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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 6/18/19

Solving The Social Security Riddle

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Message Harold Novikoff
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Social Security isn't enough. What to do?
Social Security isn't enough. What to do?
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In his recent article, " A Wall Street Boost For Social Security", Gerald Scorse (OpEdNews 6/16) points out the advantages of investing some of the $2.8 trillions of Social Security funds in the stock market instead of in low paying government securities. Warren Buffet backs up this notion, as did the Bush/Cheney administration and other republican administrations before. Without alterations to the program, such as raising Social Security taxes, taxable limits on earnings and age qualifications, or lowering benefits, the current program is projected to run out of funds by 2034.


According to Scorse's sources, the S&P stock market index shows an annualized gain of 15% since 2009. The SS fund would have benefitted if it had been invested in the market instead of government securities during this period. But what would have happened to the value of the Social Security fund if it had been invested in the stock market before the 2008 recession when the market dropped 33%? There are better ways to safeguard and enhance the Social Security fund without entrusting it to greedy Wall Street manipulators. but they would require fundamental changes in the structure of government financing.

I would refer you to such writings as "The Web of Debt" by Ellen Brown for a competent analysis of the flaws and foibles in our present systems of government financing. Mainly, they point out how, under the existing order, the private banking system through its role in the Federal Reserve - as well as by imbedded influences - profits from government financial operations, including the creation of money issued by the Federal Reserve, as a form of government debt to private banks.

As there is, nominally, a separation of state and church, there could also be a separation of state and private banking whereby the government creates its own currency without incurring debt. The creation of a national bank, as Ellen Brown keenly advocates, could supplant the private banking industry in profiting from government operations. Using the $2.8T SS funds as an endowment, together with the backing of the federal treasury, the bank could enter into government sponsored banking operations. In addition to conservatively managing the investment of some Social Security funds in basic industries, it could finance FHA loans, student loans, and other government programs at minimally low interest rates.

The creation of a national bank in competition with the private banking industry would be one step towards shifting wealth from Wall Street to the government where it could benefit the general population. Letting Wall Street get its hands on Social Security funds would put Social Security in the same predicament as our expensive and problematic private health insurance system. The government and the general public are not merely a herd of cows to be milked of their wealth by opportunistic connivers.

 

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Veteran, retired from several occupations (school teacher, technical writer, energy conservation business, etc.) long-time Sierra Club member


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