How's this for an easy, painless way to solve the Social Security "problem?" We reduce the Social Security deduction to 5 percent — or even 4 percent or 3 percent but deduct it from all of everyone's income. After all, it is deducted from 100 percent of my income, and of most people's income, so why not from everyone's income?
If it were reduced to 4 percent instead of the present 6.2 percent, most people would have more money in their paychecks. Deductions would not start to get higher than you are already paying now until you reached an income of around $250,000 — rich people who could easily afford it.
Everyone else with incomes under $250,000 would pay less and have extra money in their paychecks to spend and stimulate the economy. Enough extra money would be collected to keep Social Security viable for the next 100 years at least! The only people who would be "hurt" would be those who could well afford it, those who pay virtually nothing in Social Security deductions now.
For example, Mitt Romney with an income of $21 million a year pays just .03 percent of his income in the Social Security tax now, but under the new rule he would pay the same as you and I — 3 percent or whatever is required. The extra money in the paychecks of the "poor" Americans who earn only up to $113,000 a year would be spent and would help the economy.
Men like Mr. Romney, Wall Street manipulators with incomes in the hundreds of millions, health insurance and bank CEOs and other top earners would not even notice the missing money. They are not using it anyway. With millions of dollars a year, how could they spend any more than they already do? Whereas you and I could well use the extra $2,000 or $3,000 a year, which would really create new jobs as we bought new cars or televisions, paid our kids' tuition or took vacations and could once again afford to get our hair cut or visit the movies, a local restaurant or even the doctor's office where we could actually afford our medications.
David Liddle, PasadenaCopyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun