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Senior Contributor

Payroll taxes = Social Security, or not?

“When you start funding Social Security that way, you basically destroy any notion that people really paid for their Social Security benefits,” he said. “We’ve got this political dynamic that says, ‘Well, if you don’t extend this, then you’re in favor of raising taxes on poor working people. If that’s the dynamic, then Social Security is in really severe trouble.”


When they started talking about reducing "payroll taxes" to act as a stimulus, a tax cut for the Working People, and a flood money into the economy, my jaw dropped and out came a big, "Huh???"  They dropped the employee's share of FICA from 6.2% to 4.2% (they left the employer's share at 6.2% -- those evil capitalists don't need the help.)


I thought Social Securty was on the ropes!!! And we are reducing the funding for it by approx. 16%???  No one said boo about this. My jaw was still on the floor.


Only thing it showed me was that the FICA portion of the withholding taxes is just another federal tax and has nothing to do with Social Security. It is after all just a "payroll tax." Social Security funding is just another hog at the general fund's trough.  Guess I am a little late coming to the table of understanding and the political games of taxes, social security and the welfare state.


The payroll tax reduction was just to be temporary. Now the far left party is screeming that to not extend the payroll tax reduction is "raising taxes on the Working People."


But if it is ok for the Working People, I guess I am on board.

Senior Advisor

Re: Payroll taxes = Social Security, or not?

You pay in less you get less back.


I realize how desperately it needs to be that way to assuage the social conservative and cultural and ethnic elitists, but that's not how it has actually played out anywhere:


But it makes low browed  politics, destructive governing and extractive business operations simple.  And easy to explain to the sheep.... so why not go for it?

Re: Payroll taxes = Social Security, or not?

Bingo! The supreme court ruled back in the '60s that ss was a tax and that the federal government was under no binding obligation to payout one nickle in benefits.