- - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

It is with incredulity that I greet the plan of many congressional Democrats to not attempt to make the Social Security system sustainable for the future, while increasing benefits.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Massachusetts Democrat, received the votes of 42 colleagues for a non-binding resolution calling for a “sustainable expansion of benefits” and this ill-advised measure has 58 co-sponsors in the House.

Are the Democrats not aware that the system is progressing closer to insolvency as fewer and fewer active workers pay into the trust fund? Do they not have in mind the nation’s $18-trillion-plus debt, which continues to increase?

A parallel train wreck is playing out in the Social Security Disability system, which is also in danger of being unable to pay benefits in the near future. For this President Obama has proposed a $330-billion transfer of funds to it from Social Security.

In earlier days of his administration, Mr. Obama adopted the sensible view that the Social Security cost-of-living increase should be calculated through a more accurate formula, the “chained” consumer price index, which would have saved a significant amount of money. Today that is out the window, the president having been derided by the left for seeking to “cut” benefits through enacting smaller increases.

The old adage goes, “If you give them the money, they will spend it.” We see that the money will be spent even when it does not exist.

OREN M. SPIEGLER

Upper Saint Clair, Pa.

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