The Social Security System would be in great condition if Congress had not robbed it for other programs practically since its inception. (And, by the way, our congressmen do not even pay into social security, so they are not concerned) If any company in the U.S. had done what the government has done with individuals' money in Social Security, there would be a big story on the news and some people possibly going to prison.
Raising the age for people to collect the money that they themselves have paid in seems nothing short of cruel. If people have to work until they are 70,many will die from the stress on their minds and bodies. Or, they will be out sick much of the time which will cost companies expense. Added to this, how will young people procure jobs if older ones do not leave?
I've always been of the opinion that I can decide best how to manage my own money and plan for the future. Being allowed to do so would necessitate taking my contribution out of the system; however, it would also ensure that no money would be spent on me as I retire. The reality is that whatever I put in is a mere fraction of what I'm likely to draw out, as situation which is financially untenable. I make no plans to receive Social Security, to be honest, as it's far enough away that I see the system will either be bankrupt or will somehow change in a way that leaves me with nothing. My 92-year-old- grandmother has gotten more than her share, though, so I guess it all kind of evens out in some cosmic way.
I'm not sure that I agree that the solution to any of our government's financial problems lies in raising taxes. I think we could start by cutting spending. There are a number of social welfare programs that are beyond abused. Tighter regulation on spending in these areas, and many others, would allow us to reduce our overall debt. This would free up funding to begin fixing things like social security.
I would also support raising the age at which people receive Social Security benefits to 70 or 72. I also believe we should raise the withholding rate from 7% to 8%, and eliminate the taxable income ceiling altogether. These three actions alone should put the program back on solid finncial footing. Once we progress past the Baby Boom generation, then we are once again in good shape.
We really need to rein in entitlement spending if we are ever going to get government spending under control. Here's what I would do:
For Social Security, I would raise the cap on income that gets taxed for Social Security. There is a lot of income that does not get taxed and that is a potential source of revenue for the program. I would also increase the age at which people can start drawing their Social Security payments. This program was set up for a time when Americans lived much shorter lives and therefore did not need nearly as much in the way of retirement money. This would mean that the system would not need to give out as much money.
My two changes would bring more money in and send less money out. This would help make Social Security solvent.
Those people who have paid in should get their money now to invest in whatever way they choose. Those who want the government to manage their money can leave it there and take their chances. Those who have not paid, should not receive. As long as there is a SS Tax, Congress should have to contribute just like everyone else. Perhaps if they did, they would be more mindful of what they do with it. Same as the health care plan-if you can call it a plan.
We can adopt two broad approaches to reducing the cost of stopping the rise of social security. One is to reduce the benefit to people under the social security program, and the second is to reduce the inefficiency and wastage in administration of the program.
The alternative of reducing the coverage is the simplest. One can argue that the entire cost of social security can be brought down to zero by simply scrapping the entire program. But that is no solution. When we talk of stopping the rise of cost it should be without reduction in benefit received by people.