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Old 12-14-2012, 04:08 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnytaxman

Wow, great question Steve. The rates were a lot higher back in the 50's and 60's and into the early 70's. The big difference was in the deduction area. In the early 70's you could deduct things like sales tax along with your income tax and even, are you ready for this, cigarette tax. Even though the rates were high, not many people paid that much.

I can remember when the SS wage cap was $4,500. I think the percentage back then was 2% for both the emplyee and the employer. However, at that time there was no disability benefit and there may have been some minor widows and survivors benefit. Now I believe the family maximum is somewhere around $4,000 a month. Also a SS beneficiary over the age of 66 can still work and earn unlimited income and not have his SS go down. A lot has changed in the time frame since SS started. Most were meant to improve life, but some of the benefits are pretty well abused also.
I certainly remember boxes of receipts for sales tax deductions and credit card interest - pretty sure the incentive to write off cc interest was a boon to the cc cos a boondoggle for you and me (not boondocking). Actually glad that one is gone. Should give a credit for saving but there's no return on it.

Your point is well taken that there were deductions - but there sure are tricks out there now if you have enough dough. There is a recent well known example but I won't touch that with a 10'40" stick.

Oh well - interest-ing topic. Back to the popcorn.
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Old 12-14-2012, 07:04 PM   #58
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I received my letter from SSA yesterday. My net raise is $24/month.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:26 PM   #59
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Why is everyone getting a government check entitled to any automatic increase at all?
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:51 PM   #60
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We scoff at the measly 1.7% increase, but don't stop to think of the increased benefit you receive from Medicare. The increase in Medicare premium is far overshadowed by the rising medical costs the system has to pay. With the exception of very few, most of us will get back far more than we imagined on Medicare versus the payroll deduction and our premiums. I've not heard anyone complain they were getting too much from Medicare.

My father, being relatively healthy, got around $200,000 in benefits the last year of his life. I can just imagine the amounts paid out to people with chronic illnesses. There seem to be a lot of people on this site with total disabilities. Your benefits will far outweigh any amount you have contributed to social security and Medicare.

We live in a society. That means we take care of each other. We take care of people we don't know. We take care of people who we think are lazy, stupid or dishonest. We all know people who are "working" the system to get every benefit. These are the people that are hurting us all. The people on disability that make lots of money working under the table. If you don't believe it, just sit in a parking lot and watch the people parking in handicap spots. So many of these people just seem to jump out of their vehicles a walk effortlessly Into the store.

Sorry to be on the soapbox, but most everyone does not want to pay more in taxes, yet we complain that we are not getting a bigger increase in benefit.
Careful before you judge those who have a handicapped plate and still LOOK like they are ok.. Like me. If ans when you want to feel my pain, lemme know..
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:54 PM   #61
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NO, what we "scoff" at, is the inept management of what WE have long paid into, and THEN, to add insult to injury, the attempt by some to insist that what we later receive, is somehow "undeserved charity" granted by a gracious government...
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:56 PM   #62
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Taxman, if the self employed person is reporting a income of 113,000 you can bet your life savings his AGI is nowhere near that amount. That kind of throws out the 39.7 tax rate.

Anyway, as I see it drop the cap on social security earnings. Pay the increased benefit, but income test the need for it. You will have all the high income retirees complaining that they are "entitled" to the benefit no matter how much they make. Folks will say the government is penalizing them for working hard and being successful. We have all heard that one before.

Just remember, the person making $20,000 a year pays 7.65% of his income for social security and Medicare. Gas costs $4 a gallon for him, and bread costs $2 a loaf.

The person making $500,000 a year pays 2.8% of his income a year for social security and Medicare. Gas cost him $4 a gallon, a loaf of bread costs him $2

The person making $20,000 a year does not get a discount for bread or gas, he pays the same as the guy making $500,000 a year.

Is that fair?

My point, a big chunk of the budget deficit could be handled simply by eliminating the income cap on social security.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:59 PM   #63
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Why is everyone getting a government check entitled to any automatic increase at all?
??

/ignore
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:03 PM   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midniteoyl
Careful before you judge those who have a handicapped plate and still LOOK like they are ok.. Like me. If ans when you want to feel my pain, lemme know..
X 2 - walking on an artificial leg can look effortless - having a bad heart doesn't look painful and so on. Another thing - anyone can shop for a disabled person and use their plackard while doing so. Just because someone doesn't look half dead, doesn't mean they aren't.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:04 PM   #65
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Actually most pensions that are governmental do include colas and some of those are pretty substantial. Private pensions and those of us that are self employed are the ones with no guarantees and no colas.[/QUOTE]

As some have posted some misconceptions here, I'd speak to at least a couple of those great colas...yes, military retirees and government workers do get colas, but I can tell you that those colas are rarely anything to write home about (generally less than 1.5% for a number of years...the equation works by taking the index, whatever the new machination of that is for a given year MINUS 1%. That's the agencies I know of. And VA disability rates similar very low colas.

And we're happy to have those small increases...but any who want to argue whether they were earned...we'll have to move to a different thread or site.

I'm happy to see a cola for the SS folks. I am concerned about the increasing health care premiums. I guess we'll all have to boondock (or wally) one more night a month this year
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:06 PM   #66
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Careful before you judge those who have a handicapped plate and still LOOK like they are ok.. Like me. If ans when you want to feel my pain, lemme know..
I'm sure if you are in that much pain, you aren't walking and looking like a fairly young healthy person. I'm sure you know exactly who I mean, we have all seen them.

I had a neighbor that worked at Ford. He was ALWAYS off on disability for his back. He washed and waxed his cars, played golf, pitched horseshoes and did lots of things. I also worked for a car dealer that hired an electrical contractor to do all our work. He was forever climbing up ladders hauling heavy coils doing very strenuous work. He made a pile of money, had a big home here in Ohio, a really expensive home in Naples Florida, and a big boat. He was retired on total disability from the Cleveland Police at the age of 45.

Both these guys had handicap placards.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:19 PM   #67
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X 2 - walking on an artificial leg can look effortless - having a bad heart doesn't look painful and so on. Another thing - anyone can shop for a disabled person and use their plackard while doing so. Just because someone doesn't look half dead, doesn't mean they aren't.
So if you are nice enough to shop for a disabled person, you should get to use their placard so you can park close? I'm not talking about looking half dead. Ive never seen someone with an artificial leg walking effortlessly. If they are, I wouldnt know it. If they are walking effortlessly, im sure they would have too much pride to use a handicap placard. I'm talking about walking at a normal pace, moving quickly in and out of your car. I'm talking about some contractor driving his big ass truck into a handicap spot, putting up the placard jumping down out of the truck and hustling inside. These are things I notice every day.

If you have a bad heart, or arthritis, guess what the doctor prescribes...WALKING. If you are waiting for a heart transplant I guess you are not shopping.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:22 PM   #68
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Why is everyone getting a government check entitled to any automatic increase at all?
Guess you're not going to like me. I don't get just one Gov't check, I get three. You see I'm a triple dipper and actually planned it that way. I retired from Civil Service and that's the reason my SS check doesn't amount to much, I got hit with the civil service offset for retiring from DOD. I also am retired from the Military. I wanted set retirements along with good medical after I retired. Yes, I'm entitled to each and every penny I receive, I earned it and will gladly take them to the bank. So if my "automatic" increase covers the "automatic" Medicare and FEP health insurance rates that is just dandy.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:38 PM   #69
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I think the word needed here is .... empathy.

1) empathy for those that only have SS to rely on, for what ever the reason, and 1.7% against a raise in medicare that equals not much in maintaining a certain standard of living
2) empathy for those who retired on pensions that aren't indexed with a cola, but maybe you'll draw SS at some point in time, and if not, then you didn't pay in to begin with
3) empathy for those who served and dragged their families all over the world or put themselves in the line of fire (military and other government agencies) and the pension they draw with some small measure of SS
4) empathy for those who may not see SS in their future because the system will have to radically change before they get there

Most everyone has their own story, and until you walk in their shoes....JMHO
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:47 PM   #70
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federal workers have not received a COLA for the last 3 years and none are expected for at least two more.
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