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Your Opinion: Numbers game cheats retirees

Your Opinion: Numbers game cheats retirees

June 12th, 2011 by Donald Butzlaff, New Bloomfield in News

Dear Editor:

You have to wonder why the government wants to raise the age for Social Security and Medicare. By raising ages, we keep people paying into the funds for a longer period of time. Our elected officials are not doing this in our best interest. If you look at monthly payouts, by working longer and waiting for your benefits, you will receive a higher level of monthly income. Retire at a later date, and you have a shorter life span on Social Security.

The government is playing a numbers game with the people who stay employed for more years. Life insurance companies have computer models that project how many people will die. They know on the average that three people per 1,000 will die under this model. It's how they project how many people who work more years will die without ever having been paid a dime from Social Security or Medicare.

But what's not fine is that the government since the mid-'60s has raided Social Security funds, taken any excess of money and put it into our government general fund as a source of revenue to spend on other things. They have left in place IOUs in the form of bonds. I have never heard that these funds have been paid back to Social Security. They don't have to pay back money to people who have died. Oh, I mispoke, they pay $250 funeral expense from Social Security.

Our retiring workforce will be severely penalized by having a government mandate to work for more years to qualify for Social Security. For some, it is because they cannot physically perform their jobs any more. For others, health problems prevent them from working. Corporations don't want to keep older workers on board any longer than they have to. To continue working for more years past retirement should be a personal decision, and many people would have made the decision to keep working?

The working class in this country is paying for all of the salary of employees from the president to local officials. We are also paying for their retirement and health care costs. Where is the accountability for mismanagement.

As a retired person, I take offense that our politicians call us a greedy generation of retirees. All we have done is pay our taxes, their salaries, health care while investing in Social Security.

Stop trying to cheat retired people. We have paid our way, and the government's way for our lifetime.