Friday, April 08, 2005

The Sky is Falling

The real problem with social security is the lack of knowledge by those who run our government about what it means to be poor or middle income. There are varying degrees of poor but, when it comes to 'fixing' social security, the old axiom 'If it's not broken, don't fix it' holds true in more ways than one.

When we say 'our government' just who are we referring to? The answer is: the wealthy or very comfortably well off. The difference between rich and poor means the rich are those who have money to invest in retirement and the poor means those, including the middle incomers, who live from paycheck to paycheck.

In the structure of capitalism labor means those who have to work to produce a product and management means those who control labor. The division of labor and management is a chasm that keeps widening as a business grows and produces bigger profits and bigger profits mean
bigger battles between management and labor to increase the 'bottom line'. Management has no compulsion to increase income for labor which includes benefit programs and social security, and especially social security as the business has to match social security deductions.

The larger a corporation grows, the less they view labor with any concern for labor welfare other than how to keep from raising wages. Of course they look at their own income in a much different light which means pocketing as much of the profit as possible so their retirement is uneffected by any changes (including the demise) of social security.

When Franklin D. Roosevelt institued the social security program, what were his motives? Altruism? Compassion for the working class? Of course not, he had no financial problems and knew nothing about what it means to be a laborer on wages. Roosevelt was motivated by his vision of bringing corporate America out of a depression by motivating and inspiring labor, freeing labor from the fear of retiring on nothing. His vision, however expansive, was to save corporate America and it worked. What corportate America and the wealthy bureaucrats of government don't recognize is playing games with social security by altering the basic program could bring on a labor problem causing the whole restructing of our form of capitalism (which they so dearly love).

The efforts of government should be to strengthen social security, not on fixing what still isn't broke. Chicken-Littling the program could bring the now profitable pie-in-the-sky falling on their own very heads.

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