Rich Americans ask for Social Security to be cut… again.

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I will admit to using sensationalism in my title to get you to read this post. But I suspect that IF you read it, you might be better informed for those many political conversations that you have, usually with your family and closest friends. Like the topic of sex, politics is usually off the table for discussion amongst polite people.

Just hours after President Obama said that Social Security cuts and privatization are off the table, Cantor said that Social Security had to be cut to balance the budget. But here’s the thing: Social Security does not and never has added a single dime to the federal deficit.

imageLet me try to explain this to Mr. Cantor. Social Security is paid for through the payroll tax.

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? They add to the deficit. Tax breaks for billionaires? They add to the deficit. Subsidies for big oil? They add to the deficit. Bailing out Mr. Cantor’s friends on Wall Street when they make a bunch of shady deals, cause a financial crisis and almost ruin the world economy? That adds a lot to the deficit.

Simply put, Social Security will run on it’s curent balance for decades. (See report below.) The rest of the budget runs a deficit. So, why are we even talking about Social Security?

Here’s why: Eric Cantor and his right-wing friends want to destroy the program. That’s the only reason we’re having this conversation. Eric Cantor’s comments aren’t anything new. Right-wing Republicans have been trying to tear down Social Security for generations. It’s the holy grail of the right-wing.

Now Republicans are playing with fire — they’re threatening to shut down the government. They’re holding the debt ceiling hostage. They’ll do whatever it takes to put cutting Social Security on the table. But America is a community. We stand up for one another — including our seniors.

Update: My sissie sez, “Go to http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/TRSUM/index.html for the official report”

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About Gandalfe

Just an itinerant saxophonist trying to find life between the changes. I have retired from the Corps of Engineers and Microsoft. I am an admin on the Woodwind Forum, run the Microsoft Jumpin' Jive Orchestra, and enjoy time with family and friends.
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7 Responses to Rich Americans ask for Social Security to be cut… again.

  1. Awesome, love it, totally agree.

    Another thing I seldom hear come up in budget cutting discussions are benefits afforded to Federal, State and Local government employees but primarily to Congress and the Senate which are funded by tax dollars. Things like Pensions, Health Benefits, Free Meals (well at least free to the attendees, not the tax payer), Transportation…….

    These benefits are available to members of Congress and our Representatives as well as thousands of others who work in and for the Federal Government, but they are not available to the people who pay for others to have them. After all, there is not enough to go around for everyone now is there 🙂

    I suspect, if we diverted and applied the tax dollars associated with those benefits to the deficit we would be on a short path to a balanced budget and significantly reducing the deficit. Really, think about it, how long has it been since a person working in private industry has expected to receive a pension at the end of their work life. We have to manage on Social Security and whatever we’ve saved and invested then why not our elected officials. I think people might be amazed to know just how much money is spent annually for pensions, meals, transportation, health benefits and other ‘misc’ expenses to support already very wealthy people.

    And this is only the tip of the iceberg, we’re not even talking about the impact of funding wars on other nations and how much cheaper and more effective it would be to fund education and humanitarian initiatives in those same countries, non-competitive Medicare contracts with big pharmaceutical companies, corporate funding for political campaigns and the related conflict of interest……… but I digress, Yes, I agree, leave Social Security ALONE!

  2. Chris S says:

    I hear both sides of this argument in my professional world. I know SS isn’t a funded program and all that, but I’ve never seen any numbers to validate one side’s claim or the other. Do you know if such data is publicly available?

  3. Gandalfe says:

    Chris, you’re in denial aren’t you? You know that SS isn’t funded, but you want data on that? I’m just sayin’…

    • Chris S says:

      By not funded I mean that what goes in today, also goes out today. (Not sure if you understood my meaning.) What I want to see is data on how much goes in per month or per year and how much goes out per month or per year. I can apply population, inflation and other growth estimates from BLS if I could get the other information. Or if you have some other place where you get this information, that’s what I’d like to see since you didn’t link or otherwise cite a source. I’m not disagreeing with you by any means. I just haven’t ever seen any data to backup either side (SS will go bankrupt vs it’s running a surplus).

  4. Gandalfe says:

    Ah, got ‘cha. So most of us know that SS is paying out more than they are collecting currently. And that is eating into the principle. Here is one article that cites that. “This year alone, Social Security is projected to collect $45 billion less in payroll taxes than it pays out in retirement”. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110127/ap_on_re_us/us_social_security

    So if this model continues, in ten or more years, the SS fund would be in the hole like the government’s spending has been for years. But, that doesn’t mean that it is contributing to today’s deficit which I hear this morning will be over a trillion dollars just for this year alone.

  5. Gandalfe says:

    Oops, and from this article (above) “But the new projections show nothing but red ink until the Social Security trust funds are exhausted in 2037.” So the point remains, cutting SS doesn’t reduce the government spending deficit.

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