Friday, February 04, 2005

Even More SS

Dan Froomkin has some nice stuff which you should go read and come back.

Let's talk about what social security isn't:

A system in which your payroll taxes are invested in Treasury Bonds until you retire, at which point you're entitled to the annuity value of the principal plus interest.

Let's talk about what it is:

It's a system under which your payroll taxes are collected and which entitles you to the following:

1) A retirement annuity which begins payment on the day you elect to start collecting benefits, is adjusted annually for inflation, and which continues to pay your benefit until you die.

2) A life insurance policy which:

a) pays a laughably small death benefit when you die.

b) Provides significant monthly benefits to a surviving spouse who has dependent children and for the children.

c) Gives your spouse full entitlement to your retirement annuity upon his/her retirement. The spouse, if entitled to his/her own retirement annuity, can choose the greater of the two.

3) A disability insurance policy which provides payments to you and your family if you are unable to work.