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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/social-security-article-10663416.aspx

Subject:  Social Security Article Date:  3/10/1999  10:32 PM
Author:  aq67sceb Number:  9049 of 76078

I just finished reading Al Levit's article on Social Security at http://www.fool.com/Features/1998/sp981019SocialSecurity.htm. In general I thought it was a very good piece, but I did have a couple problems with it.

The biggest problem I had was the combination of his proposals that the payroll taxes be payable on all income, and that means testing be applied so that retirees with income from other sources above a certain level not receive any benefits from the trust fund.

The combination of the two makes for a very unfair system for higher wage earners. First, you want to tax them on their complete income. I don't necessarily have a problem with that provided that their benefits would bear some relation to their increased contributions. But instead, you want to apply means testing, which will take away the trust fund benefits of the high income retirees, who, in most cases, will be the ones you just raised the payroll taxes on. In short, you want to raise their taxes, but reduce their benefits. In the words of our proverbial grandpappy, "It just don't make no sense."

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