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Social Security: Many Happy Returns


#1

Social Security: Many Happy Returns

Christopher Brauchli

When the end of the world comes, I want to be living in retirement.
Karl Kraus, Aphorism

This column is about a birthday present for Social Security. It is the present that Social Security wants more than anything in the world. And it’s the present Republicans have the hardest time figuring out how to give--money.


#2

"Jamie Dimon is the president of JPMorgan Chase. He earned approximately $20 million in 2014. If there were no cap and all of Mr. Dimon’s compensation were subject to the Social Security tax, he would have paid $1,240,000 into the Social Security Trust Fund in 2015 ... [thereby making] the trust fund solvent forever."

Now, if we institute both 4 and 5 the psychopathic narcissistic hoarding dregs would come a lot closer to actually paying their fair share!


#3

What about option 6:

Confiscate all personal wealth over one million dollars. If you can't get by on that, then tough shit. Freeloading Millionaires and Billionaires are an unacceptable burden on society.


#4

I love the whole raising the eligibility age thing. Obviously come up with by people who never worked a hard physical job in their lives. My husband worked in an auto plant for 20 years. He retired at 62 and took the lesser benefit because he knew he wouldn't last three more years on the line-his shoulder was shot.

I would love to haul some of these congresscritters who are in their 60's and 70's out into the real world and make them do a stint at any kind of real-life job. For instance, as a grocery store cashier, as one lady I know who is in her 70's has to do. I fully expect her to die on the job. They need to see how 4-8 hours continuously on your feet, much less any kind of physical labor, feels like when you're old. They need a serious reality check

Life expectency for the poor is dropping swiftly in our "first-world" country. Raising the eligibility age means that many people would never receive anything for the money that they put in. I suspect that's intentional.


#5

My vote? Eliminate the tax cap as well as most of the sleaze balls in Washington.

There, problem solved.


#6

The retirement age has been raised, enough already. The only one that makes sense is raising the SS wage tax cap or eventually eliminating it. A fractional raise of the SS wage tax (for everyone) over time would also be a big help. SS does not need major surgery, it's a great program that keeps millions of seniors out of total destitution. The billionaires hate SS and have spent millions to try to destroy the program. Bush tried to privatize it in 2005 but mercifully he failed. But the GOP keeps trying to destroy the program.


#7

We're lucky that Social Security has been around long enough for all to see it's benefits. I say this because those against Social Security have prevented the establishment of a 100% actuarily sound system ever since it began in the 1930s. They want to be able to say that Social Security is doomed to failure, even though it could be made actuarily sound with relatively slight adjustments to FICA and Self-Employment taxation. (Something major should really be done to make FICA and Self-Employment more equal, as well as removing the "cap".) Retirement age should not have been raised. As has been pointed out by others here, wear and tear on the bodies of the 99% calls for lowering the retirement age!

In spite of all the malice inherent in the laws of Social Security, the SSTF (Social Security Trust Fund) has had a surplus ever since it began. Because that surplus is invested in (interest bearing) Treasury Securities that cash has lessened the taxation burden for all the wars we've waged since 1935 (e.g. WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afganistan, and other miscellaneous Pentagon activity). (Ditto for all the foreign money invested in Treasuries.) But, by law, FICA and Self-Employment revenue are to be used only for Social Security benefits. That's the law the Republicans hate. They want to transform the SSTF into merely a regressive flat tax on the 99% in order to reduce progressive income tax on the 1%.

The Republicans also hate the SSTF because it belongs to all of us, the public. They want everything privatised, like what's happening in Greece now, with the sale of airports and seaports to private entities. Then they can pay outrageous compensation to ceos. Who cares about the little guy!

The last time anything was done to help Social Security was during the Reagan administration, and the changes were bi-partisan. But, even then, the Democrats caved in to the Republicans, and 100% actuarial soundness was not enacted. We're at a similar point now where actuarial reality is creeping up to annoy us. What will be the outcome?


#9

Eliminate those sleazeballs and tax their elected terrorist wages at 90%, I mean seriously, if they feel they have a calling to be an elected terrorist they should do it for minimum wage!


#10

Or find a more suitable occupation such as an occupant of one of their for profit prisons assigned to trash pickup along any major highway.

Many more come to mind.


#11

Excellent suggestion! Or let them be the ones who clean up after one of those goddamned oil spills -- like the one that turned that river yellow -- just don't let them around any of those poor animals that have been impacted by those oil spills as they would undoubtedly cause them even more harm. Or how about we send them over to fight the wars they've gotten us into?? smirk laughing


#12

Lower the retirement age back to 65 and raise the wage cap. Put members of Congress on the Social Security system instead of the cushy system they now have.


#13

I hear you. Many scenarios come to mind called up by their absolute disregard for other living things.

Hard to imagine beings that choose one option so reliably and that is to benefit primarily themselves.


#14

I'm writing this comment from one earth lover to another: a few years ago I started feeding peanuts in the shell to the squirrels I used to see in my yard, along with putting out bird seed and dried corn for the bunnies, blue jays, cardinals, and Downy woodpeckers. Lo and behold, a family of crows showed up in my yard, so I started putting out 'pink slime' for them and discovered that the stray kitty loved it as much as the crows did, so I started feeding the kitty so she wouldn't kill the birds, squirrels, and bunnies! Last winter I bought a dog house for her so she was protected from the elements, and discovered she wasn't nearly as feral as I thought she was -- my husband and I have been petting her since last fall, and while she won't come in our house b/c she's scared to death of the 4 schnauzers and the 15 month old OES, she most assuredly considers this property her domain! Bottom line? I REFUSE to live in a world that disrespects ALL the creatures we share this wondrous planet with!


#15

May I be so bold as to thank you from those little brothers and sisters of ours that you are kind enough to see and care for that do not have the words to do so.


#16

How bout taxing the living sh-t out of all of the food polluters, water polluters, air polluters etc in this country that are shortening our lives by decades- Take that money along with A Robin Hood Tax on Wall Street and also Tax them "apolitical" Churches, and create Medicare and Social Security along with Dental from Cradle to Grave for us Citizens who you all have been robbing blind for Centuries!!!