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Author: alchook Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 75890  
Subject: Re: Future of retirement Date: 9/18/2011 8:43 PM
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means testing for SS is being talked about.

I've never understood how that would work.

It seems there are two ways to means test. First, you can deny benefits to high income retirees.

The problem is that while working, most of us don't have a huge amount of control over our incomes. It is what it is. When you retire, though, you have a great deal of control over your income and can manipulate it any number of ways. So basing social security on income would seem to be pretty difficult.

You could, I suppose, put some sort of wealth limit on it, but I'm not sure that would work either. A person with a $1M retirement fund looking at a conservative 4% safe rate of withdrawal is worth about $40K a year, not exactly in the upper income brackets, and I doubt the government is going to get away with calling people making $40K a year wealthy.

Still, not many people retire with even that much socked away. The savings generated by eliminating them from the rolls would be pretty minimal.

More likely, you'll see either tax increases or a generalized cut in benefits.
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