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Old 12-14-2012, 09:52 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by DSL417 View Post
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
Well said.
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:03 PM   #72
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Not sure how we've gone from COLAs to amputees - and I contributed. I suggest if you want to no more on the subject - go down to the VA and volunteer to help at the amputee clinic. You will see young amputees struggling - some running faster than you can - old men struggling and slow rolling - all breaking and hiding sweat to make it look effortless - and "normal". Some days they wear blisters on their stumps and spend a day or two on crutches. At all times they are disabled and have a right to use the placard or not. Veteran or not, the day a new amputee learns that they can and are walking is the day their pride is restored. But to suggest that pride would dictate parking in the back forty so no one will know your handicapped is laughable. You have my word on it.

And yes when you are in the service of the disabled the law says you can use their placard. I don't write the law and read it so long ago I don't remember the exact wording but it has to do with your time and theirs and your service to another.

Yes there are individuals that game the system - but extrapolating from the specific to the general is usually problematic. There should be more oversight of most things. But understanding what it is to be disabled is hard to do until you've walked a mile in their moccasin.

As for COLAs always welcome, never effective against day to day expenses.
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:18 PM   #73
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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.
Yes, it is a great deal of pain.. And no, I dont walk like a 'crippled should'.

And, I have two 'family members' who thought just like you .. just because I did look disabled, laffed, joked, played with my kids, I must NOT be disabled. Really took a toll on me mentally. Of course, the medivac was 'staged', or something..

Of course, they both have sever problems now. A fact I find refreshing to remind them of once in awhile..

Dont judge. Very few people can actually 'game' the system to any successful degree.. most get caught before they get very far or make very much.
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:32 PM   #74
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Well, I'm very handicapped, (some would say mentally, but that's another thread, lol), so I've probably got off the purpose of the original thread.

I'm glad to get my 1.7% it's not much, but as many others have said on here, "better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick"
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Old 12-14-2012, 10:35 PM   #75
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I have sciatica that is controlled with epidurals and pain medication. I have a plate and park in handicap spots, as I don't know when it is going to flare up. I could be fine getting out of my truck and have it hit half way through a WM or HD. Usually siting down for a few minutes helps, but I still have to get back out to my vehicle.

I appreciate the SS increase. Every little bit helps. I also have my stocks and mutual funds, but taxes take a bite out of the gains.

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What I really don't understand is how the goverment does not consider food or gas in their cost of living calculations.
If it's any consolation, medical mileage is tax deductible.
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Old 12-15-2012, 06:45 AM   #76
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"Yes there are individuals that game the system - but extrapolating from the specific to the general is usually problematic. There should be more oversight of most things. But understanding what it is to be disabled is hard to do until you've walked a mile in their moccasin."

"As for COLAs always welcome, never effective against day to day expenses."



My thoughts exactly, Flaggship........Very well put!
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Old 12-15-2012, 12:49 PM   #77
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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.
So if you actually work for the Feds, you're not entitled to a raise...but if you're getting a check for not working, you are entitled to a raise.

God Bless America!
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Old 12-15-2012, 01:04 PM   #78
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Just got a letter today and my raise for 2013 is $21 so I'm not sure what the last $11 raise was in my last check, but my total raise is $32...
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Old 12-15-2012, 01:06 PM   #79
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Poor entitled folks...

Sorry that the automatic increases you've come to expect as your due are so paltry this year!
Entitled? I was forced to pay into that system most of my life so I earned it! If I had invested that money myself (instead of letting the Feds put it in the General Fund so they could blow it on pork), I could be living off part of the interest, letting the other part accumulate so it ccould earn more interest. The reason we are complaining about the low COLA is we were promised it for most of our lives and now the FEds have reconfigured the formula they use to determine how much it will be to reduce the amount to an unrealistic figure so they can save on the amount they have to pony up to make up for the funds they blew.
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Old 12-15-2012, 01:09 PM   #80
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So if you actually work for the Feds, you're not entitled to a raise...but if you're getting a check for not working, you are entitled to a raise.

God Bless America!
Yes. And your left hand isn't your right hand and your nose isn't your eye. Lol. Different things are are handled differently. Who knew?
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Old 12-15-2012, 01:20 PM   #81
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So if you actually work for the Feds, you're not entitled to a raise...but if you're getting a check for not working, you are entitled to a raise.

God Bless America!
Where do you get this not working B.S.? I worked most of my life, starting in my early teens, paying into S.S., so why do you feel I shouldn't be collecting now?
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Old 12-15-2012, 02:31 PM   #82
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Where do you get this not working B.S.? I worked most of my life, starting in my early teens, paying into S.S., so why do you feel I shouldn't be collecting now?
Guess I should have said "not working any more".

And who said you shouldn't be collecting at all? Not me...but it does seem ludicrous that the "Not working anymore folks are entitled to an automatic increase to the point where they complain that it isn't big enough, while the still-working folks get no increases at all.

There's a lesson here somewhere....
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Old 12-15-2012, 02:38 PM   #83
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Guess I should have said "not working any more".

while the still-working folks get no increases at all.

There's a lesson here somewhere....
Francesca, you are getting increases while working, you get a increase to pay more into it........
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Old 12-15-2012, 03:01 PM   #84
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Even when we got COLAS, they are typically 1 to 1.5 percent below what the government predicts the actual inflation rate is. Been that way for as long as I can remember. Government workers typically earn 20-30% less than their private industry counterparts doing the same jobs. Some of that is offset with better vacation and other benefits, as well as a certain amount of stability. What happens is inflation eats away at salary and the gap between government and industry widens until there is some kind of big "reset" like the 2008 recession. For a while feds do pretty well until the cycle starts over. In the end, it's sort of equitable for folks that are hourly employees. for supervisors and others who would be in a bonus pool in industry, the gap is well over 50% - not sure if the job security is really worth that.

I've said it before and I'll say it again - Social security was meant an insurance - it was listed on your paychecks as insurance. it was meant as a means to keep folks from living on dog food, not to replace private savings and investments for retirement.

The current attitude that folks are "entitled" to an ever growing pile of case is a myth perpetuated by the AARP, and I suppose if you say it long enough and loud enough it becomes truth. It's that bunch of bandits and their entitlement focused constituency that are preventing the system from returning to sanity. SSI wasn't meant to help people pay for fuel for their motorhomes.

It's just like the vets over on the other board that believe they signed "contracts" for their benefits and received "promises". Believing you have a contract with an entity that can change the underlying law at will is folly.

I'm one of the last guys on the old Civil Service Retirement System - which is a good deal if you can stomach being tied to your job regardless of circumstance for 35 years - 'cause if you leave you get NOTHING regardless of years of service - start over. I'm also not eligible of SSI. I'm not stupid enough to put my fate in the hands of congress and believe in a lot of "promises", so my wife and I have a number of investments to buffer against changes. So to save some money here and there, besides the 5 years of no COLAS, Uncle Sam is looking to change the retirement rules form "high three" to "high five". When I retire in three years, the combination of no COLAS and high five will probably cost me 3-7 percent of my pension. I'm not complaining, but for all the folks out there driving about in $50-$200K motorhomes and complaining about SSI issues - get some perspective - the world could be a lot worse for you.

I always chuckle at folks that think they could have taken their SSI, invested it themselves, and somehow become multi-millionaires. The bubble/bust cycles that have defined the american economy since the 20's put the kabosh on that notion.
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