The Great Debate : Privatizing Social Security

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The Great Debate: Privatizing Social Security The United States’ Social Security system was implemented by Franklin D. Roosevelt on August 14, 1935 as a part of the New Deal during the Great Depression “to frame a law which gives some measure of protection to the average citizen and his family against the loss of a job and against poverty-ridden old age." Although the system has proven to be one of the most popular programs ever established, its future has been questionable for some time. According to the Social Security Administration (2008), “People are living longer, the first baby boomers are nearing retirement, and the birth rate is lower than in the past. The result is that the worker-to-beneficiary ratio has fallen from 16.5-to-1 in 1950 to 3.3-to-1 today. Within 40 years it will be 2-to-1. At this ratio there will not be enough workers to pay scheduled benefits at current tax rates” (Social Security Administration [SSA], 2008). This issue concerns many citizens, especially younger generations, and continues to be a hot topic of debate amongst politicians. Many ideas have been proposed about how to reform the current system. The most popular of these ideas is to create an entirely new system consisting of mandatory pension accounts which would allow individuals to accumulate a balance over time with investment options such as stocks, bonds, or mutual funds. This argument will show why Social Security should not be replaced by a mandatory private pension system.
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