Perry’s monstrous lies about Social Security

September 16, 2011

Gov. Rick Perry, the GOP presidential candidate who calls Social Security a “monstrous lie” and a “Ponzi scheme” has implied that future retirees can’t rely upon receiving benefits from the system.

Not only is Perry shooting wildly from the hip on these statements — a strategy cynically designed to attract angry, younger independent voters — he’s spewing some layered falsehoods that need to be addressed.

Social Security can not only be preserved for future generations, its coming fiscal shortfalls can be fixed relatively simply. What Perry also neglects to mention is that it’s one of the most successful anti-poverty programs in U.S. history.

The before-and-after Social Security picture is dramatic. Before Social Security, almost half of elderly Americans had income below the poverty line, reports the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Roughly 12 percent of elderly citizens are considered poor today. The program lifted more than 11 million out of poverty — more than 60 percent of those were women.

Here’s some even more relevant Texas-sized context: Today, more people are slipping back into poverty because of permanent job losses, recessions, a housing meltdown, stock-market downturns, reduced employment benefits, higher medical costs and stagnant wage growth. The U.S. poverty rate last year increased for the third straight year — the highest it’s been since 1993. Some 46 million have annual incomes below the poverty line of $22,113.

As the U.S. is saddled with the highest poverty rate among industrialized countries, why are the anti-poverty features of Social Security being attacked?

Behind Perry’s venom about the system is a larger truth that he’s yet to illuminate: Making cash-strapped states responsible for replacing Social Security or privatizing it is unrealistic. There is nothing in the private sector — nor is anything likely to emerge — that could replace Social Security at the same low cost to taxpayers.

Simply trashing Social Security by calling it a Ponzi scheme ignores the fact that when you pay your FICA payroll tax, you’re getting an inflation-adjusted annuity, disability insurance, a small death benefit for your survivors plus Medicare benefits.

Try to find a package like this in the private sector. It doesn’t exist. You’d have to buy an inflation-protected annuity, disability and life policy separately — and they are no bargains.

Keep in mind, when private insurers offer these products they have to pay commissions and marketing costs, so they load policies with lots of hidden expenses. They can’t offer the same economies of scale that Social Security can, which isn’t burdened with the excessive marketing and administrative expenses.

On an inflation-adjusted annuity alone, you pay dearly to keep up with the cost of living. Compared to an immediate annuity (without inflation protection), your payment would be from 24 percent to 30 percent lower.  For that reason, private inflation-protected annuities are relatively scarce and unpopular.

Private disability policies, which I recommend, are expensive outside of group plans (buy one through your employer if you can). For a 40-year-old wanting a $4,500 monthly benefit, the annual premium would be about $2,300.

Life insurance premiums vary greatly, depending upon your health, age and amount of coverage. The older and sicker you are, the higher the cost. If you have chronic conditions, risky occupation or a flawed medical history, good luck getting coverage. Social Security and Medicare don’t turn anyone away.

What about examining Perry’s inference that current workers are contributing money for today’s retirees?
That’s true, but it’s not a Ponzi scheme. It’s well known that there will be fewer workers in the future to fund the system, which will create a regular structural deficit by 2016. But that’s only the case if nothing happens and Congress completely ignores technical fixes or simply cuts benefits.

There’s more about the “if nothing is done” scenario: The Social Security Trust Fund — Congress borrows the cash and replaces it with Treasury securities from a pool of payroll taxes — will be exhausted in 2039, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Yet that doesn’t mean that Social Security will be bust; it will then begin to pay reduced benefits, again, if Congress doesn’t take action.

In what Washington Post economics blogger Ezra Klein calls “the boring truth” about Social Security, Congress can raise the amount of salary subject to Social Security tax to fill the funding hole.

Right now, the earnings cap is $106,800 and the tax is only 4.2 percent for employees, which may drop even more (temporarily) if Congress approves President Obama’s extended payroll tax break.

If you want to get personal on how Social Security will impact your life, run a benefits estimate of how much you’re entitled to at retirement age. For me, it’s about $2,000 a month. It’s not a lot of money and I know I couldn’t live on that where I live now.

Now think of what would happen to your future lifestyle if that modest supplement was scaled back — or you had to retire later. Would you have enough in your 401(k) and other savings to ensure a dignified retirement?

Behind Social Security is an appallingly simple truth: We can put more money into it by asking higher-salaried employees to pay more, and by including immigrants and public-sector employees. I know that doesn’t have much political sizzle to it, but this kind of math doesn’t lie.


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The term, “Ponzi” , is a bit brash coming from a distinguished governor from Texas. SS isn’t broke yet, but the longer unemployment lasts at the current rate, the less SS will be paying its recipients in the future. For most voters nowadays candidates are evaluated not only for their ideas but for their deportment. Maybe Texas politicians have a way with their words, but it appears it doesn’t work with the mainstream outside of Texas. He appears to be not mainstream enough for most Americans.

Posted by Pllc15 | Report as abusive

Your information does not answer the argument nor counter the claim. The system of social security acts just as a Ponzi scheme.

The earliest benefits were paid by new enrollees. Early receipients never paid money into the plan. The Federal govornment never invested (in the classical term, not current language where the term investments means federal spending) the money and gained a sustainable return. Future fixes of this system will inevitably raise the receiptient age (at a minimum) and decrease eligibility.

I agree, the system is not at all like private insurance which must make money by investing premiums in order to create a return, the private copmanies take risk and if sucessful turn a profit for its shareholders. If these private companies acted as the govornment (regardless of marketing budgets and other minor expeneses), they would be rightfully branded as a Ponzi schemes and jailed.

Beyond the scheme, the original intent of social security was to defraud the public into paying vast amounts of money into the govornment (as an added tax) with the long term promise of a return. That return was calculated to generally never happen as the average person died prior to recieving benefits. As life expentencies rose, additional payees increased (disability), and birth rates declined the inevitable bubble will burst. No tax level will turn the tide.

Telling the public that their money is safe in govornment hands (and not their own) is a fundemental problem and I aplaud Gov. Perry for voicing this complaint against a long standing lie.

Posted by CAjim | Report as abusive

I take issue with the word “defraud.” Has any Social Security beneficiary ever not received a benefit to which they were entitled? A fraud or Ponzi scheme is where people get no return — they get ripped off. With a few adjustments, no one will get fleeced in Social Security, and unlike private insurance, you know exactly how much you’re getting based on how much you put in and other factors. Did the government ever promise an investment return? No, because no one ever said it was going to be a like bond. So to even compare it to a Ponzi scheme is not only ludicrous, it’s untrue.

Posted by johnwasik | Report as abusive

A ponzi scheme is used to pay off earlier investors with monies received from later investors. That is social security. Ponzi schemes generally survive until the monies coming in are less than the monies paid out. That is social security. Typically, Ponzi schemes take the monies received and do not invest the proceeds. The promoters use the monies for their own purposes. That is social security.
Hard facts but true!

Posted by DJSN | Report as abusive

john, in a Ponzi scheme, investors DO get a return. Until the money runs out. At some point, Social Security will not have enough money from future generations to pay recipients. Just like a Ponzi scheme. At some point, 100% taxation won’t be enough.

You can say it’s unfair to compare it to a Ponzi scheme. But there really isn’t much different.

The author of the story contrasts Social Security to annuities and such and writes that Social Security is superior. It’s only superior until the monty runs out. It will run out.

Posted by usmil1959 | Report as abusive

So Parry is a liar, he is a Republican tea bagger after all. Was anyone really expecting, honesty, integrity a sense of obligation to his fellow citizens and country. He advocated seceding from the union and in the same breath wants to be president of that union. Yikes, show this carpet bagger the door. Let him go off to write nonsense books like Palin and go on a do nothing but make me rich tour. Maybe Texas will get lucky like Alaska and he will quit as governor.

Posted by seattlesh | Report as abusive

Is anyone really surprised by another Texas governor who “shoots from the hip” without any truth or facutal information? We have already seen this movie and it has a very bad ending. We are still suffering from the last one.

Posted by Outpatient | Report as abusive

Republicans, as they’ve always been, are out to turn this country into an iron-clad Plutocracy.

Yet the electorate keeps voting the jerks in. And there are no more entrenched recalcitrant right-wingers than the very geezers who need Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare the most.

Posted by jrpardinas | Report as abusive

FICA is a transfer tax.

Those who pay it today will never do better from SS and Medicare than they would from a 401k plan to which they contributed the same amount (if the limit was raised to the level of FICA).

And yes, if I tried to to sell you an “investment” with the same terms as Social Security I’d be busted for running a Ponzi scheme.

Posted by Tom_in_PA_USA | Report as abusive

He says SS is a Ponzi scheme because young and middle aged folk are paying into a system that they will not be able to benefit from in the future. So I understand the poor analogy. IN fact, the way its currently looking, those aged 45-55 will get screwed the most, as they will have paid the most in before the program goes belly-up. However, regardless of what Perry calls it, he offers no rational approach to fixing it. And as far as Presidential material from a yahoo Texas Governor – been there, done that, still reeling from the pain of the last one…

Posted by roc1 | Report as abusive

So, Perry starts to show his true colors after all. Just another mouth uttering more FUD (fear, uncertainty and doubt) to muddle issues and gain some “notoriety” to boost his numbers. Looks like he took a page out the the Palin/Bachmann playbook.

And here I was, thinking, “Hey, maybe this guy is really worth looking into.”

Guess not.

Posted by The_Traveler | Report as abusive

Mr. Perry seems like the typical politician Americans would vote into office. He talks like fool, looks like one and never tells the truth. Decent Americans can’t expect someone like Mr. Perry to understand that a good Christian helps others and always tells the truth.

Posted by Jaay | Report as abusive

Be not deceived, retirement schemes are a violation to the “Laws of Economics”, and hence are of a temporal existence. The only way to secure your existence for the future is to invest in yourself, your children, and/or neighbours. Now is the time to make the choice, either to care for our neighbour, or unlash the “law of the jungle”… the survival of the fittest! For your information Google “The World Monetary Order”.

Posted by carlvzdj | Report as abusive

It is simple really:

1) Remember, the best indicator of future performance is past performance. This is a fact. Therefore …

2) Stop using the media and its spins to sway you on issues regarding one candidate or another. The media is used by politicians of all stripes to spin, muddy, and generally obfuscate the actual facts about issues… and ESPECIALLY to avoid factual representations of the performance of previous governments formed by his or her specific party.

3) Instead, go to your public library and do some REAL FACT searching… such as a) how have GOP or DEM governments performed fiscally in the last 150 years? What party, when in government, has raised taxes more than other parties etc…

What you will find is that: a) no GOP run government has EVER handled money well, and have persistently led the country into deeper and deeper deficits. You will also find out why if you want to look (stupid stupid stupid foreign policy leading to massive defense spending increases etc., the list goes on. b) No other party has raised taxes even remotely as much as GOP governments.

Do you need to know more? Especially in light of the fact that GOP candidates when NOT in office spout exactly the opposite of the FACTS. Do you not remember the fight over raising the debt ceiling? The GOP wants you to think it is evil and so on … yet the facts state the opposite about their real policies. I mean, even their supposed guru god Reagen raised it 17 times in his term … SEE WHAT I MEAN???

Read your candidates and his or her parties REAL platform. Ignore the media until you have:


Posted by Its_obvious | Report as abusive

The real shock is that Perry is only following his nose on this one. The underlying truth of his “ponzi” scheme rhetoric is that it is based on decades of subculture conspiracy theory; the secret koolaid of the Tea Party. You may say that no rational individual will believe this reckless (and opportunistic) preaching, but there are literally thousands whom he can claim as his choir. Now that he carries the mantle of a GOP presidential candidate, more may listen and become indoctrinated into his merry band of nitwits. I feared what GW Bush would do as president and I was mostly right. Perry causes me even greater angst – gut wrenching terror. The world is indeed turning upside down.

Posted by Underwood | Report as abusive

What I find appalling is that 46 million Americans are now living in poverty. That is a population greater than many countries. It’s always been a culture where you wouldn’t survive without a buck in your pocket but 46 Million people in poverty is a time bomb waiting to blow.

When will the Republicans start caring about them?

Posted by wyldbill | Report as abusive

What about examining Perry’s inference that current workers are contributing money for today’s retirees?
That’s true, but it’s not a Ponzi scheme


All this vile false name-calling is over the top.

Here is how it worked through out recorded history.

(1) Only the very top 5% or so ever ‘retired’ as we know it.

(2) The other 90-95% worked until they DIED

(3) If the other 90-95% were unable to work until they died, then

(a) they were SUPPORTED by their younger relatives. It was their ONLY financial support.

(b) If they didn’t have younger relatives who could support them then

(i) they died in a ditch or tenement or

(ii) went to the ‘poorhous’ – a creation of the 19th century.

Those were the only options.

All Soical Security is is Option 3 (a). The younger who can work support the elders who no longer work. That’s all it is. And that is how it has been through out history.

Social Security was NEVER a ‘savings account’ where workers deposited money and it was paid out to them when the retired.

Social Security has always been a system where those working pay in and the money goes out to the retirees.

My grandparents paid in and it went to my great-grandparents (retired in the 1940s.) My parents paid in and it went to my grandparents and great-grandparents. I paid in and it went to my great-grandparents (yep 2 still alive when I was 20 and working in the summers), my grandparents, and then my parents.

To the whiners who complain that when the first Social Security retirements payemtns were made in 1940 that those who recevied them ‘didn’t pay in’, that is FALSE. The Social Sec. witholding started several years ebfore benefits were paid.

To the whiners who complain that the first recipients of Social Scruity didn’t ‘pay in enough and got more than they paid in’, get over it. It was over 60 years ago. Your elders made a decision that that was okay with thme some 60 years ago and they would rather have the Federal government make up any shortfall caused by that. They decied – before you even existed – that the Social Sec system was worth that slight difference in taxes and received and benefits paid out way back then and which would later resolve itself and even out.

Get over it. Grow up. Can YOU dribbling hate-filled right wingers pay to support every single one of YOUR elderly relatives all by yourself? That means parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles etc. (And save the lie that people can save enough all by themseleves to retire – it has NEVER happened in all recorded history.)

Posted by onthelake | Report as abusive

According to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary of law, the definition of a Ponzi Scheme is, “an investment swindle in which early investors are paid with sums obtained from later ones in order to create the illusion of profitability.” The facts presented in the article stated that without future significant tax increases on future investors/taxpayers the illusion of a sustainable system is destroyed.

There are better ways of investing and the government still does need to play a role.

Posted by M.C.McBride | Report as abusive

For the life of me I cannot fathom why anyone in the U.S. would even listen to this callous jerk for 5 minutes. WHAT is wrong with the U.S.?

Posted by w.burton | Report as abusive

to Mr. W. Burton:
Evidently you have not looked deeply into the history of the American psyche. Americans love the “Elmer Gantry” effect. We love snake oil salesmen (why would so many exist if we didn’t). we love being lied to & cajoled in every direction that is not in our best interest in order to hang on to a myth (whatever it may be: “land of the free”, except for slaves of course, & the original inhabitants). Political discourse in the country has been in a sorry state from the origin, and does not seem to want to change. There’s so much more, but no need to go further.
My analysis: we are in a process of a “Proposition 13″-type self-mutilation ready to jump from the frying pan into the fire to cut off our noses to spite or faces. PS. All of this from one of the most egocentric, self-serving, ungrateful generations of all time: mine.

Posted by dpmol | Report as abusive

The Republicans have hated social security since Roosevelt first proposed it. This is just their latest attack. And aren’t we glad they were never able to privatize it since a third of it would have been lost in the “Great Recession.”

And as shaky as social security might be, the DOD is in worse shape. But we won’t have trouble finding trillions to fund future wars in forsaken places as Afghanistan or Libya, will we? Without all those nukes and B2 bombers those Ruskies might sneak up on us yet. Or maybe the Syrians or Angolans or Chileans would kick our butts if we didn’t have stealth technology and fancy, pricey toys.

Posted by gangof4 | Report as abusive

Perhaps Ponzi scheme is a little strong, but there is no arguing that it is a pyramid scheme. Social Security taxes collected are used to payoff the beneficiaries collecting.

How many times has the Social Security Reserves been tapped for “other” uses. Is that not misappropriation of funds?

And calling SS an entitlement is a tremendous insult. Anything paid for by beneficiaries is a benefit. The citizens who paid in are owed the income and benefits promised.

15.4% is the current tax up to the first $106K. Placed in a tax free interest bearing account for 30 years will outperform the current results and eliminate 95% off Social Security Administration (SSA)employees and expense.

Posted by GSH10 | Report as abusive

w.burton, ” WHAT is wrong with the U.S.?” Have you not read some of the posts in this thread?

Tom_in_PA_USA, if you have done or think you can do better than SS by putting your money in the market, you’re one of the lucky few. Most aren’t or won’t be. Or is it that you work in the financial services industry?

Posted by PCScipio | Report as abusive

Math doesn’t lie. Restore the 6.2% tax rate and remove the $106.8k earnings cap. Problem solved, QED. If not, restore the total I’ve paid in over two careers and I’ll invest it myself.

Posted by murzak | Report as abusive

Let’s see. I am forced against my will to pay into Social inSecurity. The administrator promises me that if I contribute X number of dollars over Y number of years I will get Z number of dollars/month and that I can start collecting at age 65. I dutifully keep my end of the “contract.” Then the administrator tells me they do not expect to be able to keep to THEIR terms because somehow they just don’t have enough money. Why don’t they have enough money? Because they spent it and wrote contracts they couldn’t keep. Of course it’s a Ponzi scheme. A private insurer would face criminal prosecution if it did this. And I at least could have chosen to or not to participate in the annuity. Social Security is worse than a Ponzi scheme because you cannot protect yourself from it.

Posted by Zeronine | Report as abusive

Social security is a benevolent extortion racket. Ponzi schemes are voluntary and based on the recipient’s greed. The author is correct Gov. Perry is incorrect. The author is correct that the extortion racket can be fixed by more extortion. Benevolent extortion, but extortion none-the-less. As to the author’s math, the 2000 per month might sound pretty good right now, but inflation will turn that “easy to live on” $2000 to an equivalent buying power of about $1100. Cat food and public transit. The math doesn’t lie, but both Governor Perry and Wasik do. John Wasik is trained in psychology and communication. Ezra Klein’s training is in political science. Governor Perry’s training is in animal science and aviation. It’s great to have this level of economics expertise going toe to toe. (I know 13 books on cul-de-sacs and a love affair with the Obama economics plan and Governor of Texas, buy street cred, but Ezra Klein????)

Posted by dottedyelowline | Report as abusive

You americains with 46,000,000 poor people are still debating SS… wow !! every developped country in the world has some form of Social Security and many have higher standards of living than you have… The 5% of your population ( the millionaires ) are running the other 95%…
To bad most of you are so narrow minded and now only of the USA… the decline continues… Bush and maybe now Perry.

Posted by badge56 | Report as abusive

We have a scheme in Australia called Compulsory Superannuation Contributions.

It was started in the 1980’s by the Labor Government to stem inflation without stripping away benefits from workers. It stated at 3% of income paid by the employer and is now 9%, with some hope after a decade of conservative rule to lift it to 12% soon. As a result of this progressive scheme there is now $1.3 trillion in funds under management that is being used to invest in future projects and companies by the Superannuation Funds. We also have the pension for any shortfall.

So how is it that a small backwater country can do this, but the bastion of free market and democracy cannot. Answer this and the US might get somehwere.

Posted by paulie71 | Report as abusive

Ponzi Schemes are at least optional… Social Security rips everyone off..

Posted by DarrellS | Report as abusive

I would expect nothing less than what is in this article, since it comes from an Obama loon. SS can be fixed, but it’s going to take a tremendous quantity of medicine to fix its ills. What is pictured as SS today, will not be resembled in the future version.

Posted by Akrunner907 | Report as abusive

Why should any citizen trust a Federal Government that habitually lies to and deceives the people? Any money they get their hands on is spent for wars or to enrich their sponsors. If they get caught, nothing happens to them. The USA has not severely punished a high ranking Government traitor since Benedict Arnold! Punishing thieves is unpopular with thieves.

Only fair open representation of the entire population can ever hope to bring honesty back to Government. And that is not going to happen.

Posted by txgadfly | Report as abusive

Dear txgadfly,
Why do you tar the entire federal government when the ones who’ve done the grafting and lying the most are the Repos? Ricky Bobby can’t seem to open his mouth without spouting off yet another outrageous, ridiculous statement that is at best hyperbolic unsupported opinion.

Posted by borisjimbo | Report as abusive


Are you under the impression that FICA is placed in an income producing investment account that beneficiaries are paid from? Because this is a general misconception.

Beneficiaries are paid with the taxes collected. There is/was a reserve for to help cover shortfalls during periods of imbalance currently faced; boomer retirees outnumbering the currently employed. Hence a Ponzi or pyramid scheme/model.

Regarding Kate Smith and rehearsals. In the dance world it’s the opposite, bad rehearsal great performance. Perspectives are like opinions, everyone has one and they’re not all the same.

Posted by GSH10 | Report as abusive


Why don’t we phase out “pay-as-you-go” and replace it with a mandatory , payroll deducted IRA invested in long-term T-bills that have a guaranteed minimum return of 5%.

No cap on income, but a cap on payout to retirees earning above a specified income. This would be allocated for disability and a reasonable payout for the lowest wage earners as well as healthcare.

The upfront cost will be painful, but the system would become sustainable and reduce SSA expenses by 90% or more.

Posted by GSH10 | Report as abusive

Ok. The author admits that Congress has “borrowed” the money that was in the trust fund, the pay-as-you-go system is not going to continue to work unless it is “adjusted”, and then makes an apples and oranges conparison between the wealth transfer (socialist) system of Social Security and a private annuity, and this is a rebuttal to Perry? Social Security IS a Ponzi scheme. Let me remind you what a Ponzi scheme is. It’s a scheme where there is no real pool of money, and so it exists only as long as new money is contributed to pay to those expecting a return. Social Security has no money, only IOUs from Congress. And, oh btw, the bonds in the trust fund are NOT negotiable treasury securities like the auther implies (ignorance or omission?), but “special” bonds that can only be redeemed by the treasury – which of course doesn’t have any money to buy them unless they print some or sell REAL treasury bonds on the market thereby increasing our national debt. So Mr. Wasik, the Social Security system is definitely a Ponzi Scheme. Wealth transfer programs DO NOT WORK! If they work why do they always have to be “adjusted” to keep from collapsing? Furthermore, if each American were to have the ability to conribute 6.2% of wages, up to the social security threshhold, into a private annuity matched by their employers their whole workng life the payoff would be much greater than social security could ever be, and guess what? It would be real money in a real account!

Posted by beofaction | Report as abusive

” You’d have to buy an inflation-protected annuity, disability and life policy separately — and they are no bargains.”

Take a stab on how much life insurance is provided by Social Security? $255. Guess how much the market place would charge for that policy?

Posted by AlanMoore | Report as abusive

Wow after investigating SS in USA and reading all these comments I feel the savings system in India is much better. In India we call it “Provident Fund”. There are two types of it: PPF and EPF. EPF is compulsory and it is both employer’s and employee’s responsibility to contribute to it which eventually means that if employee is paying ‘x’ towards his EPF then employer also has to pay ‘x’ which in turn means that to an employer the PF cost of employee is ‘2x’ (x is not very large). Second is PPF which is optional and responsibility of individual. The difference is that EPF can be withdrawn anytime an employee wants during his employment while PPF is locked for first 8 years and then one can withdraw at will. Second, investment in EPF is a fixed % of income while in PPF it is upto individual. ROI in both is around 9% (currently 1% after adjusting for inflation; f****g food inflation). And all the investment and return from PF is TOTALLY tax free. And mostly employees in India have a PPF along with EPF.

Seems it is this habit of Indians of saving and cautious spending that has saved us by and large in this recession.

Posted by 007XXX | Report as abusive

Whether or not Social Security is a “Ponzi scheme” doesn’t change the fact that the program is projected to go bankrupt in 2037. The the way in which the program functions now is simply unsustainable. Currently Social Security and Medicare use 8.5% of nonentitlement revenuees (federal revenues dedicated to all other programs besides the two). By 2020, the deficits will grow to almost 25%. This means that within 9 years, in order to pay projected benefits to retirees and the disabled, the federal government will have to stop doing about one out of every five things it does today (

All of the following solutions will substantially eliminate these problems: Reducing benefit payments by 5% AND increase the retirement age to 70 over time; increasing both the employee and employer contribution immediately by 1.1% for income up to $106,800 (its current limit); reducing benefit payments by 5% AND increase both the employee and employer contribution immediately by 0.05% each year for the next 20 years for income up to $106,800 (its current limit); removing the $106,800 limit and count all income towards the SS tax; decreasing the cost of living adjustment by 1% per year AND raise the retirement age to 67; or taxing income over $106,800 at 3%, index the retirement age to longevity AND decrease cost of living adjustment by 0.5% (

Posted by Carly_EngAmer | Report as abusive

Ask any old person about his social security benefits. They will all tell you that when they were working, the benefits they would receive from SS sounded pretty good, but in retirement, the fixed income they recieve buys far less than when they were working. The government has tripled the money supply over the past few years, meaning this will be true for all of those working now. In 1969, a year at Tulane Universioty was 1640.00. If you were making $800.00/mo on SS you could help your grandkids. Now the same university is $40,000.00 and all other expenses have more or less kept pace. So if your SS benefits are $3000.00/mo now you will not be able to do much for your grandkids. SS is a government run PONZI scheme in every sense of the definition, except it isn’t illegal since it is government sponsored.
The benefits have deteriorated due to govt policies and there is no money there, just a bunch of IOU’s. Soon it will be means tested, meaning all the money people paid into it will just be another wealth transfer to the entitled “poor”.

Posted by zotdoc | Report as abusive

Thanks CarlOmunificent

American’s citizens traded their freedom and abdicated their rights for empty promises of robbing the rich to give to the poor. This has been a bipartisan effort disguised behind a well played good-cop-bad-cop performance.

Act II is the scary part.

Posted by GSH10 | Report as abusive

Perry is a small frog who has stepped into a large pond, and he’s not adjusting very well. A couple of months back and it was Bachmann, before that it was Trump, and they’ve dwindled to irrelevance even before the counter-media attack that will come in a full campaign. In the end, those 46 million Americans living in poverty get to vote just like rich bombastic Texans, and whether SS is a ponzi scheme or not, they will vote to continue it. 2010 was a reaction against the arrogance and obvious incompetence of the Dems on the health care bill, it was not an endorsement of the Tea Party. The electorate looks roughly like 30-30-30 Dem-Indie-Rep. The Tea’ers are a minority of a minority. Perry winning them is a step towards losing in 2012.

Posted by ARJTurgot2 | Report as abusive

SSA has too many ALJ’s & lawyers on the dole. DEBRA BICE, Chief ALJ, ODAR, needs to re-open my case & correct the Clear & Unmistakable errors. I applied in 1991. Their medical examiner determined disability, but ALJ Donald Holloway (crook) failed to follow established law & on remand, repeated the fraud. He also refused to follow the directive of US Dist Ct “Judge” Ron Longstaff (Iowa) to “remove the mechanical grid.” Instead, Holloway attempted to REINFORCE it! What a fraud. And NO oversight! Ron Longstaff flipped on his position too! Another fraud under color of law! The Dept of VA rates me as a 100% “Service-Connected” Disabled American veteran, yet they delay awarding an Earlier Effective date consistent with my service dates (1987-1989 when the DoD injected me with harmful experimental vaccines WITHOUT Disclosure & WITHOUT my Informed Consent!) Where is the Iowa Delegation ? I’ve asked Senators Grassley & Harkin for a problem resolution. I’ve asked Bruce Braley’s office too. It seems they work hard to keep disability program money in the hands of lawyers & judges who deny US disabled American veterans. Please share this. K. Tennant, Iowa

Posted by TruThor13 | Report as abusive