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Ponzi Social Security May Be the Wedge Issue for Youth Voters
Big Government ^ | 9-10-2011 | Chriss W. Street

Posted on 09/11/2011 11:32:47 AM PDT by smoothsailing

Ponzi Social Security May Be the Wedge Issue for Youth Voters

Chriss W. Sweet

September 10, 2011

When Texas Governor Rick Perry in the Republican debate at the President Reagan Library described Social Security as a “Ponzi Scheme”; Perry hoped the media would hyper-ventilate and scream that his political career was over. Back in 1982, Democratic Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill legendarily damaged the President’s and the Republican’s popularity by spinning that Reagan’s efforts to return Social Security to solvency was an effort to destroy the program. Perry understands that Social Security still remains popular; but he intends to use as a wedge issue against Democrats the fact that few Americans are willing to pay more taxes make the program solvent and that younger voters believe they will never receive the benefits they are paying for.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary describes a Ponzi scheme as “an investment swindle in which some early investors are paid off with money put up by later ones in order to encourage more and bigger risks.” Social Security began collecting taxes in 1937 and began in 1940 to pay their first benefit recipient, Ida May Fuller. Ms. Fuller worked for three years under the Social Security program before she retired. The Social Security taxes on her salary were $24.75; her initial monthly check was $22.54; and she lived to collect $22,888.92. Essentially, Ms. Fuller earned a spectacular 925% return on her investment.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was quoted by his Labor Secretary Francis Perkins as trying to make sure Social Security would not be a swindle to future generations:

“Ah, but this is the same old dole by another name. It is almost dishonest to build up an accumulated deficit for the Congress of the United States to meet in 1980. We can’t see the United States short in 1980 any more than in 1935.”

Prior to the 1970s, the Social Security program was fairly well funded; because it took a highly visible Act of Congress to change the payments. But in 1972 Republican President Richard Nixon increased benefits by 20% and created a formula to automatically adjust Social Security payments by a cost-of-living-adjustment (COLA) tied to the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers. President Jimmy Carter in 1977 more than tripled the Social Security tax on wages; but price inflation continued to drive COLA payments up faster than the taxes on wages.

When President Reagan tried to reinstate the original COLA calculation in 1982 he was pummeled by Democratic Speaker of the House, Tip O’Neill, who famously told the press that trying to change Social Security was the political equivalent of asking for the instant death of touching the “third rail” of an electric train. Republicans lost 26 Congressional seats in the following midterm elections, as the Democrats made preservation of Social Security the centerpiece of their campaign slogan: “It’s not fair … It’s Republican”.


In 1995, the Senate Finance Committee appointed a commission to study the amended CPI’s effect on Social Security solvency. The commission determined that the COLA calculation introduced in the 1970s overestimated the cost of living calculation envisioned by FDR by a value approximately 1.2% per year; but Congress took no action. Through 2011, the COLA has averaged 3.73%. Over the last 36 years the COLA resulted in benefit payments that were 47% above higher than the original plan supported by Roosevelt. Had the COLA not been passed into law the current $2.5 trillion Social Security Trust Fund would be three times larger and the program would solvent, instead of currently $5.4 trillion under-funded.

Perry understands that for the last twenty-six years no Republican Presidential candidate has been willing to address the unsustainability of the Social Security funding for fear of being pummeled by Democrats. But recent Rasmussen polling indicates that although Social Security remains a popular with a 73% approval; only 30% of likely U.S. voters favor raising taxes to make sure the Social Security and Medicare trust funds have enough money to pay all promised benefits. Rasmussen determined that only “26% of voters under 40 believe it’s even Somewhat Likely they will receive all of their promised Social Security benefits. That includes only 5% who say it’s Very Likely those benefits will be paid.”

The key to President Obama’s election victory in 2008 was the 22% voter preference he enjoyed in under 30 voters. Perry’s denigrating of Social of Security as a Ponzi scheme may turn out to be a powerful wedge issue that may turn younger voters away from Obama this fall.

Feel Free to Forward and Follow our Research at www.chrissstreetandcompany.com


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Extended News; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: perry; ponzi; ponzischeme; socialsecurity
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1 posted on 09/11/2011 11:32:49 AM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: shield; Cincinatus' Wife

ping.


2 posted on 09/11/2011 11:34:14 AM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: smoothsailing
Countdown to the Freepers who come on the thread and claim they "paid into" Social Security and expect "their money...."

5.......
4.......
3.......
2.......

3 posted on 09/11/2011 11:36:39 AM PDT by SkyPilot
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To: SkyPilot

You left out the “lockbox” and the “trust fund” and how the money in each of these was “stolen”.


4 posted on 09/11/2011 11:40:23 AM PDT by achilles2000 ("I'll agree to save the whales as long as we can deport the liberals")
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To: SkyPilot

All the money is in Obama’s stash.


5 posted on 09/11/2011 11:44:36 AM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: achilles2000

Taxpayers under 45 years old are going to be raped by Social Security. They should be furious about having to pay into this ponzi scheme. Maybe some are finally starting to wake up that the music has stopped and there are no more chairs left.


6 posted on 09/11/2011 11:45:14 AM PDT by Comparative Advantage
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To: SkyPilot
"paid into" Social Security and expect "their money...."

Precisely ... And the Gipper was right.

What we have now is a government run amuck, and the greatest thing about Sarah Palin is that she's the only one we can trust in cleaning things up --- BIG TIME.

In that regard, Palin's cleanup accomplishments in Alaska have scared the (censored) out of career politicians ... and crooked people.

7 posted on 09/11/2011 11:45:32 AM PDT by OldNavyVet (One trillion days, at 365 days per year, is 2,739,726,027 years ... almost 3 billion years)
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To: achilles2000
Sorry about that....I'm sure it will come up.

PS - don't try and explain to people that Social Security is, and always has been, a tax.

You can try.....but I wouldn't waste my time.

You see, in Social Security Direct Deposit Fantasy Land, there is a Magic Rainbow Money Box where all of their Direct Deposits come from, and they better keep comin! Or else!

8 posted on 09/11/2011 11:46:38 AM PDT by SkyPilot
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To: smoothsailing

THe missing part of this story is how Johnson allowed politicians to have access to Social Security monies as part of the general fund. Up until then, politicians couldn’t raid the SS Trust Fund.


9 posted on 09/11/2011 11:46:46 AM PDT by t2buckeye
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To: smoothsailing

The first thought that crossed my mind when I heard Perry talk about Social Security was: “Oh oh. He just lot the race”, but in retrospect, I think the Republicans may may have have lost it all!


10 posted on 09/11/2011 11:48:50 AM PDT by Paperdoll (NO MORE RINOs!)
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To: t2buckeye

I’m surprised it took 30 years for that to happen. To think that was never going to ever happen was downright naive.


11 posted on 09/11/2011 11:49:20 AM PDT by Comparative Advantage
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To: SkyPilot
I suspect a raising to age 70 and limits some eligibility cutoff to a private IRA, with limited government matching. Who knows, I am not saying I support this, but something has to change to make it just SS not disability and every thing else thrown in.
12 posted on 09/11/2011 11:50:02 AM PDT by boomop1
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To: boomop1

The scheme is over, pure and simple.


13 posted on 09/11/2011 11:50:56 AM PDT by Comparative Advantage
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To: smoothsailing

Retirement didn’t work out too well either.

All the good advice talked about the 3 legs of the stool:
pension, social security, and investments

My 42 year company went bk, ss is in the tank, and safe investments are paying 1% interest.

Ouch....wasted away again in Obamaville....


14 posted on 09/11/2011 11:52:16 AM PDT by nascarnation
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To: SkyPilot
Countdown to the Freepers who come on the thread and claim they "paid into" Social Security and expect "their money...."

Well, I did pay into it and I'm getting S/S checks now. I still work (I'm 66) so I am getting my paycheck plus the S/S check.

15 posted on 09/11/2011 11:52:16 AM PDT by ExtremeUnction
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To: t2buckeye
Up until then, politicians couldn’t raid the SS Trust Fund.

Yeah they could. In fact the SS fund was being raided in 1943. Instead of combining the funds, which is what happened under Johnson, they would put the SS money in the "Trust Fund" and then promptly "borrow" all that wasn't needed to pay current retirees back out again.

16 posted on 09/11/2011 11:58:17 AM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Can we ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Easily. All nonsense questions are unanswerable.)
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To: t2buckeye

“Johnson allowed politicians to have access to Social Security monies as part of the general fund.”

One more black mark against him in my view. No excuse to allow that and that fund was supposed to be sacrosanct.


17 posted on 09/11/2011 11:58:56 AM PDT by Niuhuru (The Internet is the digital AIDS; adapting and successfully destroying the MSM host.)
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To: boomop1

“I suspect a raising to age 70”

Meanwhile sixteen year old Shakaka gets fat checks to pay for her baby with a new one on the way.


18 posted on 09/11/2011 12:02:35 PM PDT by Niuhuru (The Internet is the digital AIDS; adapting and successfully destroying the MSM host.)
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To: SkyPilot; Comparative Advantage

I’m already hearing from the “the workers who paid in need their money back crowd”. Perhaps I shouldn’t bother responding. See 113


19 posted on 09/11/2011 12:05:19 PM PDT by achilles2000 ("I'll agree to save the whales as long as we can deport the liberals")
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To: Comparative Advantage

If it is any consolation to you, I am a “Boomer” who recognizes I am in the same boat as the under-40 set—I will never get back what I “put in” as the feds have turned the SSS into a straight welfare plan. I am not counting on SS retirement at all. I think it will be a pittance—and I know folks who have been told just that by SS staff. The people who will get mucho benefits are the under 40 set who get on SS disability in their 20s and 30s—and there are a lot of them—who then only work in the underground economy, if that, while living on the federal teat. And it is easy to get it in most places for psychiatric problems — “depression”, etc, which the feds allow to be easily “proven”.


20 posted on 09/11/2011 12:09:09 PM PDT by Carborundum
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To: achilles2000

All that stuff and more has been publicly mouthed by various politicians. Some of us believed it, once upon a time. It’s not sustainable now, if it ever was. Someone has to take the bull by the horns and bring it to a stop.


21 posted on 09/11/2011 12:09:33 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (There's gonna be a Redneck Revolution! (See my freep page) [rednecks come in many colors])
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To: Paperdoll
The first thought that crossed my mind when I heard Perry talk about Social Security was: “Oh oh. He just lot the race”, but in retrospect, I think the Republicans may may have have lost it all!

The Republicans may have lost it all? I don't understand.

22 posted on 09/11/2011 12:13:42 PM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: SkyPilot
Way, way back, actually in 1976 as I was in grad school I proposed that SS was a scam and needed to be radically overhauled.

Now, I was just a stupid 22 yo at the time, but, I suggested that we “grandfather” all those age 50+ and pay any excesses out of the general accounts.

Any under age 50 had a very simple choice to make. . .

On one hand they could go with SS and the deal was that they would get an annuity based upon payments in and adjusted life payments out (I called this the super safe option).

Or, they could elect to open a private account (with all the monies paid into SS to date being transferred to this account) and they and the funds from their employer must be deposited therein and they could choose from a selection of investments (ranging from simple MM to 100% stocks and anything in between). But, for this option they could not cash out until retirement, but, should they die before retirement their family got the funds).

This led to quite a lively debate, especially with my Democrat leaning fellow students. Ah, the stupid never learn!

Perry is on the right track, especially, when you realize in addition to asking the young workers to fund SS these same young workers are being squeezed out of getting into the job market by the same bunch of “boomers” who are staying in place to make up losses.

Go Perry, go.

23 posted on 09/11/2011 12:13:58 PM PDT by lowbuck (The Blue Card (US Passport) Don't leave home without it.)
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To: Paperdoll

He could stand to be a little more gracious about it to the average wage earner than saying in effect, “shame on you for believing generations of both Democrats and Republicans.” If an actual plan were brought out then there would be something to debate.


24 posted on 09/11/2011 12:14:57 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (There's gonna be a Redneck Revolution! (See my freep page) [rednecks come in many colors])
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To: Cincinatus' Wife; RoosterRedux; jonrick46; deepbluesea; RockinRight; TexMom7; potlatch; ...
Perry Ping....

IF you'd rather NOT be pinged FReepmail me.

IF you'd like to be added FReepmail me. Thanks.

25 posted on 09/11/2011 12:17:39 PM PDT by shield (Rev 2:9 Woe unto those who say they are Judahites and are not, but are of the syna GOG ue of Satan.)
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To: smoothsailing

Shucks, who would have thought the truth works?


26 posted on 09/11/2011 12:19:39 PM PDT by dila813
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear
In fact the SS fund was being raided in 1943. Instead of combining the funds, which is what happened under Johnson, they would put the SS money in the "Trust Fund" and then promptly "borrow" all that wasn't needed to pay current retirees back out again.

Let's be clear that the alternative was Socialism. If the Treasury hadn't borrowed it, the money would have been invested in private enterprise via stocks and bonds. Before too many years, we would have had -- literally -- government ownership of the means of production. In fact that may have been FDR's actual intent.

We all need to think really hard about where we would be as a country today if the government owned all the corporations. Does anybody see an Apple or a Microsoft in there? How about Google?

Wait, there's more. Once the government started unloading its stocks because the benefits going out had started exceeding the money coming in (which just happened last year), the stock market would tank as the single largest shareholder was known to be embarking on a long, slow, but really big selling spree. Which means that the trust fund would lose value. How much value? About the same as it's going to lose due to the Treasury reneging on the T-bills that SSA holds.

The shortfall isn't about money, or what happened to it. It's about demographics: the fact that there will so few workers per retiree compared to the 1940's and 50's.


27 posted on 09/11/2011 12:27:51 PM PDT by Nick Danger (Pin the fail on the donkey)
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To: smoothsailing
Social Security was a bad idea from the beginning and many people recognized and fought against it. The insidious thing about it and the reason the resistance was not as great as it could have been was that initially Social Security payments were a pittance. So it really didn't affect people all that much in the beginning.

Fast forward 50 years and we have a very different demographic. Now we are facing what those people who saw the danger in this program first talked about.

Social Security is a derivative of a Ponzi Scheme. It has the nefarious aspects of a true Ponzi Scheme but it differs just a bit. In some ways it's worse. I've never heard of a Ponzi Scheme that was compulsory. If you are reasonably intelligent you can spot a Ponzi Scheme a mile away and thereby stay away from them. Social Security is a compulsory tax. That's one of the major differences.
28 posted on 09/11/2011 12:28:48 PM PDT by truthguy (Good intentions are not enough.)
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To: dila813

***Shucks, who would have thought the truth works?***

And down the same road with OBummercare.

Government understands that these schemes are corrupt so they make them mandatory - under threat of fines (for employers and the self-employed).

Then they have the audacity to spend those confiscated funds or include non-contributors as beneficiaries.

Is SS a ‘pension/retiree plan’ or not? They never said!


29 posted on 09/11/2011 12:33:18 PM PDT by sodpoodle (Despair: Man's surrender. Laughter: God's redemption.)
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To: boomop1

I pretty much agree. Float the retirement age annually to ensure annual break even solvency.

Maybe keep stealing the “employer’s portion” for sooner retirees, and let the workers opt out entirely by investing their own contribution.


30 posted on 09/11/2011 12:37:36 PM PDT by Atlas Sneezed (Are you better off now than you were four trillion dollars ago?)
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To: sodpoodle

I think limiting it to a wedge issue amongst the young voter is wrong. I’m 51 and have been paying in for 35 years and I’m not counting on receiving a DIME from Social Security.

I am, however, quite curious to see Thad McCotter’s SAVE SOCIAL SECURITY PLAN, which will be unveiled tomorrow at Noon, at the Heritage Foundation. At least ONE candidate has a PLAN!


31 posted on 09/11/2011 12:38:16 PM PDT by cumbo78
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To: lowbuck
Your post is interesting. You are only a couple of years older than me and just about at the same time I had the same thoughts about Social Security. My thoughts were initiated after listening to a lecture from Milton Friedman about the same topic. His ideas on Social Security were just about the same as yours if I remember correctly. He advocated a similar method of phasing out Social Security.

Did you get your ideas from Friedman or did you come to the same conclusions on your own. Doesn't matter really. We were all correct about how Social Security was eventually gonna collapse or need huge structural changes to keep it from collapsing.

BTW, I'm supporting Perry on this one as well. He's showing some courage by speaking the truth. Very refreshing.
32 posted on 09/11/2011 12:39:26 PM PDT by truthguy (Good intentions are not enough.)
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To: cumbo78

At 51 (BTW, I am but a few years younger), you have the worst of both worlds having paid into an insolvent system for 35 years with no real benefits to show from it when you reach the SS retirement age and too seasoned to take advantage of any possible alternative that should be made available to younger workers. As you know, real growth in retirement savings occurs when one is in his 20s and 30s. At 50 years old, it is nearly impossible to play catchup. The current system is immoral.


33 posted on 09/11/2011 12:43:42 PM PDT by Comparative Advantage
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To: smoothsailing

I guess employing “egg heads” to find out what the people (voters) care about was a good idea.

It works!


34 posted on 09/11/2011 12:44:52 PM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Nick Danger
Nonsense.

There are countries where they actually do invest the retirement money in the stock market and these countries are fiercely capitalistic.

35 posted on 09/11/2011 12:47:36 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Can we ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Easily. All nonsense questions are unanswerable.)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

You are absolutely right. Unless he does, he may rue the day he ever broughgt it up.


36 posted on 09/11/2011 12:48:09 PM PDT by Paperdoll (NO MORE RINOs!)
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To: truthguy
Like I said, I was just a “stupid, know nothing, grad student at a third tier” university. Before going back to finish college I had a few years in the U. S. Navy (a great non profit!) and had seen my pay being “docked” for FICA.

Not being (quite) an Einstein, I was still able to figure out that my meager contributions would not be able to support me in my old age without some other kind of “kicker” getting involved. So in college I looked into things and figured out that the “kicker” was going to be “ME”(and anyone else unlucky enough to be getting a paycheck).

Thus, was my grand plan formed.

As for M. Friedman I later learned about his ideas in the WSJ, especially, in his (annually reprinted) editorial dealing with the problem with medical costs and how they were not a problem until the federal government (with the great society) got everyone eating from the trough back in the middle 60’s.

37 posted on 09/11/2011 1:01:17 PM PDT by lowbuck (The Blue Card (US Passport) Don't leave home without it.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

It works well! Frame the debate, stand back and watch the fireworks, and be seen as the one who called it what it was. :)


38 posted on 09/11/2011 1:18:37 PM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: SkyPilot

Heck I’m 50 years old and think there is little chance I will ever collect what hubby and I have been promised.


39 posted on 09/11/2011 1:23:44 PM PDT by chris_bdba
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To: cumbo78

George Bush attempted to solve this crisis with ‘partial privatization’.

In May 2001, he announced establishment of a 16-member bipartisan commission “to study and report specific recommendations to preserve Social Security for seniors while building wealth for younger Americans”, with the specific directive that it consider only how to incorporate “individually controlled, voluntary personal retirement accounts”.[77] The majority of members serving on Bill Clinton’s similar Social Security commission in 1996 had recommended through their own report that partial privatization be implemented.[2] Bush’s Commission to Strengthen Social Security (CSSS) issued a report in December 2001 (revised in March 2002), which proposed three alternative plans for partial privatization:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Security_debate_(United_States)#George_W._Bush.27s_privatization_proposal


40 posted on 09/11/2011 1:43:48 PM PDT by sodpoodle (Despair: Man's surrender. Laughter: God's redemption.)
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To: Nick Danger

They could limit the amount of money invested in private business to a percentage of the total amount of issued stock.

They could also invest the money in precious metals, municipal bonds and such.


41 posted on 09/11/2011 2:02:28 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open ( <o> ---)
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To: chris_bdba
You and I are the same age and I agree; not much chance that we will ever get what we paid for in SS.

If Obama is reelected (I give him a 1 in 5 chance today) SS will fail before the end of his second term.

42 posted on 09/11/2011 2:08:10 PM PDT by Pontiac (The welfare state must fail because it is contrary to human nature and diminishes the human spirit.)
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To: sodpoodle
Ahh, yes. Those evil republicans! /s

The Raw Deal: How the Bush Republicans Plan to Destroy Social Security and the Legacy of the New Deal

43 posted on 09/11/2011 2:13:21 PM PDT by smokingfrog ( sleep with one eye open ( <o> ---)
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To: Nick Danger

If they are truly private accounts, the ownership is the individual, not the government.


44 posted on 09/11/2011 2:29:04 PM PDT by RockinRight (Carter Obama and Reagan the nation!)
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To: t2buckeye

Where then were the excess funds deposited, if not in government bonds, i.e. laundered into the general fund?


45 posted on 09/11/2011 2:41:06 PM PDT by Jacquerie
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To: sodpoodle

I’m not quite sure what McCotter’s plan will entail, but I’m almost certain that it will involve personal choice re: your investment. The fact that Peter J. Ferrara is involved at some level would solidify that.


46 posted on 09/11/2011 2:45:03 PM PDT by cumbo78
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To: smoothsailing; shield; Cincinatus' Wife
I wonder who this might be?

Rick Perry:

We’re having a special guest at Monday’s debate. Those who correctly guess who it is by tomorrow at 6PM CT receive a bumper sticker! Make your guess below.

Link Here

47 posted on 09/11/2011 3:04:01 PM PDT by tsowellfan
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To: tsowellfan

Now that’s a smart tease.


48 posted on 09/11/2011 3:18:18 PM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: tsowellfan; shield; Cincinatus' Wife

Two top guesses so far are Bush and Palin. LOL

I’ll go with Ted Nugent!


49 posted on 09/11/2011 3:41:09 PM PDT by smoothsailing
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To: smoothsailing

That’s a good guess.


50 posted on 09/11/2011 3:47:27 PM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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