Crazy Things Conservatives Say

Privatize Social Security? Absolutely Foolish…

By Jack E. Lohman

Yes, the Left has its wild fringes, too, and some government departments and bureaucrats and Union leaders should be dumped. I blame much of that on politicians of both stripes who have had their own careers to enhance, but let’s look beyond that for a moment.

As a moderate Republican (read that: “not Republican enough” for some), I disagree with my friends on the far Right.

Cut Social Security Benefits?

Yes, Social Security is a Ponzi scheme, and when the world ends 1000 years from now, the last of our living will have lost their investments. Plus their life, thus retirement will not be their major concern.

We seniors (including me) invested our cash dollars over the last 40 years so we could spend it today, yet we already have gone two years without a cost-of-living increase. That’s a loss of benefits, and in time it could erode to making SS worthless, if not corrected.

But now conservatives want to extend the retirement age to 67 or 70. Just where are these seniors going to find work with an unemployment rate at 9.7%? Should they take jobs better saved for our kids? Is it really smarter that we force them into poverty with no cash to spend, and taking welfare and unemployment checks, or to require financial assistance from their children who are playing hell to keep food on the table for their own families?

I don’t think so, but it is a good issue for disingenuous politicians.

Oh, let’s privatize it!!!

Stupid idea, even if it did come from Paul Ryan, Sharron Angle and Christine O’Donnell.

First, why add to the system the high costs of banker salaries, bonuses and profits and even their campaign bribes, which are also passed along to the people. And second, can you imagine what would have happened to your retirement cash had Bush moved SSI into the stock market in 2003? Yes his campaign contributors would have been very excited, but … do you remember what happened to your “privatized” 401(k)’s in the last 5 years?

Privatization is always favored by politicians because private companies can give campaign bribes and public entities cannot.

Make privatization “optional?”

You mean… so those opting in and seeing the bankers steal their cash, can then “opt” for going on the public dole when they become seniors?

I don’t think so… again. If we are going to do this, let’s do it right.

  1. Is it underfunded? Yes, and we should remove the $105K cap on employee contributions and extend them to all income, not just wages. And No, the Fat Cats don’t like this.
  2. Is it broke? No, but it will be if we don’t properly fund it and flex it as the Baby Boomers enter and leave the system.
  3. Do politicians dip into it? YES, and they must if they are going to slip taxpayer cash to the Fat Cats that fund their elections.

That’s a serious problem, and only public funding of campaigns will replace the need to use taxpayer funds to buy off the Fat Cats. There are only two sources of campaign money — public and private — and we pay a heavy price for the latter being used to fund elections.

See: Should we privatize Medicare?

Privatizing Medicare and Social Security are both strategies to pass middle-class assets — the savings from the cuts — to the wealthy campaign contributors. Unfortunately the poor people can’t give cash, so this will ultimately lead to a revolution by the people. U.S. politicians should not be behind the corruption of this, but they are. Only public funding of campaigns will reverse the political corruption.

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