"Social" Security

I've been following the debate over the future of social security from a slight distance. I haven't delved into the details of any of the proposals. I have the feeling that doing so would be a waste of my time, mostly because I am unlikely to understand the intricacies of some of the language, both political and economic. However, I do have a few opinions regarding the matter:

1) I am opposed to allowing workers the use of private accounts to invest the amount of social security taxes that they pay. This, in effect, eliminates the "social" security "tax" and creates a social security "investment." My view is that the social security tax that I pay out of every paycheck is not specifically or directly for ME or MY retirement, but for a social fund that benefits those most in need according to standards accepted by the majority of society. Similarly, when I pay local taxes I don't expect to have a policeman stationed at my door, but I expect to be able to call on one when in need. This analogy is not well developed, but I hope it serves to illustrate my point. Sure, I will be happy to receive a social security check when I retire, if I am lucky enough to live that long. However, I am not "counting" on this social security check, and I am planning my savings today accordingly. These terminology distinctions may be interpreted as splitting hairs, but they demonstrate my opinion that the debate should first be focused on the question of whether to have a social safety net program before shifting the talking points to various ways to "fix" the program. Why do we have to talk about whether or not we should have a social program in some sort of a code language. My opinion is that we should have a program, but I'm willing to debate the point with those that think that we should not have such a program.
2) George W. Bush DID NOT receive a mandate for changing social security. I am growing tired of this administration claiming that they have received a mandate for every policy decision that they propose when they barely won both the popular and electoral votes, and did this probably because of foreign policy issues as opposed to any of their domestic agenda.


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