Social Security Privatization Scam is S & L big time

-----Original Message-----
From: David Ingram [mailto:taxman at]
Sent: Thursday, January 13, 2005 1:23 PM
Cc: Webmaster at Jurock. Com; Roberts Joseph
Subject: Social Security Privatization Scam is S & L
big time
Importance: High
My comments about Social Security not going broke
generated many comments.
This is perhaps the best response with the most
information. It came from Joseph Roberts, editor,
publisher and owner of Vancouver's Common Ground
Magazine (
Give it a thought, check out the figures yourself, and
then think seriously about whether or not you want to
see Social Security Privatized.  Pay particular
attention to 1996 when Alan Greenspan states that the
Stock market may be over inflated and then tells
seniors to invest in the market the next day.
I am going to send this twice. Once with the cartoons
attached and once with them removed because so many of
my recipients have email filters that reject anything
with an attachment.
If you get it twice, erase the second one. It is the
one without the attachment cartoons.
david ingram
-----Original Message-----
From: Joseph Roberts [mailto:joseph at]
Sent: Thursday, January 13, 2005 11:56 AM
To: editor Common Ground
Subject: Social Security Privatization Scam is S & L
big time
Importance: High
Dear friends:
This is a very real live, real time act of robbery of
taxes from the misguided and mass media manipulated
citizenry of the USA.
It is BIG MONEY and it is the Saving & Loans Scandal
written LARGE. Understand the game and act now or
forever lose your life savings.
The S & L scandal was only the practice for this act of
political piracy by Politicians for Profiteers.  It is
a pre-emptive invasion of the Security Savings of
Americans who have worked their whole live for what,
just to be robbed by the Bushites?
But forewarned is forearmed. FDR warned you (see
article), pay attention.
Get the word out NOW.
Can we stand four more years of having the citizens of
the USA scared silly and robbed of everything they are
worth. The Security Savings took decades and lifetimes
to build, keep your eye on the ball or you will loss it
in these "four more years". This is bigger than Iraq.
Yes, do give these cartoons a look and read the
accompanying articles.
----- Original Message -----
From: Paul Grignon
To: Paul Grignon
Sent: Thursday, January 13, 2005 8:24 AM
Subject: The Social Security Privatization Hoax
An update from
The Social Security Privatization Hoax
By Norman D. Livergood
     Politicians and Wall Streeters are peddling the
Big Lie that Social Security is inevitably going bust.
It is not!
     The Social Security System (SSS) runs at a surplus
of $100-$120 billion annually and will continue to do
so throughout the twenty-first century! This trust fund
system is one of the few programs set up by the federal
government that works. In 1999, SSS received $383
billion in checks, $436 billion in taxes, and an
additional $49 billion in interest. Instead of red ink,
Social Security made almost $102 billion in profit, to
add to the more than $652 billion it had in surplus
from previous years.
     On December 6, 1996, Federal Reserve Chairman,
Alan Greenspan, called for "prompt action to rescue the
financially threatened Social Security system."
Greenspan endorsed the privatization scams which would
require workers to put their Social Security retirement
payments into the stock market.
     Greenspan certainly isn't obsessed with the
hobgoblin of consistency. On December 5, 1996 - the
previous day - Greenspan announced that the stock
market was in trouble because of what he called
"irrational exuberance." In other words, one day
Greenspan intimates that the stock market may be in for
a new speculative disaster on the order of the Great
Crash of 1929. The next day Greenspan declares that
American workers ought to put their retirement money
into this same treacherous stock market that that very
day lost witless investors between $700 million and $1
     In the months to come similar "experts" will warn
us that the Social Security System is facing disaster.
Every day the feeding frenzy continues, with columnists
and other sycophants falling into step. Fortunately,
some leaders have the courage to speak the truth.
Robert M. Ball, former Commissioner of Social Security
from 1962-1973 and a member of the Advisory Council on
Social Security, said "there is no financial crisis in
Social Security." As Ball explained, the system is
today accruing substantial surpluses and total income
will exceed outlays until about the year 2020. After
that Social Security reserves--estimated at $3
trillion--will be used to pay ongoing benefits that
exceed the level of current taxes. By 2070, benefits
are projected to exceed taxes by about 5.5 percent of
taxable wages.
      The sky is not falling. The fact is that the
Social Security System is doing fine and faces only the
danger that the public might believe the big lies that
Greenspan, Congress, and Wall Street are mounting
against it.
     Big Lie # 2: The Social Security System will run
out of money by the year 2029 (or 2034 or 2037).
      The Truth: These projections are based on totally
unrealistic projections made by so-called bipartisan
(but not nonpartisan) commissions packed with Wall
Streeters, bankers, and financiers. George W. Bush's
Social Security panel has eight Democrats and eight
Republicans, but all of them were picked because they
agreed with Dubya's social security Wall Street scam:
stock market "personal retirement accounts." Dubya's
panel is chaired by Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan
(D:NY) and AOL Time Warner's CEO, Richard Parsons. This
notwithstanding AOL Time Warner's payment of $5.5
million in 2000 to settle a lawsuit alleging the
company illegally denied pension and health benefits to
its workers.
     Panel projections take the Social Security System
trustees' worst-case scenario and claim it to be the
only realistic picture of the future for the SSS. The
so-called independent studies of Social Security
funding have been financed by the very Wall Street
firms who want to grab the money. For example, the Cato
Institute Project on Social Security Privatization was
funded by American Express, the brokerage house of Alex
Brown and Company, and the giant American International
Group. The co-chairmen of the Cato Institute project
are William Shipman, a senior officer at the Boston
State Street Bank, and Jose Piñera, the man who
privatized Chile's social security system, resulting in
a $1.5 billion loss to Chilean citizens in 1995.
     As Robert Dreyfuss shows in his 1996 article in
Mother Jones ("The End of Social Security As We Know
It?" Nov/Dec, 1996), the Chilean "model" is a clear
warning to Americans, with the Chilean workers losing
four percent of their investments in the privatized
social security scam while the corporations managing
the accounts earned profits of more than twenty
percent! The Chilean military dictatorship foisted the
social security privatization scam on the workers
through their total control over the public media.
     How ridiculous is this worst-case projection? Over
the past seventy-five years the American economy has
been growing at about 2.8% annually. Even during the
worst economic times in the U.S. - during the 1930s
depression - the economy grew at 1.9%. Now these
doomsayers insist that the U.S. economy will only grow
at 1.4% annually over the next 75 years! So, if you
predict that our economic growth will fall below even
the all-time low of the 1930s depression, the Social
Security System gets into financial trouble in about
the year 2037. But if you take a more realistic view of
the U.S. economy, even a modest 2% growth rate, the
Social Security System will stay solvent, in fact reap
a surplus, throughout the entire twenty-first century.
     The impact of Social Security benefits on the
lives of citizens and on local economies is
incalculable. In 1995 Social Security paid $340 billion
in benefits. Forty-two percent of American senior
citizens are kept from living in poverty by their
Social Security payments. Nearly one in five Americans
receives Social Security benefits and ninety-five
percent of Americans have the Social Security benefit
protection program.
     Big Lie # 3: The only way out of disaster for
Social Security is privatization.
      The Truth: Privatization schemes are PIRATIZATION
      The same Wall Street firms who contribute big
bucks to the campaigns of presidents and senators now
want to loot the Social Security System of trillions of
dollars and jeopardize the survival of millions of
retired Americans. These self-appointed leaders
established a 40-member Public Pension Reform Caucus in
Congress, co-chaired by Representative James Kolbe,
Republican of Arizona, and Representative Charles
Stenhold, Democrat of Texas. In July, 1996,
Representative Nick Smith, Republican from Michigan,
introduced H.R. 3758, the "Social Security Solvency
Act," which would begin the piratization process by
diverting about one-sixth of workers' Social Security
contributions into private retirement funds. The amount
would increase to 80% over a period of a few years.
Other bills now being considered would increase the
rate of looting at an even faster clip. Most bills
follow the Chilean model, requiring workers to pay an
additional 1% annual management fee to the private
brokerage firms.
     It would be insane for Americans to allow Wall
Street brokerage firms to handle the Social Security
System trust fund. These same brokerage firms now
manage private pension funds by investing the assets in
their own stocks and bonds swindles, often leaving
insufficient money in place to pay pensions. They have
lost and continue to lose money in Wall Street gambling
schemes such as the global derivatives market, still an
ongoing $3.5 trillion a day fiasco, despite scandals
and a bad press. Private pension fund losses because of
brokerage firm derivatives speculation have already
been exposed in Wisconsin, Virginia, Connecticut, and
     One of the privatization schemes has been created
by a group whose name is right out of 1984: the
Quadrennial Advisory Council on Social Security. They
plan to have individual workers put 5% of their income
into a private IRA, leaving the other 1.2% for the
Social Security fund. So you lose your retirement fund
through your IRA gambling scheme - and who's going to
take care of you?
     Wall Street is pumping millions of dollars into a
small band of organizations, public relations firms and
"think tanks" whose mission it is to undermine public
confidence in Social Security and push for
privatization. Among the Wall Street trading firms,
insurance companies and corporate donors working to
undermine Social Security are:
? Merrill Lynch
? T. Rowe Price
? Aetna
? American Express
? Morgan Stanley
? Oppenheimer Funds
? Quick and Reilly
? Watson Wyatt Worldwide
? State Street Bank and Trust
? Investment Company Institute
? DuPont
? Motorola
? Securities Industries Association
? American International Group
? National Association of Manufacturers
? Fidelity Investments
? Blackstone Group
? AIG Life
? American Council of Life Insurance
? Teleos Asset Management
? Digital Equipment
? I.B.M.
? Alex Brown and Sons
? Rockport Financial
Social Security Snake Oil Salesmen
Professional Budget Hysterics
      "Just two years ago a wide array of
Washington organizations, including the Cato Institute,
the Concord Coalition, the Heritage Foundation,
Americans for Tax Reform, the National Taxpayers Union,
Third Millennium, and Citizens for a Sound Economy
advocated massive cuts to Medicare, Social Security and
Medicaid as the only way to reduce the Federal budget
deficit. These organizations dismissed, out of hand,
any notion that economic growth could balance the
budget or that a very modest tax increase could put the
federal budget back into alignment.
     "Since then, economic growth and modest tax
increases have eliminated the federal budget deficit.
But like a snake oil salesman with only one patent
medicine, the Washington-based budget hysterics have
not changed their remedy -- they have only changed the
disease. Now, in order to "fix" Social Security's
possible long-term actuarial problems, these same
organizations are pushing for massive benefit cuts in
order to finance the multi-trillion dollar cost of
switching to a "privatized" system. And once again,
when asked about economic growth and modest tax
increases as a curative, they simply dismiss these
solutions out of hand as "unrealistic" or 'not
politically feasible.'"
National Council of Senior Citizens, "Wall Street
Affluence Buys Washington Influence"
Wall Street's Green Hornet and Its Trusty Side-Kick,
     The point-man for Wall Street's Social Security
scam is Jose Piñera, who was the minister of labor from
1978 to 1980 under the brutal right-wing dictatorship
of Alfredo Pinochet in Chile. Piñera is currently
president of the International Center for Pension
Reform and Co-Chairman of the Cato Project on Social
Security Privatization. The Cato Institute, a
right-wing think-tank, claims to be "libertarian," If
you wonder why a "libertarian" organization is the
spearhead for the privatization scam, you have only to
be aware that Merrill Lynch is the chief contributor to
Cato's expenses.
      Piñera and other Wall Street paid agents tout
Chile as the role model for the U.S. to follow in
"reforming" its Social Security "crisis." Let's take
another close look at the so-called Chilean model:
• Nearly half of Chilean workers choose not to make
regular Social Security contributions, because they
have little reason to believe that money taken from
their checks by the government will ever be returned to
them in the form of promised benefits decades into the
• The benefits citizens in Chile receive are so
breathtakingly low they amount to a national disgrace
Under Chile's new pension system salary deductions are
higher than FICA taxes levied in the United States. In
Chile, workers must put 10 percent of their earnings
into individual retirement accounts, and give 7 percent
of their earnings to finance health benefits, and
deduct 3.3 percent of their earnings to finance
survivor and disability payments. An average worker in
Chile, then, pays 20.3 percent in payroll taxes versus
7.65 percent for U.S. workers (15.3 percent including
the employers' side).
• In Chile, between 10 and 20 percent of worker
contributions to the pension funds go to fund
administrators, resulting in smaller returns than
"gross revenue" statistics would suggest. Between 1982
and 1995, for example, the average rate of return on
pension investments in Chile totaled 12.7 percent.
After factoring in commissions to fund handlers,
however, the average real rate of return of Chilean
pension fund investments totaled less than 2 percent!
Under the current U.S. system, Americans pay no
commissions; and administrative costs eat up less than
1 percent of a workers' contributions.
• The average rate of return on Chilean pension
accounts in 1995 was negative 2.5 percent!
• The Chilean stock market lost nearly 20% of its value
in the first half of 1998, on top of a steep drop which
followed the October, 1997 global financial shock
• The Chilean pension fund has dropped from the $33
billion at its high point in 1997 to $29 billion today
     Having stolen the presidential election, George W.
Bush now wants to steal the taxpayers' social security
as well by having them invest in Wall Street, which in
March, 2000, saw investors losing $4 TRILLION. The Bush
plan calls for diverting 2% of today's workers' Social
Security payroll taxes into private Wall Street
accounts, the same accounts. Bush and his Wall Street
flunkies want you to think that this refers to a measly
2% of the entire Social Security reserve fund, but it
actually means 2% of the 12.4 percentage points of
total salary that now go into Social Security payroll
taxes--one-sixth of the total payroll tax money. Under
this scenario, Social Security would lose one-sixth of
the money that now flows in, representing a staggering
$74 billion loss to Social Security the very first
     Individual stock market accounts would cost a
bundle. We'd have to pay for two Social Security
systems at the same time: today's program for current
beneficiaries and the privatized system. To cover the
price tag, we adjustments--or some mix of these bad
     If you want to see what a catastrophe
privatization of retirement funds has proved to be, you
need go no further than the horrible example of
     Big Lie # 4: There's nothing Americans can do
about this crisis - it's bound to happen.
      The Truth: First, there is no present crisis -
other than the real possibility that Americans will be
confused by all the smoke and mirrors created by the
very Wall Street people who want to pillage the Social
Security System. There is no crisis over the solvency
of Social Security; it is a fight over the future of a
program started in 1935 that means the difference
between life and death for more than 32 million elderly
     American workers must wake up to this present
frenzied effort on the part of Big Money to take over
the trillions in social security funds. Americans of
all ages must tell our congressional representatives
that we don't want the Social Security System to be
piratized and that we hold them responsible for making
sure it doesn't happen. We must speak out against this
conspiracy wherever we can.
     Contrary to the Big Lies, the sky is NOT falling;
the Social Security System is alive and well. But we
must protect it from the "defenders of the public good"
who are out to plunder it.
The Vultures Are Circling Social Security
     The Wall Street Journal let the cat out of the
bag, announcing that even under moderate privatization
plans, $60 billion a year would flow into mutual funds
managed by Wall Street, instead of going into the
Social Security Trust Funds. Michael Tanner, director
of health and welfare studies at the Cato Institute
(read big money think tank), let slip the other
incriminating evidence when he admitted that along with
Bank of America, Citicorp, Chase, insurance companies,
the Investment Company Institute (ICI), and securities
firms like Salomon Brothers, Cato's $2 million
privatization project is being funded by "large
employers concerned about payroll tax increases."
Privatization of Social Security would mean billions of
dollars for Wall Street mutual funds managers and
employers. The gang that brought you the 1929, 1987,
1998, and 2000 stock market crashes resulting in
hapless investors losing billions of dollars are now
trying to con Americans into putting their retirement
earnings into Wall Street.
     But with the billions in profits at stake the big
money people are mounting a campaign to convince
Americans that Social Security is dead or dying. As
usual, they suppose that if they tell a big enough lie
American citizens will swallow it. The Investment
Company Institute, which by the way, "donated" $245,264
to federal candidates in the 1996 election; Peter G.
Peterson, an investment banker, Nixon's commerce
secretary, and president of the conservative Concord
Coalition; and the libertarian Cato Institute are
leading the pack. Their uninformed disciples repeat
their propaganda in newspaper letters to the editor and
commentaries and magazine articles. The newest cons
include trying to convince citizens that Social
Security funds invested in U.S. Treasury bonds don't
really exist and that the Chilean privatization plan is
a model America should adopt.
      If you have money in U.S. Treasury bonds or other
securities, you expect to get your interest and capital
when you redeem them. But, mysteriously, Social
Security funds in those same instruments can't expect a
return on the investment. Why? Because the scam artists
say so. In fact, following the lead of the Concord
Coalition and the Cato Institute, the disciples are
claiming that Social Security is a giant Ponzi scheme.
Doesn't make sense, I know.
Let's Eradicate The Vultures
     So far, no new Social Security privatization (read
piratization) legislation has been passed, though
dozens of bills are now being pushed by Wall Street's
bought-and-paid-for congresspersons and George W. Bush
ran on a platform to "allow Americans to invest their
social security savings in Wall Street."
     Fortunately, not all Senators or Congresspersons
have sold out to Wall Street's piratization schemes.
Senator Paul Wellstone of Minnesota went on record
("The People's Trust Fund" by Paul Wellstone, The
Nation, July 17/August 3, 1998) as supporting Social
Security against the Wall Street vultures.
     Dubya has now begun to raid the Social Security
fund with his new "war on terrorism" budget. This
so-called war is entirely of Bush's making and is only
for the purpose of giving billions of taxpayers's
dollars to his defense industry supporters.
Unfortunately, hardly anyone is speaking out against
Bush's insane raid on Social Security.
     American citizens of all ages must begin fighting
now to make sure that Social Security remains in place
as it is. Social Security was created to protect
society from the social and economic burdens associated
with widespread old-age poverty and misery as seen
during the 1930s Depression which was precipitated by
the 1929 stock market crash.
     By and large, Americans with incomes under $25,000
a year get back more in benefits than they pay in the
form of Social Security payroll taxes. Those with
incomes of more than $50,000 a year get back somewhat
less. The U.S. Social Security system is a progressive
system — a system designed to improve the economic
condition of those on the very bottom of the U.S.
economic ladder and reduce economic stratification.
      American citizens need to remember President
Franklin D. Roosevelt's reply when he was asked why he
had set up Social Security as a worker contribution
system: "We put those contributions there so as to give
the contributors a legal, moral, and political right to
collect their pensions and their unemployment benefits.
With those taxes in there, no damn politician can ever
scrap my social security program."
      Right on, Franklin!
• January 10, 2005: Dubya Manipulates Information to
Support His Social Security Looting
• January 4, 2005: Privatizing Social Security is a
fake solution to a fake crisis
• December 17, 2004: Dubya's Looting of Social Security
Will Mean Poverty for the Aged
• December 10, 2004: Bush's Plan to Piratize Social
Security Involves Borowing and Hoping
• December 7, 2004: Bush Junta Inventing a Crisis to
Piratize Social Security
• December 7, 2004: Ignoring the Facts About Social
• December 2, 2004: Stop Dubya's $2 Trillion
Piratization of Social Security
• November 26, 2004: Bush's Insane Privatization Scheme
• October 1, 2004: Helen Thomas Shows How Bush Plans to
Loot the Social Security Fund
• September, 2004: Dubya Orders Invastion of Social
• August, 2003: Campaign for America's Future
• June, 2003: Thomas Frank, "Get Rich or Get Out:
Attempted Robbery with a Loaded Federal Budget,"
"Here is a sentence that actually occurs on page 31 of
the main volume of the [Bush junta proposed] 2004
federal budget:
'But in 2002 the combined shortfall in Social Security
and Medicare of nearly $18 trillion was about five
times as large as today's publicly held national debt.'
"An eighteen trillion dollar shortfall! Frightening, is
it not? Until you read further and realize that, in
fact, both programs are today in surplus, that Social
Security will remain in surplus for fourteen years to
come (it will be able to function on the money in its
Trust Fund until 2042) and that the $18 trillion figure
is a cumulative seventy-five-year estimate based on
extreme long-term projections that will probably turn
out to bear as much resemblance to reality then as the
Futurama exhibit at the 1939 World's Fair does to our
reality today."
• 1/9/03: Rep. Ron Paul, MD, "The Great Global Social
Security Giveaway?"
• 6/21/02: Paul Krugman, "Bush's Social Security
Privatization Schemers Lie About the Numbers"
• 4/2/02: Paul Krugman, "Social Security is Very Much
For additional information:
• 3/7/03: Campaign for America's Future
• Social Security Q & A
• Social Security Links
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