Like our John Hancock story last issue, news of Social Security pushing back retirement age has stirred more than a few comments.
This would go a long way to improve the solvency of Social Security, promote greater savings, more involvement in personal and employment related retirement programs, and it would incent account value build-up in life and annuities (i.e., higher earners should pay more taxes on Social Security income). Next, tackle the real fiscal problem of extended care: get rid of the loopholes for middle- and upper-income earners to drink at the trough of public (taxpayer) payment of extended care costs without any affect on assets going to next generations. We need to promote personal responsibility for this care (read: purchase insurance or partnership coverage) so that the taxpayers (including their heirs) aren't saddled with deficits way beyond what we're complaining about today! Deficit reduction needn't destroy all sense of personal responsibility; in fact, it should promote it.
CNBC reports the proposed new retirement age would be 69. I think that's okay, but they forgot to talk about the early retirement age of 62. If 68 or 69 becomes the rule it will induce more people to opt for early retirement. Early retirement should be 65 or 66. If they choose to leave it at 62, then the benefits should be drastically reduced. Too many people are currently choosing early retirement, a trend that sucks cash out of the trust fund. Further, the trust fund should be closed to every governmental body, and used for Social Security and Medicare benefits only.
David L Spinner
Leave Social Security alone and make cuts in SCHIP for illegal aliens, cut free health care, food stamps and free school lunches for those that have not contributed to this country. Hard working Americans have paid into this system and it is not an entitlement program. It is a trust that has been robbed by the Federal Government. Pay back the IOUs and the program will be solvent!
I think that it is time to come up with a stop-gap plan that will bridge the retirement age that you wish to retire at--either 60, 65 or whatever new year Social Security starts. This then could be invested tax-deferred, plus the individual could invest the monies in the market. This would also shut down the problem with the liberals (who cannot comprehend long-term growth, it seems) about privatizing Social Security. Monies cannot be touched until you retire or not before 55 years of age. Also, if the individual has to take Social Security early because of health reasons, then they can access these monies on a taxable basis just like Social Security. These types of investments could be sold by the insurance companies, and they would not be considered an IRA or a Roth IRA, either. This also would allow the younger generation to set aside more monies that would be accessible, as I stated, and take advantage of the markets. This would not be a government program, but a bridge to Social Security and should be allowed to contribute more monies if needed to this program. Also, when they reach the official retirement age, this should not be used against the individual to offset Social Security. If the monies have outperformed their expectations, then so be it. It also can have a beneficiary and be includable in one's estate as an asset.
James B. Cuthbert, Sr.
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