Saturday, August 14, 2010

Deficit help from ending social security not wanted by Americans

Cutting social security to fix the deficit is not an idea that Americans like according to a survey funded by AARP and conducted by GfK Roper. Cutting Social Security isn’t really wanted by 85 percent of American’s, reports the Huffington Post. A large sample (72 percent) “strongly opposes” such action.

Anyone with Social Security benefits say ‘Me first’

For a 75-year-old Social Security system that has received a fantastic deal of criticism, such support may seem surprising. Since the AARP funded this survey happening, and the AARP members tend to be either on, or nearly on Social Security, it appears about right. Another interesting related figure to surface from the poll is that 57 percent of American adults younger than 50 claimed they’d be willing to pay higher payroll taxes to ensure that they’ll have Social Security to collect after they retire. While a tremendous national deficit will certainly affect future generations for decades to come, the grim reality is the sense of entitlement commonly associated with the “Baby Boomer” generation makes their refusal to cut Social Security less than surprising.

Using the trust fund

Since Social Security is definitely not the most sustainable program, the Obama administration is trying to figure out how to proceed to change things. Many fear that their shrinking nest eggs will be taken away. Privatization would be great for those still in the work force when Baby Boomers wouldn’t be able to get their funds anymore, and taxes aren’t covering the program.

Two-thirds Americans afraid to lose Social Security as an income

80 percent of Americans are concerned for the families of fixed-income retirees which only one out of each three are concerned about how not having Social Security could affect their lives after retirement. Clich├ęd old fears of a “poor house” or “debtors’ prison” rear their ugly heads, giving way to hysteria. Even 80 percent of people who are “thy sky is falling” types believe that they would still get benefits even if there was not a Social Security program anymore.

Additional reading

AARP survey

Cato Institute

Huffington Post

Social Security Online

Milton Friedman on the Social Security myth

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