Jan 17, 2013

Getting More Brazen All The Time

     Seemingly unconcerned about appearances, the Business Roundtable, an organization of CEOs, some of the wealthiest Americans, are lobbying for an increase in Social Security's Full Retirement Age (FRA) to 70 because this is "what's best for the country."  They also want to reduce Social Security's Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA). Of course, they oppose extending the F.I.C.A. tax to all salaries. Currently, F.I.C.A. is limited to the first $113,700 of salaries. Any salary beyond that -- and almost all of the salaries of these CEOs -- is not subjected to the F.I.C.A. tax.


Anonymous said...

i don't see anything wrong with their position of this is "what's best for the country."

When viewed as a whole, they are probably right. The country is made up of many people of many different ages. Sure, raising the retirement age affects some people adversely (those who didn't save for retirement or those who can't work until age 70). However, it helps other people by potentially lower taxes and providing greater benefits after age 70.

When making grand policy decisions, there will always be some individuals that are harmed and others that benefit. As a society, we need to do what provides the greatest benefit with the least harm. You may not agree with their calculation, but that doesn't mean it's wrong.

Anonymous said...

And it screws over black males who have an average life expectancy of 67 years. I'm sure that was just an oversight of these powerful white COEs.

Anonymous said...

that's the rub. you talk about how good decisions will hit some people harder and some people less hard, and then throw out "those who haven't saved for retirement" and those who cannot work "until 70").

you fail to acknowledge that people that fail to save for retirment are generally people who CANNOT save for retirement. Blather on about personal responsibilty and living below one's means all you want, but making minimum wage prevents that unless either poor people just aren't to have children or maybe just one and then they are never allowed any spending that isn't completely necessary. Awesome society you're building there.

Same with the "unable to work until 70." At first glance, to a rich white male of privilege and high class, that may seem to affect a very small number of people. You probably envision poor injured/disabled souls (who you think will have insurance or families to cover that, or, don't care because those sort of people are small in number). In reality, those people, those who can't work until 70 (SEVENTY!) is a huge class of people made up of precisely everyone who isn't a rich, white person with a lot of education and a work history consisting of physically-easy jobs made up of almost exclusively using a computer or talking to people.

Which means this type of bargain wouldn't just affect "some" people more than "others." Unless, of course, you define "some" as "non-white, poor, uneducated" and "others" as "rich white people."

My goodness, the white/male privilege worldview slant is so thick in these comment threads it's palpable.

Anonymous said...

oh, and p.s., before your white male brain gets a-thinking again--

our consumerist capitalism economy requires a lot of minimum and low wage jobs to run. it just doesn't work--bosses and owners can't get obscenely rich without a huge base of cheap labor. Currently, 28% of American workers are low wage, which is defined as making an hourly wage less than would be above the federal poverty line for a family of four with full-time hours. And the federal poverty line is woefully low, fyi.

So to say that lower-wage (read: an ever-increasing portion of non-rich Americans) people shouldn't have any/many kids or be able to afford anything but bare bone necessities in order that they can "save for their retirement" and we can cut taxes for and spending on programs like social security necessarily relegates over a quarter of our population into mere subsistence, or poverty in old age.

Again, awesome society you're creating there.

Anonymous said...

It's my opinion,wealthy people are concerned mostly with money so if the government saved money with raising the retirement age i wonder would taxes be reduced for the wealthy.

I'm black and agree many more blacks
than whites either because of medical conditions or a combination of illness and crime,may never collect benefits.

Anonymous said...

Taxes on the wealthy may not be lowered, but they wouldn't be raised.

A big thing the wealthy, anti-SS folks are mad about is raising the FICA tax income cap. Currently, only $100,000 some odd of income is taxed--increasing the amount of income taxed would help decrease the social security problems we are currently facing. but rather than do that, wealthy people are fighting to instead raise retirement age, or use chained CPI, or do other things that reduce benefits paid instead.

They want to fix the problem by cutting payouts for the poorest of us rather than increasing pay-ins for the richest among us.

Anonymous said...

Why don't we do a combination of all of the above suggestions to placate everyone?!?! Raise the retirement age to say 68, raise the FICA cap to maybe $200,000, and slightly reduce future benefits. Obviously the exact figures here would need to be calculated to ensure the appropriate revenue and savings, but I think it's a fair solution that would at least affect everyone to some degree so there weren't clear "winners" and "losers."

Anonymous said...

How much of someone else's money will be enought? For those who think the money of the rich is tainted and thus the rich do not deserve it, well they are partially correct. That money 'taint yours and 'taint mine.

Anonymous said...

It's not a question of whether the rich "deserve" their money. In our society, where "celebrities" make millions from making ads, and sports figures make millions for ???, and inherited wealth makes some people think they hit a triple when they were merely born on third, but others work very hard for minimum wage, those who have more have an obligation to fund our society.

Without adequate funding, our society will not survive. Tax rates historically have been much higher, and our economy thrived. It is a patriotic duty to contribute towards adequate funding. "From those to whom much is given, much is required."