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You probably already know it: Social Security is in dire straits. Currently, the program at risk of facing a major shortfall as soon as 2034, which means that receiving benefits in the future is far from a sure thing – even for today’s middle-age workers. To fix the program, dramatic changes must happen now.
It’s with this urgency that the president has tasked Mick Mulvaney to run the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). While we don’t know for sure what fixes Mulvaney will apply, most would burden all taxpayers and beneficiaries.
Here are three discussed changes that could affect all Americans:
Previously, the president has said that cuts to payouts are off the table. But in a Senate confirmation hearing, Mulvaney indicated otherwise.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Mulvaney told the Senate that he would advocate for cuts to benefits, adding…
I have to imagine that the president knew what he was getting when he asked me to fill this role.
It isn’t hard to read between the lines. In 2009, Mulvaney called Social Security a ‘ponzi scheme’ and insisted the program as we know it should be brought to an end. Chances are slim his views are drastically different today.
In 2016, every American paid 12.4% of their income under $118,500 to Social Security. Now, Mulvaney has the power to adjust that cap.
Already, the SSA announced the cap would increase by 7% in 2017. But Mulvaney is willing to push the cap higher. During his confirmation hearings, he declared that his pledge as a congressman to oppose tax increases would not extend to his service in the OMB.
Today, the age at which Americans can receive full benefits for Social Security is set to increase to 67 for anyone born after 1960. But further increases aren’t out of the question.
So even if Social Security stays solvent, the length of time Americans can draw off the program during retirement could shrink significantly.
Asked if he believed that the age limit should be further adjusted, Mulvaney replied with a simple, “I do, yes sir.”
Regardless of what happens over the next decade, the long-term prognosis for Social Security doesn’t inspire confidence. And counting on the program for a comfortable retirement is a gamble, to say the least.
That’s why thousands of Americans have been moving their retirement savings into gold, an asset that will ALWAYS have value, and which the government can’t simply change the rules on.
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