Friday, June 25, 2004

Social Security Strikes Again

Paul Musgrave has a few things to say about some new pro-Social Security propaganda that's making its way around the web. And Paul's right, it's grossly misleading. Here I thought I was pressing for changes because I wanted to make my *own* choices regarding *my* money. Now it turns out that SS opponents haven't been folks like me interested in personal choice, but rather evil dagger-toothed suits. (Or is that fellow supposed to represent me?)

Heck, there's at least one outright lie in the ad: "A small part of each paycheck is saved for you." Social Security doesn't save anything. It turns right around and gives the money I pay to other people. SS doesn't save money for me any more than my health insurance provider does.

And like Paul, I'm not encouraged by the "solvent for the next 40 years" rhetoric. I just turned 26, which means I'm guaranteed to pay 40 years worth of taxes, and retire just in time for insolvency to begin. And there's no small part of each paycheck of mine being saved for me.

For more fun, take a look at some old Social Security propaganda. The SS comic books are rather quaint, but the posters provide some good lines. "Join the March to Old Age Security.". Funny, I could've sworn the AARP just told me that SS alone doesn't provide security. Remember...Social Security services are free." Yep, so long as you define "free" as "12.4% of your earnings." Not surprisingly, the posters and comics focus only on benefits, and never on costs. From reading these materials, you'd think SS was just a matter of showing your employer your SS card, and then you'd be entitled to receive free money. Only when you look at the pamphlets does the subject of taxes even come up.


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