Join John Adams, world renowned Intl Matchmaker, Monday nights 8:30 EST for Live Webcasts!
And check out Five Reasons why you should attend a FREE AFA Seminar! See locations and dates here.



View Active Topics       View Your Posts       Latest 100 Topics       FAQ Topics       Mobile Friendly Theme


If This Happens, It Will Signal A Collapse

Discuss issues related to business, finance, taxes, investments, cost of living in different countries, etc.

Moderators: fschmidt, jamesbond

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 13th, 2012, 5:49 pm

gsjackson wrote:There is no trust fund only because it's been plundered by pols who want the money for other priorities, such as discretionary wars -- and I think the semantic distinction is important when it comes to prioritizing, which some here are prepared to do rather ruthlessly. People look at their tax stubs and see that part of their money has been specifically earmarked for social security and Medicare -- programs that have consistently demonstrated their political appeal and support. So they need to know that this money is being stolen.
It wasn't stolen, it was spent on things YOU wanted it spent on. That money lowered debt issued in to the market, kept interest rates DOWN, and enabled you to buy a house, car, and have low interest loans on cc's and such. Put that money off b/s and you have to sell debt, and that means that interest rates over the past decades would be higher.

Back in the 60's court rulings found that you are NOT entitled to SS, it is not yours, and you have no account. The amount can change, it was a tax all along. What you believe - you can believe in the Easter Bunny, too.

Where was it spent?

Highways. Welfare of all kinds, the rest of the budget.
Last edited by ph_visitor on May 14th, 2012, 12:40 am, edited 1 time in total.




Check out our Dating Sites and International Romance Tours!



Contrarian Expatriate
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2499
Joined: December 3rd, 2009, 6:57 am

Post by Contrarian Expatriate » May 13th, 2012, 10:14 pm

Billy wrote:Contrarian, what about the Euros?
With all the fiscal problems in the Euro zone, that currency has been decreasing in value. If Greece leaves the zone, and later Spain, Italy, and Portugal, that currency would plummet in relation to the US dollar.

Basically the Euro is too risky a currency unlike the others I mentioned. Stay away until they get their house in order over there.

gsjackson
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2180
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: New Orleans, LA USA
Contact:

Post by gsjackson » May 13th, 2012, 11:18 pm

ph_visitor wrote:
It wasn't stolen, it was spent on things YOU wanted it spent on.
Back in the 80's court rulings found that you are NOT entitled to SS, it is not yours, and you have no account. .
Not me. I don't do debt. Personally, I'd be thrilled to see interest rates go up, so maybe I could at least keep pace with inflation on the cash I'm holding.

Please cite the case you're referring to. I feel pretty certain you've misread it.

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 14th, 2012, 12:38 am

Case Name: FLEMMING V. NESTOR 363 U.S. 603

NO. 54. ARGUED FEBRUARY 24, 1960. - DECIDED JUNE 20, 1960. - 169

In this 1960 Supreme Court decision Nestor's denial of benefits was upheld even though he had contributed to the program for 19 years and was already receiving benefits. Under a 1954 law, Social Security benefits were denied to persons deported for, among other things, having been a member of the Communist party. Accordingly, Mr. Nestor's benefits were terminated. He appealed the termination arguing, among other claims, that promised Social Security benefits were a contract and that Congress could not renege on that contract. In its ruling, the Court rejected this argument and established the principle that entitlement to Social Security benefits is not contractual right.

There you have it.

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 14th, 2012, 12:41 am

gsjackson wrote:
ph_visitor wrote:
It wasn't stolen, it was spent on things YOU wanted it spent on.
Back in the 80's court rulings found that you are NOT entitled to SS, it is not yours, and you have no account. .
Not me. I don't do debt. Personally, I'd be thrilled to see interest rates go up, so maybe I could at least keep pace with inflation on the cash I'm holding.
You DO realize that if rates go up, the cost of doing business for everyone else goes up and your ability to get a job goes DOWN, right?

gsjackson
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2180
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: New Orleans, LA USA
Contact:

Post by gsjackson » May 14th, 2012, 3:17 am

ph_visitor wrote:Case Name: FLEMMING V. NESTOR 363 U.S. 603

NO. 54. ARGUED FEBRUARY 24, 1960. - DECIDED JUNE 20, 1960. - 169

In this 1960 Supreme Court decision Nestor's denial of benefits was upheld even though he had contributed to the program for 19 years and was already receiving benefits. Under a 1954 law, Social Security benefits were denied to persons deported for, among other things, having been a member of the Communist party. Accordingly, Mr. Nestor's benefits were terminated. He appealed the termination arguing, among other claims, that promised Social Security benefits were a contract and that Congress could not renege on that contract. In its ruling, the Court rejected this argument and established the principle that entitlement to Social Security benefits is not contractual right.

There you have it.
Okay, you are reading the holding correctly. Congress can change benefits as it sees fit, though it is constrained by the due process clause from making arbitrary and patently irrational classifications. That should be an easy enough bar to get under, if Congress wanted to cut benefits because of insufficient funds.

I don't, however, understand what you mean when you say "it was a tax all along." Presumably you mean it was a general revenue tax all along rather than a dedicated tax for a specific purpose, which is what it was set up as, and is called. In this holding, however, the court affirms that it is a dedicated tax, which therefore, the court says, establishes a stronger expectation of benefits than for benefits conferred by government out of general tax revenues.

As a practical, political matter, the program is well protected at the moment. Bush's first order of business after getting reelected was to torpedo it, and that effort was stopped very quickly by a broad coalition. Should that coalition be unsuccessful in the future, and Congress cut benefits substantially, it seems to me that there is a good argument to be made under the due process clause if Congress has cut benefits after looting the SS fund. If that doesn't qualify as arbitrary and irrational I don't know what does. The Court (though not, likely, the current Roberts Court) might inquire as follows: "Why are you cutting social security, Congress? "Because there are insufficient funds." "Why is there not sufficient money in the trust fund, since it was fed by a dedicated payroll tax?" "Because we took the funds for other purposes." Doesn't sound like due process to me.
Last edited by gsjackson on May 14th, 2012, 3:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

gsjackson
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2180
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: New Orleans, LA USA
Contact:

Post by gsjackson » May 14th, 2012, 3:24 am

ph_visitor wrote:
gsjackson wrote:
ph_visitor wrote:
It wasn't stolen, it was spent on things YOU wanted it spent on.
Back in the 80's court rulings found that you are NOT entitled to SS, it is not yours, and you have no account. .
Not me. I don't do debt. Personally, I'd be thrilled to see interest rates go up, so maybe I could at least keep pace with inflation on the cash I'm holding.
You DO realize that if rates go up, the cost of doing business for everyone else goes up and your ability to get a job goes DOWN, right?
At my age the only jobs I can get are adjunct faculty positions, and that's a major growth industry, since colleges don't want to pay full-time faculty any more. Have PhD, will travel and work for peanuts. That's our mantra now.

If low interest rates were going to spur employment, we would have seen some evidence of that by now after a few years of rock-bottom rates. No, the economy of basing everything on debt has played out its skein, and will have to be replaced with something else, ideally interest-free loans directly into the real economy of goods and services by government.

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 14th, 2012, 5:32 am

gsjackson wrote:
ph_visitor wrote:Case Name: FLEMMING V. NESTOR 363 U.S. 603

NO. 54. ARGUED FEBRUARY 24, 1960. - DECIDED JUNE 20, 1960. - 169

In this 1960 Supreme Court decision Nestor's denial of benefits was upheld even though he had contributed to the program for 19 years and was already receiving benefits. Under a 1954 law, Social Security benefits were denied to persons deported for, among other things, having been a member of the Communist party. Accordingly, Mr. Nestor's benefits were terminated. He appealed the termination arguing, among other claims, that promised Social Security benefits were a contract and that Congress could not renege on that contract. In its ruling, the Court rejected this argument and established the principle that entitlement to Social Security benefits is not contractual right.

There you have it.
Okay, you are reading the holding correctly. Congress can change benefits as it sees fit, though it is constrained by the due process clause from making arbitrary and patently irrational classifications. That should be an easy enough bar to get under, if Congress wanted to cut benefits because of insufficient funds.

I don't, however, understand what you mean when you say "it was a tax all along." Presumably you mean it was a general revenue tax all along rather than a dedicated tax for a specific purpose, which is what it was set up as, and is called. In this holding, however, the court affirms that it is a dedicated tax, which therefore, the court says, establishes a stronger expectation of benefits than for benefits conferred by government out of general tax revenues.

As a practical, political matter, the program is well protected at the moment. Bush's first order of business after getting reelected was to torpedo it, and that effort was stopped very quickly by a broad coalition. Should that coalition be unsuccessful in the future, and Congress cut benefits substantially, it seems to me that there is a good argument to be made under the due process clause if Congress has cut benefits after looting the SS fund. If that doesn't qualify as arbitrary and irrational I don't know what does. The Court (though not, likely, the current Roberts Court) might inquire as follows: "Why are you cutting social security, Congress? "Because there are insufficient funds." "Why is there not sufficient money in the trust fund, since it was fed by a dedicated payroll tax?" "Because we took the funds for other purposes." Doesn't sound like due process to me.
Does not matter.

You are assuming rule of law.

This is Congress. They will simply alter the law to make any actions taken to be legal.

Congress can do whatever they want, it's wisest to assume at this point that all SS benefits will be cut drastically or inflated away.

You can cite proper case law until you die of starvation - it does not matter if there is no money.

Look at what happened in the FSU. Pensions were wiped out. Either defaulted upon, the checks simply stopped coming, or inflation destroyed what little the pensioners received.

It's gone, the money, it's gone - you need to get your head around this concept.

Wanting it to be different won't change one thing.

Expect Congress to change the law and alter benefits dramatically in the near future, and alter them all downward and later.

It does not matter what the law says if there is no money.

That's what is going to happen.

Lawyers will take on a class action suit on behalf of one hundred million whinging Americans, they will either lose or win and be awarded $1.

There is no money.

Get it.

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 14th, 2012, 5:40 am

gsjackson wrote:If low interest rates were going to spur employment, we would have seen some evidence of that by now after a few years of rock-bottom rates. No, the economy of basing everything on debt has played out its skein, and will have to be replaced with something else, ideally interest-free loans directly into the real economy of goods and services by government.
They have spurred employment, but the countervailing forces are so large that the improvements are negligible. If the rates were allowed to rise, UE would go higher and the USA RE market would collapse further. If 0-rate loans were used, negligible returns on investment would occur. The rate is currently o.25%. What gains do you think will be had by a rate of 0.00%? Or a negative -1.00% rate via various manipulations? Not much, that's what.

'Interest-free loans' is called printing money.

Notice how much food prices have risen the past few years? Portions smaller? Gasoline more expensive? Imports from China pricier at WalMart?

That's price inflation as a result of monetary inflation as a result of a long term low interest rate environment {aka ZIRP}. If you just loan people money -0- rate directly, you just inflate the money supply more and prices just rise.

It's the very same as giving people the amount of the loan and never having to pay it back.

gsjackson
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2180
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: New Orleans, LA USA
Contact:

Post by gsjackson » May 14th, 2012, 5:49 am

ph_visitor wrote:. If you just loan people money -0- rate directly, you just inflate the money supply more and prices just rise.
This is always assumed, never demonstrated conclusively. We've had an inflated money supply with QE2 for a while now, and are considered to be in a DEflationary spiral, though the predictions of rampant inflation have come regularly for four years now at least. The banksters just play their casino games, and aren't lending into the real economy. Why deal with them at all? Just bypass them, and save the economy having to pay their cut, aka interest?
Last edited by gsjackson on May 14th, 2012, 5:59 am, edited 1 time in total.

gsjackson
Veteran Poster
Posts: 2180
Joined: June 12th, 2010, 3:08 pm
Location: New Orleans, LA USA
Contact:

Post by gsjackson » May 14th, 2012, 5:58 am

ph_visitor wrote:

Congress can do whatever they want, it's wisest to assume at this point that all SS benefits will be cut drastically or inflated away.
Well, there is still this thing called the ballot box, and if congresspeople think tanking SS is a political loser, as it certainly is right now, the oligarchs don't have enough money to funnel into their campaigns. Being voted out and having to go back to the law office in Lubbock is the worst thing they can imagine. Money to fund SS will go into the program, as long as it has political backing. It will just be taken from discretionary wars and such places. The money is fluid. Problem is, idiotic American young people are being successfully propagandized into believing the program's a goner, so the political calculus may change in a few years. Witness this website as an example.

ph_visitor
Freshman Poster
Posts: 280
Joined: January 20th, 2012, 3:13 am

Post by ph_visitor » May 14th, 2012, 6:14 am

gsjackson wrote:
ph_visitor wrote:

Congress can do whatever they want, it's wisest to assume at this point that all SS benefits will be cut drastically or inflated away.
Well, there is still this thing called the ballot box, and if congresspeople think tanking SS is a political loser, as it certainly is right now, the oligarchs don't have enough money to funnel into their campaigns. Being voted out and having to go back to the law office in Lubbock is the worst thing they can imagine.
This did not work in 2008 or 2010.

What if you vote them out, and the new guys think the same way once in DC? What if it's not about corruption, or money; what if it's about they begin to think they know better once in office?

That's the problem.

No matter who you elect, they are going to do the same shit.

R, D, I, L - it doesn't matter. All begin to think they know better and act against the wishes of their constituents.

Romney or Obama, Dem or Rep - it doesn't matter.

All will start more wars, go more into debt, and explode the deficit and debt higher.

Does not matter who.

It also does not matter if you vote for SS if there is no money.

You can vote all you want. No money, means no money.

smallcheese
Freshman Poster
Posts: 156
Joined: January 10th, 2012, 7:42 am
Location: Citizen of the world, currently in Hong Kong

Post by smallcheese » May 14th, 2012, 6:27 am

You're right. Social Security in some form or another will continue to exist because the politicians have to keep it around long enough until all of the people living off of it now, die. Then they can get rid of it because today's generation doesn't expect anything out of it anymore. Over time, more and more benefits will be slowly cut down or eliminated. In the meantime, the U.S. dollar won't be worth anything near what it is today. So basically your dollar today will be worth .25 cents in the future. And with that .25 cents, you'll need to buy your gasoline at $10.00 a gallon. Sadly this is coming sooner rather than later. The only thing saving the U.S. right now is that Europe and Japan are in worse shape.

You're foolish to believe that the ballot box will change anything. It won't. Today's generation of politicians only care about themselves, even more so than before. Government service is not a service anymore. Being a politician has become a great job to get and stay in so that you can get all of the benefits out of it that ordinary Americans cannot enjoy. And the only way to get elected now is to have big money behind you. That means politicians become beholden to special interests and lobbyists. It's no wonder the U.S. is so screwed up right now.

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “Business, Finance, Taxes, Investments, Cost of Living, etc.”