August 14: Preserve, Improve, and Expand Social Security
Added to the calendar on Saturday Jul 29th, 2017 9:46 AM
Monday, August 14, 12 Noon, in Oakland's Frank Ogawa Plaza
Broadway and 14th St, 12th St BART Station.
Rally and Two-Block March to Federal Building
Confirmed Speakers to date:
Alex Lawson: Executive Director, Social Security Works
Norman Solomon: Author, Columnist, Activist
Social Security is alive and well now, but just like Medicaid and Medicare, Social Security is under attack. We must defend it. Join us on Social Security's 82 birthday to celebrate it, and re-dedicate ourselves to defend and improve Social Security and all these vital programs.
Over its 82 years, Social Security has provided income and dignity for hundreds of millions of retirees and people with disabilities, their spouses and children, and for deceased workers' spouses and children. For two thirds of seniors, it's over half their income. Half of women and people with disabilities would be in poverty without Social Security. Almost 10% of children get it. We will NOT go back to the days of workhouses!
Social Security is the nation's most effective anti-poverty program, yet it is entirely funded by we who work for a living, through FICA deductions from our paychecks, and by our employers. Not a cent comes from the government. In fact, our $2.8 Trillion Social Security Trust Fund is invested in loans to help the government run. Those loans must be repaid to Social Security. It's our program, our money! Our past, our future!
For years, the same corporate and financial vultures who eliminated defined-benefit employee pensions have also tried to destroy Social Security. Their hedge-fund crooks like Peter Peterson put out fake studies to undermine people's faith in Social Security. Their official Commissions, like Bowles/Simpson recommend: Raising the Retirement age. Cutting benefits and cost-of-living increases. Worst of all, turning Social Security into private individual accounts for each recipient, invested in risky Wall Street stock market accounts with expensive management fees. Instead of having a unified program of collectively-guaranteed economic security for everyone, we'd be individuals at the mercy of Wall Street's insider trading and boom-and-bust whims.
Now, the Trump administration wants to eliminate the payroll tax, which is the financial foundation of Social Security. And Trump's 2018 budget calls for $64 Billion in cuts over the next ten years to Social Security Disability Insurance, an integral part of Social Security. Most of these "savings" would come from reduced future enrollment because of new work requirements.
We have a different plan: Scrap the $127,000 cap and make the rich pay Social Security tax on all their income. Raise benefits to cover actual cost of living and disappearing pensions. Enact a realistic cost-of-living formula. Provide benefits for time caring for young children. Restore student benefits for children of deceased or disabled covered parents.
We must remember that our parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents won Social Security in the mid-1930s, the depths of the Great Depression, when everything looked stacked against us. Social Security must be preserved, improved, and expanded. In the 1930s, Roosevelt said "Make me do it!" We did. We can do it again. We must do it again!
California Alliance for Retired Americans, 510-663-4086,
600 Grand Ave, Rm 410, Oakland CA, 94610, californiaalliance.org