Social Security Reform: Hitting the Nail on the Head
It was a statement made five years ago, but it’s even more relevant today as we continue to roll closer to Social Security’s projected insolvency. The statement, as highlighted in a post today by The Motley Fool’s Sean Williams on www.fool.com, was Donald Trump’s 2013 summation of Social Security’s predicament:
“As Republicans, if you think you are going to change very substantially for the worse Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security in any substantial way, and at the same time you think you are going to win elections, it just really is not going to happen… What we have to do and the way solve our problems is to build a great economy.” (Courtesy: Washington Times)
Building on this assessment, delivered at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, Williams captures the essence of the opposing positions taken by the Republican and Democratic parties, noting that “the likelihood of reform occurring anytime soon appears to be slim to none…” And this sentiment is shared by many political writers, including The Washington Post’s Robert Samuleson, who recently cited the “need to rewrite the social contract between generations,” while at the same time suggesting that “politicians freeze at the mere mention of cuts in Social Security and Medicare.”
So, what to do? As Williams suggests, there’s a strong possibility that no reform progress will be made before 2020, or perhaps even 2024 depending on the outcome of presidential and congressional elections. According to data from the most recent Social Security Trustees Report, that would move the crisis to within a decade of the ultimate consequence–the full depletion of the program’s cash reserves and the cuts in benefits to the elderly.
Despite the continuing stalemate, there are reform proposals on the table, and there is what seems to be a growing level of interest in calling attention to the problem. For example. the Association of Mature American Citizens (AMAC) has taken a strong position on the urgent need for Social Security reform, and has long been an advocate for a solution designed to ensure the program’s long-term solvency. This solution is embodied in its Social Security Guarantee Act of 2017, a compendium of legislative adjustments that would serve to ensure the program’s stability for generations to come, without increasing taxes. Learn more about this Act here…