President Barack Obama may wish to preserve Social Security forever, he certainly doesn’t intend to preserve it in its current form.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the White House-created commission studying the future of Social Security is considering:
[…] raising the retirement age, which is now set to reach age 67 in 2027, specific cuts under consideration include lowering benefits for wealthier retires and trimming annual cost-of-living increases, perhaps only for wealthier retirees.
Raising the retirement age is sound policy considering that living expectations have risen sharply since Social Security was originally enacted.
Lowering benefits for “wealthier” retirees is outright unfair though considering that everyone’s been paying equally into the fund. But wait, the administration might chance that as well:
On the tax side, the leading idea is to increase the share of earned income that is subject to Social Security taxes, officials said. Under current law, income beyond $106,000 is exempt.
So if you make a little more money, you’re hit from both sides when it comes to your retirement: first, you have to pay more into the scheme while you’re still working only to receive less when you retire.
These sort of shenanigans are inevitable when dealing with a government entitlement program that’s financially unsustainable in the long run. How matter how much more money the government intends to take from the “wealthy”, in the end, Social Security will bankrupt itself.
The only rational solution is to phase out the system over the years ahead and eventually abolish it. People should be responsible for their own pension.