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Twisted Politics?

A good article on Social Security privatization which is currently being discussed in the US.

Most of the authors points apply to Canada as well:
Today, we refer to Social Security as an "entitlement." In the 1930's, however, that was not the case. It was thought of as social insurance. The difference is significant.

In the 1930's, relatively few people lived significantly past the retirement age of 65. In those days, it would have been foolhardy to save enough to last until you were 80. But if everyone contributed to a collective pool, then we could insure that the few who lived long past retirement would not be destitute.

Since the 1930's, longevity has increased by more than a decade. However, the Social Security retirement age has been raised only a few years. As a result, Social Security no longer represents insurance for the unusually long-lived. It is now an "entitlement" for everyone.
I don't particularly agree with the authors final conclusion but it is plenty valid.

Canada is going to have to make some radical changes at some point in the future to many of our social security programs. Like the author, you can't deny that providing need to the truely destitute is the right thing to do. It just irks me something terrible when I see people retiring in their fifties and early sixties so that they can play golf for 15 years. I don't mind the golf but knowing that my taxes are paying for their green fees just doesn't seem right.

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