“Welfare” is an entitlement. Unlike welfare, SS and Medicare are OBLIGATIONS of the Federal Gov’t. People pay into both systems, and the funds MUST be there when needed. the question ought to be “how are we going to finance the system esp. with 76 MILLION people retiring at practically the same time, PLUS finance Obamacare”? I would just LOVE to hear what the ‘Rats propose to do to solve this*/s
Correct answer: WE are SCREWED.
Sort of, The supreme has already ruled on this issue, Social Security and Medicare are “GIFTS” to the American people, there is no RIGHT to THEM WHATSOEVER and they are not OBLIGATED in any way shape or form to grant these gifts to anyone.
I tend to align with your viewpoint that it (ss) is an obligation, but I recall reading about the case of Fleming vs. Nestor (1960) wherein the USSC ruled that there is no contractual obligation in the way social security was set up that constitutes a contractual obligation of the government to pay benefits. They basically ruled that payments into social security were a form of tax, and that disbursements were essentially welfare. That is for social security. Yet today things like food stamps, aid to families with dependent children (i.e., “welfare”), are viewed as “rights”. The whole damned system has gone mad.
In 1983 during the Reagan administration, both parties agreed that there should be a cap on Social Security at the 90% level (that is at the level where only 10% of all income earned was above that level). Unfortunately, they have been increasing the cap figure by the Cost of Living figure, but earnings at the upper levels instead of increasing by 2 or 3% a year have typically been jumping something like 16% a year. Thus for a number of years the cap has hovered around the 85% level and even lower now. If this cap were restored to the 90% level, this would significantly increase the money going to Social Security and it was a bipartisan agreement. So SS would be saved for a number of years in spite of baby boomers.