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The GOP Would Deny Income To Retirees By Raising The Age To Qualify For Social Security Benefits

Posted on the 29 April 2014 by Jobsanger
The GOP Would Deny Income To Retirees By Raising The Age To Qualify For Social Security Benefits
The GOP Would Deny Income To Retirees By Raising The Age To Qualify For Social Security Benefits
These charts were made from information provided by the Gallup Poll between 2002 and 2014. The latest survey being done between April 3rd and 6th of 1,026 randomly chosen nationwide adults (and has a margin of error of 4 points). Previous years would be similar.
I found it interesting that the difference between expected retirement and actual retirement was significantly different. As a young or even middle aged person, we all expect to have a long work life & don't particularly expect or want to retire early. But life intervenes, and changes those expectations to realities.
Why do people retire earlier than they expect to? A few just meet their goals, and retire to enjoy the money they have made -- but they are a tiny minority. Others are forced into retirement because their employer just wants to replace them with a younger and cheaper employee. But the majority of early retirees must do so because of either illness or their bodies are just not capable of performing physical labor any more.
The Republicans in Congress have said for years now that the retirement age for receiving Social Security benefits should be raised to age 70. And a roundtable of corporate executives recently agreed with them. But they are not considering what happens to workers in the real world. Workers who spend their lives without doing any physical labor (politicians, bankers, corporate executives, hedge fund managers, Wall Street brokers, etc.) could probably work until age 70, because they have not had to put daily physical demands on their bodies.
But there are millions of Americans workers (miners, oil field workers, construction workers, farm workers, etc.) who must do hard physical labor every day of their working lives, and it is just not right to expect them to continue doing that kind of work until age 70. While most would love to continue working, their bodies will just not let them do that. Whether we want to admit it or not, a 55 or 60 year old just cannot do the same physical labor they could do at 25 or 30 years old. People who spend their lives doing hard physical labor will have to retire earlier than a person who has not.
And that is the main thing that's wrong with the GOP's desire to raise the retirement age. It would force many physical laborers who have to retire to go years without any income before they could apply for Social Security -- making them have to rely on family members for support, or forcing them into a homeless and penniless situation. And that's a terrible thing to happen to a person that worked hard for their entire lives (until their bodies could no longer do it).
It is just these type of people who the Social Security program was created for -- hard workers who, through no fault of their own, can no longer work. Raising the retirement age would throw these people into poverty (which Social Security was designed to prevent) -- and it's a heartless solution designed to keep the rich from having to pay the same percentage in FICA taxes that these workers pay all of their working lives.
There is no legitimate reason to raise the retirement age, or to cut any Social Security benefits. Any problems the Social Security system has (which will not show up for another 20 years) can easily be fixed by raising or eliminating the cap on income subject to FICA taxes. And personally, I don't see why the rich shouldn't be paying the same FICA tax percentage as middle class and poor workers have to pay.

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