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Are Social Security and Medicare entitlements?

  1. Petra Vlah profile image60
    Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago

    Through our working years we all paid for Social Security and Medicare, so why are they considered entitlements when in fact we contributed our own money into the system?

  2. readytoescape profile image60
    readytoescapeposted 4 years ago

    I’d say simply the definition of the word, we are indeed “entitled” to the benefit systems we paid into.

    The issue comes into play when those that have not paid into to system believe they are “entitled” to those benefits. Further this issue and the use of the term is complicated by the bureaucracies and politicians abusing those “entitlement” programs to “buy” votes by providing benefits to those individuals that are indeed not entitled to receive them.

    By weaving “welfare” programs into the Social Security and Medicare umbrella, the Political definition of the term and therefore the discussion has been skewed.

  3. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago

    Paying in is what gives you the entitlement.  Entitlement is not a dirty word.  It means someone is getting what they are owed or were promised.

    1. Petra Vlah profile image60
      Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      The word is misused and confusing.
      I know we are entitled to get those benefits for which WE CONTRIBUTED for years.
      What makes it hard to understand  and accept is Why in God's name politicians calls them entitlements  when they are earned benefits and ESPECIALLY WHY are those programs bundle up with real entitlements like Welfare, House subsidies, food stamps, SSA and the rest

      1. Billy Hicks profile image91
        Billy Hicksposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        http://cdn.memegenerator.net/instances/250x250/27065370.jpg

  4. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago

    Um.  An entitlement is by definition something you are justly meant to have.  That is what it is always meant.

    Politicians lately have been talking about what used to be called 'a false sense of entitlement'--that is a feeling one is due something with out have earned or otherwise been justly promised.  This got shortened sometimes to 'a feeling of entitlement'.  But that is just recent slang.

    Trust politicians to mess up a perfectly good word.

    1. Petra Vlah profile image60
      Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Too trust politicians is like trusting a robber and giveing him credit for taking ONLY a few things from your house, but leaving some behind.

      1. Winter Maclen profile image81
        Winter Maclenposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Working in the senior services arena, in Illinois we have a program in which qualifying senior citizens - income and health issues are confirmed - are allowed paid home care rather than being placed in a nursing home.  Because circumstances determine the acceptance rather than anything else, it is considered an entitlement.  In our state the definition means they are entitled to service if they meet specific criteria, regardless of other factors - like unemployment benefits or social security. And if we paid in and we receive these benefits without intending to take advantage of the system, there is nothing wrong with this.  In our case, it keeps down the cost of caring for these folks as well as allows them to stay in their homes.

        1. Petra Vlah profile image60
          Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I have personal knowledge of other programs called entitlements just because people (whether legitimately or often through fraud qualify for it).
          Just to give you a few examples:

          - legal immigrants (mostly from ex-communist countries) who DID NOT WORKED one single  day in America are receiving a SS Supplement , at times greater than a regular SS of an American born who worked 30 years and contributed into the system.
          - the families of those immigrants signed a form saying their parents will never be a burden on the system and guess what? In a few months they claim their financial situation has changed and no longer can provide for their parents.
          - the children are receiving from the government financial aid to care for their parents (as if it in not a moral obligation to do so)
          - those elderly people are also receiving other benefits like medical supplies (and most of those supplies are being sent out of the country, mostly to Russia)
          - the subsidized homes for the elderly have programs that include massages, manicures and pedicures.

          Tell me how is that fair to Americans who have paid into the system and are not getting half as much?

          1. Petra Vlah profile image60
            Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Forgot to mention that they also receive $80 in coupons for taxi and they encourage each other to go to certain doctors as often as possible (for imaginary medical problems). The corrupt doctors (usually from their own country) bill the Medical and Medicare and remunerate the patients with gifts or money.

            Any wonder California is broke? Those people know how to work the system and they do it with no regard for moral standards

            1. Healthy Pursuits profile image89
              Healthy Pursuitsposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              The people you gave as an example account for a very small number of elderly who receive benefits. If proper fraud investigation procedures were in place, these people could be handled via reporting and investigation.  I suggest that you expose these practices by reporting them, instead of holding them up as a major example of how the system is abused. This isn't a major example. It's a minor one, considering the money involved. And it could be investigated.

              If the examples people give fairly represented the majority of elderly who are on SS, they would be examples of hard working people who have retired and now should be able to peacefully receive the benefits that they've paid into without being made to feel like thieves or deadbeats. These are honest people who have not only paid into SS their whole adult working lives, but they have paid taxes their whole working lives. 

              I know, because I'm one of them. I've been working and paying taxes since I was 12 years old, and I highly resent being lumped into the group of deadbeats and frauds who receive benefits. This was done by the Republicans to justify their vision of a smaller government, while they take all kinds of tax breaks themselves. I have changed my voter designation from Independent to Democrat because of the recent behavior of the Republicans.

              1. Petra Vlah profile image60
                Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I believe you did not really read my answer and just went up on flames.
                It is precisely people like you (for whom I have a lot of respect) that are being taken advantage of by people like them.
                You think those are just a few isolated cases? Let me assure you there are plenty of them and "a mafia" has been created to protect the fraud, so reporting such frequent incidents will get me nowhere

                1. Healthy Pursuits profile image89
                  Healthy Pursuitsposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  You did not read my post clearly. I was saying that as long as all we do is give one example after another of SS fraud, the focus is not on the majority of people who are receiving SS. The focus is on the fraud and all SS recipients get painted with the same suspicious brush.

      2. JayeWisdom profile image94
        JayeWisdomposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Petra...I love your simile about trusting a politician!

  5. rrhistorian profile image60
    rrhistorianposted 4 years ago

    Social security and medicare are termed entitlements because they are managed through a rules based program that requires people to be "entitled" to them.

    Although taxes are collected from all individuals who earn a wage, not all wage earners will be "entitled" to receive social security or medicare support due to their financial position when applying.  And, even when some people are "entitled", they only receive partial support from these programs based on the rules currently enforced.  Advancement of these programs requires better control of the use of funds collected by not allowing them to be taken for other activities.

    Additionally, to ensure proper management, these programs should be reconciled with the actual funding collected through the programs and that government should be required to place funds from other areas into them when the workforce cannot properly support them.  This would require the government to maintain a job focus where the people would lose support within the programs when the workforce collections into the programs were not sufficent.

  6. kathleenkat profile image89
    kathleenkatposted 4 years ago

    Those who paid in, are entitled.

    Those who did not pay in, are not.

    Unfortunatly, there are those receiving Social Security that did not pay into the system. In high school, I knew a girl a couple years older than me (18 or 19, at the time) who received Social Security because she was independent, and 'disabled' (autism) and 'struggling' (unemployed). Tell me, in what world, would an 18 year old have time to pay into Social Security? Currently, she is still on Social Security, pays it all to her parents for rent (who she probably can't legally even live with, but who knows?), and is continuing the drain that resource of those who actually deserve it.

    She is unlikely an isolated case. People abuse the system, all the time. I keep hearing that Social Security will probably run out by the time I am of retiring age (which, by the way, keeps climbing higher and higher because retirement funding is being stretched to the brink). No thanks to those who abuse the system.

    1. profile image0
      JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      It was never meant to be simply a retirement program... situations like that were part of the reason why the program was created.

      1. Petra Vlah profile image60
        Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Situations like what?

        1. profile image0
          JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          Disabled people, even if they didn't pay into it, among other things.

          Social Security isn't a retirement program, it's a social welfare program for specific groups.

          Old age(retired people), survivors, and disabled all fall under the program. It was never meant to be a retirement program where you get exactly what you paid into it back out at retirement.

          1. Petra Vlah profile image60
            Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            From what I understand social security is a supplement to everyone's individual retirement and I know even millionairess are getting SS whether they need it or not (mostly not!)

            1. profile image0
              JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              SS is the old age, survivors, and disability act. It isn't solely focused on retirement. In fact, it isn't technically about retirement at all. It's about welfare. The 'retirement' part has to do with the fact that we had old people who weren't able to take care of themselves, just as survivors and disabled people often aren't able to take care of themselves.

              If you want to learn more:
              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_Security_(United_States)
              http://www.ssa.gov/history/briefhistory3.html

            2. Repairguy47 profile image60
              Repairguy47posted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Millionaires paid into so what makes them less entitled than the 16 year old supposedly afflicted with bi-polar illness?

      2. kathleenkat profile image89
        kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        Okay... In WHAT world is a teenager with autism entitled to disability $$$?

        This girl would take me shopping every month, because she had to spend "all her Social Security, or it would get taken away!"

        People abuse the system. A person with a fully functional body, and the cognative ability to cash a check, has no excuse to be on Social Security at the age of 18. They can contribute to society by at least bagging groceries, and paying into Social Security, so they can have it when they're old and retired.

        1. profile image0
          JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          It depends on the level of autism... I definitely know of autistic people who can't take care of themselves. You don't think mental disabilities count as disabilities? Or do you not think that people should get money for being disabled.

          You didn't give other details, if she were capable of working and supporting herself, she shouldn't have been getting it, simple as that.

          But again, SS isn't just about retirement money. Never was either.

          1. kathleenkat profile image89
            kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            This person is abusing the system. I am positive of that. I cannot prove that to anyone else, as nobody knows her like I do.

            I didn't say that people with disabilities shouldn't get money. I am saying that people do abuse the system. My mom in Tennessee complains about fat people with wheelchair stickers on their car; she says disability aid gets handed out like candy down there; surely such a high percentage of the population doesn't really have such a problem walking to warrent parking closer to a store.

            I think the government needs to stop looking at disabilities on paper, and start interviewing these people. ADHD is also a mental disability, but there are plenty of employed and able people with it.

            1. PrettyPanther profile image83
              PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Ignorance is not pretty.  You might want to educate yourself about what is involved in getting disability.

            2. profile image0
              JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              If that's true, then I agree with you.

              I just thought you were against people who haven't paid into the program getting benefits.

              My cousin has a defect with his sciatic nerve, basically it is seated improperly in his glutes... so any muscle movement constricts on the nerve and causes him tremendous pain... he's on all those crazy painkillers that I don't even know the names of.

              When he went in for disability, he had to be interviewed by this doctor. That doctor told him he was one of the few who, in his opinion, really need it.

        2. PrettyPanther profile image83
          PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          I am the parent of two high-functioning autistic boys and you don't know what you're talking about.  Criticizing the disabled out of ignorance is just plain ugly.  You have no idea what hidden problems this girl might have.

          This is the problem with those of us who are able to work judging those who can't.  In order to receive disability, that girl or her parents had to jump through a lot of hoops and present a lot of evidence.  Many people who truly are disabled have to apply four or five times before they are finally approved.

          Your ignorance and your quickness to criticize is really ugly.

          1. Repairguy47 profile image60
            Repairguy47posted 4 years ago in reply to this

            Why are you attacking her?

            1. profile image0
              JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              I would guess for the comment about autistic people not deserving disability $$$...

              1. kathleenkat profile image89
                kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                There is a difference between "autistic people don't deserve disability" and "this particular autistic person that I know does not deserve disability."

                Don't put words in my mouth.

                1. profile image0
                  JaxsonRaineposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  Your comment was generic, not specific. It came across as an argument against autism, not that one person.

                  I'm not putting words in your mouth... that's just what you said. Perhaps you could have worded it better.

                  1. kathleenkat profile image89
                    kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    Perhaps you could have interpreted it better.

                    http://www.earthlingcommunication.com/a … earing.php

              2. Repairguy47 profile image60
                Repairguy47posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                I was being facetious.

            2. PrettyPanther profile image83
              PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Attacking?  I stated the truth.  You disagree?  You're entitled.

          2. kathleenkat profile image89
            kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            It's not quickness. I have known this girl for almost 10 years.

            She spends her Social Secuirty $$$ at the mall. She has, in the past, taken myself and a few others out on a huge shopping spree because she said if she had any Social Security left over, they would take it away from her.

            I attribute her inability to find work more to her dropping out of high school, rather than her autism. I know several autistic/aspergers individuals who have jobs, and are highly functioning. I am paying for her art supplies and new clothing with my Social Security payments.

            1. PrettyPanther profile image83
              PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              "I attribute her inability to find work more to her dropping out of high school, rather than her autism."

              Yes, because you're the expert on autism, right?  Unlike the professionals who performed in-depth evaluations, including ones hired by the federal government to evaluate her disability, right?

              1. Repairguy47 profile image60
                Repairguy47posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Because we know the government NEVER makes a mistake.

                1. PrettyPanther profile image83
                  PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  And neither do judgmental people like kat.

                  1. Repairguy47 profile image60
                    Repairguy47posted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    And you're not judgemental? I know I am.

              2. kathleenkat profile image89
                kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                Find me a job posting that doesn't at least list "high school or equivalent" that someone could reasonably live off of.

                1. PrettyPanther profile image83
                  PrettyPantherposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                  What does that have to do with her disability?  NOTHING.

                  1. kathleenkat profile image89
                    kathleenkatposted 4 years ago in reply to this

                    What does this have to do with my 18 year old highschool dropout friend that can't find a job (and uses her very mild autism as a way to get money)? SOMETHING.

        3. Mighty Mom profile image91
          Mighty Momposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          http://www.nami.org/Template.cfm?Sectio … ntID=82445

          Not necessarily. She could be on SSI or SSDI.
          Social Security is not automatically handed out. See link. It takes perseverance to apply and get accepted.
          If someone is receiving benefits, they've jumped through a lot of hurdles.

  7. psycheskinner profile image80
    psycheskinnerposted 4 years ago

    Just because you do not agree with what entitles a person to something, doesn't stop it from being an entitlement. The system is what it is and the word has the same meaning.

  8. profile image0
    Arlene V. Pomaposted 4 years ago

    I am not entitled to Social Security because my work did not pay into it.  And it's not that I am heartbroken.  Others have paid into the system all along and expect it to be there for them once they retire.

  9. maxoxam41 profile image79
    maxoxam41posted 4 years ago

    It is the duty of any government to take care of their people. I will extend the thought as far as, since we pay for the system to work, through our taxes, we should be entitled to the biggest share of the budget, not the defence!

  10. Xenonlit profile image60
    Xenonlitposted 4 years ago

    I don't want to hear that condescending lie about "Taking care of the people."

    It is called "honoring your contract" or "giving the people what they paid for"!

    Whenever you hear, and wherever you see the word "entitlement" associated with Social Security, Medicare or Veterans benefits, remind people that these are not entitlement. Remind them that these are contracts and don't ever let up.

    Medicare and Social Security are insurance programs that we pay for during the life of our working careers. We pay whether we want to or not. There is more than enough money to keep the trust going. In fact, there is a surplus every year. When the Federal government takes that surplus, it adds to our national debt. When the government pays its debt, the Social Security trust fund is capable of continuing its contract indefinitely.

    When Bush and Cheney stole a trillion dollars, that was theft. They need to be prosecuted and stripped of their titles and benefits for life.  When the American people allowed it to happen by electing and re-electing such crooks, then they screwed themselves out of their own insurance benefits.

    Veterans benefits are a CONTRACT with veterans who give up the right to sue and who are promised compensation when they lose body parts or their health in the course of protecting America. America has ex-cons who get more in workers compensation for fake back injuries than veterans get for having a leg blown off in a war.

    For draft dodging, non volunteering white men and women to call that an "entitlement" is a lie and it is pure evil.

    The Republicans did this when they pushed the catastrophic idea of "the corporation as a person". They kept pushing the idea for years, again and again, until weak Supreme court judges and legislators approved of a clearly fascist concept. There was no democracy in that decision. The people did not have a say.

    Now they're pushing the idea of stealing from our trust fund and defaulting on contracts with veterans. They keep pushing the lie about  "entitlements" until the more stupid and gullible decide that  the lie is true.

    Jump on this where you see it. Challenge it wherever you hear it, or get ready for the Fascist corporate state that used to be America.

    1. Petra Vlah profile image60
      Petra Vlahposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      I see it the same way like you:Social Security and Medicare as well as veterans benefits are Contracts that need to be respected and a type of Insurance that we bought for ourselves to use in case of sickness or in our old age.

      It is totally outrageous to even think about the government messing with such programs. To compare or to put those earned benefits in the same category with welfare, food stamps, housing subsidies, and the rest is crazy - they are NOT, by any means in the same zip code

 
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