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Old 04-16-2015, 06:52 PM
 
29,784 posts, read 34,885,423 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
LOL....you just solved our need for education reform
Teachers may just become that prestigious job that the high academic achievers seek !
Consider the impact on state universities competing for talent especially research universities. I was just reading an article about the growing gap and inequality in university endowments. Add this on top of and watch public university chancellors in the non FICA states beam with joy.
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Utah
546 posts, read 325,614 times
Reputation: 674
Raising the cap for high income earners, without increasing their calculated payout is one possibility. There are types of executive compensation on which FICA is not collected, perhaps some exclusions could be eliminated.

Maybe only phase out a partial amount of SS on means testing, not the whole thing.

Possibly make an adjustment to spousal benefits for people who have divorced. I believe now if you were married at least 10 years before divorce, you may be entitled to a higher benefit if the spouse earned a much higher income, and it's indefinite. Seems like if you have been divorced for a number of years prior to FRA, you should make it on your own earnings, not piggyback on an ex-spouse of years ago. I don't know how many people it would impact, but to me, it makes sense that if you were married for 11 years in your 20-30s, but divorced long before retirement age, you should eventually lose the spousal benefit whether you remarry or not.

Just a couple of thoughts...
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:10 PM
 
6,353 posts, read 5,166,278 times
Reputation: 8527
Quote:
Originally Posted by lenora View Post
How much is two years of lost Medicare benefits worth to the affluent? (I say affluent because those who are not affluent would either continue to work or obtain subsidized Obamacare policies).
Based on what I pay for insurance, about $36,000. ($18,000 per year, per person.) Mostly it's the affluent, working at desk jobs, who can decide to work to age 67 and no one will stop them. Do you want a 67 year old plumber under your sink? I don't. How about a 67 year old financial planner…sure.
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:44 PM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,661 posts, read 1,528,456 times
Reputation: 3650
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cnynrat View Post
Here is a menu of choices, with the % of the funding gap they are estimated to close:

1. Raise the earnings cap on taxes to $215k (90% of all earners fall below this): Closes 36% of the gap

2. Remove the earnings cap altogether: Closes 86% of the gap

3. Starting in 2016, raise the FRA by 3 months each year until it reaches 68: Closes 18% of the gap

4. #3, but extend the FRA to 70: Closes 44% of the gap

5. Change the way COLA is calculated to use a chained COL: Closes 23% of the gap

6. Raise the tax rate from 6.2% to 6.45%: Closes 22% of the gap

7. Over a 20 year period raise the tax rate from 6.2% to 7.2%: Closes 64% of the gap

I'll take #'s 1, 3, 5, and 6 to close 99% of the gap. That balances benefits adjustments (3 & 5) with tax adjustments (1 & 6). If you wanted to get that last % you could bump the tax rate up a little more in #6, or extend the FRA a little more, say to 68 and 3 months.

Some of these interact with each other to increase the benefit to the program, for example raising the tax rate and increasing the cap.
I agree with you and #6 should include raising the early retirement age for anyone not yet retired. Also eliminate file and suspend. What I like about the four options that you selected is that everyone has to make a sacrifice - the high income earners and the average guy, younger workers and the retired and the soon to be retired. High income earners and retirees should not be solely responsible for bailing out social security.
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Old 04-16-2015, 09:57 PM
 
2,296 posts, read 1,563,546 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ABQ2015 View Post
I agree with you and #6 should include raising the early retirement age for anyone not yet retired. Also eliminate file and suspend. What I like about the four options that you selected is that everyone has to make a sacrifice - the high income earners and the average guy, younger workers and the retired and the soon to be retired. High income earners and retirees should not be solely responsible for bailing out social security.
Great ideas.
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Old 04-16-2015, 10:08 PM
 
33,046 posts, read 22,077,624 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cnynrat View Post
Here is a menu of choices, with the % of the funding gap they are estimated to close:

1. Raise the earnings cap on taxes to $215k (90% of all earners fall below this): Closes 36% of the gap

2. Remove the earnings cap altogether: Closes 86% of the gap

3. Starting in 2016, raise the FRA by 3 months each year until it reaches 68: Closes 18% of the gap

4. #3, but extend the FRA to 70: Closes 44% of the gap

5. Change the way COLA is calculated to use a chained COL: Closes 23% of the gap

6. Raise the tax rate from 6.2% to 6.45%: Closes 22% of the gap

7. Over a 20 year period raise the tax rate from 6.2% to 7.2%: Closes 64% of the gap

I'll take #'s 1, 3, 5, and 6 to close 99% of the gap. That balances benefits adjustments (3 & 5) with tax adjustments (1 & 6). If you wanted to get that last % you could bump the tax rate up a little more in #6, or extend the FRA a little more, say to 68 and 3 months.

Some of these interact with each other to increase the benefit to the program, for example raising the tax rate and increasing the cap.

I reject #2 (egregiously progressive), #3, #4, and #5 (egregiously regressive),
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Old 04-16-2015, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
424 posts, read 287,167 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Christie will propose phasing out Social Security payments for those making more than $80,000 in other income, and eliminating them for those making $200,000 or more a year.
Though most people will disagree with me, I think this is a good, responsible compromise on social security that would probably put the program in a better financial position for future generations. I am just shocked that this proposal came from Chris Christie.... either I'm not as progressive as I thought I was or Christie's more of a moderate rather than conservative.... For those saying that this proposal isn't fair, well yes, but nothing in life is ever going to satisfy all parties and this is a whole lot better than forcing a lot of seniors with no other income out on the street when social security runs out of $$$, because lets be honest here, with congress as incompetent as it is and the national debt wayyyyyy too high, taxes aren't going to raise anytime soon.
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Old 04-16-2015, 11:39 PM
 
2,296 posts, read 1,563,546 times
Reputation: 2737
Quote:
Originally Posted by RipCityBassWorks View Post
Though most people will disagree with me, I think this is a good, responsible compromise on social security that would probably put the program in a better financial position for future generations. I am just shocked that this proposal came from Chris Christie.... either I'm not as progressive as I thought I was or Christie's more of a moderate rather than conservative.... For those saying that this proposal isn't fair, well yes, but nothing in life is ever going to satisfy all parties and this is a whole lot better than forcing a lot of seniors with no other income out on the street when social security runs out of $$$, because lets be honest here, with congress as incompetent as it is and the national debt wayyyyyy too high, taxes aren't going to raise anytime soon.
You can't tell those that paid in hundreds of thousands of dollars into social security and saved their asses off like the govt encouraged them to do and then tell them, "too bad," you get zero when they were factoring it in all along.

Last edited by Burkmere; 04-17-2015 at 12:35 AM..
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Old 04-17-2015, 03:46 AM
 
2,912 posts, read 3,551,793 times
Reputation: 4103
With all the attention given to this problem, it might be helpful to remember that today's government deficit and debt have nothing to do with Social Security. The funding for SS is solid for the next 20 years, at least. Meanwhile, the general budget is hemorrhaging red ink, right now, every day, in huge amounts. Perhaps our "leaders" should get this under control before messing with SS.
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Old 04-17-2015, 06:31 AM
 
9,206 posts, read 9,283,907 times
Reputation: 28870
Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Sooner than many of you may think, means testing could be in your life if Chris Christie is elected president.

NJ Gov. Chris Christie proposing overhaul of Social Security benefits in New Hampshire speech | Fox Business

The Republican is set to deliver a speech Tuesday in New Hampshire outlining his ideas on reforming Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and other so-called "entitlement" programs.

Christie will propose phasing out Social Security payments for those making more than $80,000 in other income, and eliminating them for those making $200,000 or more a year.

Christie's political action committee released excerpts before the speech. It's part of an effort to frame Christie as a politician who's unafraid to share "hard truths."

Hmm so is that 80k individual or 80k couple?
What are your thoughts on this specific proposal?
I don't think Congress will ever enact this idea into law. Its just too much of a hot potato. What I would like to see instead is some combination of these things:

1. Older ages for eligibility for benefits.

2. A modest and gradual payroll tax increase.

3. Perhaps, something really creative like increasing both the earnings cap and the benefits that someone with a higher income could draw from social security, yet not increasing them by as much as the additional taxes would be.

4. Not private retirement accounts, but perhaps the government could invest a portion of social security funds in something that would earn a greater return than treasury bills.

Changes do need to be made, but the one change I would be flatly against is privatizing or eliminating social security. Even Christie's ideas are better than that.

I do him credit for raising this issue and not sticking his head in the sand, like so many politicians do.
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