Moral bankruptcy begins with the acceptance of lies, especially lies made by and to oneself. This process proceeds among those with extreme political philosophies, and it is a sad day for America, which needs political balance for a healthy society. A forum for examining this idea is a debate about social security reform with irresponsible, demagogic rhetoric spoken by those who know better but harbor unknown reasons for telling lies. What motivates Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and AARP (which has received $1 billion in federal funds) are secondary to addressing the problem of fixing what is so obviously broken.
Twelve years hence, Social Security will have an $18 B deficit, mounting quickly to $200 B annually with a shortfall of $27 trillion over 75 years; the current SS unfunded liability is $10.5 T. Cutting benefits and/or raising tax does not solve the problem. The idea of "progressive price indexing" offered by the White House and grasped by left and right politicians succeeds only in higher tax with reduced benefits that occur sooner instead of later! Since 14 August 1935 when SS began and labor-income earners were coerced to pay Federal Insurance Contribution Act (FICA) that has been increased eighteen times, the national retirement system has been in failure mode because the "trust fund" is composed of federal bonds that are a liability and not an asset. So government lied to the public. There is no asset fund, FICA is not insurance, citizens must pay FICA tax, there is no guarantee of federal benefit payment, the taxpayer has no ownership of "contributions," and today 90% of all employees and self-employed are under the SS plan with 44 million receiving this form of welfare payment. This is quite important to individuals but in ways a greater concern to industry.