Someone recently wondered why there had not been a PDD post regarding Social Security being “bankrupt.” Here goes:
Social Security currently has a 2.5 trillion dollar surplus. This is partly due to Ronald Reagan raising SS taxes on working people. Then he started to raid the fund to make it look like he could cut taxes on the rich and corporations, bloat the military, and still “balance” the budget. Well, he still wound up turning a surplus into a massive deficit, but I digress.
Other administrations followed Reagan’s lead and “borrowed” (stole) SS money for other purposes. However, the government is legally required to reimburse the fund. Social Security is an immensely popular program with a low administrative budget. It will be solvent, as is, for a couple of decades and can be made more sustainable with some minor tweaking such as raising the cap on SS tax which assures that Bill Gates pays as much SS tax as a family earning $120,000.
The current assault on Social Security is just another piece of the class-war being waged against working people by those who would have us go back to a world of serfs and masters. Corporate profits are at an all-time high, as is wealth disparity. An under-regulated and over-fed financial sector has crashed the world economy, but the banksters and speculators get bonuses while the rest of us face austerity measures to pay for their folly. They want Social Security privatized so they can redistribute the wealth upward, as usual. And as an aside: every other industrial democracy has figured out how to provide universal health care.