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Info Seeker

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,094 Views
Message 41 of 68

Whar cost of living raise, it went to medicare.

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Info Seeker

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,170 Views
Message 42 of 68
i think the us is doing a bad job sence other peolle that were in office
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Bronze Conversationalist

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,159 Views
Message 43 of 68

davidw994077 wrote:

Of course you chose Britain to compare national healthcare systems. It is one of the worst in the world because of under funding. And of course the taxation. The USA just hides it's taxes better with backdoor taxes and hyper-inflation. You don't mention Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Australia. And you don't mention the numerous benefits these countries have. 


No matter what COLA formula is used or how it is calculated, there will be people who need more.  One of the biggest detriments to SS benefits is that when wages increase faster than inflation, the COLA will lag behind by at least a year.  For 2017, the wage index jumped 7.3% and SS COLA was 0.3% because the previous year wage index jump was 0% and didn't affect inflation.  Since 2017 was a 7.3% wage index jump, it put pressure on inflation and SS COLA is 2%.  Again lagging.  The wage index jump for 2018 is less than 1% so there is no telling what the 2019 COLA will look like.

 

For healthcare, I was just trying to make the point that those kind of benefits come with high taxes.  I chose the UK because I had the info from their tax website.

Yes, countries like the Scandinavian ones, do provide a lot of benefits, like free college education, family time off, etc.  Entrance to the colleges is limited and highly competetive for those spots.  If they don't get in, they look to go elsewhere, like the US.

 

As far as taxes, go.  Norway has the lowest marginal tax rate of the Scandinavian countries.  The Norway minimum income tax is 35.8% plus the VAT taxes.

 

7.8% National insurance on gross

28% flat income tax with very few exemptions

 

Plus surtaxes on top of that:

Additional 9%  on income between $76K to $124K

Additional 12% on everything above 124K (so income at this level is taxed 3 times, 7.8% + 28% + 12% = 47.8%)) 

and a 25% VAT tax.

 

I don't think Americans would ever be comfortable taxing the lowest income people at levels like 37.8% and having to pay $125 for goods and services they pay $100 plus sales tax for now.

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Info Seeker

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,201 Views
Message 44 of 68

Of course you chose Britain to compare national healthcare systems. It is one of the worst in the world because of under funding. And of course the taxation. The USA just hides it's taxes better with backdoor taxes and hyper-inflation. You don't mention Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Australia. And you don't mention the numerous benefits these countries have. You can't spend trillions on illegal wars and country welfare and have benefits for US Citizens. What is AARP doing specifically to get us a reasonable COLA? And we have the fiat money tree that could abracadabra walla fund the best healthcare system in the world instead of propping up Wall Street.

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Bronze Conversationalist

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,192 Views
Message 45 of 68

davidw994077 wrote:

.... And of course out of control healthcare. Every other country in the world has national healthcare no cost. .....Congress gets automatic COLA increases every year and has their own healthcare system.


Healthcare in those other nations is not "free", per se.  For the UK tax system, based on all the information I've found:

 

There are very few tax deductions(most have none), and no single, married or head of household categories. There is only a personal income tax that doesn't care if you support only yourself or a family. If you are married, you pay your personal tax and she pays hers based on your individual incomes.

 

Income tax is 20% of income from $14,801 to $57,900,

40% of income from $57,901 to $193,000,

45% of all income over $193,001 and above.

 

The personal exemption ($14,800) is reduced $1.25 for each $2.50 over $128,700 until there is no personal exemption for incomes over $144,500.

 

On top of the income tax is the National Insurance Tax (SS and National Health System), which is an additional 12% for everyone with incomes over $10,500.

 

Then add the UK VAT tax rate of 20% for most goods and services.

 

And to supplement all of this they have personal health insurance.  Most hospitals contract 25% of their business to the NHS.  The other 75% is private insurance.  NHS doctor salaries are set by the government.  Administrators get the highest pay at under $200K per year.  Top doctors receive about $150K and new interns receive about $30K.  The NHS pays for doctor training and require a mandatory service time with the NHS.

 

Congress doesn't get a COLA but has voted down their Average Wage Index referenced pay increase every year since January 2009.  Also, I haven't been able to nail this one down but Congress was on the ACA.  I think Congress has gone back to having to pay for the same health insurance that all federal employees purchase.  I recall hearing about it in the news but couldn't find the change back to the federal health benefit options.

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Info Seeker

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,237 Views
Message 46 of 68

The COLA is not based solely on senior cost of living, but manipulated by using everyone from 21 to 90 and then "adjusting costs" of food, gas, healthcare. Seniors have not had a decent COLA adjustment since the 80's. The FED has created hyper-inflation to save Wall Street banks that own the FED and the cost of everything has suffered. On meager Social Security income it is impossible to survive. And of course out of control healthcare. Every other country in the world has national healthcare no cost. This gives seniors there more income in retirement. If people knew the benefits that people in other countries get we would have revolution tomorrow. Congress gets automatic COLA increases every year and has their own healthcare system. Pentagon "loses" 7 Trillion and it's oops sorry about that. Sooo, what are lobbiests from AARP doing to change the COLA system?

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Bronze Conversationalist

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,683 Views
Message 47 of 68

vgl373 wrote:
I agree. our government should be held accountable to put every dollar back into SS they have stolen. It was not their money to use in the first place

Actually, it has always been their money to use as it was written into FDR's original Social Security Act of 1935, Title II, Old Age Reserve Account, Section 201(b). "It shall be the duty of the Secretary of the Treasury to invest such portion of the amounts credited to the Account as is not, in his judgment, required to meet current withdrawals. Such investment may be made only in interest-bearing obligations of the United States or in obligations guaranteed as to both principal and interest by the United States."

 

The Treasury is a bank and the investment transfers the money to the general fund as a loan.  They do the same thing with the SS deposits that your bank does.  The difference is the government uses it to provide services and pays back the "loan" using future general income tax receipts.  The bank pays it back from loan proceeds on cars, homes, businesses and market investments.

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Bronze Conversationalist

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

1,639 Views
Message 48 of 68

GailL1:

A few minor corrections to one of your comments:

 

1.  All deposits to the Trust Fund immediately purchase the special Treaury bonds.  Monthly payments are made by redeeming the maturing bonds.  The Trust purchases and redeems about $1 Trillion in bonds each year.

 

2.  The Trust Fund hasn't had a negative year since 1981.  Here's a nice simple chart from SSA that shows cash flow through the Trust Fund since 1957.  Just a few years after 1981, the Fund almost went broke until the SS Act of 1983 started taxing new hire federal workers and retiree SS benefits.

https://www.ssa.gov/oact/STATS/table4a3.html

 

3.  The Trust Fund doesn't make the National Debt look lower.  The Trust Fund, at $2.8 Trillion, is the largest single line item in the $20 Trillion National Debt.  The government owes all that money back to the Trust but for now the interest payments are keeping the Trust afloat.  Of the debt, about $5.6 Trillion is money the government owes itself in the form of federal pension funds, military pensions, NTHSA funds, the SS Trust Fund, and other government departments.  Corporations and individuals own the majority in the form of Treasury Notes/Bonds and good ole Savings Bonds.  Foreign countries own about $6.6 Trillion with China at $1.25T and Japan at $1.1T.  The SS Trust is more than those 2 combined.  SS is coming close to making annual benefit payments equal to the China owned debt.

 

What I think you meant to refer to was that SS income and outflow is added to the budget to make it look bigger and other large programs appear to be less of the budget.  Adding in SS and Medicare income taxes makes the tax income look like $3.5 Trillion when the actual amount of discretionary tax income is closer to $2 Trillion.  Then on the expenditure side they get to show social programs are 42% of the budget. and DoD is 21%.  If Social programs weren't included, the DoD portion would be closer to 30%.  In the words of Benjamin Disraeli, and made famous by Mark Twain, "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."

 

Otherwise, I think you hit all the right points in your posts.  If you check the chart for 2016, you'll see that payroll taxes were $75 Billion short of benefit payments.  That shortfall was made up by the bond interest ($88 Billion) so a little of that left over and the income taxes on SS benefits is the surplus that went to the Trust.  I'm waiting to see if the 2017 economy is going to reverse the trend of payroll taxes not covering benefit payments.

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Trusted Social Butterfly

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

2,310 Views
Message 49 of 68

That is a far cry from what you said earlier -

Gail wrote -You posted:

 My insurance agent told me that in 2020 Doctor`s office calls won`t be covered by Medicare. 

 

The reason that Medigap Plans F and C are going away is because those are the only plans left which have 1st dollar coverage and we know it saves money when seniors have at least some skin in the game.

 

I'd be leery of an insurance salesman or saleswoman who is trying to get you to change plans right now because much of your pricing depends on how the plan you have bases their premium - might be good to know before you makena decision.  Also good to know is if there is repercussions to you if you do change since you may not have guaranteed issue rights.----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------That is what the agent told me but being skeptical I checked and found nothing is set in stone yet as we are still living with Obamcare. Prices agent quote was $40/ month less than what I pay now for plan F and he was pushing plan G which was $55 less than I am paying . I got a quote from AARP and it was $50/month more than I `m paying now so decided to stick with my present plan.

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Trusted Social Butterfly

Re: Social Security Cost of Living

2,236 Views
Message 50 of 68

IM267 wrote -  I agree Social Security is taken out of every paycheck & I assume since people working now make Wayyy more money then I did must be paying in more so I want to know also where is that money going?   ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------It all went away when LBJ integrated SS funds into the general fund, which is now 20 trillion in debt.

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