06 10:41:55 AM

PastaFazoole: FarkerinMN: I love how everyone keeps talking about how SS is disability insurance, well it sucks as disability insurance. Say I make $50k that means that about $7k is being spent for my shiny government disability insurance (approx 7% from me and my employer) well for $7k I can buy a a top notch disability insurance program form a private insurer (hell I work a "construction" field and will get 85% of my $100k'ish income and I only pay about $4500 a year)

And what if you have a pre-existing condition? Then how much does that top notch disability insurance program cost? Will it even cover you for that condition? With SSDI, there is no such thing as a pre-existing condition.


This. Although SSDI payout still isn't 100% guaranteed as things like alcohol and drug abuse (among other things) can affect eligibility.

Not to mention the fact that a number of private DI policies have loopholes built-in when determining your eligibility for benefits, as well as your benefit amount. You have to look VERY closely at how they determine partial and full disability, as well as how the payments are made based on that status.
 
2012-08-06 11:07:27 AM
social security != retirement. Or, maybe it does if you are an utter dumbass or hit the skids later in life, but the whole point of saving up during your life is so that you don't die of being broke and old. Social security is supposed to be a safety net, not a trampoline.
 
2012-08-06 11:37:23 AM

PastaFazoole: Mr. Eugenides: superdude72:

Are you saying the projections are wrong? We can very easily fix Social Security by raising the cap on earnings subject to SSI tax. Period. All this fluff about life expectancy is just fluff. It has already been taken into account.



That is incorrect. Your SS benefit is based on your contribution to the program. If you raise that cap, that just means the high earners get more benefits when they eventually retire. It's just another "lets kick the problem down the road" solution.

What if we raised the cap on contributions, and in addition put a maximum cap on benefits, perhaps whatever the maximum benefit is presently, and/or add a means test for benefits?


So you're saying that hypothetical woman Gina who makes $50,000/year and never puts any money away over her lifetime should get greater benefits than hypothetical woman Annie who makes the same $50,000/year but makes sure to scrimp today and put $5,000 or more per year into a retirement savings should get more benefits?

Means testing is simply another way to encourage people to either not save for retirement or to hide that money when retirement comes.
 
2012-08-06 02:38:43 PM
"A married couple retiring last year after both spouses earned average lifetime wages paid about $598,000 in Social Security taxes during their careers. They can expect to collect about $556,000 in benefits"

so they are returning the principle in noninflationary adjusted dollars and digging on forty years of compounded interest

raid and spend then
oh my goodness, where did it all go?

that dollar I contributed in '71 could buy four gallons of gas, two packs of cigs
or 6.66 hostess fruit pies
 
2012-08-06 02:39:39 PM

Mr. Eugenides: PastaFazoole:

What if we raised the cap on contributions, and in addition put a maximum cap on benefits, perhaps whatever the maximum benefit is presently, and/or add a means test for benefits?

So you're saying that hypothetical woman Gina who makes $50,000/year and never puts any money away over her lifetime should get greater benefits than hypothetical woman Annie who makes the same $50,000/year but makes sure to scrimp today and put $5,000 or more per year into a retirement savings should get more benefits?

Means testing is simply another way to encourage people to either not save for retirement or to hide that money when retirement comes.


No, I don't think money saved in a 401K or IRA (up to the allowable limits) should count against a person if we were going to means test, so they wouldn't have to hide it.
 
2012-08-06 02:57:36 PM
Like clockwork my father brought this up today.

Good job astroturf'ers, you truly are leading the sheepel.
 
2012-08-06 06:55:03 PM

BigJake: Benjimin_Dover: Even if it earned a measly 1% or less in interest, I would bet that the interest alone by this time could pay for the benefits going forward. Hell, just having that chunk of change sitting in banks would have been a pretty big pot of capital that could have been lent out to businesses and such making more than 1%.

That opens up a whole 'nother can of worms though. For starters, there's no way the government would allow those funds to be lent out on the same basis as the banks' other funds. This is a reasonable position but it opens the door for all manner of tomfoolery - the government would then have a giant pool of capital whose investments it could effectively direct through regulation, allowing it an even greater influence on our economy, and I guarantee that after awhile return + safety wouldn't be the two highest priorities anymore. A pool of capital that large is another bubble waiting to happen.

If you take that money and invest it in the stock market, then the government essentially owns large chunks of the economy while simultaneously seriously boosting share prices beyond reason. Once that capital flow reverses, watch out. In the meantime you'd have one of the most socialist economies in the world (in the literal sense, not the Palin sense) and all its attendant long-term sclerosis.

Individual accounts solve the socialization problem but do not solve the capital flow problem, while introducing a funds cutoff to those currently receiving benefits.

It's a fine little pickle


Those are valid points but I would expect that the funds would be outside of government control similar to how my funds are when I put money into a savings account. I have no say on how the bank uses them to make loans to others such as mortgages and the like. They would have to follow all the same regulations and safeguards that they follow now. (cough) I don't pretend to be a financial wizard at that level but I can say that the current method of pissing the funds away into the wind is not the way to do it.
 
2012-08-06 10:15:59 PM
Benjimin_Dover:

Those are valid points but I would expect that the funds would be outside of government control similar to how my funds are when I put money into a savings account. I have no say on how the bank uses them to make loans to others such as mortgages and the like. They would have to follow all the same regulations and safeguards that they follow now. (cough) I don't pretend to be a financial wizard at that level but I can say that the current method of pissing ...


You mean the same banks that lobbied to repeal Glass-Steagall so they could build Investment Banks and leverage their savings side against much higher risk on the investment side? And then almost all failed in the crash of 2007?

Until we get 100% public financing expect the worst when it comes to money and collusion between big government and big business. That goes for both parties. One only needs to look at the manufactured bankruptcy of the USPS, and the huge pension nest egg that will leave behind for someone to use at will, to see what happens when politicians and their corporate buddies have a way to get their hands on a large amount of slated money.
 
2012-08-07 08:38:44 AM
But, if you get sick or die young, you can come out ahead. My dad died of a heart attack at 56, when my youngest brother was still in high school. He received social security for two years, which was used to pay for college. My mother had to retire early due to bone disease and received SSID for a number of years before she turned 65.

So, if your health fails while you are young, you can still come out ahead. However, I prefer to work until I am 70 or so and then retire healthy.
 
2012-08-07 08:42:56 AM
We could always raise the contribuition cap.

Or we could give it all to the banks and work until we die.
 
2012-08-07 07:25:10 PM

TyrantII: Until we get 100% public financing expect the worst when it comes to money and collusion between big government and big business.


You do have a good point here. I would suggest that 100% financing may create another problem that might be worse. No recourse for patients who get denied claims.

Currently we have insurance companies who can be taken to court when they don't pay a claim that they should have where you are on one side and they are on the other side. In the middle you have the government deciding as a referee of sorts. Once the government moves out from the third party middle man and completely on the other side where they get to deny a claim AND also decide whether they were correct or not, we might end up with more denied claims than we have now.

I think the problem is extremely complicated and no solution is going to be simple.
 
2012-08-07 10:20:57 PM

PastaFazoole: What if we raised the cap on contributions, and in addition put a maximum cap on benefits, perhaps whatever the maximum benefit is presently, and/or add a means test for benefits?


How is that not just a way to make people who will not need SS pay for people who will?

If you want to raise taxes, call it a tax.
 
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