“We are now in the midst of the fiercest and best-financed attack against Social Security in our lifetimes. […]
Despite right-wing misinformation, the program that benefits 55 million seniors, disabled Americans, widows, widowers and orphans has a $2.7 trillion surplus. Social Security, which is funded by the payroll tax, has not contributed one nickel to the deficit and, according to its trustees, can pay 100 percent of all benefits owed to every eligible American for the next 21 years.
Despite Social Security’s overwhelming success, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan has been a proponent of privatizing the retirement program by putting seniors’ savings into risky Wall Street investments. Even before tapping Ryan as his running mate, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney had said he wants to begin the process of privatizing Social Security. He also would gradually increase the retirement age to 68 or 69. And he favors slowing the growth of benefits for persons with ‘higher incomes.’ Under a plan floated by Romney’s allies on Capitol Hill - Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) - someone making about $45,000 a year today who retires in 2050 would receive 32 percent less in annual Social Security benefits than under the current formula. By that definition, the top 60 percent of all wage earners would be considered ‘higher income.’”