Public Policy Of Social Security And Retirement Savings

1536 words - 6 pages

Social Security is on the verge of taking care of the baby boomers generation. This means that it will be paying more benefits than taxes it receives. In lay-man’s terms it means it will be spending more money than it is making. I think that you should pay into your own private retirement account for you to reap the benefits in the future. Not for you to pay into a cluster of workers money for current elders to benefit from. You need to take care of your own future and not rely on other people’s responsibility. “…people began to think retirement funding as a right…and so…started saving less” (Klay & Steen). That being said, people of a certain age should be “grandfathered” into this meaning, people of the age of say 40, still get the normal social security retirement money but anyone younger must start abiding this new reform. If you get married, keep paying into your own unless your spouse is not working. If that is the case then pay the same amount BUT put half into your own and half into your spouses. If the other spouse is working however, they should pay into their own account and you into your own.
The Social Security Act was passed by President FDR as one of his programs to fight the Great Depression. The Social Security Act was enacted August 14, 1935 (Social Security Act). The current problem is the fear of what will become of Social Security as the baby boomers generation begins to retire. As millions of baby boomers approach retirement, the program's annual cash surplus will shrink and then disappear. Then, Social Security will not be able to pay full benefits from its payroll and other tax revenues (Social Security Reform Center – Problem). This is causing the U.S. government to think about reform and changes for the current system. Questions like fairness, benefits, retirement age, responsibility, and many others come to play so this is a very tricky and multiple-sided problem.
Back in 1950, as the baby boom was just getting started, each retiree's benefit was divided among 16 workers. Taxes could be kept low. Today, that number has dropped to 3.3 workers per retiree, and by 2025, it will reach--and remain at--about two workers per retiree (Social Security Reform Center – Problem). The number of workers for each beneficiary dropped from 5.1 in 1960 to 3.3 in 2006. This is expected to decrease to 2.1 by 2030 (Klay & Steen). Baby boomers are going to retire and Social Security begins to spend more on paying benefits than it receives in taxes in 2017 or 2018 (Social Security Reform Center – Problem). This means Social Security will begin to handle very large funding problems because of the amount of people retiring and the worker/beneficiary ratio falling. This is caused by the increase of the payroll tax 17 times since 1935 (Epstein). Currently Social Security is not having any issues with payments. It lifts 1.3 million children and almost 13 million senior citizens out of poverty (Merino). The other side of the problem though is...

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