The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age


    It was reported yesterday that Senator Begich, (D) Alaska, introduced his bill on Tuesday to build up, not tear down, Social Security!

    Begich's office says the bill would extend the solvency of the program for about 75 years, instead of until 2033, which is when reserves now are estimated to be exhausted.

    The bill would lift the cap on taxable earnings for Social Security, making all earnings subject to the Social Security payroll tax. A report states that the Congressional Research Service has found that this legislation, when made law, would eliminate 95 percent of the projected shortfall. The basis cites that the slight raise in the payroll tax rate from 12.4 percent to 12.5 percent would be enough to eliminate the projected gap. Even without any modifications, the resulting funding would be able to pay out full benefits beyond 2085.

    It would deliver to high earners, who would be paying more, increased benefits upon retirement, the same as benefits rise as wages do for workers below the cap.

    President Obama’s response will be interesting to watch because this does appear to breach his pledge to not raise taxes on people making under $250,000.  Of course, Begich’s proposed legislation will no doubt encounter opposition due to creating a larger tax contribution for those generating between $110,100 and $250,000 and of course, it is a progressive plan.

    However, IMO, this is a positive action that provides resolution to the ongoing Social Security quagmire. 

    For more info and copy of bill's text go to:



    I have been thinking about this.

    The repubs really wish to cut SS benefits.

    Their logic involves facing the fact that the SS fund is really part of the general tax fund since, per a series of accounting frauds, there is no SS fund in reality.

    If one follows this logic carefully the truth is that anyone who pays into SS and Medicare is really paying regular taxes; and at a rate equal to those receiving capital gains, dividends and interest.

    So in the end there is no 47% dead head group in this country.

    There are no 'takers' among wage earners.

    dd, The more I research and consider this bill, it's just common sense.  I am hopeful that many will write to their congressional representatives, WH and to Senator Begich to show enthusiasm and support for this bill ASAP.  It's very important and am also helpful Bernie Sanders' supporters will sign on to this too.

    Lots of good info on Begich's website and many other sites.

    This is a fine piece of proposed legislation indeed.

    I cannot see the House backing anything like this unless the repub coalition really does fall apart.

    Regardless, the Alaskan Senator might have begun something that could come to fruition if the dems take over the House in the next election.

    Their logic involves facing the fact that the SS fund is really part of the general tax fund since, per a series of accounting frauds, there is no SS fund in reality.

    I think you are mistaken in that statement. What you call an accounting fraud is actually a rhetorical fraud. What you call "facing the fact that the SS fund is really part of the general tax fund" is the lie that Republicans hope is believed so that they can justify cutbacks to SS. The account that SS tax funds goes into exists and is legitimate. The fact that there is no other legitimate place to invest that fund other than in U.S. bonds lets the government use those funds just as if  it was general revenue and lets them paint the cost of paying when the bonds are cashed out as proof [a lie] that SS is a reason for our huge deficits. 

     If the gov left billions in payroll taxes hidden under the mattress drawing no interest and borrowed that much more more from China instead, it would be clear that the SS trust fund was indeed funded. There would be a big pile of hundred dollar bills to prove it, but that pile would not be drawing interest from the most secure investment available on the planet and an equivalent amount would need be borrowed from foreign countries at whatever the prevailing rate is to cover the difference. Doing away completely with SS, and cutting the tax that funds it, would have exactly the same affect.

    That is pretty good logic Lulu.

    But at least according to the repubs, all payroll taxes are part of the general taxes and therefore, according to THEIR logic the forty percent of wage earners that pay no Federal taxes are really paying Federal taxes.

    Your analysis is the truth.

    I think i get it!

    Thank you.

    Latest Comments