I would not mind giving a smaller amount to SS to cover people who are truly in need. On the other hand I do have a problem with funding people who have the means to do without it.That's basically my thought also. I do think we need, for lack of a better term, a safety net, and that's the responsibility of all of us. Beyond that I'm all in favor of individual choiceThe problem with this is it would disincentives saving even more. "You, mean if I don't save anything for retirement, the government will cover me, but if I save some, they won't give me anything? I'm buying that big screen HDTV LCD then!"People around here wouldn't think like that because we are generally driven to make comfortable retirement for ourselves with more than the bear minimum to get by. But there are plenty of people who would rather get a little for free rather than a lot for themselves - otherwise you wouldn't have abuse of similar welfare, food stamp, etc programs.I suppose you could be okay with some abuse (I don't mean fraud, I mean chosing to participate by not working/saving, rather than using it as a fall back) as a acceptable consequence.The bigger issue though, is what happens to the people who have been paying into SS for years, are just retired or about to retire. Where do they get the SS they've paid into for decades if all of a sudden we start letting people keep most of their SS money for themselves?Its a nice idea in theory, but the transition would be extraordinarily painful, because the reality is that your SS is not 'your money' anymore, it goes to pay today's retirees. And your SS money comes from tomorrow's workers, when you're retired. SS isn't 'savings', the government (Repub and Dem) hasn't saved a penny in its life.
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