Bernard Madoff, Congress, and Andy Stern of the
Service Employees International Union (SEIU) are alike.
(Added to this website on 11/18/09.)
Main Menu Back to Trusting Our GovernmentNot long ago Bernard Madoff was glorified by the media as the greatest con artist of all time. He had taken billions of dollars from people who trusted him to invest their life savings for them. However, Madoff kept their money for his own use, buying mansions, yachts, and other expensive luxuries. He paid them dividends by taking money from those who invested later. In other words, he took Peter's money for his own use and paid Peter a dividend periodically by using Paul's money which came into his hands later. This worked well for Madoff until there were not enough Pauls to pay the Peters (the economic crunch). Madoff's whole bogus investment scam was discovered and many suddenly realized that they had lost their life savings. This is known as a Ponzi scheme and is as illegal as any scam can be.
Madoff was a bad man indeed who ruined the lives of many people. However, he was not the greatest con artist of all time. Most likely, the United States Congress, when it was dominated by the perpetrators of social security, was composed of the greatest con artists of all time. Social security is based upon taking money from the young to furnish retirement funds for the old. In the meantime, Congress can steal the money for their own pork barrel spending. In addition, the money can be considered theirs because they count upon the old to die off quickly so that dollars need not be spent to send out social security checks. And, of course, the annual increase in one's social security check can be set well below the rate of inflation which it is supposed to cover - and the initial check set well below a third of what it should be had the money been in a bank's certificate of deposit (CD) for all those years. Furthermore, the one who had been paying to the social security fund for all his life cannot leave the investment to his heirs - it goes to the government instead. So it is obvious that this government Ponzi scheme is much cleverer than Madoff's was. And once there is not enough money coming in from the younger crowd (as is now the case), the social security trust fund goes broke and everyone loses their life savings insofar as social security is concerned - which is what most depend upon. This makes the government the biggest criminal of all - or at least the Communist-dominated government that we had when social security was enacted.
Duped by Congressional Lies
by Walter E. Williams
Some of the responses to my column last week, titled "Immoral Beyond Redemption," prove that Americans have been hoodwinked by Congress. Some readers protested my counting Social Security among government handout programs that can be described as Congress' taking what belongs to one American and giving to another, to whom it doesn't belong -- legalized theft. They argued that they worked for 45 years and paid into Social Security and that the money they now receive is theirs. These people have been duped and shouldn't be held totally accountable for such a belief. Let's look at it.
The Social Security pamphlet of 1936 read, "Beginning November 24, 1936, the United States Government will set up a Social Security account for you. ... The checks will come to you as a right." ( www.ssa.gov/history/ssb36.html). Americans were led to believe that Social Security was like a retirement account and that money placed in it was, in fact, their property. Shortly after the Social Security Act's passage, it was challenged in the U.S. Supreme Court, in Helvering v. Davis (1937). The court held that Social Security was not an insurance program, saying, "The proceeds of both employee and employer taxes are to be paid into the Treasury like any other internal revenue generally, and are not earmarked in any way." In a 1960 case, Flemming v. Nestor, the Supreme Court said, "To engraft upon Social Security system a concept of 'accrued property rights' would deprive it of the flexibility and boldness in adjustment to ever-changing conditions which it demands."
Decades after Americans were duped into thinking that the money taken from them was theirs, the Social Security Administration belatedly and quietly tried to clean up its history of deception. Its website ( www.ssa.gov/history/nestor.html) explains, "Entitlement to Social Security benefits is not a contractual right." It adds: "There has been a temptation throughout the program's history for some people to suppose that their FICA payroll taxes entitle them to a benefit in a legal, contractual sense. ... Congress clearly had no such limitation in mind when crafting the law." The Social Security Administration's explanation fails to mention that it was the SSA itself that created the lie that "the checks will come to you as a right."
Here's my question to those who protest that their Social Security checks are not handouts: Seeing as Congress has not "set up a Social Security account for you" containing your 45 years' worth of Social Security contributions, where does the money you receive come from? I promise you it is not Santa Claus or the tooth fairy. The only way Congress can give one American a dollar is to first take it from some other American. Congress takes the earnings of a person who's currently in the workforce to give to a Social Security recipient. The sad fact of business is that Social Security recipients want their monthly check and couldn't care less about who has to pay. That's a vision shared by thieves who want something; the heck with who has to pay for it.
Then there's the fairness issue that we're so enamored with today. It turns out that half the federal budget is spent on programs primarily serving senior citizens, such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. But let's look at a few comparisons between younger Americans and older Americans. More than 80 percent of those older than 65 are homeowners, and 66 percent of them have no mortgage. Homeownership is at 40 percent for those younger than 35, and only 12 percent own their home free and clear of a mortgage. The average net worth of people older than 65 is about $230,000, whereas that of those younger than 35 is $10,000. There's nothing complicated about this; older people have been around longer. But what standard of fairness justifies taxing the earnings of workers who are less wealthy in order to pass them on to retirees who are far wealthier? There's no justification, but there's an explanation. Those older than 65 vote in greater numbers and have the ear of congressmen
Mr. Williams is correct in regard to social security, but leaves out a couple of things. First, younger people usually have jobs and are able to work hard physically. Older people do not usually have jobs and are not usually able to work hard physically. Second, the money the government stole from the older people should rightfully be theirs. It is the not the fault of the older people that the Ponzi scheme of social security makes them subject to the mercy of a crooked government. True, a more capable older generation might have, in their youth, voted out those who invented social security as it is - but how many people (old or young) can keep track of all the schemes of crooked politicians? After all, it takes a lot of time to work and raise a family.
The long-term solution is to have each person during his or her working years place a percentage of his or her income in a private CD that earns interest. The money in the CD would be available upon the individual's retirement, and when the individual dies, the balance would go to the heirs. Had we used this system when I was paying social security, my income from it today would be well over three and one-half times what it is now. And bear in mind that the crooked politicians can take what is left after one dies, so social security is more insidious than a mere Ponzi scheme - not only takes money from the young, but keeps money from those who die after retirement as well.
The short term solution is to stop spending the taxpayer's money on earmarks, bailouts, and organizations like ACORN - and use the money to do the right thing to those who have been forced to place their dollars into the Ponzi scheme known as social security.
Now the Obama administration is setting up another Ponzi scheme for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) which is headed by Andy Stern, the most frequent White House visitor since B.O. began to stink up that building. Stern's Communist-dominated union has been using a Ponzi scheme for years so that the retirement fund for its members is used for political purposes and wealth for the leaders while the new members fund the retirements of the old members as well as the union health care fund. However, recently the SEIU has been losing members and new members are needed so that the promises given to the old members in their retirement can be kept. Stern's solution is to (1) have Congress enact legislation that takes away the secret ballot from the members so that the SEIU thugs can see to it that all members vote the "right" way, (2) have Congress give handouts to the SEIU as they have done for ACORN in the past, (3) have Congress create legislation that will force people to join the unions (which will make some companies go out of business). Part of the health care package that is in Congress is designed to take pressure off the union health care funds, so that the SEIU will not go broke.
Stern is strongly advocating a comprehensive government-run health care system that will care for illegal aliens as well as American citizens. He is also advocating open borders for the United States. This will give him the new members he needs so much, and will see to it that the union health care fund is no longer needed. B.O. is most willing to play ball with Stern because it is the Communist-dominated unions and especially SEIU that provide much of B.O.'s campaign funds. B.O. has been hand-in-glove with SEIU for years and Stern's desire to have the "workers of the world unite" in one big union is exactly what comrade B.O. wants. Once again, we see that B.O. and his thugs are aiding the Communist movement in the U.S. And once again we see Communists creating an unconstitutional and otherwise criminal Ponzi scheme.
The Senior Citizens League (www.seniorsleague.org) has proposed the following Social Security Bill of Rights for Congress to pass.
1. Congress shall PAY Social Security Recipients a MINIMUM annual COLA of 3%...
2. Congress shall CORRECT the way the Social Security COLA is calculated so it reflects the REAL increase in the cost of living, and GUARANTEE said COLA under law...
3. Congress shall PROHIBIT the payment of social security benefits based on illegally performed work...
4. Congress shall GUARANTEE under law, that Social Security and Medicare benefits will be excluded from budget cuts and paid as promised...
5. Congress shall GIVE BACK the almost $3 trillion they have TAKEN from our Social Security retirement reserves...
6. Congress shall IMMEDIATELY pass into law the $5,000 Lump Sum Social Security Settlement for NOTCH VICTIMS...
Main Menu Back to Trusting Our Government