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View Diary: Raising the retirement age means poor people subsidize rich people's retirements (38 comments)

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  •  I've heard this argument many times, but for the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WheninRome

    life of me, I don't see the likelihood of this happening.

    People, generally speaking, aren't well informed on Social Security.  Their taxes are deducted, they get older, retire and receive Social Security.

    At some point - assuming means testing or eligibility dates are tied to income -- we're supposed to believe they suddenly become enlightened about all the various subtleties of the system and cry out "Welfare!"?

    I don't see it.  And that may be a fault of mine.  But everyone pays in and everyone receives benefits.  Just like today, we don't see seniors arguing with each other over the formula by which their exact amount is determined, I don't see how means testing for amounts paid or dates eligible would instantly cause a total loss of faith in the system.

    If anything, the vase majority of our population who are lower wage earners would see the system as more "fair" and be stronger supporters.  

    We could make the same argument in reverse:  Millionaires receive the most generous Social Security benefits, therefore, it is welfare for the rich and must be discontinued.

    Anyway, I just have been unable to see that that particular argument holds "reality water."  :-O   Again, it may just be me.....

    "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

    by YucatanMan on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 12:11:30 PM PDT

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    •  Seniors are informed (0+ / 0-)

      I recently applied for Social Security.  There was no means test.  You don't think I'd have noticed it if they'd asked me to document all sources of income and reduced the benefit accordingly?  I mean they have the calculators all over the place to estimate your benefit or you can request more accurate estimates at various retirement ages.  Your benefit is based on past wages earned not on your gross or taxable income or your wealth.  If you have to add all that into the calculation of your benefit, you betcha that will cause resentment.  

      And you know where that resentment is going to come from?  It's going to come from all those "affluent" seniors with only about $50K or $60K in income when they find out their benefit is going to reduced.

      •  decreasing benifits without cutting taxes (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenbell, YucatanMan

        Is a tax increase.

      •  I don't see why people at that level of income (0+ / 0-)

        would have their benefits be reduced.

        The means testing should focus only on the very highest earners - like those who escape the tax due to the cap.  At that level or double that level or wherever.

        But it should not apply to people who earn the average household income in the USA.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 02:47:48 PM PDT

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    •  I have never heard any old and/or (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      YucatanMan

      conservative person grouse about SS.

      Ever.

    •  "Entitlements" (0+ / 0-)

      I beg to differ about means testing.   Once you start means testing the corporate media will be doing the work of the powers to be and calling Social Security the "welfare program".  

      How do you think something that everyone pays into got labeled an "entitlement"?  

      Poor man wants to be rich. Rich man wants to king. And the king ain't satisifed until he rules everything. B.Springsteen

      by howd on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 12:56:14 PM PDT

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      •  They could say the same things today. There's (0+ / 0-)

        nothing tying them to accuracy or reality as it is.

        The "entitlement" usage simply proves that it true.  

        The exact details don't really matter (see "Obamacare").  The media says what it wants these days.

        In Roosevelt's time perhaps the media were tied to facts. And it isn't just FOX.  I had to hear some RW wacko ramble on and on today on the Diane Rehm show about how government spending cannot possibly help a recession.

        The media will say whatever they want, regardless of the details of any program.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 02:43:51 PM PDT

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    •  Do you really think they will not quickly learn (0+ / 0-)

      once they hear stories of how their parents had to go around their house and add up the value of every little thing they own down to each and every plastic cup, knife, fork, and spoon once means testing is implemented?

      You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

      by Throw The Bums Out on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 02:19:47 PM PDT

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      •  I think that's a bit much. There are many (0+ / 0-)

        programs active today where your wealth and income has to be documented, but they are all aimed at the poor.  The paperwork isn't nearly as crazy as all that.

        And this would be somehow more onerous if the rich had to do the same thing?   Somehow, that's hard for me to see.

        "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

        by YucatanMan on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 02:46:20 PM PDT

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        •  Why don't you check out SSI sometime, though (0+ / 0-)

          of course nobody actually does that even though you are supposed to add up all your assets down to the last paperclip.

          You have watched Faux News, now lose 2d10 SAN.

          by Throw The Bums Out on Mon Mar 11, 2013 at 03:49:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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