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Old 04-20-2015, 07:25 AM
 
Location: Jamestown, NY
7,841 posts, read 7,341,108 times
Reputation: 13779

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Maybe it's not envy at all, but rather resentment born of the knowledge that we are paying for our own cell phone, full rent, food, transportation, etc., etc. and then in addition we are paying for all those items for others, many of whom are on the receiving end because they have been life-long wasteful spenders and mis-managers of their money.

And yes, I am well aware of the stories of victims of life's tragedies ("there but for the grace of God go I") and I am on record in this thread as being in favor of a safety net. One can be in favor of a safety net while at the same time resenting people who abuse that same safety net.

There is a leach/moocher/game-the-system mentality which is off-putting (to use understatement).
I don't assume that people who wind up poor as senior citizens intentionally "game the system". My guess is that they were just never all that well off for most of their lives before they reached their 60s for whatever reasons. I don't begrudge my tax monies going to people who were not as lucky and blessed as I've been so that they don't have to live in cardboard boxes and dumpster dive for their meals, even if I don't necessarily approve of their choices, lifestyles or habits.
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Old 04-20-2015, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,763,041 times
Reputation: 32309
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda_d View Post
I don't assume that people who wind up poor as senior citizens intentionally "game the system". ..........
I don't either, as was made clear in my post. I referred to the subset of people who do as being a source of resentment. And unfortunately I believe that is a large subset, although its size is not susceptible to any objective proof as far as I am aware.
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Old 04-20-2015, 07:41 AM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,746 posts, read 4,224,664 times
Reputation: 6866
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryinva View Post
I understand fully how SS pays out. Thats not the point. What i meant about fairness is its not like SS doesnt already have a fairly complex rule set. You have to be married for at least one year before you qualify for death benefits. So often a retired couple (now a days) will live together, rather than remarry for many years, to protect their benefits, and savings if things dont work out Makes sense. Then they get married, if it makes sense to. So if a wife was married for the last 10 years vs he first 10, it would not be hard, at all, to figure time value compensated earned benefits. Its done all the time with QDROs and pension plans. My ex will get a frozen fixed amount of my pension from the company I worked for, based on my earnings and years of service AT THAT TIME. Which in her case is $300/mo, starting at age 60. So at 62, having avoided earned income work for most of her life, she collects $1200/mo, plus if she was smart enough, she got 1/2 of my 401k at the time, ($20k) which if she had left it alone would be a tidy sum after 25 years! And if I die before she does, why would SHE deserve a death benefit equal to DWs? That is clearly an unfair waste of SS funds. I realize that this is an almost a perfect storm scenario, and in the big picture of SS handouts will not be a major factor, but it sure frosts my shorts! Married is married, divorced is divorced. Being married 10 years is not equal to 30. But it is according to SS rules.

Remember the SS "premiums" you pay now, are to fund the LAST generations safety net. Youre "return" on collecting SS is based on what you contributed to help fund it. My EX contributed nothing and is robbing from the next generations premiums. Again, I dont think at all she deserves nothing, but 100%, when the SSA has all kinds of rules to reduce payments for everything else, sure as heck seems like loophole you can drive a truck through. Im sure there are plenty of lazy gigalos out there looking for wealthy cougars for the same reason.
Full disclosure: I have practiced both Family Law and Social Security Law.

SSA is not a Family Court. It does not have the ability, time, resources or desire to relitigate who is at fault for your failed marriage nor determine whether the two of you agreed that she should stay home or whether you were an abuser or had abandoned your spouse, etc. This is not a "loophole".

Pre-1977, SSA required that spouses be married for 20 consecutive years before either could claim divorced spousal benefits. Even though I would have qualified under that rule, I understand why it was reduced to 10 years. In 1977, the majority of white women were homemakers with children and ten years out of the workforce seriously damages one's earnings record. Congress also changed the rule whereby the divorced spouse had to wait until the wage earner filed for retirement benefits rather than became eligible to receive those benefits. This rule was changed because the wage earner was deliberately delaying applying for benefits in order to inflict pain on his former wife.

I am one of those nasty attorneys who advise spouses to delay the divorce proceedings if the spouse is within one or two years of a divorce. Why would I not? In MD we require one year of separation before one can even file for an uncontested divorce. Add 6 or more months, at a minimum, until the final hearing is held. If the hearing is already scheduled and the couple will have been married 10 years within a few weeks after that date, I go a step further and advise an unrepresented client (via a helpline) to explain this to the judge and ask for a postponement. I don't know of one judge who would not grant a postponement under these circumstances.
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:10 AM
 
8,870 posts, read 5,149,988 times
Reputation: 10159
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryinva View Post
I understand fully how SS pays out. Thats not the point. What i meant about fairness is its not like SS doesnt already have a fairly complex rule set. You have to be married for at least one year before you qualify for death benefits. So often a retired couple (now a days) will live together, rather than remarry for many years, to protect their benefits, and savings if things dont work out Makes sense. Then they get married, if it makes sense to. So if a wife was married for the last 10 years vs he first 10, it would not be hard, at all, to figure time value compensated earned benefits. Its done all the time with QDROs and pension plans. My ex will get a frozen fixed amount of my pension from the company I worked for, based on my earnings and years of service AT THAT TIME. Which in her case is $300/mo, starting at age 60. So at 62, having avoided earned income work for most of her life, she collects $1200/mo, plus if she was smart enough, she got 1/2 of my 401k at the time, ($20k) which if she had left it alone would be a tidy sum after 25 years! And if I die before she does, why would SHE deserve a death benefit equal to DWs? That is clearly an unfair waste of SS funds. I realize that this is an almost a perfect storm scenario, and in the big picture of SS handouts will not be a major factor, but it sure frosts my shorts! Married is married, divorced is divorced. Being married 10 years is not equal to 30. But it is according to SS rules.

Remember the SS "premiums" you pay now, are to fund the LAST generations safety net. Youre "return" on collecting SS is based on what you contributed to help fund it. My EX contributed nothing and is robbing from the next generations premiums. Again, I dont think at all she deserves nothing, but 100%, when the SSA has all kinds of rules to reduce payments for everything else, sure as heck seems like

loophole you can drive a truck through. Im sure there are plenty of lazy gigalos out there looking for wealthy cougars for the same reason.
I do see what you are saying. Your ex-wife should be limited to $300 per month. But that would merely qualify her for other programs, so she isn't going to be limited to $300 per month. Whether I pull the money from my right pocket or my left pocket, I'm still paying.

Drawing half (which is not 100% btw) of your FRA benefits isn't exactly winning the lottery.

My advice is: don't let what she draws bother you.
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:15 AM
 
8,870 posts, read 5,149,988 times
Reputation: 10159
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
I don't either, as was made clear in my post. I referred to the subset of people who do as being a source of resentment. And unfortunately I believe that is a large subset, although its size is not susceptible to any objective proof as far as I am aware.
But how do you identify the subset? How do you know Dave is a member of the subset? Maybe Dave was a drug baby and as a direct result has mental impairments which are not visible to the naked eye.

Since you don't know, why waste your mental energy resenting him?
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:34 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,651 posts, read 17,632,423 times
Reputation: 27754
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Maybe it's not envy at all, but rather resentment born of the knowledge that we are paying for our own cell phone, full rent, food, transportation, etc., etc. and then in addition we are paying for all those items for others, many of whom are on the receiving end because they have been life-long wasteful spenders and mis-managers of their money.

And yes, I am well aware of the stories of victims of life's tragedies ("there but for the grace of God go I") and I am on record in this thread as being in favor of a safety net. One can be in favor of a safety net while at the same time resenting people who abuse that same safety net.

There is a leach/moocher/game-the-system mentality which is off-putting (to use understatement).
Well stated. I agree with a safety net for those who are not able to provide for themselves, as well as a temporary holdover in the event of a job, reduction in income, etc. Still, there's a lot of abuse and people "going a mile when given an inch."
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:47 AM
 
26,156 posts, read 28,555,015 times
Reputation: 24868
Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
: smack:

HowTF was I supposed to know at move-in that he was a drunk?

There was also a drunk at the previous place - the house that was foreclosed. That guy was in declining health after several surgeries and kept his bottle on the opposite side of his recliner where I never saw it. At least he was a harmless drunk and never got in anyone else's way.

Should I demand full disclosure before I move in anywhere?

When you're a poor person in a tight rental market facing a forced move, you might not have many options. As I said earlier, there was literally no other place I could have moved into.
Your inner "red flag alert" doesn't exist. You're attracted to abusive situations and people because of what happened in your childhood. You don't see danger in situations that others can see from a mile away. Moving from a situation with one drunk to a situation with another...repeating childhood pattern. It's not random.
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,651 posts, read 17,632,423 times
Reputation: 27754
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda_d View Post
I don't assume that people who wind up poor as senior citizens intentionally "game the system". My guess is that they were just never all that well off for most of their lives before they reached their 60s for whatever reasons. I don't begrudge my tax monies going to people who were not as lucky and blessed as I've been so that they don't have to live in cardboard boxes and dumpster dive for their meals, even if I don't necessarily approve of their choices, lifestyles or habits.
I don't begrudge these folks but at the same time, the money that goes to them is money that could be going to me to make me more secure. I'm not a fan of redistributive schemes, but it's obviously a balance between letting people starve and making those who are secure moreso.
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:58 AM
 
Location: NC Piedmont
3,911 posts, read 2,885,095 times
Reputation: 6291
Lots of like minds in this thread; we need a net but it would be nice if it wasn't abused much. Unfortunately policing aid programs with a heavy hand has a bad track record also; people who deserve help are inadvertently turned away or don't try to get the help they qualify for because they think they will be turned away. And before anyone says that's their own fault, I know that but a good safety net will help those people. It is often that sort of thinking that got them in need to begin with so if we have decided we aren't going to let them live in boxes and starve we have to keep the barriers somewhat low for them to request help.
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Old 04-20-2015, 11:14 AM
 
8,870 posts, read 5,149,988 times
Reputation: 10159
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emigrations View Post
I don't begrudge these folks but at the same time, the money that goes to them is money that could be going to me to make me more secure. I'm not a fan of redistributive schemes, but it's obviously a balance between letting people starve and making those who are secure moreso.
Because your taxes would go down? Dream on.

Are you familiar with how governmental budgets work? If you are the head of a department, you make certain that you spend every cent you have been budgeted, no matter what. If you buy things you don't need then discard them later, that is business as usual. You build unnecessary things into your budget, and you spend that money too. Then when recessions come along and you must cut, you reduce or eliminate some of your unnecessary line items, and pat yourself on the back for "trimming" your budget and "saving" taxpayer money. You might even get a bonus or perk of some sort.

This is how it works at every level of government. The waste is staggering, and it is not tracked.
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