Trillions of Reasons

Do you pay into Social Security? I certainly do. Of course, every dime I put in is worth it for the chuckles I set loose annually upon being informed by the Social Security Administration how much I’ll be getting when I retire.

Via Media puts it bluntly:

The program is now supporting peopleĀ for an average 25 years of old age rather than five, as it did originally. And while in 1960 there were 4.9 workers paying Social Security taxes for each beneficiary, that number has dropped to 2.8 today and is expected to drop to 1.9 in 2035.

I see. So, what does that mean in the new math? Or the old math, for that matter. We’d need to invest trillions of dollars today which we do not have, and get a rate of return above historical interest rates to provide the money we would need to cover retirements for everybody who is currently in the workforce (including 18-year-olds who got angry for the first time when Uncle Obama took a bite of their paychecks).

So, what’s the other option? We put on our big boy pants and stop promising people something we can’t deliver.

Don’t hold your breath–unless you wish to singlehandedly contribute to a smaller number of future retirees.