Social Security and Medicare Are On Borrowed Time

July 28, 2014

Trustees for Social Security projected that there would be no change in the year that the program runs out of money, 2033.   Instead of “no news is good news”, we have “no news is still catastrophic news”.  The article goes on to state that:

If the trust fund reserves were exhausted, both Medicare and Social Security would still be able to pay out most of what they would owe in benefits through tax revenue.

Social Security’s disability trust fund, for instance, would still be able to cover around 80 percent of payments, once its reserve is depleted in 2016. If both trust funds ran out of reserves in 2033, the payroll tax, which finances Social Security, could make around three-quarters of payments for the next 55 years.

What this amounts to for the vast majority of us is “Give Social Security 100% of your payments now, and if you are lucky enough to reach retirement age, expect to receive 80% of those payments.  Oh, and if you die before you reach retirement age, whatever it changes to in the future, you’ll get nothing at all.”

He added that the long-term fixes Social Security needs would already be more painful than the changes implemented three decades ago, the last time the program was revamped.

“Lawmakers would do well to act promptly,” (Trustee Charles Blahous)  said.

No, lawmakers take great pains against acting promptly.  It is we the people who must act promptly.  I don’t know about you, but paying $1.00 now, to get 80 cents back 30 years from now, if at all, sounds like a horrific investment.  And even that isn’t guaranteed.  It’s time for all of us to let our lawmakers know that we want to opt-out of the black hole that is Social Security.

-Richard Renza, Jr.

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