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Old 07-07-2019, 05:39 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RationalExpectations View Post
Yes of course -- and that is one of its problems. A dollar paid in SHOULD buy the same in benefits regardless of the income of the recipient.
Thread is going on loner than it should either because some of you won't see sense, or simply cannot.

SS is *NOT* a pure straight insurance/annuity scheme. But rather a "social insurance" program loosely but never the less based on first Soviet Union and later other European nation anti-poverty schemes.

Thus the idea here is *NOT* merely to replace dollar for dollar income; but SS is what it is and always has been; an anti-poverty scheme for lower income older workers, in particular females. Things were later expanded to include benefits for minor children and disabled workers, their spouses and or minor children.

Just giving poor workers a one for one replacement of dollars in retirement won't help them very much. More so because inflation will eat up a good part of those "saved" dollars over thirty or so years of contributions.

Social Security does what socialist schemes are largely based upon; taking people's money and giving a lion's share of it to those less well off (low income workers).

Again (and hopefully for last time) everyone pays the same flat rates into SS; but depending upon several factors certain groups get far more benefits than others.

The thing is named "Social Security" rather than *pension* or whatever for a reason; it basically is a social welfare scheme. However to get the thing through Congress and keep the GOP from killing it, SS was and still is presented as a system where those who pay into it receive benefits from said pooling of funds. No taxpayer/government funds are involved other than of course repaying IOUs.

Most working Americans are woefully ignorant of SS unless or until it comes time for them to claim benefits. Other than that the thing is just something they see as an entry on their paychecks that makes promises about future retirement benefits.
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Old 07-07-2019, 08:41 PM
 
Location: Whereever we have our RV parked
8,778 posts, read 7,698,666 times
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An FDR program. All the "love big govt", have nothing to complain about, its one of the fairest govt programs in existance.
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Old 07-08-2019, 06:22 AM
 
2,089 posts, read 710,136 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsyPal View Post
Thus the idea here is *NOT* merely to replace dollar for dollar income; but SS is what it is and always has been; an anti-poverty scheme for lower income older workers, in particular females. Things were later expanded to include benefits for minor children and disabled workers, their spouses and or minor children.

<snip>Social Security does what socialist schemes are largely based upon; taking people's money and giving a lion's share of it to those less well off (low income workers).

Again (and hopefully for last time) everyone pays the same flat rates into SS; but depending upon several factors certain groups get far more benefits than others.

<snip>Most working Americans are woefully ignorant of SS unless or until it comes time for them to claim benefits. Other than that the thing is just something they see as an entry on their paychecks that makes promises about future retirement benefits.
I haven't read through this whole discussion, but have excerpted some of your points above because I agree wholeheartedly.

First, the formula to calculate the monthly benefit after all past wages have been indexed and averaged is 90% of the first $923, plus 32% of the next (approximately) $4,500, plus only 15% of the remainder, up to the wage cap. It clearly benefits low earners. I was over the SS max for years and once calculated that if I'd worked another 4 years instead of retiring at 61 my monthly benefit would increase by $50/month but my employer and I would have contributed another $50,000 or so. Not a great return!

As for the misconceptions- yes, I see them on FB all the time. Some imply that all the contributions from people who die before collecting SS disappear into some giant government abyss. Others repeat an inane calculation that starts with the assumption that the average salary over a person's lifetime is $30K, so if you'd paid the CURRENT SS payroll contribution rate on $30K for the last 40 years... of course, almost no one made $30K in 1979, the cap was much lower then, the rate was lower....
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:06 AM
 
1,293 posts, read 688,989 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athena53 View Post
I haven't read through this whole discussion, but have excerpted some of your points above because I agree wholeheartedly.

First, the formula to calculate the monthly benefit after all past wages have been indexed and averaged is 90% of the first $923, plus 32% of the next (approximately) $4,500, plus only 15% of the remainder, up to the wage cap. It clearly benefits low earners. I was over the SS max for years and once calculated that if I'd worked another 4 years instead of retiring at 61 my monthly benefit would increase by $50/month but my employer and I would have contributed another $50,000 or so. Not a great return!

As for the misconceptions- yes, I see them on FB all the time. Some imply that all the contributions from people who die before collecting SS disappear into some giant government abyss. Others repeat an inane calculation that starts with the assumption that the average salary over a person's lifetime is $30K, so if you'd paid the CURRENT SS payroll contribution rate on $30K for the last 40 years... of course, almost no one made $30K in 1979, the cap was much lower then, the rate was lower....
Athena53, Social Security current retirement benefits are primarily funded by the current generation of employees and employers. The problem with that method is demographics; they're not consistent and sometimes fall heavily upon whatever are our nation's current generation of employees and employers.

[I'm among those advocating SS funding should be additionally shared by more general sources of tax revenue. Social Security retirement's reduction of national poverty is of benefit to our entire economy. For similar reasoning, I'm among those advocating government medical programs should be entirely funded by sources of tax revenues more general than only payrolls and wages. Investors and speculators should also contribute.

I'm among the minority that advocates federal programs for what are considered to be substantially social programs, should to whatever extent feasible be funded by a general federal sales tax. (general sales taxes are flat rated and they generally apply to everyone).

None of these proposals I support would change our demographic problems.]
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Old 07-08-2019, 01:52 PM
 
20,740 posts, read 13,741,528 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Supposn View Post
Athena53, Social Security current retirement benefits are primarily funded by the current generation of employees and employers. The problem with that method is demographics; they're not consistent and sometimes fall heavily upon whatever are our nation's current generation of employees and employers.

[I'm among those advocating SS funding should be additionally shared by more general sources of tax revenue. Social Security retirement's reduction of national poverty is of benefit to our entire economy. For similar reasoning, I'm among those advocating government medical programs should be entirely funded by sources of tax revenues more general than only payrolls and wages. Investors and speculators should also contribute.

I'm among the minority that advocates federal programs for what are considered to be substantially social programs, should to whatever extent feasible be funded by a general federal sales tax. (general sales taxes are flat rated and they generally apply to everyone).

None of these proposals I support would change our demographic problems.]
Again problem is when you start doing that it opens up SS/Medicare into calls of being something DNC has fought against; *welfare*.

Social Security is a PAYGO (Pay As You Go) scheme funded by those employed and employers (self-employed pay the full sums on their own).

Medicaid and other welfare/social programs already cover low income or whatever indigents SS does not provide.

As have frequently stated nearly every other western developed nation has tweaked and or otherwise addressed issues with their social security/national pension schemes to face certain demographic facts. The USA however has not because no one has the political balls to do so. Instead Congress and WH will do what government in this country does best; wait until the crisis actually hits, *then* take action.

SS is basically fine, it just needs some small adjustments such as raising the wage cap and or full retirement age. While things are open for discussion changing things to reflect American society accurately, instead of some Ozzie and Harriet world of the 1950's or 1940's that doesn't exist would also help.

Address issues like divorce and remarriage causing men to leave a train of ex-wives and a current (or survivor) all claiming benefits off one person's record.

Indeed with gay marriage now legal the idea of a "weaker spouse" needing protection financially no longer automatically means a female. Nor is the assumption built into SS (for all married persons) that one spouse needs or should stay home to raise children.

In short just make SS deal with what it should, and not act as a vehicle to influence social policies.

DT and other well off old men shouldn't automatically have their children qualify for SS benefits just because it is the law.
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Old 07-08-2019, 02:06 PM
 
Location: 5,400 feet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BugsyPal View Post
Again problem is when you start doing that it opens up SS/Medicare into calls of being something DNC has fought against; *welfare*.

Taxes designated for Medicare currently funds only 56% of program costs. 44% of Medicare costs are funded by general tax revenues.
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Old 07-08-2019, 02:31 PM
 
20,740 posts, read 13,741,528 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiminnm View Post
Taxes designated for Medicare currently funds only 56% of program costs. 44% of Medicare costs are funded by general tax revenues.
Part A is largely funded via payroll taxes. It is parts B and D that require hefty infusions of funds from general revenue (about 71%).


https://www.kff.org/medicare/issue-b...and-financing/
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Old 07-08-2019, 02:44 PM
 
71,520 posts, read 71,694,121 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jiminnm View Post
Taxes designated for Medicare currently funds only 56% of program costs. 44% of Medicare costs are funded by general tax revenues.
Premiums for part b are tiered .....lower incomes pay 25% of cost with gov picking up 75% .higher incomes pay up to 85% of costs ....part A we get free because we paid in our working lives .


Last edited by mathjak107; 07-08-2019 at 03:01 PM..
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Old 07-08-2019, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Ohio
19,904 posts, read 14,228,365 times
Reputation: 16083
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supposn View Post
FICA payroll taxes are among, if not the most regressive of all U.S. Federal taxes
No, they aren't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1921 View Post
Perhaps you should take the topic to the Great Debate section.
He doesn't know how to debate. He doesn't even know what he's talking about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdelena View Post
The calculations used to determine benefits are quite progressive, not at all regressive.
Good point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Supposn View Post
Athena53, Social Security current retirement benefits are primarily funded by the current generation of employees and employers.
Wrong. I'm guessing OASI Trust Fund is beyond your understanding.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Supposn View Post
I'm among those advocating SS funding should be additionally shared by more general sources of tax revenue.
Except that won't work.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Supposn View Post
For many lower income persons, what occurs prior to their qualifying for Social Security retirement is over 60 years of financial desperation that was made more difficult for them and their families due to the most regressive of all federal taxes, the FICA payroll taxes levied upon their wages.
Dream on.

First, it isn't 60 years. You only need 35 years to qualify for 100% of your benefits. Contrast that with France who now makes workers work 42 years and those born 1973 and later 43 years.

Second, people who start work at age 20 will work 45 years and retire around age 65.

45 years ≠ 60 years

Third, their "financial desperation" is their own self-doing.

Fourth, those people are stupid and financially illiterate and without Social Security, those people would have nothing for retirement.

Finally, as others have pointed out, the calculation of benefits is slanted in their favor.

If anyone is getting screwed, it's the Middle Class and Upper Class, not the Lower Class.
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Old 07-08-2019, 05:48 PM
 
Location: 5,400 feet
2,623 posts, read 2,576,057 times
Reputation: 3674
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
Premiums for part b are tiered .....lower incomes pay 25% of cost with gov picking up 75% .higher incomes pay up to 85% of costs ....part A we get free because we paid in our working lives .

I am well acquainted with that chart and its effect on those of us who have moved into RMD territory.
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