Sunday, October 5, 2014

Social Security: RIP?

Closing down Social Security      [Fellowship of Minds]

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There have been renewed reports that this Administration is closing down Social Security offices and reducing services as demand increases by an aging population.  Employee reductions of 21,000 are in the works - to be replaced by "external partners", i.e., other government agencies and contractors.

Future applicants may be subject to eligibility screening by the credit-rating firm Experian [currently under "multi-state investigation" for violating consumer protection laws.

Mr Obama has been quietly, but steadily reducing funding for the Social Security Administration -- by about $1 billion in recent years.  The secret [draft] plan, created by a specious but impressively titled entity [The National Academy of Public Administration] is outlined at this link calling for a "smaller workforce" [i.e., layoffs], and "reduced physical infrastructure" [closing field offices].  Members of this National Academy include current and former employees of:
Grant Thornton
and career bureaucrats and the editor of Government Executive magazine.

The operative, but unintelligible phrase in the study is
"Our communication and business practices enable a dispersed workforce that is no longer working in centralized, traditional offices"

We're closing down the field offices, replacing them with on-line connections; and you can no longer have a human to deal with, except "in very limited circumstances."

174,000 .357 magnum rounds for SSA
Visits to Social Security offices now include screening by aggressively arrogant guards who are heavily armed; the SSA last year purchased a billion rounds of hollow point ammunition - for what purpose we're not sure.

Perhaps they fear a frontal attack by cane-waving seniors.

Now, to be clear, Social Security is not funded by the federal government, even though it is administered by the federal government.

All funding is derived from mandatory contributions by Americans who are and have been employed throughout their adult lives.  These contributions are made as a percentage of pre-tax income; when the taxpayers eventually are eligible to receive Social Security "benefits",  they are taxed on those benefits again as "income".

Officially, Social Security "is the largest social welfare program in the United States, constituting 37% of government expenditure and 7% of GDP."

Originally, Social Security funds were separate front the US Treasury, and payments were made directly to recipients.  Traditionally, there was always a surplus, and it was expected this would always be the case.

But, under the Democratic Administration of Lyndon Johnson, Social Security revenue was transferred to Treasury's General Revenue pot and used to fund LBJ's Great Society welfare programs; subsequently, these funds have become a slush fund for every Democratic sponsored welfare program since -- leading to Congressional wailing that
"Social Security is running out of money!"
thus the need to raise taxes again.

Democrats blame the Republicans for Social Security shortcomings since the GOP works diligently to reduce welfare and the public dole.  In the meantime, the Democrats continue to generate more expensive social welfare programs to be funded by employed Americans.

Return the Social Security Administration to its status as separate from the federal government and fence in its budget to dispense benefits ONLY to eligible Social Security contributors, and this fund will return to solvency and surpluses.

But, that would mean the US could no longer support illegal aliens and the permanently unemployed Welfare Class that functions as a generational parasite on our economy.