08 January 2013
Reposted from Jobsanger
The Republicans are currently trying to float two lies about Social Security. The first is that the budget cannot be balanced, or the deficit reduced, with cutting Social Security benefits and raising the retirement age. That is not even remotely true, since Social Security is completely paid for out of FICA payroll deductions, and don't add as much as a single penny to the deficit or the national debt.
Even the most revered Republican president (at least for the right-wingers) knew this. Ronald Reagan was big on cutting the budget (in spite of the fact that he actually increased the deficit), but he was honest enough to admit that cutting Social Security benefits would do nothing to balance the budget, control the deficit, or lessen the national debt. In attacking Social Security in this way, modern right-wingers are ignoring the truth told by their own icon.
The other lie they tell is that Social Security is going bankrupt unless benefits are cut and the retirement age is raised. The truth is that Social Security can continue to pay full benefits for another 25 years, and even after that it could continue to pay benefits at a 78% level. It is NOT going broke! And it could be easily fixed. Raising or removing the cap on the amount of income subject to the FICA deduction would easily fix Social Security far into the future.
The truth is that the Republicans have never liked Social Security. They voted against it when it was proposed, and regularly vote to harm the program -- in spite of the fact that it has worked exactly as it was designed to work, and has lowered poverty among the elderly from more than 50% to less than 10%. They have even tried to privatize it and let their buddies on Wall Street get their greedy hands on it.
This makes me wonder -- why do congressional Republicans hate Social Security? Why does it offend them that the elderly are now protected from a life of poverty after retiring? Is it because they are rich themselves and simply don't care about other people? Is it to protect their rich buddies in corporate America and on Wall Street (who don't need Social Security) from having to pay the small FICA tax? Is it because they consider ideology to be more important than the lives of ordinary Americans? I must admit, I am mystified.