Social Security is “unfair,” yes, because it does dual duty as a social welfare program and a income-replacement retirement plan, as I wrote at Forbes.

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10 thoughts on “Forbes blog post, “Social Security Isn’t Fair – And That’s Actually The Point”

  1. for the benefit of the entire ssa system I believe that we should all be charged the same PERCENTAGE of our ENTIRE income regardless of whether we earn 10k dollars or 10 B dollars. Then the payouts should be capped to not replace more than 25% of our base salary up to a maximum of 20,000 dollars/year. the payout should be taxed only after SSA + other income from any other source = exceeds 30.000 dollars/year.


    1. $30,000 is a drop in the bucket these days, considering costs of living for mortgages, HOA fees, rent increases,
      insurances for auto and home, utilities, out of pocket medical bills, food, and auto repairs.
      It would be more like it if a retiree or worker was earning more than, say $65,000 per year.


  2. We have earned our S.S. and Medicare benefits and they are NOT “social welfare” funds. We paid taxes into them for 45/50+ years AND SO DID OUR EMPLOYERS. THOSE BENEFITS ARE FOR US WHO PAID INTO THE SYSTEM – NOT FOR UNDOCUMENTED ALIENS OR ANYONE WHO PREFERS NOT TO WORK BUT REAP THE BENEFITS OF MONEY OFF OUR BACKS. Also, understand that persons receiving S.S. may stand to have taxes deducted from their S.S. if it exceeds certain gross adjusted income amounts.
    We also pay (with annual increases) Medicare which comes off our S.S. and we ALSO PAY FOR ADDITIONAL HEALTH CARE INSURANCES. Retirees need every cent the receive from S.S., pensions, and investments.
    You, writer, have not worked long enough to realize what’s at stake. When a country decides to gut, reduce, and tax seniors retirement incomes, it then becomes an ethical issue and reflects how well a country cares for its Americans who have paid into the system.


  3. Too bad, Elizabeth. You could have written a good article without all the Trump bashing. Sorry you harbor so much hate; it must be rather debilitating sometimes, like when you write about a serious topic but are compelled to mix it with your political views.


  4. I don’t think you really pointed out that Social Security is already progressive in nature due to the multiple bend points. A recipient receives: 90 percent of the first $895 of average monthly earnings, 32 percent of the amount between $895 and through $5,397 and 15 percent $5,397 up to the max.


  5. Very nice article. One thing that has always bothered me that is not ever talked about. One couple husband worked and received $1500 a month for ss. His wife who has never worked receives $750 ss drawing on her husbands ss. If husband dies she would get survivor benefits that would equal $1500 total ss for her. Now next couple both spouses worked she draws $750 a month on her ss. Her husband draws $1500 on his ss. If the 2nd couples husband dies the spouse would get a total of $1500 a month survivors benefit. Example one has only one person paying into the system and the other has two people paying into the system but they both receive the same survivors benefit. Does not seen fair the second couple has paid in much more money and receives the same amount back as the first couple.


  6. Social Security is an unconstitutional rip off.

    As you already pointed out, those lower on the income scale get back more relative to what they pay FICA taxes than those higher on the income scale. That acts like a steeply progressive income tax and is internally redistributive within the system.

    Furthermore anyone who has more other income than a certain amount that is not adjusted for inflation has part of their benefit taken back by making it subject to taxation. And on top of that, higher income people have to pay higher Medicare Part B premiums and that gets deducted from Social Security benefit payments.

    Anyone who is middle class and up would have been far better off keeping and investing those FICA taxes in a stock index fund in a 401 K type account. They would have a far greater rate of return on their money than they ever will from Social Security and they would have a property right to that money unlike Social Security benefits that can (and have) been modified strictly at the whim of politicians..


  7. If this article is aimed at those with disability, then disability should visit the author of this article with speed IJN Amen.


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