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Wed Dec 12, 2012, 02:36 PM

Weaker Unions = Lower Pay = Smaller Social Security Checks

I know I am pointing out the obvious here but this angle is being completely ignored by talking heads and politicians alike. With all the DC talk of either nibbling away at Social Security and/or Medicare, or taking away larger bites instead, this trend is not being acknowledged. Even if NOTHING is done to cut ("ahem" reform) either program, serionrs are already getting squeezed and the outlook for future retirerees conturs to deteriorate.

Socuial Security is not a fixed benefit. The amount anyone qualifies for receiving once they start collecting Social Security directly depends on ones history of earnings, which determines how much equity each of us has in our account.

In an earlier era, most workers had their best earning years in the decade prior to retirement - as promotions, seniority and accumulated pay raises added up to increasing incomes. Unions, by and large, were responsible for establishing that now fading template. Unions protected higher wage earners from being targetted for layoffs, allowing workers to retire at peak income levels - which meant that their Social Security benefits upon retirement were calculated based on an ascending rather than descending income curve over the course of their working careers.

Seniors in the future, on average, can look forward to receiving smaller social security checks (adjusting for inflation) than prior generations qualified for. That is increasingly now locked in and will not be reversed unless the decline of organized labor is somehow reversed instead. That is what is happening now, even without forcing seniors to wait another two years before they qualify for Mediare.

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply Weaker Unions = Lower Pay = Smaller Social Security Checks (Original post)
Tom Rinaldo Dec 2012 OP
onehandle Dec 2012 #1
MrYikes Dec 2012 #2
Tom Rinaldo Dec 2012 #3
MrYikes Dec 2012 #4
RebelOne Dec 2012 #6
PETRUS Dec 2012 #5
Tom Rinaldo Dec 2012 #7

Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 02:39 PM

1. = France 1789

There will be a tipping point ending with heads on pikes.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 02:52 PM

2. I asked once and I think I was told that $2600 was the top monthly amount paid.

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Response to MrYikes (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:31 PM

3. Could be, but most make less, often much less

And peak earning years have a huge impact on the amount that you qualify for. Ages 55 to 65 used to be high earning years, a byproduct of the seniority system to a large extent. The norm now is shifting rapidly. 55 to 65 arre becoming low income years for many who get laid off from good jobs and end up having to virtually beg to be hired by anyone.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:42 PM

4. You are correct. The low number is $615, I believe.

and that is for spouses. others too, I suppose. But paying for medicare and other normal living expenses, I am amazed that they are able to survive. Any deviation in their income or expenses can and does put them over the edge.

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Response to MrYikes (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:47 PM

6. I am now collecting social security and just wish I was receiving $2600.

My social security is $1460, and minus the Medicare payment, it comes to $1360.

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Response to Tom Rinaldo (Original post)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:43 PM

5. just yesterday

I heard one of the speaker's at our anti-right to work rally in Lansing make exactly that point.

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Response to PETRUS (Reply #5)

Wed Dec 12, 2012, 03:50 PM

7. I'm glad to hear that

People need to think about where we would all be without Organized Labor because that is the direction we are heading if we don't work together to change it. Work together, now there's an interesting concept, sort of like Solidarity.

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