Wednesday, April 24, 2024

The Ugly Future Of Social Security, Huge Shortfalls Ahead

The ugly future of America's Social Security system is rooted in the fact major shortfalls ahead must be addressed in some way or another. This will not be easy and will most likely disappoint a lot of people. This is a massive program, as of February 2023, about one in every five residents in the US collected benefits from these funds. Many Americans rely heavily on Social Security benefits. The Social Security Administration claims that 97% of adults over the age of 60 are either collecting or will start collecting Social Security.  

Oh, what a tangled web we weave when the government gets involved. Even if I did not get that saying right, my takeoff on it has merit. A great example of a government program on its way to ruin is Social Security. What is called the unfunded "surplus reserve" is set to run out in 2033. Remember, promises can be broken or altered, and they will. Fixing this system many people refer to as a Ponzi scheme will not be easy.

The most obvious answers include removing the cap for high earners forcing them to pay more into the system. Raising the retirement age and cutting benefits. Another is to not pay what is promised to those who have saved and sacrificed over the years saying they "really don't need it." In other words, making people with savings ineligible, this is sometimes referred to as means testing.

In truth, inflation is already attacking the incomes of retirees based on how the CPI is figured, and adjustments in payouts already fall short of the real cost of living. Months ago when inflation was near its high, the website ShadowStats claimed real inflation was closer to 17.15% rather than the 8.5% that the media, the Biden administration, and the Federal Reserve claimed. This results in smaller raises and payouts for those on Social Security saving the system billions.

Having just seen the cost of caring for an aging parent, it is easy to join those saying the system to designed so that anyone with a long life is unlikely to pass much wealth along to their children. If you have money in old age, the system is geared to rip it from you. This is a brew of wealth transfer endorsed by society in the name of "the greater good." 

Comments below an eight-minute video ( ) detailing the most basic facts about the wall Social Security is running into indicate most viewers get it. We understand the problem that haunts the Social Security system, Still, "getting it" changes nothing, the problem still exists. Boomers are draining the system. The comments below the video note;

  • As a 37-year-old with 20 years of SS taxes behind me and another 20 years ahead of me... This video makes my skin crawl.
  • The SS that you contribute is actually going to the current/next generations of retirees it’s not saving for you. Yours comes from the next generation contributing.
  • We're living longer, the younger generations are having fewer children, housing is less affordable, income is not increasing, and the working class is unable to build wealth. Essentially, more people will need it and less will be paying for it.

As noted above, the unfunded Social Security "surplus reserve" is set to run out in 2033, a mere nine years from now. For such a widely used program, it’s a bit surprising that people in the US have put their heads in the sand and ignored the reality that this is no small problem. Also, most people know little about how it works. This remains the case even though most of the news around this program over the past decade has been predicting it’s doomed.

In Recent Years This Part Of The Budget Has Exploded

This is why millennials and younger workers often see the money being taken from their paychecks with the feeling they’ll never see it again. Sadly, the compact between generations to take care of each other has come under pressure for a number of reasons. The biggest two are difficult to overcome. Demographics and the idea individuals deserve a higher standard of living than necessary are coming into conflict.  

Of course, the concern over where all this is headed spans all of society. The truth is ugliness awaits most boomers nearing retirement, not only have they been lied to, but they also have to deal with rigged markets, corruption, and incompetent advisors. Anyway, you look at it, many people will not retire happy. As far as Washington and our politicians sorting out this mess, when all is said and done, this will most likely become another case of, "Thank God for the last minute or nothing would ever get done."


(Republishing of this article welcomed with reference to Bruce Wilds/AdvancingTime Blog)

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