"Fixing" Social Security

Wouldn't you be a little skeptical if you took your car in for a routine checkup and the repair shop said it had found a mysterious and costly problem deep in the engine that "needs fixing" – even though you can't detect any problem at all?

Welcome to the shady world of today's Social Security mechanics, including politicos of both parties and a phalanx of banking lobbyists. They're telling us in the direst terms that there's a major problem deep in the Social Security system that must be fixed right away. The "fix" is going to be costly, they solemnly inform us – it'll require raising people's retirement age to as high as 70, cutting the monthly payments for retired workers and even privatizing part or all of this public safety net for retirees. But we must accept these fixes, they warn, or the whole system will sputter and die.

B. S. ALERT, B. S. ALERT! Of all government programs – including the bloated, fraud-ridden Pentagon – Social Security is least in need of fixing. It's the most efficient program we have, requiring a mere one-percent of its total budget for administrative costs. And even the political mechanics who want to mess with the program admit that Social Security is perfectly sound and capable of paying full benefits to future retirees through at least 2042. What insurance company or bank can make that claim? And with only minor adjustment, the system is solid through 2075 – long after most of today's "fixers" will be dead.

There is one fix, however, that would guarantee the soundness of Social Security in perpetuity: Raise the current $88,000 income cap so that the salaries, bonuses, stock gains, and other wealth of the elites are also subject to Social Security taxes – rather than keeping the burden solely on the wages of low-income and middle-class working folks.

To push for this simple and fair reform, call Campaign for America's Future: 202-955-5665.

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