There are two basic problems with social security:
1) It's regressive. The poor pay in a higher percentage of their income and take out a smaller amount of dollars than the rich.
2) It's fiscally unsound. Projected liabilities exceed projected assets by a huge amount as the baby boom generation becomes SS-eligible.
Greenspan's solution addresses #2 but does nothing to address #1. Real reform would combine a phased-in benefit limitation with an end to the regressive taxation of the poor by gradually taking the cap off the social security tax and applying the tax to capital gains as well as income; and means testing to eliminate over-withdrawal from the system by the rich.
You may be right that if we were designing a government from scratch, we wouldn't include social security or medicare in the mix. But we aren't. We're dealing with programs that are nearly impossible to rein in and will take a monstrous effort of will by some President--surely not this one--to reform.
Greenspan is also right that the longer we wat to make social security solvent, the more catastrophic will be the changes we ultimately make, both in terms of benefit reductions and tax increases.
There is nothing inherently wrong with regressive taxes, except to liberal economists who think the poor shouldn't have to pay for what they get. Also, I would like to see evidence of where the rich get a better return out of SS than the poor.
Here we go again...wanting to increase the taxes on the minority (hard working wealthy) for the benefit for the majority--many of whom as democrats have been lead down the path to believe they can do nothing for themselves. IN GENERAL TERMS... Until the lower tax paying majority realizes that they have to be more responsible for themselves...better education, better savings, perhaps less partying, less TV, less drugs etc., etc. and more work, they will have less and deserve less.
I don't know how to put this politely, so I won't try: you are a moron.
The hard-working wealthy? You were thinking perhaps of Paris Hilton?
As for the supposedly lazy majority, when is the last time you held a blue collar job? I've worked in steel mills and paper mills, done pick-and-shovel work, and worked in a restaurant kitchen. Those were sweaty, exhausting jobs, far harder than the desk job I now have, and paying far less. The idea that working class people are lazy is so friggin insulting it hardly justifies a response.
Social Security has problems, plenty of them. But asking the working class to solve them all for the benefit of the well-off is not my idea of a decent solution.