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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 10/4/2005 10:37:27 AM EDT
I thought of this not too long ago, and wanted to share my thoughts about the problems we're having with Social Security. Let me lay some groundwork here:

The government came up with the concept of Social Security, ostensibly as a means to take care of those who couldn't take care of themselves. The idea was mainly to allow people, as they retire, to have funds to support themselves. Never mind for now the abuses in the system for now and focus only on that aspect.

We know already that Social Security worked well as we had only a limited number of people drawing benefits, and few people paying into the system, and that this trend is very quickly turning around as there are more and more people drawing benefits and fewer people working to foot the bill. Going by memory, I think it used to be 11 people working for each one drawing benefits, and we're at a ratio of about 3 to 1 now. The exact numbers are not important.

What is important, in my opinion, is this: We've never had, nor do we currently know, if this system is feasible in the long run. We know it was easy to fund at its inception, that's for sure.

Now follow me on this: Up until the middle of the 20th century, what happened to folks as they approached retirement age? Chances are, their kids ended up taking care of them. As a matter of fact, grandparents, and in particular the grandmother, could also be counted upon to help raise the children. This is seriously considered to be the reason women live longer than men (unrelated to this discussion - I just wanted to mention it). The family took care of each other and all was well.

Fast forward to the 20th century. We are now living in a society in which that seems almost impossible. Older people want to retain as much control over their life as possble, and their kids don't want to be burdened by having to deal with taking care of their parents.

We look at the Social Security system as a NECESSITY, when it really is a product of our own wants and desires, and ultimately our selfishness. We've changed the whole paradigm of what it means to grow old. What's the solution? It seems that unless we're willing to forgo our desires, that we're going to be spending ourselves into oblivion; I honestly don't have an answer. This is a social experiment on a grand scale, and no one has figured out a solution for it yet. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next 50 years.

I think this is the correct way of looking at the problem though, and not by asking "What should the retirement age be?", or "What should be the benefit level?", and other solutions to a problem which are just minor tweaks and don't address the underlying problem.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 10:39:36 AM EDT
Children forced to support old people.

Ban old people, for the children.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 10:50:24 AM EDT
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 10:58:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By NimmerMehr:
Children forced to support old people.

Ban old people, for the children.



Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:00:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Zhukov:
I thought of this not too long ago, and wanted to share my thoughts about the problems we're having with Social Security. Let me lay some groundwork here:

The government came up with the concept of Social Security, ostensibly as a means to take care of those who couldn't take care of themselves. The idea was mainly to allow people, as they retire, to have funds to support themselves. Never mind for now the abuses in the system for now and focus only on that aspect.



Social Security was/is a supplement to retirement. NOT A RETIREMENT fund. People who don't know the difference and bitch that they don't have enough money in retirment obviously didn't save enough.
Link Posted: 10/4/2005 11:03:27 AM EDT
I think everybody about 40 or younger should be making plans for SS to be nothing but a memory by the time they retire. The medical field is keeping people alive longer so it will only be natural for them to raise the retirement age sooner or later.
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