Despite the gloom and doomsayers, Social Security is in fine shape. It has $2.83 trillion in treasury bonds earning interest, which when added to the revenues collected from payroll taxes has exceeded the payouts to the beneficiaries every year over the past three decades.
In 2013, $769 billion was collected (including $94 billion in interest) and $714 billion was paid out, adding some $55 billion to reserves.
To alleviate the fear of funds running out, Congress may consider modifying the limits. In 2016, we will pay a flat 12.4 percent on $118,500 and zero on earnings above that. This is limiting the charge and payout amounts to low and medium wage earners.
We could eliminate the $118,500 limit or raise it to, say, $500,000. Also, as of 2013, individuals earning more that $200,000 a year pay an additional .9 percent in Medicare tax. Why not add the same to Social Security as well?
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Finally, do not privatize these funds.
Salam M. Nalia, Fresno