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A solution for the Social Security nightmare that could be implemented in two weeks

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posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 03:24 PM
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Everyone knows that the entitlements are bankrupting the US. For decades solutions have been discussed and other than BS issues like “fraud and abuse”, no substantive solutions are ever offered. Privatizing the programs will not fly by the democrats and raising taxes to pay for the program won’t fly by the republicans. The political gridlock regarding Social Security will never end.

The solution is simple. Social Security should be reclassified as a retirement benefit insurance program, rather than the retirement benefits program it is today. Everyone, including those who are going to retire tomorrow and have paid into the system for 40 years should be means tested and denied any benefit if they have a net worth over a certain amount, excluding their primary residence. A sliding scale could be used.

This changes the entire nature of the program, orients people to adequately plan for their retirements and solves the programs insolvency.

Should someone who has a pension that provides them a retirement of 3x the poverty level receive a government funded retirement? No. Should someone who has a couple of homes, winters in Arizona, summers in NYC receive a retirement benefit? No. Should someone who has spent 40 years in the military and is receiving a solid pension receive an additional government retirement benefit? No.
Social Security should be for those who, for whatever reason, have insufficient resources to retire at some level to be determined, say 3x the poverty level. It should not be for those who can afford to fund their retirements at an acceptable level. Your payments into the system should be considered insurance that should you be unable to fund your retirement, you will have a government to fall back on.

This entire problem is caused by the elderly, the greediest component of the American society. They “paid into the system” Its “my money”. All of that is rubbish. It is a page out of the playbook when folks died at a much earlier age and folks did little if any investing. The notion that regardless of how well off you are, you are entitled to a benefit is a dog that ceased barking a couple of decades ago.

Should someone have to sell their condo on Maui that they use a couple of weeks a year to fund their retirement? Of course they should. Why on earth would we consider paying someone a cash benefit who has a $350K condo they use on a whim? People sell assets all of the time, sending kids to college, starting businesses, better investment opportunities. Why should funding retirement be considered any different? It should not be.

Determine a level of net worth, excluding primary residence but including all pension and other investment assets (including real estate) and absolutely cut people off when they are over the limit starting July 1. When someone commits fraud by giving all of their assets to someone else to qualify for the program while still having access their assets, throw them both, in jail, I don’t care if they are 80.

edit on 6-6-2011 by dolphinfan because: (no reason given)




posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 04:03 PM
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Originally

This entire problem is caused by the elderly, the greediest component of the American society.



What???????? I cannot COMPREHEND this statement. Also, If you feel that "elderly" people over a certain income limit shouldn't get the benefit, then they should have the right to a full refund of all taxes paid paid into SS.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 04:11 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


This is an interesting--and obviously well thought out--potential solution to the problem. However, what about an opt-out option? Wouldn't it be much easier to implement that? I feel like this may be more compassionate (I know this is a bad word, but we do live in a very politically correct world) and appealing to people.

Still, I like the way you think, even if the whole "the elderly are greedy" thing is a bit harsh.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 04:14 PM
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Should someone who has a pension that provides them a retirement of 3x the poverty level receive a government funded retirement?


Well yes, yes they should. If they have paid into the program they have as much right as any other to collect.

This sounds like a great way to screw up the one thing in our modern era that actually benefits people. Of course everyone wants to renegotiate it now.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 04:18 PM
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reply to post by Seiko
 




Well yes, yes they should. If they have paid into the program they have as much right as any other to collect.


Even though I think his/her theory is interesting, I have agree with this. I think it would be wrong to suddenly take away the benefits that many (yes, even the wealthy) individuals have been forced to pay into their entire lives. That's why I think an opt-out option is much more viable and attainable, and it's something that could actually save the impending social security mess.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 04:22 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


republicans will veto or filibuster this till it dies. this has already been thought out and put to paper, but the rich and wealthy will not stand for it. it raises their taxes is the simple reason



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 05:50 PM
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reply to post by Seiko
 


They should receive something from paying into the social security system and they do in this model. They get three things, the insurance that should they need it there will be a program that will ensure that they not be destitute in their retirement years and that they will not be living in a society where there are destitute elderly folks living in tent cities or shelters which is where we are headed. Finally they get millions of young people who will enter public service in some capacity, including the military who will ensure that they are not rounded up and tossed into gulags. Those are the things they get. How about they have a bit more concern about the future of the 25 year old soldier who is putting thier life on the line every day than the maintenance fees on their vacation condo?

It should be absolutely no different than any other kind of insurance, you hopefully don't need the benefit. I've never had a car that was totaled in an accident. I'm lucky in that regard. I do, depite the fact that I have been driving for decades without a major accident still pay auto insurance in case I do. Social Security should be the same way.

The elderly are the most selfish group of folks in the US, bar none. They don't acknowledge that they are a part of any problem, but are the first to insist that any and all solutions to a societal issue are handled in a manner that satisfies their interests above all others. They pound the table with the business of how they were the greatest generation in one case and the biggest in the other and built this country. The WWI generation and the older Baby Boomers think that the rest of the country are totally beholden to them due to their achievement. Rubbish. Every generation is confronted with challenges and the measure of the success of the nation is a direct result of their dealing with those challenges. In the case of both generations, its a mixed bag, the same it has been for every generation. The only difference is that we now can have History Channel and PBS specials about how terrific they were/are.

How about living in a community with a large portion of over 60 folks. Typically you will find the schools suck. Why? Because there is a large voting block of people who's kids are already out of school, went to the schools when they were new and don't give a rip about education because its not their problem. How about the elderly who demand the greatest and latest of medical treatments and fully expect that Medicare will pay for it.

Ironic - young folks are inventing the drugs and treatments that are administered by young doctors and surgeons to maintain the health (and prolong the lives) of the generations who are doing their very self-interested best to bankrupt them and their children.

As a parent, one of the things that you deal with is a child thinking the entire world revolves around them. You deal with it through a variety of methods, but its the way children are. The elderly of today are absolutely no different. They act like children. The only difference is that they have the juice to hire lobbiests and support other pressure groups that actually have a meaningful impact on public policy.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 07:23 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


I've never had a car that was totaled in an accident. I'm lucky in that regard. I do, depite the fact that I have been driving for decades without a major accident still pay auto insurance in case I do. Social Security should be the same way.
You are right about 1 thing. SS is a lot like car insurance. I only pay it because I am forced to do so. Both are huge scams. I have NEVER had an at fault accident. So, why does my insurance always go up? What does my credit rating have to do with how I drive my car? What does my marital status have to do with it? It is a huge scam and I have been wasting money on it for 29 years, just about the same amount of time I have been getting scammed by SS. So, yeah they a lot in common.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 07:25 PM
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reply to post by Seiko
 





This sounds like a great way to screw up the one thing in our modern era that actually benefits people. Of course everyone wants to renegotiate it now.
Renegotiate? I never got to negotiate in the first place. Given a choice, I never would have agreed to this stupid program.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 07:26 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 



This entire problem is caused by the elderly, the greediest component of the American society. They “paid into the system” Its “my money”. All of that is rubbish. It is a page out of the playbook when folks died at a much earlier age and folks did little if any investing. The notion that regardless of how well off you are, you are entitled to a benefit is a dog that ceased barking a couple of decades ago.


Um, what?

A) The elderly aren't the greedy ones
B) Social Security is solvent for the next 25 years or so
C) We can make it solvent forever by reforming the tax code and taxing the top earners at a fair rate
D) Social Security doesn't add to the deficit

If you want to find greed in America, look at the banksters and corporate fascists who have made you believe the only way to solve America's "debt crisis" is by breaking the backs of the poorest and weakest members of society.

Wealth has done nothing but move upward to the top 1% since corporate-fascism began spreading widely through the American political system. Cutting taxes and deregulating investments (which is what rich people do - invest and move money around in various vessels) only serves to enrichen the rich.

Then, after the rich pull the greatest ponzi scheme in human history, the taxpayers bail them out, corporatists use their resources to break unions and populist organizations and install faux Tea Party fascists into power who further gut state services, and then when revenues are so low basic services can no longer be provided, they say, "these leeches are taking all your money!" and because so many people would rather blame grandma(?) than the obvious culprit, they are able to perpetuate the decline of the American Middle Class further and further.

Grandma isn't greedy and she is not the problem. The corporate-fascists who have infected the American media and political system who completely refuse to pay their fair share of the wealth they raped from the rest of us and our future generations are the problem. Means testing is not a way to fix Social Security, no matter how you spin it. Means testing is just another right wing smoke screen to dismantle the thin safety net the weakest members of society have.

They literally stole the wealth of America. And here you are shilling for them and saying the elderly are the greedy ones. Right.



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 07:57 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 


"went to the schools when they were new and don't give a rip about education because its not their problem."

ummm...ya....
my kindergarten was called the chicken coop, it was small enough of a building to actually be one!! It wasn't new, matter of fact, I wouldn't be surprised to find out it was one of the firsts schools built, just an old one room schoolhouse. grades 1st through fourth were in a old school that had it's top floor judged to be unsafe and it was off limits during my 2nd grade, I still remember the feeling of having dust and small fragments of the ceiling falling into my hair while eating!! in all, there were only two schools that would be consdered even close to new during my 12 years of school....all the others were put out of use long before I graduated, or were made into administrative offices.
and I am in my fifties, anyone older than 60, sorry, I doubt if they had any new schools.....
the new schools didn't start being built till the late 60's early 70's, at least in my area...

It's amusing though watching as history is rewritten simply because it suits society better for it to be...

as far as social security, how about we raise the cap?? maybe some of the raises would hit those of us who don't make a few hundred thousand a year once in while if they did that....
if the means testing is like the mean testing that they have for welfare now, no thanks.....we don't need another duplicate of welfare....we already have a whole mess of programs for the poor!! it we were to make social secuirty into a means tested program, may I suggest that we just do away with all these welfare programs as we do this, and well, make one program for the poor coming from just one agency, and cut some a little off of the admistrative costs of our government!



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 09:38 PM
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reply to post by Avenginggecko
 


The elderly are greedy. Anyone who knows that the current system is unsustainable and refuses to ensorse any support which alters their current benefits is greedy.

As far as the system not adding to the deficit and its being solvent for another 25 years, that is nonsense.

The entire business is no different than taking a shower. If I have 3 folks in the house and we all can take a 10 minute hot shower and I go first, no problem. Everyone gets the shower they expect and that they desire. Now add 3 more folks to the house and don't enlarge the hot water heater. I still take my 10 minute shower but now the 5th and 6th persons don't get any hot water. Is that being a reasonable/responsible housemate? No. My expectation would and should be that we'll all have to cut our showers in order to get a hot one.

Demographics have changed. More folks are retiring than at any point in history and they are living longer. People are also having fewer kids, creating an inverse pyramid relative to social security funding. The model has to change and the way to change it is to take it away from folks who don't need it.

As far as the bankers go, thats an issue that has been discussed at length on ATS. It has nothing to do what so ever with the funding issues relative to Social Security.

As far as the rich, there simply are not enough rich to tax high enough to continue to fund the program as is. It needs to be fundamentally changed.

They could raise the retirement age to 70 and means test the program and be done with any further talk of reform in two weeks.

A) The elderly aren't the greedy ones
B) Social Security is solvent for the next 25 years or so
C) We can make it solvent forever by reforming the tax code and taxing the top earners at a fair rate
D) Social Security doesn't add to the deficit



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 09:44 PM
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Take care of yourself and family as everyone else has done in the past?
2nd line

That being said, I really have no problem at all taking care of widows/widowers and truly sick people. We are being scammed by our government, The testing process is broke. I've witnessed many people get assistance that shouldn't have been entitled, the system is broke. Let's start by purging all illegals from these entitlements for citizens of the U.S.The rest will fall into place.
edit on 6/6/2011 by mugger because: add



posted on Jun, 6 2011 @ 09:52 PM
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reply to post by mugger
 


There are millions of folks ripping off these entitlement programs and the government knows all about it. I have a friend who owns a bunch of nursing homes and hospices. He will only take Medicaid and Medicare patients. No private insurance and no cash clients. Why? Because it is far easier to just get the check from the government than deal with different insurance firms and deal with some old, sick person who stopped paying and evicting them is all but impossible.

His facilities are nice and there are private, cash paying folks living there. How? The give all of their assets to other people so they can claim to be destitute and thus qualify for either medicare or medicaid. These folks have homes, significant retirement assets - they are well off, yet the tax payers are footing the bill for them to live in an assisted living facility. There are lawyers and "patient advocate" organizations who work primarily to enable the well off to appear poor on paper to qualify for these subsidies.

Defrauding these entitlement schemes is a multi-billion dollar business.



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 12:56 AM
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Do you call your grandparents greedy? Your lack of respect for the eldery is scarey! I hate to burst anyones bubble, but everyone gets old! People who have paid into the system their entire lives deserve to be looked after when they retire.



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 05:20 AM
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reply to post by mugger
 


and I know for a fact that people who really do need a little help are left out to dry...
means testing??? they don't even know how much they are giving away, how much the cost of living is really in any one area, and they fail to comprehend that because they don't have a clue about either of those two, they are adding juice to the inflationary trend!!
they'd be better off just putting an end to all these programs and coming up with one program that is part of the irs, that basically gaurentees each person a set income, and well, those who fall below that income can get a check....for cash, on a monthly or quarterly basis......
let's see, that would close down the unemployment offices, the medicaid, medicare, social security, a good part of hud, a good part of the dept of agriculture (food stamps(, dept of energy (heap), and a good part of social services......and there would be no flukes in the means testing where they hand out more money than they are saying that people don't need any help if they make...it will just be if you don't make x amount of money, you will get a check to bring that amount up to x......and well, if at the end of the year, it's found that you've gotten help for part of the year, but earned more than x, you will be paying it back!!!
as far as the fraud, ya there's alot of fraud going on, but alot of it is at the provider's end of the deal!!! add to that that the system actually makes it easier for employers to pay crap wages....that landlords, electric companies, healthcare providers, health insurance companies, colleges and universities, ect... can hike up their rent on almost a yearly basis because they know the g ov't will pitch in and they won't really lose that much business...
well, I have to say, social security is the least of our worries!!! and one must never forget, our gov't has been running on the funds that people have paid into that system for a few decades now....all the money has been put into the general fund and spent on whatever.....
they are just upset now that the fund isn't a cash cow anymore and they actually have to put some of that money back!!! ahh...poor dears.....
so, ya, let's drop the program, that will save alot of money!! you sure, since the gov't is spending more now than it ever did, doesn't have that cash cow to drain anymore (they are now draining the fed employee retirement fund!!), and well, it appears that we have reached our credit limit with the world!!! so, will it really save us alot of money??? will you see enough of a tax decrease to actually help out your aging parents with their insane medical bills??? dont' think so....think it's more than likely that your mom and dad will be less likely to watch your kids while you work, and well, you working might be a problem because all these aging people will not retire!! and I think that you might see a decrease in your wages as all those "poor" start demanding a decent wage since there is no help for them from the gov't!!! and I expect to see less business all the way around, when they don't get those higher wages and can't participate in the economy any more!
meanwhile, back at the bank........the next million dollar bonus is on us!!!!!



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 07:59 AM
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reply to post by Night Star
 


People who paid into the system their entire lives who can not afford to provide an adequate retirement for themselves certainly deserve to be taken care of. Is the person who has over $1M of net worth, excluding his primary home the kind of person we really believe should be receiving a government retirement benefit? Is the $2K/month going to make a difference to that person? No.

As far as means testing and the problems associated with it as well as the cost of living in certain areas, the testing and methodology could easily worked out, it is the same kind of process implemented every day in the private sector. As far as the regional cost of living, who cares? So you can't retire in Chicago? Nobody has a right to not have to make choices in their lives. Many people move when they retire specifically for cost of living reasons. The weather is not the only reason that retirees move out of the North East.



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 04:47 PM
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reply to post by dolphinfan
 

if it could be so easily worked out, why do we have this giant gap between those who really can't afford the decent housing, decent food, decent medical care, warm houses and all that, and those who are considered needy enough to get help with the rent, the food, the healthcare, the heating, ect???
I know one thing, people are bloody nuts if they think that someone is gonna keep living in that gap, working, and well pitching in to help pay for the medical care of a bunch of kids who dads are constantly griping and trying to justify why they shouldn't have to pay child support, and moms just keep popping them out....while that 70 year old is struggling to get out of bed in the morning and can't afford to go to the doctor for the arthritis that is making it so hard for her to walk even!!!

ya, we have such a great success with means testing!!!
one person lays in a bed while doctors refuse to set the ankle so she can walk, the other has her kid's daddy packing up and moving out of the house and can be overheard as they argue as to why each they shouldn't have to work, mom, na she can't she has to run little timmy to baseball practice, with his nice new base ball gear, and take care of the kids, dad can't, na, he's going to school, compliments of the US taxpayer......
guess who was means tested and found to be deserving, and who wasn't!!!

guess who is getting sick and tire of pitching in and helping others have a better lifestyle than her income can provide to her!!!
means testing!!!


there's so many nice mountains around me, calling me.....plenty of wild food, plenty of space, plenty of quiet, and quite frankly, I'm beginning to think it would be easier to live alone in the forest than in society!



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 06:28 PM
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reply to post by dawnstar
 


Its not been easily worked out because there is no political will to work it out. The groups you describe rely on the government and the government has an incentive for them to use the programs. The government has no desire to see things like there be no demand for AFDC or WIC or any of these programs. Thousands of government folks would no longer be needed and the state would either get smaller or they would find some other trash programs to take the money and dump it into. With the current administration it would either be a 5 mllion dollar wind mill that powers a dozen LED lightbulbs (that is taken out of commission 6 months later because some endangered moth is getting torn to bits flying into it) or $50 million green commuter trains that operate at 30% capacity with a 40% on-time record. Both of the above of course brought to us by GE.

Means testing could be competently and fairly implemented. You could design the system that would work and so could I. It is a simple problem to solve. Finding politicians with the courage to implement an honest system is what is not simple



posted on Jun, 7 2011 @ 06:32 PM
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wall street bailout to date..
4.6 trillion over 4 years..
laudyms.wordpress.com...
the cost of medicare...
$25 trillion over the lifetime of those now in the program as workers and retirees.
medicare over the lifetime of all those who are now paying into the system.....40+ years??? works out to a little over a half a billion a year...
Social Security's cost will soar more quickly than Medicare because its early retirement age is 62 rather than 65. Social Security's cost will grow from $712 billion in 2010 to $911 billion in 2015 and $1.2 trillion in 2020....
www.usatoday.com...

so, figure in around 2012, the cost of these two programs will be around 2 trillion dollars.....and please remember all these people will have or will be paying into these programs for their entire working life...it they work....
we're averaging half of that amount a year rewarding the fools that played a major role in getting us into this mess to begin with, the ones who caused our major investment, our home to depreciate outrageously, the same people who sold our pension funds worthless pieces of "AAA grade" paper!! the same ones that cause us to lose our jobs!!!
may I suggest that our fine gov't, before they finish off the fed employee pension funds and head for the IRA's and leave all of us with no future, well, that they start prosecuting these bankers and recouping some of the money that has been lost, not to menton just given to them , with no strings attached!



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