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Posted: 12/31/2006 3:24:30 AM EDT
story



Social Security Agreement With Mexico Released After 3 1/2 Year Freedom of Information Act Battle

   WASHINGTON, Dec. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- After numerous refusals
over three and a half years, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has
released the first known public copy of the U.S.-Mexico Social Security
Totalization Agreement. The government was forced to make the disclosure in
response to lawsuits filed under the Freedom of Information Act by TREA
Senior Citizens League, a 1.2 million-member nonpartisan seniors advocacy
group.
   The Totalization Agreement could allow millions of illegal Mexican
workers to draw billions of dollars from the U.S. Social Security Trust
Fund.
   The agreement between the U.S. and Mexico was signed in June 2004, and
is awaiting President Bush's signature. Once President Bush approves the
agreement, which would be done without Congressional vote, either House of
Congress would have 60 days to disapprove the agreement by voting to reject
it.
   "The Social Security Administration itself warns that Social Security
is within decades of bankruptcy -- yet, they seem to have no problem making
agreements that hasten its demise," said Ralph McCutchen, Chairman of the
TREA Senior Citizens League.
   The U.S. currently has 21 similar agreements in effect with other
nations, which are intended to eliminate dual taxation for persons who work
outside their country of origin. All of the agreements are with developed
nations with economies similar to that of the U.S.
   For example, a worker who turns 62 after 1990 generally needs 40
calendar quarters of coverage to receive retirement benefits. Under
totalization agreements, workers are allowed to combine earnings from both
countries in order to qualify for benefits. The Agreement with Mexico, like
other totalization agreements, would allow workers to qualify with just six
quarters, or 18 months, of U.S. coverage.
   But Mexico's retirement system is radically different than that of
other participating countries. For example, only 40 percent of
non-government workers participate in Mexico's system, whereas 96 percent
of America's non- government workers do. In addition, the U.S. system is
progressive, meaning lower wage earners get back much more than they put
in; in Mexico, workers get back only what they put in, plus accrued
interest.
   "I applaud the persistent efforts of TREA Senior Citizens League to try
to get documents from the U.S. Government about the U.S.-Mexico Social
Security Totalization Agreement," said Rep. Walter Jones (R-N.C.). "The
American people are finally beginning to get some of the information
regarding this Agreement that they have been seeking for so long."
   According to the SSA, the Social Security Trust Fund will begin paying
out more than it is taking in by 2017, and will be exhausted by the year
2040.
   With 1.2 million members, TREA Senior Citizens League is one of the
nation's largest nonpartisan seniors groups. Visit
http://www.SeniorsLeague.org for more information or to see the
Totalization Agreement documents.
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 3:28:59 AM EDT
maybe the sooner this house of cards falls the better.
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 4:43:15 AM EDT
tag
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 5:43:04 AM EDT
I’m forty years old and have been working since I was seventeen. Social Security sends out a statement every year or so showing how much you’ve earned over your career. I’ve never been anywhere close to rich. My average income over those years has been about $18,000.

I added up what my total “contribution” to Social Security was and then figured out how much money I would have if that money had gone into an investment fund. At eight percent I would now have over one hundred thousand dollars in my account. If I didn’t add anything else to it then it would be something like eight hundred thousand dollars when I turn sixty five.

Social Security is a terrible system.

But it’s not going broke, things don’t really work like that. Social Security is legally an entitlement. If the money runs out the Government automatically borrows the money to cover it. It, along with other entitlement programs, will suck the Federal budget dry over the next ten or twenty years.

Raising taxes is the obvious answer to the problem, and it’s also the wrong answer. Increased taxes will slow the economy down and send us back into a recession. Besides, entitlement spending will increase faster than taxes can be raised anyway. You can always spend more than you earn. We can’t keep borrowing forever either. The only solution is to cut entitlements.  And I don’t see that happening anytime soon.
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 7:05:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Thuban:
I’m forty years old and have been working since I was seventeen. Social Security sends out a statement every year or so showing how much you’ve earned over your career. I’ve never been anywhere close to rich. My average income over those years has been about $18,000.

I added up what my total “contribution” to Social Security was and then figured out how much money I would have if that money had gone into an investment fund. At eight percent I would now have over one hundred thousand dollars in my account. If I didn’t add anything else to it then it would be something like eight hundred thousand dollars when I turn sixty five.

Social Security is a terrible system.

But it’s not going broke, things don’t really work like that. Social Security is legally an entitlement. If the money runs out the Government automatically borrows the money to cover it. It, along with other entitlement programs, will suck the Federal budget dry over the next ten or twenty years.

Raising taxes is the obvious answer to the problem, and it’s also the wrong answer. Increased taxes will slow the economy down and send us back into a recession. Besides, entitlement spending will increase faster than taxes can be raised anyway. You can always spend more than you earn. We can’t keep borrowing forever either. The only solution is to cut entitlements.  And I don’t see that happening anytime soon.


Wrong.  The US Government could decide all of a sudden that no one shall get Social Security benefits.

Flemming v. Nestor - 1960

"The [U.S. Supreme] Court ruled that no such contract exists, and that there is no contract right to receive Social Security payments. Payments due under Social Security are not “property” rights and are not protected by the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment."
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 7:11:04 AM EDT
And this is why us lowly citizens who paid into the system will be told be can't get a dime, while millions of who spent their life in welfare and illegals can.  But hey, it's all legal according to the courts.
Link Posted: 12/31/2006 7:12:13 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Fourays2:

maybe the sooner this house of cards falls the better.



Link Posted: 12/31/2006 7:13:24 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Procyon:
.....................

Wrong.  The US Government could decide all of a sudden that no one shall get Social Security benefits.

...............




I can see the headlines now  "50+ million people lose their SS bennys.. politicians do nothing"

The sad reality is that neither political party is going to let grandma starve...

Link Posted: 12/31/2006 7:17:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Procyon:

"The [U.S. Supreme] Court ruled that no such contract exists, and that there is no contract right to receive Social Security payments. Payments due under Social Security are not “property” rights and are not protected by the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment."


Serious question:
If there is no contract, why must I pay?  I don't think I will be able to sue the government for unpaid SS benefits when it goes bankrupt.
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