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Social Security

2000-03-14 03:06:19+00 by Dan Lyke 4 comments

Woohoo! I just got my Social Security statement. If you took just what I've paid into my social security account so far and got 5% on it until retirement at age 67, you'd be able to pay my benefits 'til I'm 82. Yet I'm going to continue to pay into this fund at the maximum amount for at least the next 36 to 39 years. What in the heck are they doing with my money? Yeah, I know, paying off the debts of previous generations, it just sucks that the government is involved in this Ponzi scheme, and theforefore requires that I be too. And since I believe marriage is a discriminatory institution and I refuse to participate in it do you think there's any way to drop death benefits for a spouse in exchange for higher end benefits? Nooooooooo. Oh well, at least if I became disabled they'd pay enough for me to live in Montana and eat dog food. Needless to say, Social Security doesn't figure very strongly in my retirement plans...

[ related topics: Politics ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:29:48+00 by: Wendell

I don't complain about SocSec for the selfish reason that my 80-year-old father is currently getting 3 times what I'm putting into it (probably your share too, Dan), and he's already gotten double what he put into it in 40 years PLUS 5% interest. It sure beats a system which would require him living in his only son's spare room (which I don't have one) for the rest of his life, and I'm not going to have a son for me to move in with in 20-some years. My retirement planning is based on the belief that, with "everybody" putting money into the stock market for retirement, the moment there are enough retirees to take out more money than is going in, the Market will totally collapse (that's 20+ years away, but still well before SocSec's scheduled "insolvency"). My prediction: In 2025, the NASDAC index will be below what it was in 1995... but if I'm wrong, who will remember? Then again, for me right now, the best way to invest my money is by paying off my 18% credit card debt... so take any financial advice from me with a TON of salt.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:29:48+00 by: Mike

I think that the problem is that everyone considers Social Security a forced savings plan, where the money I pay in today is what I will be paid from in the future. Instead it is a tax whose proceeds are specifically earmarked for a particular benefit, like highway tolls are used only for road repair, etc. SS is designed for a rock-bottom safety net for the elderly and infirm. Reducing your contribution in exchange for your promise to never marry is equivilant to not charging my taxes for flood relief in Alabama when I live in Illinois. It is a part of being a citizen of one country and not a mass of mini-states. My Brother-in-law is retarded, and collects SS disability. He works in a sheltered workshop, but will never earn enough to keep his SS account unp to date. You all pay a share of his upkeep, and I pay a share of yours. Sounds fair to me.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:29:49+00 by: Dan Lyke

But, to take your analogy, why should those of you living in Tennessee pay for the increased risk of fire, flood and earthquake for those of us living in California? If I know I'm gonna get a new house every 5 years at someone else's expense, why not build in the flood plains? This sort of thinking seems to me to logically end in "this resource is going to be destroyed anyway, I may as well suck as much out of it as I can while I still have the chance."

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:29:49+00 by: Wendell

Of course, when you're being constantly told a certain resource is "going to be destroyed anyway", it triggers human nature to "suck as much out of it as I can while I still have the chance". But if you honestly believe that a resource "is always gonna be there", you are much less a tempted to abuse it. The trouble today is getting anybody to believe that ANYTHING "is always gonna be there". But there are uncomfortable issues inherant in all kinds of "insurance"; I used to work for a private insurer that went belly-up and I've dealt with most of them. Yeeesh.