Social insecurity

November 05, 1990|By Albany (Ore.) Democrat-Herald

THE GOVERNMENT is in deep money trouble. So what does the United States do? It raises the payments it makes to 40 million people getting Social Security checks, whether they need the extra cash or not. The boost in benefits was automatic.

At 5.4 percent, it's the biggest in more than eight years. The increase is determined by the rate of inflation. The worse inflation gets, the bigger the increase. That's good for those getting checks. It's bad for those paying the bill.

Social Security already takes more than 15 percent of the pay of working Americans. Many people getting Social Security checks are well off and don't need the money. But of course they take it. They're entitled to it by law. They paid into the system when they were working, and now they're entitled to whatever they get, whether they need it or not.

While this is going on, our government was trying to decide how much more each of us gets to pay in taxes to cover the uncontrolled spending of the federal government. There's something perverse about a government that wants to raise taxes when it already takes from the earnings of struggling young people so that it can give more money to everyone over 65, even those whose hefty incomes allow them to enjoy their senior years without money worries at all.

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