Social Security

Richard Anthony

Many people ask us what we think about the government's Social Security System. Well, the answer is...we don't! Why? Because it's nothing more than a Pyramid Scheme foisted upon the weak and ignorant who mistakenly believe that God's provisions are not sufficient. Social Security is nothing more than coveting other people's money.

Canada has a similar program, and instead of a Social Security Number, it is called a Social Insurance Number, or S.I.N. for short. And a SIN is an accurate description for this Socialist Security Number.

To illustrate this fact, here is a little story about John Doe, who walks into an office building, and talks to Mr. X about a retirement plan. What would you do if you were John Doe?

John: I'm interested in investing in a retirement plan. What kind of plans do you have?

Mr. X: Well, we have a very special plan for you! It's a plan that will give you the utmost sense of security for your old age years.

John: Good. How does it work?

Mr. X: Well, you pay us a percentage of your paycheck each week. Better yet, you don't have to do a thing! To make it easier for you, we'll automatically deduct it from your paycheck every week. And when you reach retirement age, we'll pay you your retirement money on a monthly basis.

John: Do I determine for myself how much I pay into this plan every week?

Mr. X: No, we decide how much we will take from you.

John: How much do you deduct each week?

Mr. X: That changes, depending upon how much we need the money to pay the current retirees.

John: What is the retirement age?

Mr. X: Oh, the retirement age is whatever we say it is. It changes. As people live longer, we raise the retirement age up to compensate for our possible losses.

John: Hmm, I see. And if I start today, will the retirement age be locked at its current age?

Mr. X: No. If people are living longer when you reach retirement age, we will raise the age limit. I'm really sorry, but there's nothing you can do about it.

John: And just how much will I get paid once I retire?

Mr. X: Oh, that changes also. We are always lowering the payments as more people retire and draw from this system, because there is not enough money coming in to compensate for all the money going out. You see, we take the money that others have paid into it and, after we pocket most of it, we divide it among new retirees.

John: But, isn't that called a Pyramid Scheme?

Mr. X: Yes, it is. But we call it something else.

John: And aren't all Pyramid Scheme illegal in America?

Mr. X: Yes, they are. But, as I said, we call it something else. And besides, we are immune from those laws. You see, we're a subsidiary of a big corporation, and we have the backing of that corporation. Those laws don't apply to us.

John: I see. May I see the contract please?

Mr. X: There is no contract. All you have to do is trust us! Have faith in us. We'll give you our word that we'll pay you.

John: But, if there's no contract to sign, there's no guarantee that I'll get any retirement money from you!

Mr. X: Correct, but you do have our word.

John: If this office decides to cancel their retirement plan service, do I get back the money I already put into it?

Mr. X: No, we keep it all. We don't have to give you a penny. That's the law.

John: Well, I don't think I like what I'm hearing. It sounds like a scam. Give me one reason why I should consider your retirement plan if I am the one taking all the risk, and if there are no guarantees?

Mr. X: Well, 99% of all Americans partake of our retirement plan because they are led to believe it is mandatory to sign up.

John: So, let me get this straight. Your retirement plan is based upon the Pyramid Scheme, which is illegal in America. There is no guarantee that I'll get paid once I retire. You can change the retirement age at will. You can change how much is deducted from my paycheck at will. If this office decides to cancel this retirement plan service, I lose all the money I put into it. There's no written contract between us, only your word. There's no obligation for you to keep your word, but there appears to be an obligation for me to keep paying you money, regardless.

Mr. X: Yes, that is absolutely correct.

John: And what happens if I decide to stop paying into your retirement plan?

Mr. X: Oh, you can't stop. Once you start, you cannot voluntarily drop out.

John: Really? Well, let's say I decide to join your system. What happens if I stop paying into your retirement plan?

Mr. X: In that case, we will garnish your wages, confiscate your possessions, sell your house, car, and everything else you have. Then we'll take that money from those sales to pay your fair share of this retirement plan, plus interest and penalty fees. And, in addition to monetary damages, we will have you arrested, taken to court, and thrown in prison. And then we'll add court fees to your debt.

[Dear reader, what would you do if you were in John Doe's position?]

John: I don't believe what I'm hearing from you! What kind of security is this? I've heard enough! I'm leaving!

Mr. X: But, Mr. John Doe, according to our records, you have already joined our retirement system! It's called, "Social Security."

A Lesson in Provision

Israel's history demonstrates that the lesson of provision is one of the most important lessons we learn in our spiritual pilgrimage. This truth was certainly demonstrated during Israel's exodus from Egypt. It didn't take long for the provisions of Egypt to run out. Moses and the people expected a relatively quick trip across the Sinai Penninsula and into the land of Canaan. Unfortunately, what should have been about a two-week journey ended up being forty years of wandering. During those forty years God provided supernaturally for the nation. Six days a week, when the dew dried off the ground, a thin flaky substance was left on the desert floor. God called it "bread from heaven" (Exodus 16:4). When the people saw it they asked, "What is it?" (Exodus 16:15). That question in Hebrew could be transliterated, "man hu?" Eventually they called the substance "man ha," meaning roughly "it is what it is."

God's instruction was clear; each one is to gather as much as he needs (Exodus 16:16). No one was to gather a surplus. When they did, it rotted (Exodus 16:20). This was to be a day-by-day experience of God's provision. God faithfully provided manna for forty years.

After forty years, a new generation prepared to enter the promised land under the leadership of Joshua. Moses reminded this new generation of the provision of God and what it was intended to teach:

Deuteronomy 8:2-3, "And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live."

God Almighty was teaching Israel the lesson of provision. His covenant is one of provision. Therefore, as His children, we are to depend on God as the source of our security. We are to ask Him to meet our needs, and know by faith that He will. Remember, God feeds the ravens (Job 38:41) and not one sparrow is forgotten before God (Luke 12:6).

Luke 12:7, "Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows."

Security of the world is a false image, because there is no security there. You're only safe in the hands of the Lord when you follow His ways and do His Will. That's where true safety is and His Word shows us that, and He shows us that daily when we follow His Ways.

If you find you are looking to the State for your security a little more than you should be, simply repent of it. The Lord will provide for all your needs (Matthew 6:25-34, Luke 12:22-31, Philippians 4:19, Psalm 34:10). But, you may ask, "Don't I need social security?" Well, the State scares you by saying, "What are you going to do when you are old?" The State has convinced everyone that nobody's going to be there for you. Well, the Lord is always there for you.

We don't need insurance from man, because we have assurance from God:

Isaiah 32:17, "And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever."

Hebrews 10:22, "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water."

Would you not rather put your faith and trust in Almighty God, rather than in the "Socialist Security" insurance scheme?

Psalms 60:11-12, 108:12, "Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man."

Government Confessions on the Social Security Scam

The following is further information on the social security scam --- in their own words!

"Trust Fund balances are available to finance future benefits...but only in a bookkeeping sense...they do not consist of real economic assets that can be drawn down in the future to fund benefits. Instead, they are claims on the Treasury that, when redeemed, will have to be financed by raising taxes or borrowing." President Bill Clinton in his Analytical Perspectives section of the 2000 budget.

"We have no positive assets in the Social Security Trust Fund." Secretary of the Treasury, and one of the Social Security trustees, Paul O'Neill, June 19, 2001, at a luncheon speech to the Coalition for American Financial Security in the Sky Room of the World Trade Center and later to Sam Donaldson on This Week, Sunday, June 25, 2001.

"It holds no real assets. Consequently, it does not generate funds to pay future benefits. These so-called trust fund 'assets' simply reflect the accumulated sum of funds transferred from Social Security over the years to finance other government operations." June O'Neill, former Director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) at the CATO Institute's Conference for Women and Social Security.

"Government trust funds do not correspond in any meaningful way to those in the private sector. Government trust funds are simply a form of earmarking, accounting mechanisms that record tax receipts, user fees, and other credits and associated expenditures," Barry Anderson of the Congressional Budget Office in testimony before the House Budget Committee, September, 2002.

"It means that ordinary working Americans, like teachers, police officers and firefighters, who believe their payroll taxes are going toward their Social Security retirement are in for a surprise...Instead of going to the Social Security trust fund, their payroll contributions are being funneled directly into tax breaks for individuals and corporations" Robert Matsui (D-CA), Chairman House Ways & Means Subcommittee on Social Security, Associated Press, March 30, 2002.

"It is in this role as a savings account that the Trust Fund could fail. It cannot work because it holds no independent assets. Though the Trust Fund is backed by government securities, these have a different meaning than they would for you or me. If I hold a government bond, I have an assetthat the government will give me money for or that I can sell at any time. If the government holds a bond, however, its obligation to give itself money is meaningless. The government cannot make these bonds good, as needed in 2014, except by borrowing, reducing other expenditures or taxing citizens." House Budget Committee Chairman Nick Smith 6-8-99.

"In fact, the money the government has supposedly been putting aside from the Baby Boomers' Social Security taxes is not there. The government has been borrowing the money to pay for the budget deficit. The Social Security Trust Fund is simply IOUs from the U.S. Treasury.... [Social Security] would be fine if the government would stop borrowing the money." Newt Gingrich 4-7-95.

"The truth is that the Social Security Trust Fund has already been stripped bare. There is no trust and no fund. It is a lot like the S&Ls.  The savings and loans had a lot of real estate on the books, a lot of property, a lot of shopping centers, a lot of deposits, and everything else, until you looked inside and found out there was nothing there. The assets were mostly on paper.... Meanwhile, the Social Security cupboard is bare." Senator Ernest "Fritz" Hollings (D-SC) Congressional Record 4-24-91.

"The Enron case made headlines because fraud and deception of such magnitude is fairly unusual in the corporate world. Washington fraud and deception of a much greater magnitude doesn't make the headlines because fraud and deception in government is standard practice....Washington politicians have for decades been doing precisely what Enron has been accused of doing -- concealing debt with accounting tricks. Congressmen tell us that our Social Security taxes go into a trust fund to pay for future retirement pensions. That is a boldface lie. The Social Security trust fund has no money in it." Walter Williams, Professor of Economics, George Mason University in an article published by the Washington Times April 17, 2002.

"First, an immediate and significant reduction in the payroll tax will, more than any other proposal, put money in the hands of those who need it and will spend it -- across the entire income spectrum. It will give both employers and employees more cash as quickly as the next payday, thus relieving financial pressures on both. A just-released Congressional Budget Office study notes that a payroll tax cut 'would probably have a large bang for the buck' because it could induce spending and reach families with lower earnings. This action can be taken without undermining the Social Security Trust Fund or the benefits of current and future retirees." John T. Dillon, CEO of International Paper, in the Washington Post January 11, 2002, Editorial Page.

"When the money going out exceeds the money coming in, you are in trouble and that happens in 2016. Those who try to push the fatal date off to 2038 are counting the money that Social Security has in its so-called trust fund. However, the so-called trust fund exists only as a legal technicality, not as an economic cannot spend and save the same money." Thomas Sowell, The Washington Times, July 29, 2001.

"Enron's murky 'off-balance sheet' accounting practices highlighted its assets and downplayed its debts - as does Social Security's 'trust fund' accounting. While the trust fund's trillion dollars in government bonds are 'assets' to Social Security, they are debts to the rest of the government - which will have to raise taxes or cut other programs to repay them, just as if there had been no trust fund at all." Andrew G. Biggs of the CATO Institute for the Washington Times, April 4, 2002.

"Every dollar collected in (FICA) payroll taxes is spent the very minute, the very hour, the very day it comes in the door ... any funds left over,  they are spent on other programs or used to pay off the national debt.  But nothing is saved. No money is stashed away in bank vaults; no investments made in real assets." John C. Goodman, President of the National Center for Policy Analysis in an article published by the Washington Times, April 12, 2002.

Senator Peter Fitzgerald (R-Illinois) on the Senate floor during lock-box debates, 1999: "A few years back Congress passed laws making it illegal for State and local governments to plunder the pension funds of their employees. But during all this time, where Congress has put these laws on the books and made it illegal in the private sector and at the State and local government level to plunder pension funds, we have gone on and on in Washington taking all the money that goes into the Social Security trust fund, taking every dime of it out, and spending it on some other program. As a result, as I speak now on the Senate floor, there is no money in the Social Security trust fund. All of it has been taken out and spent on other programs. They have put meaningless, nonmarketable, nonnegotiable securities in the Social Security trust fund, securities that have no economic value because they cannot be sold to raise cash. Right now our Government is building up, theoretically, surpluses in the Social Security trust fund, but they are taking all that money out and spending it. So when we actually need it to pay benefits, beginning in the year 2014, there will be no money there. No matter what the balance of those bogus IOUs is in the Social Security trust fund, in the year 2014--whether that balance is $1 trillion or $5 trillion--they are of no assistance in paying benefits to those who depend on Social Security. The country will either have to raise taxes or cut benefits to make up for the shortfall that is anticipated after the year 2014. This legislation is basic, decent common sense. We should not allow Congress to continue frittering away the Social Security trust fund. I urge all my colleagues to support it and end this outrageous practice of plundering the Social Security trust fund, to the detriment of our Nation's seniors and those who will be desiring to live on Social Security benefits in the next century."

"Currently, the Social Security system is running a surplus, taking in more in taxes than it spends on benefits. That surplus is used to purchase government bonds -- the only purpose to which it can be put. The purchase of those bonds generates general revenue for the federal government and that money is spent on the operations of the federal government. That is a bad system, but it is how the trust fund was designed to work. The fund does not hold cash, never has held cash, and was not designed to hold cash." Michael Tanner-CATO Institute 10-16-99.

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