Letters to the Editor

Plan to privatize Social Security raises hackles

In his State of the Union”address, President Bush tried to sell us a lemon. And personally, I’m tired of making lemonade!

The president is trying to dress up a very risky Social Security privatization scheme –– which, in reality, would guarantee benefit cuts for the American people and actually divert billions in taxpayer money to the president’s Wall Street friends.

Social Security can meet 100 percent of its obligations for the next 37 years with no changes to the current system, according to the Social Security Administration itself. So why does President Bush act as if the sky is falling?

Everyone agrees that there are things that we could and should do to make Social Security stronger, but the real crisis would be the president’s own privatization plan, which would cut our benefits and unravel our nation’s most successful anti-poverty program.

Rather than limit solutions to privatization, I think the president shoulf focus instead on solutions that don’t involve taking money out of our pockets! For example, the president himself only pays Social Security taxes on a fraction of his income. If he and all the others who earn more than $90,000 a year paid Social Security tax on all of their income like we do, then we wouldn’t be having this conversation. People should know even the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that privatization would require benefit cuts.

Millions of Americans rely on Social Security to keep them from falling into poverty after they have passed the age of earning top-dollar. It just doesn’t make any sense to replace a guaranteed benefit with a guaranteed gamble.

Rae Lynn Hilliard

Federal Way

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