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Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 03:53 PM   #1
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Bush gets progressive with SS

Bush wants to implement an income litmus test:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/7659512/

Boy, depending on how they set that up, that could really produce a disincentive to save(once you reash a 4% withdrawal rate that would cause a benefit phase out, of course)! Could increase the advantage of paying off the house rather than invest.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 04:41 PM   #2
 
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Of course Bush's main focus is Private Accounts, which do not save Social Security, but is the beginning of ending it!

I listened to an Interview with Thomas Friedman today on MPR. He was basically discussing the new World economy and the demise of the U.S. Middle Class. - He said that this is the 'real crisis', but all the Bush Adminstration is focused on is the ending of the New Deal Programs.

Translation: - Bush wants to start the Process of Ending Social Security. This is what he refers to as the "ownership society" - which means - You are on your own!

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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 05:33 PM   #3
 
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Just heard Bush at his news conference, when asked if he would be satisfied with a bill from Congress that saved Social Security, but did not have Private Accounts.

Bush's answer was basically 'No' - So do all you neocons understand now that his main focus is not Saving Social Security? - His main focus is Private Accounts which is a step in eliminating Social Security.

I would not let this Fox in the Hen House. Let's wait for the next Democratic President to Save Social Security. It is a Democratic Program and should be saved by a Democrat!
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 05:42 PM   #4
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Personally, I'm stunned at just how biased our tax system is already biased towards the wealthy. I was bummed that I couldn't put money in a Roth IRA this year (good problem to have, I know, but it's just a one time thing). But then I learned they count Adjusted Gross Income, and you can deduct.....drum roll please....401(k) contributions! So basically, if you are already in a place that you can sock away a ton of cash, we'll help you sock away more! Not that I'm not taking advantage!

We already have private accounts, I don't understand why we need a second layer.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 05:46 PM   #5
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Hey.............are you trying to apply logic to tax law?
I don't think we allow that here

JG
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 07:19 PM   #6
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Quote:

We already have private accounts, I don't understand why we need a second layer.
The low income family can't take advantage of the private accounts as most of them are just trying to take care of their basic needs. So why not use a small portion of SS to go towards a private account? As Bush said, if one does not care to invest in stocks they will have Treasuries as an option. I just can't see how this is the first step in eliminating SS.

I'm not sure I can swallow his sliding scale of benefits though. We already have a sliding scale to some degree as the middle to high income earners don't receive the same proportionally as the lower income earners.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 07:24 PM   #7
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Quote:
Let's wait for the next Democratic President to Save Social Security.
I would rather see Social Security left alone too, but now that they control the House, Senate, and Presidency, what are the odds that the Republicans will voluntarily pass up their opportunity? *Especially since they seem to gain more power with each election.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-28-2005, 08:57 PM   #8
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Quote:

I just can't see how this is the first step in eliminating SS.
Well . . . first it is important to understand that private accounts do not help the impending short-term short-fall in the social security program. They are not a solution. Rather, they exacerbate the potential problem: To the extent that social security is in trouble, it is because several years from now the total amount of taxes being paid into social security will be exceded by the total benefits being paid out. If we go to private accounts, we reduce the amount of social security taxes being paid but in the short term we will not have reduced the benefits owed. This will result in increased debt and put our entire system into real crisis. We will have to borrow more money, sooner if we replace existing social security with a private accounts sytem.

So -- if private accounts don't help the problem, what do they accomplish? They don't provide more financial stability for the average American. They reduce the role of social security for the average American in retirement and replace it with these private accounts. Another way to look at this is that they transfer the typical American retirement plan away from a guaranteed benefit plan (very safe and stable) to a contribution and performance based plan (varries with stock and bond market performance and completely out of the control of most workers).

Okay . . . so they don't solve the financial problem. They don't provide the typical worker with greater financial stability. What do they do?

The right-wing think-tankers have published their thoughts on this subject. They believe that the way to get rid of social security is little by little. They recognize that this program is the most popular federal social program in existance. So first, they need to establish a precedence of reducing it. Once that has occured, they can reduce it repeatedly till it is no longer has value. Then they can eliminate it.

Quote:
The low income family can't take advantage of the private accounts as most of them are just trying to take care of their basic needs. So why not use a small portion of SS to go towards a private account?
So you believe that the low income family that has not been able to LBYM under the current system is likely to become sophisticated enough investors to use private accounts to advantage over the 40+ years that they work? And you believe that this system (where every minimum wage and low income blue collar worker has to become investment savy in order to avoid retirement in poverty) is a good thing for them?

Based on current savings rates and investment performance for low income workers, this seems unlikely to me. What data leads you to believe differently?

Quote:
I'm not sure I can swallow his sliding scale of benefits though. We already have a sliding scale to some degree as the middle to high income earners don't receive the same proportionally as the lower income earners. *
Well . . . when social security taxes have been producing a surplus for several years and that tax is very regressive. Those earning more than $90K pay decreasing rates as their salaries increase. So the social security surplus has been collected disproportionately from the poor. In the past, the benefit phase of social security has been very progressive. But, of course, if we reduce the traditional benefits in favor of private accounts, we will have taken that regressively collected surplus and given disproportionately to the wealthy.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-29-2005, 02:56 AM   #9
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Quote:
Just heard Bush at his news conference, when asked if he would be satisfied with a bill *from Congress that saved Social Security, but did not have Private Accounts.

Bush's answer was basically 'No' - So do all you neocons understand now that his main focus is not Saving Social Security? - His main focus is Private Accounts which is a step in eliminating Social Security.

I would not let this Fox in the Hen House. Let's wait for the next Democratic President to Save Social Security. It is a Democratic Program and should be saved by a Democrat!
CT
I agree that President Bush is not the one to solve the problem with Social Security. Note I said problem, not crises. There is a long term income/expenditure unbalance that will need to be addressed. I can be addressed on either or both sides of the equation. His private accounts idea does not address either side of the equation.
I disagree that this program is a Democratic or a Republican program. I believe that it is an American program, and should be handled by Americans. Do not trust the present Administration and Congress to address the long term funding problem. Private accounts will not do so.
OTOH, if we keep Social Security as a core, the private accout idea, funded by non Social Security money (read voluntary contributions) is a good idea. Can't President Bush say IRA, 401k, etc. For lower income workers, could be incentivized with a tax credit similar to the low income tax credit.
Just my two cents worth.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-29-2005, 04:57 AM   #10
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS


I enjoy reading these political rants before breakfast, half listening to DW bitch how the Prez screwed up Survivor and The Apprentice meanwhile I'm workin' up a good crap.

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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-29-2005, 05:18 AM   #11
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

Politics and me.

I think I'll take early SS this year, and beat the crowd - before the big run on the bank.

I also agree - until both sides get together and make it an American problem, not much can happen.

After seeing the drug bill they passed - I'm not holding my breath.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-29-2005, 06:26 AM   #12
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

I totally agree that private accounts will not fix the problem. There will have to be other measures taken to address the long term funding issue of ss. All I'm saying is that we should have some control of a portion of our ss money. At this stage of the game I would choose treasuries anyway. But if I were 21, stocks would be the way to go.

It's a tough issue with no easy solution. I'm afraid it's gonna be tied up in a political quagmire for years to come.
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS
Old 04-29-2005, 08:05 AM   #13
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Re: Bush gets progressive with SS

I asked my daughter what she thought about means testing, but she was engaged in a discussion with her favorite lion:



A second later he's flying across the room. Why do we always hurt the ones we love?
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