Wednesday, January 07, 2009


Our President Elect, Obama, is muttering something very scary - about our social security benefits and medicare. The word the news is using, and I hope Obama is not using is "ENTITLEMENT PROGRAM"

A legal definition of Entitlement Program is: A federal program that guarantees a certain level of benefits to persons or other entities who meet requirements set by law, such as Social Security, farm price supports or unemployment benefits. It thus leaves no discretion with Congress on how much mo.....The legal term, however, carries no value judgment: it simply denotes a right granted. For example in the United States of America, social security is an entitlement program.[1]

Now, I'm not quite sure I understand this. A right granted to receive back our own money?

We pay a hefty sum of our earnings throughout our working lives into Social Security and Medicare with the expectation we will get this back in monthly payments or services at the end of our lives. Should we be "entitled" to receive these payments back - of course we should - we have already paid our federal income tax in addition to our Social Security and Medicare payments.

The government has "borrowed" all our money that we entrusted to them for our old age "security program," so, of course government doesn't have the money to make future actual payments to the retirees of baby boomer age and elders.

Perhaps the government of the U.S. is adopting this translation of "Entitlement":

In clinical psychology and psychiatry, an unrealistic, exaggerated, or rigidly held sense of entitlement may be considered a symptom of Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

So when the government doesn't like things what do they do, change the law? Pur current President had quite a push for a while that we should be changing the program and place these contributions toward our retirement Social Security program into the stock market. Boy, that would have been a fine disaster for people who are retiring right now and in the future, would it?

Entitlement is a guarantee of access to benefits because of rights, or by agreement through law. It also refers, in a more casual sense to someone's belief that one is deserving of some particular reward or benefit.[1] It is often used as a pejorative term in popular parlance (i.e. a 'sense of entitlement').

How terribly cocky and presumptive of me, to think I would get back the funds I contributed all my life to these programs - yes, I confess, I do have a sense of entitlement -

I guess what our President Elect's exact plans will be remain to be seen. I will only say this: Obama, you said you knew what the common man goes through in trying to survive - don't let the nation's elderly population disappear into even worse poverty (granted, a few lucky or well planned people who have had no terrible life disasters still have their 401K's and savings left to rely on - but it doesn't take much to rob us of those nest eggs - that was the purpose of Social Security and Medicare - to provide a cushion in case of a failing economy!!!!!

Government can use our money to bail out banks who don't know how to manage their businesses - and then blandly sit back when the banks tell them that they just can't tell them where the money went - "into the pot" some said. I hope when Obama takes office he lets us have our own money - no more bank give aways, no stealing it for other uses - !


Babe said...

I hear 'ya!
Defies common sense.....
Hope,hope,hope that Obama will have divine Wisdom with all of this.
It seems to me that it's the government that feels a sense of "entitlement!"
Like we owe them OUR money to mismanage anyway they can.

Gardenia said...

Exactly, Babe. Yes, prayers for wise decisions...

Gardenia said...

Oi, my grammar and spelling - woops - low heart rate, dizzy head.....sorry!

tshsmom said...

Every year my cheery little memo from social security says that I won't be "entitled" to full retirement until I'm 66 3/4 yrs old. They also warn that my benefits will probably be cut by "at least 25%" at that time. Yeah baby, "entitle" me some more! :(

punxxi said...

being married to a guy with a degree in economics, makes me more scared of this guy than you can imagine!hopefully he wakes up and realizes that to do what he wants to do, will require the printing of money which equals the world devaluation of the dollar, and will throw this country into a DEPRESSION.mostly i hope that he is not so egotistical (jimmy carter , anyone?) that he micromanages everything and fubars the country so bad that we never dig ourselves out of the hole again. what i would like to ask him , is how does recycling old clinton and carter people equal change?

Gardenia said...

tshsmom - they've already been quietly and sneakily cutting benefits - my understanding was that earnings were based on last five quarters worked - but now I guess not, when I applied in '07, I found SS was calculated on "lifetime" earnings. I didn't earn a lot the first 20 years I was alive, (who does?) and not until I was almost 48 did I have a "livable" wage, the last two years being VERY livable...then like most women took a little bit of time off to raise children, and therefor early "calculators" were very deceiving and my actual payout was a discouraging "surprise!"

Obama's proposed idea to stop taxing our social security benefits will be a big help - - small as that amount may be - from the rumbles, I am thinking that perhaps even the Dems will be fighting him on a lot of stuff.

It has always been an afront to me that Seniors have to pay property tax, after paying for a home, and paying taxes all their earning years, if they can't pay their property taxes then the County gets the whole shebang, house, grounds, garage, trees - the whole works!

My mother's (she's 83) property taxes went sky high in Wyomning because of the energy "boom" - her social security check may see a raise of a teeny fraction of that raise, not nearly enough to cover increased taxes and utility costs. I don't know what the answer is. She is too ill to work, and who will hire an 83 year old anyway? Or a 62 year old?

Yeh, we've been "manufacturing paper" for a long time - its like our economy is a big monopoly game - paper money! I have an elderly German friend who said during a crash there that they used their paper money to cover the cracks in their walls to keep the wind out.