Member Rara Avis
I'm just wodering, where do you see socialism in that?
It's pretty much embedded right in the phrase, Jim. Social security?
A citizen works for most of his/her life and pays into Social Security for thirty or more years.
First, Jim, you're suggesting the role of government is to force its citizens into saving for their future. You really want to go there?
Second, what a pensioner he can withdraw is generally not tied to what he put in.
Third, the money an individual contributes to the general fund is only half the story . . . literally. His employer also contributes half, remember? And of course any tax on business is ultimately just a hidden tax on the population; it's a cost of doing business, not a deduction from their profits, after all.
I'm not, however, saying I think you're necessarily wrong. See my comments below to Alison.
As far as elder care - we take care of our own in my family. It would be nice if all old people were so lucky.
Exactly so, Alison.
My stance has generally been that people should take care of people. Voluntarily, not under duress or mandate. The people who need the help get it, and the people who provide the help . . . also get it. Turning charity into a government bureaucracy opens the door to gaming the system and closes the door to anyone feeling good about their involvement. People who need help should get it from family, church, and community. And, of course, that's the way it was for thousands of years. It sure didn't work perfectly, and I'll be the first to admit it. Instead of trying to fix the old way, however, perhaps by financially encouraging people to help people, we threw the baby out with the bath water and put in a system that ultimately works even less well.
There's an overly long, somewhat experimental, and certainly not very good short story called Retirement over in the Prose forum that tries to explore my views on this in more depth.
"Wait a minute," says Dorothy, her hand shooting up like a school child. "You almost make it sound like Social Security was evil. Hell, it sounds absolutely great to me."
"It was great," I say, nodding. "And the ideals behind it were even greater. It just couldn't last. As great as the idea was, it's actual implementation depended on a young work force supporting the one that had gone before it. It never took into account the fact that people were already living longer, even with the poor health care of the Twentieth Century, and many more people were living beyond retirement age. In 1900, there were only 123,000 Americans 85 years old, Dorothy. By the end of that century, there were three million. By the middle of this century, in 2050, there were fifty million, even though Social Security had already gone the way of the dinosaur and American eagle."
PS You ok Ron? An expletive here, and the right and wrong thing in t'other thread. You seem uncharacteristically excitable!
LOL. I sometimes forget, Moon, that Americans speak a different English than the rest of the world. Over here, the word bloody has essentially the same meaning as it does in your part of the world, but quite a different connotation. I'd put it in the same neighborhood as dang or gosh? I understand, from conversations with other Brits, that it comes across a bit stronger and less polite for you? I'll try to remember that.
Swearing is like using bold or exclamation points in writing; it only generates attention when kept in moderation. I swear in my writing about as often as I use exclamation points. Which would be rarely for the former and almost never for the latter.