Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Social Security Benefits To Rise In January
The government says that because of inflation, Social Security checks will go up about 1.7%. The average Social Security check is about $1,237 a month. That means there will be a rise in a monthly payment of about $21 for someone receiving ab average payment (or about $252 for a year). A person getting $1000 a month would see an additional $17 a month (or about $204 a year).
Unfortunately, a part of that tiny rise in Social Security income will probably have to be given back to the government in the form of a higher Medicare payment. The Medicare premiums have not yet been announced for 2013, but it is believed that it will rise about $7 a month. If that turns out to be factual, the average Social Security recepient would see only a $14 rise in monthly income, while someone getting $1,000 a month would only see a rise of about $10 a month.
NOTE -- In their continuing effort to privatize Social Security (or at least cut the benefits), the Republicans are still trying to use the deficit as a reason why this must happen. That has always been a lie, and remains so. Not a penny of Social Security benefits comes from the general government revenues, which means Social Security has not contributed at all to the growing deficit. I included the above chart (which shows where Social Security funds actually come from) to remind readers of this fact.
Not only does Social Security not contribute to the growing deficit, but it is not in nearly as much trouble as Republicans would have us believe. The fund can continue making full benefit payments for at least another 20 years -- and simply raising or removing the cap on FICA taxes (which would not affect middle class workers at all) would fully fund benefits for many more decades.
Social Security works. Don't let the Republicans screw it up.