Saturday, January 10, 2009
Do you get yearly statements about Social Security from the Social Security Administration? I assume that you must, as I do; in fact, I just received my 2008 statement today.

And that's what I'm going to chat about today. See, on the front page there's a section "About Social Security's Future". From that I quote:

    In 2017 we will begin paying more in benefits that we collect in taxes. Without changes, by 2041 the Social Security Trust Fund will be exhausted and there will be enough money to pay only about 78 cents for each dollar of scheduled benefits. We need to resolve these issues soon to make sure Social Security continues to provide a foundation of protection for future generations.

I have a problem with one of the sentences in that paragraph. Well, two really, if you count the whole "running out of money in 2041" thing.

My real problem, though, is the wording "protection for future generations".

See, I was born in 1976; therefore I'll only be 65 in 2041 when the money runs out. And since I was born after 1959, my "Normal Retirement Age" - the age at which I can collect full benefits - is 67.

So all of the money that I've paid in, all 6.2 percent of my salary that goes to FICA, will be all dried up just two years shy of my retirement.

Thus my problem with the "future generations". It should read something like, "We need to resolve these issues soon to make sure Social Security continues to provide a foundation of protection for all of you unlucky saps born since Nixon's resignation."

Yes, everything in this statement - my estimated benefits, my earning records, even how to request this statement en Español - really don't matter one iota. They should save the money spent on printing and mailing all of these statements to anyone born after The Godfather Part II was released and put that towards, oh, I dunno, another year or two of payments? At least get us to July of 2041. Something.

But no.

So now I've decided to slack off a full 3.72 minutes more per hour (that's 6.2% of 60 minutes for those non-mathies out there) to save myself the hassle of paying good money after bad.

You know what? I should take up smoking, and spend that time outside puffing away. That way I won't even live to see 65 when I won't get any benefits anyway.

It's not a perfect plan, but then again, apparently neither was Social Security.
posted by Josh at 4:27 PM |


At 4:56 PM, Blogger Tuan

You know... I have heard a lot of analysts say "privitazation of SS is bad. Look at the stock market!! How bad would that have been?" But I say half of 6.2% of my pay is more than no benefits when I am 67.


At 5:13 PM, Blogger Josh

Hmmm, your Republican rantings almost seem to make sense ...

Now that is scary.