February 21, 2005

Total Piece of Garbage

This Social Security calculator, though praiseworthy for its creativity and net-savvy, is fraudulently incorrect.

1) Nowhere does it say 'estimated' or 'average' for the numerical predictions. How do they know how much I will invest in my private account?

2) They simply assume that Social Security can be maintained WITHOUT any tax hike or spending cut, which is utter garbage. There should be, under the left side column, a field to include "How Much You Would Pay In New Taxes."

3) The most popular lefty plan on SS right now is to un-cap payroll taxes after $90,000 a year... and surprise! The calculator doesn't change for any income above 90k (does anyone believe the average $90k salary person will invest the same amount into private accounts as the average person making $150k or $300k?) They're ignoring the fact that some people will definitely benefit from the proposed change (even if they are the much-maligned rich people).

4) They don't even account for Social Security going bust or cutting pay-outs for younger people, which is the flip-side of the tax thing. They have to include either one, the other or both because Social Security will go insolvent - even according to the trustees that are in charge of it.

5) There is no change in benefits yet proposed. So far, the traditional pension/pyramid-scheme aspect of Social Security isn't going to be changed - only augmented with a parallel private accounts system. They are assuming that a change in index from wages to prices (which does make more sense) will be decided. Whether or not that's a fair assumption to make, that is not the Bush plan. There is no plan to change benefits for those under 55 yet, because that could alienate Congress prematurely.

This calculator is a lie. They can't even wait for Bush to have a plan before they start lying about it? Jeepers.


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