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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Jan 1, 2005.
Enron social security products, anyone?
One question that should be asked by every voter: who really stands to gain from this?
Banks, investment firms, etc., of course.
Though I don't think knowing that will cause anybody to be against it. We seem to be inured to that stuff by now.
Sorry. I misread the title of this thread as "A Pig Bush on Social Security." That pretty much sums it up, I should think.
THE HONORABLE ROBERT T. MATSUI DIES AT AGE 63
how convenient for the bush administration. yes, i'm cynical.
The ad described with the 40 something couple talking about gambling is silly. Everything I've heard/read about this thing makes it fairly obvious that the new plan will be optional. If you like your SS as it is now, then nothing will change for you.
What wrong with that? Choice is a good thing.
If choice is such a good thing, why don't we let people choose whether or not to pay taxes? While we're at it, we could let them choose if they want to obey traffic laws. After all, we're just letting each individual choose to do what's in his or her best interest! Yippee! Choice for everyone!
And I'm sure, 40 years from now, when millions of Americans have "chosen" to make bad investments with their retirement money, they'll happily "choose" to starve to death, instead of voting in new benefits that will cost even more money than the "broken" Social Security system would have cost.
At the risk of sounding like I'm droning on endlessly about this, I am less concerned about people making bad investments with the privatized portion of their Social Security (which they can already do very nicely with their IRAs and 401(k)s plans) then I am with the added debt created by diverting trust fund income, and the probability that a lot of people will get screwed with lowered benefits to make up for the shortfall.
On the politics of the thing, I believe the opponents of privatization would be foolish to make the argument that people aren't capable of making investments on their own. Hardly anyone thinks the government can do this better than they can as individuals (rightly or wrongly). If Democrats make this basis of their opposition, then they are going to lose the debate and lose it big.
paul krugman wrote a long piece about the problem w/ this scheme, here.
My question is Why Now? Massive deficits, and a war on foreign soil with no near-term solution, coupled with the fact that the revised numbers for SS insolvency are being pushed back farther and farther would seem to indicate that we have some time to figure this out. It is not a crisis. It won't be a crisis for at least 2-3 decades.
So... Why Now instead of 10 years hence?
"War on Pensions", anybody?
This is a good point. With deficits as they are (huge), this could spell disaster.
They want to do this now because with each passing day the proportion of people paying in versus people drawing out is narrowing. Eventually even this system won't be able to save SS, which is doomed as it currently stands.
I'm pretty sure you're asking this rhetorically, but of course the answer is that conservatives don't like social security and see this as a good way to kill it.
That's my feeling as well. Same with the DoEd and the IRS as well.
from the krugman article, linked above:
the whole thing is worth the read.
All we have to do is raise the level of income subject to SS taxation to around $250,000 and the SS system is safe for much of the next century.
All Bush is doing is expanding the financial disaster that is the federal budget to include Social Security, which he can't touch right now.
I'm not sure what his motives are. To destroy the middle class?
Anyone wonder why I'm leaving this sinking ship?
Why cap it at all? It should include all income.
What Jane Galt asks is why have a separate payroll tax? Why not just pay for SS out of general revenues? That way we can use the existing progressive tax structure to pay for Social Security.
No question, but my point is that a small adjustment would put off the problem for the forseeable future, yet it's off the table.
Let's see, Republicans are against things like welfare and national healthcare. Now they want to cut social security like they cut Medicare, education, environmental programs, public housing, etc...
Cuz, you know, Christians aren't for things like helping the poor, the sick, the elderly, the children... After all, Jesus hates homosexuals, but he loves those guns and big business. Hypocrisy much? Anybody else think what Bush says and what he does are 2 different things?
No one seems to be able to answer the major questions. Like what happens to those who lose most of their benefits to places like Enron? There's a reason why Social Security is the way it is. If you want to invest, no ones stopping you. Go invest. If you win, great. If you lose your nest egg (to places like Enron), that's what Social Security is for.
Most aren't eligible for SS until 65. The average black man lives to be 55.
As a proportion of what's put in versus what's paid out, black men pay the most and white women take the most. As it stands, SS is an unfair tax on minorities used to fund the lifestyles of old white women. If that's not systematic, government sponsored discrimination... I don't know what is.
Bush's plan allows black men (and everyone else for that matter) to give their private accounts to their families, even if they don't live to 65. Currently the kids get some money if they are under 18, and adult heirs get a few grand to help pay for a funeral.
I heard some liberal on TV say that SS was totally solvent until 2050. That's great, if you are over 40 right now. If you aren't... well, good luck. This issue trancends partisanship. SS is broken. We need to do something now, while we still can. If Bush's plan doesn't seem to work, that's fine, but please propose something that will work for all of us, not just old white people.
The "black men live to 55" stat comes from averaging in all the teenagers killed in gang-related incidents, etc. I don't think they would have accumulated much in their private accounts. Middle class black men, the ones likely to have accumulated lots of money in a private account, will very likely live to a ripe old age.
The second question is what will happen in 2050, supposing we do nothing. The answer (assuming all the projections come true--a dubious assumption) is that Social Security will be unable to pay 25 percent of what it owes. So everyone will likely get their benefits cut by 25 percent. Guess what: people would still get more than they get today, even in inflation-adjusted dollars: about $19,000 compared to around $15,000 today. Under the Bush plan, many people would actually get less than they get under the current system.
Economist Max Sawicky has an excellent blog post about all this.
The current life expectancy at birth for African American males is 68.2 years.
Please tell me you're kidding about the old white people thing, because that's just reaching.
Just because I don't have a solution, doesn't mean Bush's plan is good. I've heard that they could just raise the income level to $200,000 instead of $90,000. That's a start. Spending a trillion dollars to pay for people to potentially lose almost everything with nothing to fall back on, while Corporate America gets richer, is not my idea of an ideal solution. What do they do with those who get ripped off by people like Bush's buddy Kenny Lay?
And I think you quoted the wrong part of my post. The SS stuff was on the bottom. The part you quoted is about the hypocrites who claim to be Christian, yet do very unChristian things. I don't see what this has to do with ripping off black men. You know, white people die young too.