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Old, Disabled People, and Social Security: A Study in Depression


Old, Disabled People, and Social Security: A Study in Depression

Diana Bulgarelli

Editor’s note: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a safety net program that provides a very basic income to older adults and people with disabilities who have either no or very limited other income and resources. The maximum possible federal monthly benefit for an individual is currently $733. SSI has changed little since it was signed into law in 1972, and increasing numbers of recipients are living in poverty, going hungry, or becoming homeless.


I was alerted to this recent letter on facebook recently by A friend- I thought it appropriate for anyone who has paid into this program to know-

Gary Cordell:

The Social Security check is now (or soon will be) referred to as a Federal Benefit Payment?
I'll be part of the one percent to forward this. I am forwarding it because it touches a nerve in me, and I hope it will in you.
Please keep passing it on until everyone in our country has read it.
The government is now referring to our Social Security checks as a "Federal Benefit Payment." This isn't a benefit. It is our money paid out of our earned income! Not only did we all contribute to Social Security but our employers did too. It totaled 15% of our income before taxes.
If you averaged $30K per year over your working life, that's close to $180,000 invested in Social Security.
If you calculate the future value of your monthly invest-ment in social security ($375/month, including both you and your employers contributions) at a meager 1% interest rate compounded monthly, after 40 years of working you'd have more than $1.3+ million dollars saved!
This is your personal investment. Upon retirement, if you took out only 3% per year, you'd receive $39,318 per year, or $3,277 per month.
That's almost three times more than today's average Social Security benefit of $1,230 per month, according to the Social Security Administration. (Google it – it’s a fact).
And your retirement fund would last more than 33 years (until you're 98 if you retire at age 65)! I can only imagine how much better most average-income people could live in retirement if our government had just invested our money in low-risk interest-earning accounts.
Instead, the folks in Washington pulled off a bigger Ponzi scheme than Bernie Madoff ever did.
They took our money and used it elsewhere. They forgot (oh yes, they knew) that it was OUR money they were taking. They didn't have a referendum to ask us if we wanted to lend the money to them. And they didn't pay interest on the debt they assumed. And recently they've told us that the money won't support us for very much longer. (Isn't it funny that they NEVER say this about welfare payments?)
But is it our fault they misused our investments? And now, to add insult to injury, they're calling it a benefit, as if we never worked to earn every penny of it.
Just because they borrowed the money doesn't mean that our investments were a charity!
Let's take a stand. We have earned our right to Social Security and Medicare. Demand that our legislators bring some sense into our government.
Find a way to keep Social Security and Medicare going for the sake of that 92% of our population who need it.
Then call it what it is: Our Earned Retirement Income.


Gingrich's Contract On America lives!


You may be, but I am not confused in the least- What an arrogant and mindless statement-


We are all commodities now and when old and used up discarded. Ain't corporate capitalism grand.


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Tell it early and often - to coin a perspective of Mark Twain. Its stunning to imagine that the hypnosis has lasted this long - but there you go, just keep stating it and putting it out there. Eventually when we get bitten in the butt by the giant vampire squid - I don't think such a bite is poisonous, and it might just bring baseball loving millions to the chalk box and bat rack at the edge of the diamond in stride on the way out to home plate to tap a challenge to the pitchers, set the stance and say ... bring it on!!


Just for starters-
If you weren't so old, tired and ignorant fuzzy and clueless in your thinking you would have read my opening statement that pointed out that I was relating A facebook post from A friend that I thought appropriate- I DIDN'T WRITE THIS, just for starters-
Secondly, the intent of my delivering this message was all about the new label that the Govt. was placing on SS Payments and of course the monetary worth of the investment for the middle of the road "Earned Retirement Recipient"- (NOT Federal Benefit Payment Recipient")
And thirdly, after digesting your tasteless comment on the authors use of the words "Demand that our legislators bring some sense into our government", which was A cheap shot at best-
And then to focus on the spelling or mis-spelling of A word in that statement was TRIVIAL at best-
You may be old my friend, but I see no wisdom or intelligence here what-so-ever... You come off like some wet behind the ears, smart assed juvenile to this Old Man....
I found your original remark tasteless and remarkably ignorant at best- Good fkn day to YOU....


Read my reply below to the guy you voted up- You both missed the mark here and you have told me nothing that I don't already know....And again, if you think that I think people steal because they don't think it is wrong, you are the one that is confused!
And if you think voting anyone out in the primaries will solve any theft in Washington, you are beyond confused....


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Thanks theoldgoat- The only sensible reply to my well meaning, maybe wake someone up post that I tried to convey-
Funny how these cons in Washington can let 1 out of 5 children go to bed hungry at night over some Ag. bill over food stamp cuts, allow Wall Street to screw everybody out of their pensions and 401-k's, Homes, Raid our Treasury to put us in debt to cover the Bankers greed, etc. and have some shit bag like Donald Rumsfeld announce there is 2.3 TRILLION missing from the Pentagon budget and then, the very next day the two bldgs. that housed these records are destroyed in some black flag operation- That 2.3 TRILLION is more than our SS golden egg account-
Where do we go from here?


Hey, I am not going to delete anything from that original post- That would be unfair to the guy that wrote it- I am NOT going to customize A decent STATEMENT to satisfy every nit-picker that comes my way- The overall message outweighs your petty disagreements, although you made some small but significant points-
And, I never stated I had any solutions, you did- And I just don't see them working out- And that is just my opinion...


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Thank you for this article. I have personally known several people on SSI. One of them was a migrant farm worker in her youth. People who preach the Protestant Work Ethic have no idea about how much poor people work.


That would be true if you would be allowed to have a personal retirement account (like a 401k). It would require a lot of financial self discipline and personal responsibility and everyone knows 90% of people don't have either.

SS is not like that, it gets spread among all users (spread the wealth?). So even if i made 100k/yr for 40 working years i will not get that investment back, some of it will go to the guy that might have made minimum wage his whole life.


Right you are- But the sheer numbers give those that paid make the "Federal Benefeit Program" sound more ludicrous than ever- It is as stated "Earned Retirement Income" totally-
Not to mention all of the "Illegal Aliens" that picked grapes in the hot sun all day, paid in and never saw A dime-
I worked at least 2 Union jobs that petered out before "Vesting" that eliminated my SS investments of that time-
Good points all though....


Man, you are like A little child who just won't give in- You have turned the whole intent of my post into your own little crusade- And now I am A Blowhard and Plagiarist! You just refuse to see the forest through the trees....
Hey, eat your little alligator heart out there buddy and if you want some news on elections read below article- I am really getting tired of your petty bullshit BTW-....

"willing to disparage the one thing that voters can do to help correct the corruption problem, without offering any reason why you think it is ineffective"

"Electronic Voting Fraud: A Real Threat to Any Democrat Running for President"

"Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman, Truthout:
"After rigged vote counts put George W. Bush in the White House twice, Democrats are finally beginning to talk about voting rights. Still, today, there are 24 states where Republican officials control the voting process and could decide the 2016 presidential election outcome".
***(All in quotes, so as not to plagiarize-happy now?)


There- I added his name- Satisfied now?


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That's what they are mortally afraid of stubones49 . If we were to stand up and demand higher Social Security payments, healthcare for all, free K thru college education, Public banking (Federal, State and Local). Why there would be much less money for the government and their criminal partners in the great Public/Private transfer of wealth from everyday working amerikans to the parasites that make up our elected government, the wealthiest 1% of the country and the Military Congressional Industrial Complex! Why, if we were able to do that, there wouldn't be any money left for wars of choice. There wouldn't be enough money left for amerikan NGO's to help pay for the overthrow of governments that don't want to dance to amerika's tune of world wide capitalist plunder! What a wonderful thought!