Tuesday, August 14, 2007

An Oldie but Goodie

72 years ago today President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Social Security Act. Today, nearly 50 million seniors, the disabled, and survivors receive Social Security benefits and for many it will make the difference between living independently or in poverty.

No other government program in American history can claim the successes achieved by Social Security. Period. Attacks and misleading predictions about sustainability have been leveled against the program since its creation and still, Social Security checks go out on time and as promised. Whether you’re 72 or 22, it appears Social Security is poised to play an even larger role in your life.

A new report by the Center for American Progress details the decline in pensions, personal savings and median incomes, which increase the importance of the only, guaranteed retirement income…Social Security. These are especially important facts for our younger workers who have been told repeatedly that “Social Security won’t be there for you”.

What nonsense.

Here’s a great source for some historical perspective. “The Battle for Social Security—From FDR’s Vision to Bush’s Gamble”. Author Nancy Altman says Social Security’s most important champion has always been the American people.

“Through its many challenges, Social Security has always emerged victorious,because Americans have remained committed to this essential program. The large majority of Americans have supported Social Security because it embodies the best of American values, including reward for work, compassion, fairness, foresight, and prudent, conservative management. This unflagging support has permitted Social Security to eradicate much of the economic insecurity of the past and to transform society.”

Ultimately, it will be the next generation of workers who will have to see through the political hype and the privatization schemes, and come to the same conclusion generations before them have...Social Security can and must be strengthened for generations to come.

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