Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Are People Seriously Stupid When It Comes to the "Elderly"?

Ok, let's start off with one thing. I think the elderly are overly-coddled in this country. I think they get too many special perks. And I really, really don't like the AARP.

I think if you really want to help the elderly, you do it early. You make sure that kids get educated. You make sure that you create the right environment for jobs to be created. You give incentives for people to save.

Yes, I do believe that there should be some assistance, but I think it is wrong for the elderly to think that they are entitled to assistance simply because they are elderly. I love my grandparents, but I still question the wisdom in the government doling out Social Security benefits to them every month given how successful they were during their working years.

I think that if there are any benefits paid out to the elderly, simply because they are "elderly", then there should be a means test. Yes, I know it gets into the whole "Well I paid into social security for 50 years with my taxes" argument. I really don't care. We have already said in this country that its ok to subsidize people because they don't earn as much or can't find a job. I do not think its ok to simply to subsidize their incomes because of their age.

And, in case people have not noticed, people are living longer these days. Back when Social Security was first rolled out, life expectency was about 62 years. For men it was actually about 58. Meaning that most of the people would die before or just after they started to be elligible to collect their benefits. However, we, in our infinite wisdom, have failed to take into account this fact and still give out the benefits as if people were going to live for the same number of years as they would back in the 1930s. Currently, life expectancy is about 75 years.

Apparently, though, this is not enough. Apparently, someone wants to do away with taxes for people over the age of 55. This little bit of insanity is brought to you be Lee W. Olsen. Not content to ending income tax for people over 55 (and quite frankly 55 is just middle age these days, not elderly), he wants to do away with property tax and any other sort of tax on people over 55.

So let's see if this makes sense. Let's make schools so unaffordable that if you are able to secure the funding, you will end up paying off debt for the next two or three decades. Let's also decrease the tax pool, putting an even greater proportion of the tax burden on one group of people. Then, lets also demand that this group of people pay for the subsidization of the elderly.

I guess in a way it does make sense. By the time you hit 55, you'll be broke, or been bankrupted by the whole thing so you'll need to have a subsidy to tide you over.

Yeah, I know, this is really cutting into my street cred with my progressive friends. I look at it as if you live in this country, and in this state, you have to kick in your fair share. What that share is, that is another question. But I see no reason to simply exempt a group because of their age.


Leonardo said...

the aarp is intended for retiree's who have alot of money. I'm sure it started out as a good idea. You can go all around the world at discount prices. It also gives political clot to people 60 to 75 years of age. It does nothing to help me. But I'm in the minority and always will be. I've gotten use to it. I'm curious
what age is considered elderly?

AngryBell said...

Without doing the math, my gut says 70.