March 17, 2013

Dopey WNJ Letter of the Week

Tom Koval Sr. of Bear is adamant that the government keep its hands off his Social Security:

I know I am tired of politicians calling Social Security an entitlement. Politicians from Obama to Carney have called Social Security an entitlement. Enough already.

I have paid into Social Security since I began working. It is my money.

While I sympathize with the rest of Tom letter regarding the government, here's some facts about paying into SS ... and what you actually get back:

The answer largely depends on when you retire and how much you've earned over your lifetime. Consider a single man who earns the average wage throughout his career ($43,100 in 2010 dollars), works every year from age 22 to 64, and then retires at age 65 in 2010. Over his lifetime he has paid $345,000 into the system. But he is likely to get back $72,000 more than that, or $417,000 in Social Security and Medicare payouts, according to recent Urban Institute calculations. A single woman with the same work and tax history will come out even further ahead due to her longer life expectancy, likely netting $464,000 in lifetime benefits, which is $192,000 more than she paid into the system. These amounts are in constant 2010 dollars and assume a 2 percent real interest rate.

Married couples will make out even better. So, yeah -- Social Security is an entitlement ... after a certain point. Which makes reforming it necessary if we ever want to get the hell out of the financial mess this country is in.

Posted by Hube at March 17, 2013 09:25 AM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

Mr. Koval needs to realize that social security is not an investment fund. There isn't a pot of money with his name on it at the Social Security Administration. If he wanted that then he should have gotten behind W's proposed reforms. Money comes in from current workers and goes out to people who receive benefits. That's it.

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