Skip to comments.Graham: Reduce benefits for wealthy seniors
Posted on 01/02/2011 10:24:47 AM PST by rabscuttle385
Seniors should be older before the receive Social Security and wealthy Americans should receive less benefits across the board, says Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.
He made the argument in an interview on Sunday's Meet the Press, but it's a position Graham has advocated for on the stump in South Carolina, including a 2009 stop at The Citadel with Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.
"What I'm going to do is challenge this country to make some hard decisions," Graham said at the time, telling the crowd of cadets, Tea Partiers, and Graham supporters that they shouldn't give Congress a pass on the tough stuff.
(Excerpt) Read more at charlestoncitypaper.com ...
I certainly agree with you and your post was so well said. My husband is drawing ss now tho he is still working. I will be eligible in another year. I certainly hear the difference in arguments depending on the age of those debating this subject. You are right. The younger people make it sound as though we are taking from them and are leeches. They have no idea what it feels like to have paid into the system for a lifetime then be told you get nothing back possibly.
All government debt must eventually be paid by future taxpayers. I think that's obvious to most people, even if they don't want to admit it.
But, here's the problem: you are proposing that the burden of solution be imposed on a small set of people. You are belittling their claim of ownership without acknowledging that their claim really isn't any more valid than anyone else's.
Rather than insisting that those of us that acted responsibly in the past must now accept more responsibility (for the benefit of the deadbeats of all kinds), let's talk about who should share this sacrifice:
Re: “Graham is a poster child for abortion. Why did his mama not do the right thing. I am anti abortion but in a few cases, exceptions should have been made.”
Ha ha — I agree with you — there’s a line I’ve used on a few particularly obnoxious characters over time and it stops them cold: “The best answer to YOU (so and so), would’ve been abortion!”
I was starting to think that you might have a point. Now I know that you are just another asswipe.
What you paid in is a fixed amount. It has nothing to do with what that money might have been worth.
Money today has a future value, based on an expected rate of return. It is the basis of private annuity contracts.
Money in the past has a present value as well. But, it's easy to determine what it's worth, based on historical interest rates.
If you think money in the past isn't worth more, just try to explain that to the IRS. If they audit your return and assess you for back taxes, you'll also be assessed for interest, at the published annual rates. You might be able to get the penalties waived, but you'll still pay the interest.
If you fall behind on a loan or mortgage, the bank will do the same thing.
Just the contributions from 2000 to date are $125k.
RE: “Here comes that wealthy seniors
thing again. Is a wealthy senior one thats scrimped and saved their whole working life to put $500,000 into a retirement fund for themselves while the governmant gave away their tax money to those who have spent their entire lifetime on welfare?”
Yep, you got that right! Those would be the ‘wealthy seniors’ in question!!! Save save save; then watch the govt. rip your savings away from you............ oh yeah, that’s just swell!
Look, you were the one that claimed that people were getting back more money than they put in. I simply pointed out the error(s) in your calculation.
Yeah, it would have been great if the government had allowed everyone to invest that cash instead of taking it. There would be a bunch of happy people right now, having turned that $130K into a real retirement portfolio. One that could have kept the owners in style in their golden years.
If you want to compare what someone put into Social Security to what they are receiving, then this is exactly how you have to evaluate it. The government doesn't loan money to you for free, and neither do you.
Try to tell the IRS that you don't owe interest on the back taxes after you are audited. You might be able to avoid the penalties, but you won't avoid the interest.
And that would be wrong. I've never called any SS or Medicare recipient a "leech" or anything similar.
Nevertheless, we have to face the facts that (1) the programs are unsustainable as currently structured, (2) there is not enough to cut in the rest of the Federal budget to remotely offset this problem, and (3) we can't just tax the next three generations for whatever it takes to keep the benefits flowing.
Session’s maybe eight hours old and he already veers hard left?
Let’s start eliminating entire departments before we start hammering individuals some more.
Way too many responses on this thread are knee-jerk “no.” When we talk about out-of-control spending, what the Hell do you think we’re talking about? One of the largest entitlement expenditures is benefits to seniors. How are we supposed to reduce the size of government without cutting spending on seniors? I don’t care what anyone on this thread says—today’s seniors did not pay for the benefits they are getting. And even if some did, why should some 20 year old making $10 per hour pay for a wealthy senior’s benefits? That is the very definition of generational theft.
We have been running a Ponzi scheme for years and now today’s seniors don’t want it to end because they’ll take a cut. Well, that just means young people will be totally screwed instead of just majorly screwed. The people who got the windfall are dead. You can’t dig them up and get the money back. Today’s seniors have to take a cut if we are going to restore sanity.
Now, that doesn’t mean that the ONLY cut is going to be cuts to benefits to wealthy seniors. It would have to be part of a comprehensive program to slash other social spending, slash government worker benefits and make other adjustments for non-wealthy seniors, like raising the retirement age to 70 or 71 before you get Social Security and Medicare.
The bottom line is that every single one of us has to take a cut in government spending to reduce government.
RE: “Then dont call it Social Security anymore, call it what it really is, welfare.”
EXACTLY! Well put! A bad idea from its inception has turned into the greatest welfare program in the country (add Medicare to that, too) because so much more has been added to the program than ensuring actual seniors, 62 and up, to get a relatively small monthly stipend in old age after years of work and forced contributions.
MANY many people simply cannot work much beyond sixty and in recent years, those who WANTED to could not find any jobs at all in many locales around this country anyway. Shall they be punished at, say, age 62, if they are infirm or NO ONE WILL OFFER THEM A JOB no matter how qualified they may be?
Social Security ‘contributions’ (taxes) have really been ramped up in the last 20 years. Max contribution from 1971 through 1980 came in at $7594.94. Max contribution from 2001 to 2010 came in at $58,125. That does not include the employer contribution, just employee.
I think you'll find that a lot of people agree, including me. The question is: how do we fix it?
My problem is that this proposal is trying to fix it by targeting successive groups of people with insufficient political power to fight back. That's nothing more than armed robbery, with the federal government as the weapon.
Spread the sacrifice around to everyone (including federal pensions, federal employees, government bond holders, and all other entitlements), and you might get more support. I realize that's politically difficult, but at least everyone has to contribute.
Further to my last post:
Oh, and by the way, I’m getting close to retirement and would take a pretty big hit if what I advocate goes through. But if it was part of a comprehensive package that was real and verifiable, I’d take the hit.
I think you have to leave the bond holders out of it. I agree on your other suggestions.
RE: “Hey a$$hat, you’d do well to do a little research before you start calling people names.
You’re exposing yourself.”
You brought on the verbal assaults yourself with that post of yours, POST NUMBER 24!
You are absolutely right.
But, that's not what Lindsey Graham is proposing. He is proposing that a subset of people deemed "unworthy" of Social Security benefits be denied.
And who is that subset? People who sacrificed their entire lives to invest and save in addition to their Social Security contributions.
When you have a proposal that spreads the sacrifice around to everyone, let's hear it. Otherwise, you are advocating nothing more than armed robbery, using the federal government as a weapon.
Why? The Social Security "trust fund" is literally a stack of special US treasury bonds in someone's file cabinet in a government office.
If you are going to default on those bonds, why not the others as well? Because it will ruin our bond rating?
Sorry, but Social Security bondholders "invested" in those bonds in that file cabinet at the point of a gun. If anyone should be protected from a default, it's them -- not the ones that invested voluntarily.
Nice of you to lecture me on common knowledge. I understand present and future value of money.
However you’re assuming a lot of things. You’re assuing the government gives a damn about it when they have to pay out. I can assure you they don’t.
Your assumption also predicates that Social Security is some flavor of investment such as an annuity. It is not. It is a wealth transfer program. It always has been, and always will be. Watching people get on a high horse defending wealth transfer (from the present taxpayers to the past ones) by calling detractors ‘Marxists’ is the height of irony (not to say you did, but it’s pretty common so far in this thread).
But to get back to a rather important point which has been stated umpteen times, it doesn’t make any difference what you imagine the government owes you, or exactly how you might imagine your ‘contribution’ to be calculated, there is no money. There is only a claim on future taxpayers, and that claim will be appreciably worse than the claim that was on you.
I will acknowledge that you have been wronged. I’ve always thought Social Security was criminal. I’d love to see it killed right now. However we both know that won’t happen. Thus we are left with figuring out how to mitigate the mess we have.
I’m getting tired of restating why I favor means testing, and I don’t need to say again that I’m not in favor because of class warfare. It doesn’t matter if I do since someone will label me a Marxist anyway.
Assuming, of course, that they invested the money instead of spent it. Judging by 401K participation rates, only about half would have invested. The rest likely would be reaching into your pocket demanding you share your wealth.
Its only fair, you see./s