Some of our older readers might not like this one. Thing is, it’s true.
When I was in college one of the first op-eds I ever wrote was on Social Security in the college newspaper. I argued that with the the baby boom generation getting ready to retire (this was the late 1990s) we college students (of a smaller generation) faced a real problem. There were going to be an awful lot of retirees out there counting on Social Security with fewer people actively contributing to the general economy. (And to Social Security.)
The argument I made was of course not solely my own. Many people had made the argument before me and many people have since. I said that we needed to radically reform Social Security and phase it out over a few years.
Look, I think there should be a phase out of the old system over say 10 years.
Older people have made calculations with the idea that Social Security would be there forever as it is now. Most people are not economists. They just did their thing in their working life and then retired as they were told they should. If we are going to change social security we should be sensitive to this very important (and very political) point.
Insiders have known about this for a long time, but now it is documented.
In the words of 2 people I spoke to about this story – “How can this be legal?”
Good question. At least they’re stopping it.
You read that correctly.
The Western welfare state is unsustainable. It’s not sustainable in Europe and it isn’t here. It is amazing however that many people insist that government and the welfare (and warfare) state must continue to grow.
One of the least discussed, but potentially most significant, provisions in President Obama’s budget is the use of the “chained consumer price index” (chained CPI), to measure the effect of inflation on people’s standard of living. Chained CPI is an effort to alter the perceived impact of inflation via the gimmick of “full substitution.” This is the assumption that when the price of one consumer product increases, consumers will simply substitute a similar, lower-cost product with no adverse effect. Thus, the government decides your standard of living is not affected if you can no longer afford to eat steak, as long as you can afford to eat hamburger.
This should have been their centerpiece proposal during the last battle. They had the full attention of the country and could have put it to good use.
Watch the “net interest” percentage going forward as interest rates rise. That’s going to put a cramp in our lifestyle.
It appears that the White House has been secretly negotiating with large businesses as Obamacare has veered off down disaster road. The delay of the employer mandate has everything to do with the Obama administration’s buddies in big business saying that the program is half baked at best and that they can’t comply with the tangle of red tape. So Obama has punted, on this.
Now, however, it appears the administration’s bravado was all for show. At the same time Obama was expressing great confidence, White House officials were secretly meeting with representatives of big business to discuss ways to postpone enforcement of parts of the new law. And on Tuesday the White House announced that the employer mandate – sometimes described as a “crucial” element of Obamacare – will be delayed to 2015 from its scheduled start on Jan. 1, 2014.
But the administration knows that come what may it must start transferring money to taxpayers via the healthcare “exchanges.” They must increase reliance on the government.
The president has proposed using something called a “chained consumer price index” for adjustments (which are always up) to Social Security payments. It in theory lessons the current rate of increase. Liberal and progressives are beside themselves. How could President Obama do such a thing?
Every time I write about the need to reform Social Security people freak out. Suddenly supposedly small government folks fly into a rage at the idea that Social Security must be curtailed for the good of the country.
Hey, life isn’t fair. But we have got to do something about Social Security and the coming debt bomb.
Of course most seniors don’t consider Social Security theft, and the headline above is intended to be inflammatory, however the Social Security system we have now is completely unsustainable. It hurts many who are just struggling to make it in an economy which is very different from the rising tide many retirees experienced over the past half century.
Should generally poor young people be subsidizing often wealthy old people? That’s what happens in our present crony capitalist system.