“If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom, go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!” – Samuel Adams

A Conservative Argument Against ‘Privatization’ of Social Security

By Josiah Schmidt

President Obama has recently begun campaigning against Republicans on the basis that they want to get rid of Social Security.  This is, of course, completely false: Not even Congressman Ron Paul advocates a complete, immediate abolition of SS.  Some Republicans, however, do advocate a “partial privatization”.  I, however, do advocate outright abolition as the only viable solution to the looming entitlement
crisis.  Here’s why.

At current rates, by the year 2040, the US federal government will be able to pay for Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.  But nothing else.  No military, no road funds, no education funds, nothing.  If we had wanted to put our entitlement spending on sound footing back in 2008, then we could have raised federal income taxes by 73%, or we could have increased payroll taxes by 103%, or we could have cut federal spending by 115%, or we could have cut Social Security and Medicare benefits by 47%.  Any of those options would have been painful two years ago, even if a some-of-each approach had been taken.

However, we did nothing in 2008, or 2009, and now one would have to add a few more percentage points to each of those numbers to represent our current situation.

The bottom line is that Social Security is fiscally unsustainable.  Even a pro-Social Security website laughably titled “ThereIsNoCrisis.com“, which was created a few years ago, could only make the statement, “economists agree it [Social Security] will remain solvent for decades” (emphasis mine).  Indeed, a few “decades” is—at very, very best–all that the program has left.

Politicians like George W. Bush and Paul Ryan have to be commended for at least addressing this sacred cow.  Yet, their proposals have fallen woefully short of providing a real solution.  At this point, the only real solution is to simply scrap the program in its entirety.

For starters, Social Security is unconstitutional.  Congress was simply not authorized by Article I Section 8 to create such a program. Unfortunately, this fact makes virtually no difference to the political debate today, because the vast majority of people just don’t care about the original intent of the Constitution.  So perhaps a case can be made from a pragmatic approach.

That case lies in the fact that Social Security is a Ponzi scheme.  The term “Ponzi scheme” is thrown around a lot, and a lot of times people correctly label SS a Ponzi scheme, but don’t really understand why, or what that means.  The SEC itself defines a Ponzi scheme as,  “. . .an investment fraud that involves the payment of purported returns to existing investors from funds contributed by new investors. Ponzi scheme organizers often solicit new investors by promising to invest funds in opportunities claimed to generate high returns with little or no risk. In many Ponzi schemes, the fraudsters focus on attracting new money to make promised payments to earlier-stage investors and to use for personal expenses, instead of engaging in any legitimate investment activity.  With little or no legitimate earnings, the schemes require a consistent flow of money from new investors to continue. Ponzi schemes tend to collapse when it becomes difficult to recruit new investors or when a large number of investors ask to cash out.”

To put all that into layman’s terms, a Ponzi scheme takes your money, tells you that it will invest your money wisely and that it will give you lots of earnings back.  The Ponzi scam artist doesn’t actually invest your money.  Rather, he finds more suckers, telling the new suckers the same story he told you, and then uses the money from the new suckers to pay you.  The scheme can continue only as long as the scam artist can find enough new participants to pay earlier participants.  When the scammer runs out of suckers, the Ponzi scheme implodes, and all those who payed into the scheme but have not yet gotten repayed lose a lot of money.

The Social Security Administration, however, chooses the term “pay-as-you-go system,” rather than “Ponzi scheme”.  The SSA claims that its scheme is absolved from the economic forces working against other Ponzi schemes, since the government can always guarantee future participants (because it forces all workers to pay into the system). This might be true, if it weren’t for the facts that: A) As medicine and technology improve, citizens will live longer and will have claim to more and more benefits; B) A large population bump followed by a population slowdown (such as the Baby Boom) could mean there will come a day when a lot of retirees will want benefits from a relatively small number of paying workers; and C) Increasingly restrictive labor laws (like the minimum wage) reduce the tax base from which to pay retirees.

The main culprit of the impending crisis is, of course, fact B): the demographics issue.  The SSA however, sees the Baby Boom as merely a speedbump in an eternally-sustainable road.  Population growth goes up and it goes down.  So, Social Security might have to run deficits for a while, but once the Baby Boomers have passed, SS can run surpluses again.  Again, this reasoning might be legitimate, were it not for the fact that some “speedbumps” can be big enough to destroy the car.  And any “speedbump” in the population that would cause entitlement spending to consume 100% of the entire federal budget, is such a speedbump.  The fact is that, just like all other Ponzi schemes, SS is approaching the day when the government will not be able to find enough new payers to pay for older retirees.

The longer such Ponzi schemes continue, the more damage they wreck. Everyone has no problem with calling for the immediate and complete dismantling of all other Ponzi schemes, but–for some reason–we are afraid to do anything about the biggest one in existence.  The ratio of taxpayers to benefit-receivers is probably not ever going to get any smaller, therefore the amount of suffering we are dooming our taxpayers to (when the inevitable day of reckoning comes) only increases with every second that we do not end the scheme.

I had a flicker of hope when I heard that Rep. Paul Ryan had introduced legislation to “privatize” Social Security, but after reading the proposal, I was quickly brought back down to earth.  As usual in the lexicon of politics, “privatize” merely means corporatism, i.e. crony (fake) capitalism.

Rep. Ryan’s proposal is (and, for the most part, President Bush’s proposal was) basically to give workers the option of investing part of their Social Security taxes into a fund, managed by the US government, consisting of various equities and securities (some of which would be in private companies, some of which would be in government securities).  Importantly, the government would also guarantee a specified return on the investments, so that if the companies investing your funds lost a lot of money, the government would make up the difference (even counting inflation).  The similarities to the government’s encouragement of moral hazard in the housing market via its implicit guarantees of Fannie and Freddie are, of course, glaring.  As long as the government guarantees your investment return, the companies with whom your money is invested can afford to take all sorts of wild risks with it.  Rep. Ryan’s scheme would likely create yet another huge speculative bubble.  Furthermore, the folks charged with deciding where your money gets invested will consist of five people, appointed by the President.  If you think those appointments won’t be political, and that those planners won’t be inclined to invest your money in accordance with the whims of the special interests who got them there, then you haven’t been paying attention for the past several years.

The real kicker against a plan that involves investing part of workers’ money in the stock market and in government bonds is the fact that, unless the government radically alters in favor of sound monetary policy, austere fiscal policy, and business-friendly regulatory policy, the stock market is set for a painful decline for the foreseeable future.  As long as the government keeps encouraging policies that promote consuming over saving, there will be no resources to invest in capital.  And as capital is consumed rather than built up, American businesses will become less and less productive, and investing in them will be like throwing money into a black hole.

So, while Rep. Ryan’s SS proposal could possibly be a very minor improvement over the current situation, it would mainly be a rearrangement of deck chairs on the Titanic.  Moreover, his proposal for SS suffers from many of the same flaws as the Democrats’ proposal for the health care system.  It involves mandating that individuals purchase the services of certain (politically well-connected, no doubt) providers.  By denying citizens a truly voluntary choice over what happens to the fruit of their labor, resources are diverted into less productive or unproductive lines, and the economy is distorted and hampered.  Other countries, such as Chile, have already “privatized” their social security systems in similar ways, with some success.  But the United States faces a unique and far more dire predicament, which necessitates a far more drastic solution.

The question on everyone’s mind, however, is: What happens to all the retirees if Social Security is completely abolished?  Bam — no more Social Security taxes, no more Social Security benefits.  Well, hopefully the government would be decent enough to make some nice big spending cuts elsewhere in the budget with which to pay compensation to those who may have already become rather dependent on the system. That is, after all, what private businesses are forced to do when their Ponzi schemes are uncovered.  But even in the deaths of private Ponzi schemes, people lose a lot of money and feel a lot of pain. This would be no different in the death of the government’s Ponzi scheme.

Yet, the first thing that happens after the abolition of SS is that the working children and grandchildren of retirees instantly get a raise of about 12.4% in their paychecks.  This means that if you’re making $30,000, you get to keep about $3720 more than before; if you’re making $100,000, you get to keep about $12,400 more than before, etc.  That’s an extra three or twelve thousand dollars a year to take care of grandma.  And if grandmas and grandpas have a good handful of productive progeny, they might be able to live out their retirements quite comfortably with help from their caring kids.  For those retirees who might not be able to live that way, there will undoubtedly be a surge of private charity to fill the vacuum left by the abolition of SS.  Before the existence of Social Security in America, we survived and thrived like no other nation before us.  It really wasn’t that bad.  Old people unable to work weren’t starving and dying in American streets 100 years ago.  Granted, people didn’t live as long back then, but they also didn’t have the abundant medical care and technology that we have today.

Would people adequately prepare for their retirement, in the absence of Social Security?  Well, people might have to retire a bit later without a SS guarantee, but in many instances, the question must be asked: why shouldn’t they?  But, really, the fear of undersaving for retirement is quite bogus.  Economists Paul Smith, Lucy McNair, and David Love have found that 88% of households have already saved enough money on their own to avoid poverty in retirement.  The real crisis isn’t so much that retirees won’t have enough savings, but rather that the productive base of the economy won’t have enough money — after taxes and inflation — to help out those retirees who can’t get help from their family and community.  It’s the younger, working people who may feel the bite the hardest when the SS Ponzi scheme pops (and it is for this reason, among others, that many young people will soon begin attempting to escape this country, making the burden that much heavier for those that remain).

It’s important to keep in mind that whether the Social Security Ponzi scheme is abolished or runs out of steam on its own, it will be very painful and lots of people will suffer big losses–just like in the ending of any other Ponzi scheme.  Already, the SS Ponzi scheme is set to do catastrophic damage to our nation, but the longer we wait to end a Ponzi scheme, the more damage it will do.  Unless we’re okay with paying suffocatingly high taxes or seeing vast swaths of our favorite government spending programs disappear, then the Social Security system needs to end.  Simply transforming it into a mandatory national savings program is not a realistic solution, anymore than it would be a solution for other Ponzi schemes.  The government must fess up, shut down the scam, and liquidate as many of its assets as possible in order to try to compensate the victims of the charade.

But let’s face it — not even Karl Rove and Frank Luntz combined could make the total abolition of Social Security sound politically palatable enough to swallow.  The only way that Social Security gets abolished is if voters, including senior citizens, wake up to the reality of the situation and call for an end to the program.  That will only happen if citizens choose to educate themselves and others. Granted, the odds are that that won’t happen, that nothing will prevent the disaster, and that this whole essay will have merely been a futile exercise in logic.  But if we as Americans somehow defy the odds, and choose to make the tough and prudent decisions that need to be made, the outcome will be immeasurably better than if we had sat back and done nothing.

Josiah Schmidt is a Liberty Features Syndicate contributor.


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19 Responses to “A Conservative Argument Against ‘Privatization’ of Social Security”

  1. Anyone who compares Social Security to a Ponzi scheme is profoundly ignorant of both. In many cases this is not the ignorance which flows from lack of information; that could be cured. Rather, it is usually a militant crusading ignorance which ignores facts and logic and, worse, works to keep them out of the public discourse.

    A Ponzi scheme, as most of the critics well know or should know, masquerades as an investment arrangement but actually pays out capital pretending it is interest/dividends. Capital is depleted, but that depletion is concealed from the “investors”. Sooner or later the facts come out and the scheme collapses.

    Social Security is fundamentally and obviously different. It is intended to be an inter-generational transfer program. It is not supposed to, and does not purport to, build up large reserves. No facts are concealed. There is no claim that benefits are being pre-funded. It does not maintain individual savings accounts though it does, of course, maintain records of individual benefit entitlements which are based on formulae reflecting contribution history.

    It is, in short, a transfer and not an accumulation program: today’s contributors pay the benefits of today’s retirees. Any assets which build up result from the fact that today’s contributions exceed current benefits. They are not pre-funding reserves analogous to those which are needed in a private pension plan or life insurance policy. As a transfer program, Social Security does not make any pretense of accumulating assets by individual, by group or by generation to pay the benefits of that individual, group or generation. Had it operated that way, it could never have paid benefits in the 1930s when it came into effect and when it was most needed. 30s retirees were paid from 30s contributions and the pattern has continued.

    A private pension plan, by contrast, should build up substantial reserves, over time, to pre-fund benefits earned to date. If it terminates before reaching that funding level – usually but not always because the plan sponsor goes out of business – there will be benefit expectations which are not met. That level of reserve building is not necessary for Social Security because the government is not going out of business: more precisely, if it does we will all have far more pressing problems to worry about than Social Security so we can proceed on that assumption. Not only is such funding not necessary; it would be disastrous.

    There is, to repeat, no need to build up reserves in anticipation of the collapse of the US government. Doing so would be a waste of time and effort anyway because the accumulated assets would likely become worthless when the collapse happened. All our SS-benefit entitlements, and any associated assets, would become about as valuable as claims against the Czarist government in the thirties.

    Finally, we should remember that if the critics had their way and benefits were pre-funded, the end result would be a vast pool of investment capital slopping around the markets under the overall control of government – not, I would have thought a prospect which would appeal to most right-wing critics of Social Security

  2. It’s a ponzi scheme. You even described it yourself.

    A Ponzi scheme, as most of the critics well know or should know, masquerades as an investment arrangement but actually pays out capital pretending it is interest/dividends. Capital is depleted, but that depletion is concealed from the “investors”. Sooner or later the facts come out and the scheme collapses.

    Social Security is fast on its way to collapsing and revealing it for the unsustainable socialist scheme it always was.

    Try to at least pretend to grapple with reality next time.

  3. Nonsense Mr. Ellis. Except for quoting back to me what I wrote, all you offer is a piece of invective: no analysis. I note that you omit “Social Security is fundamentally and obviously different… “

    Even if nothing were changed in the contribution or benefit structure, the “socialist scheme” would have to reduce benefits by about 30% more than a quarter century from now when the surplus is expected to run out. In fact, retirement ages will probably rise in line with life expectancy, the cap on covered wages will be raised (soon, I hope) and other adjustments will be made well before there is any substantial problem. The “collapse” you seem to relish is a pipe-dream (or a pipe-nightmare if there is such a word).

  4. So you lower the payout and squeeze a little more life out of the Ponzi scheme. It’s still a Ponzi scheme, fitting the description brilliantly…in addition to being unconstitutional and un-American.

  5. Again we see “a piece of invective: no analysis” nothing but the best illustration of “militant crusading ignorance which ignores facts and logic” I have seen in a long time.

    What part of Transfer Scheme can you not understand?

  6. Oh, I know you’re good at empty invective; you proved it above.

    Social Security IS a transfer scheme; it transfers money earned by the American people into American coffers against their will that they may or may not ever see again.

    It would be hard to think of a program more at odds with American principles and values…if the socialists in this country weren’t busy thinking them up all the time (government health care, SCHIP, Cash for Clunkers, etc.).

  7. Maybe we are getting somewhere. We agree now that Social Security is a transfer scheme. It collects taxes/premiums and provides benefits, but not to each individual from, or even in direct proportion to, his/her own contributions. So do taxes which pay for police protection, defense, sanitation, public health …. The list goes on. Should they all be uprooted? I suggest not. I want as few mugging victims, invading foreign troops, Victorian (or non-existent) sewage systems and epidemics as possible. Also as few destitute old people as possible..

    It’s a stretch to call even my very first paragraph invective. Maybe, but that’s all – and it was in response to pages of very intemperate rhetoric.

    I am starting to appreciate my local libertarian friends more and more. I argue with them on many topics including Social Security. In my view they sometimes, like Mr. Ellis, stray to the right of Genghis Khan but they listen, discuss and come back with coherent arguments and supporting facts; they have even invited me onto their TV program, HardFire, a couple of times. Try it Mr. Ellis (their style, not the TV program – on second thoughts, you could even try that). You might like it.

    cc: Gary Popkin, Joseph Dobrian

  8. “[T]he ‘socialist scheme’ would have to reduce benefits by about 30% more than a quarter century from now when the surplus is expected to run out.”

    Where would that “surplus” be kept, Mr. Actuary” In a “lock-box” no doubt, filled with scraps of IOUs. There is no surplus. payouts from SS exceed “contributions” and the Ponzi scheme will soon collapse.

  9. That argument vaporizes on examination. The surplus is invested in special government bonds. Try a little thought experiment: imagine that the SSA exchanged those bonds for private securities held by a non-government actor – a private pension plan perhaps. All of a sudden would the “scraps of IOUs” magically acquire value in the hands of that private actor?

    In fact, the Treasury bonds which Social Security holds are just as valuable as any other government issue. Not much, I expect, in Mr. Ellis’s or dr. theo’s view. Not much in my view either if government were emasculated in the way some right-wing extremists advocate.

    By the way, if it is any consolation, I am often highly critical of government bureaucracy and of many bureaucratic “free-market” actors too,

    I think I should stop at this point (unless I am really provoked) before any readers became totally bored – assuming they have not already.

  10. That argument vaporizes on examination. The surplus is invested in special government bonds. Try a little thought experiment: imagine that the SSA exchanged those bonds for private securities held by a non-government actor – a private pension plan perhaps. All of a sudden would the “scraps of IOUs” magically acquire value in the hands of that private actor?

    In fact, the Treasury bonds which Social Security holds are just as valuable as any other government issue. Not much, I expect, in Mr. Ellis’s or dr. theo’s view. Not much in my view either if government were emasculated in the way some right-wing extremists advocate.

    By the way, if it is any consolation, I am often highly critical of government bureaucracy and of many bureaucratic “free-market” actors too,

    I think I should stop at this point (unless I am really provoked) before any readers became totally bored – assuming they have not already.

  11. “The surplus is invested in special government bonds.” Are these super special bonds secured with anything more than a promise? How can a government that is in debt equivalent to the gross national product several times over guarantee anything? I submit, Mr. Actuary that SS is a scheme that most resembles a Ponzi con, and cannot sustain itself any longer.

  12. I guess that qualifies as provocation. I suggest US Government bonds have substantial value: better than Enron and other private-sector luminaries; better even than GM’s before that nasty government rescued them. Or would you have preferred Detroit as a ghost town.

  13. Bajactuary, you show promise by recognizing that Social Security is a socialist wealth transfer scheme…but then you blow all your promise with one of the most intellectually bankrupt arguments ever to come from the Left: that if we are to defund unconstitutional socialist programs like Social Security, we must defund legitimate constitutional functions of government that ensure public safety and law and order.

    Since you appear to be extremely clueless about the country in which you live, you might want to first go back and read the U.S. Constitution. Pay specific attention to Article 1 Section 8 which lists the legitimate functions of the federal government. You will not find a retirement system there, nor will you find any of the other charity systems being carried out by the federal government which eat up more than 50% of federal spending each year.

    There is much to admire from the libertarian stance…and much to recognize that falls woefully short in our constitutional republic. Neither liberalism nor libertarianism line up well with America’s founding principles and our constitutional form of government. Only conservatism appreciates these and works to maintain them as the standard for our country.

    Finally, it is difficult to have a coherent discussion with someone who adamantly refuses to acknowledge the elephant in the room that Social Security is perhaps the biggest Ponzi scheme in human history. A certain amount of common ground on the plain of reality is required first.

  14. I find that ludicrous. More importantly, so would all the people – left, right and center – with whom I studied Constitutional Law. They recognized many styles of argument but endless repetition was not one of them.

    At this point, i think further response would be a waste of time.

  15. “The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and GENERAL WELFARE (emphasis supplied) of the United States.” U.S. Constitution, Article 1 Section 8

  16. Thank you for once again broadcasting to us how abysmally clueless you are about the Constitution of your own country.

    Consider what the men who created our country had to say about your little socialist “yes we can” blank check known as the General Welfare Clause:

    If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the General Welfare, the Government is no longer a limited one,possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one, subject to particular exceptions. – James Madison, Father of the Constitution

    I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents… – James Madison

    Charity is no part of the legislative duty of the government. – James Madison

    The moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the laws of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence. If `Thou shalt not covet’ and `Thou shalt not steal’ were not commandments of Heaven, they must be made inviolable precepts in every society before it can be civilized or made free. – John Adams

    [T]he present Constitution is the standard to which we are to cling. Under its banners, bona fide must we combat our political foes – rejecting all changes but through the channel itself provides for amendments. – Alexander Hamilton

    The Constitution ought to be the standard of construction for the laws, and that wherever there is an evident opposition, the laws ought to give place to the Constitution. But this doctrine is not deducible from any circumstance peculiar to the plan of convention, but from the general theory of a limited Constitution. – Alexander Hamilton

    The constitution of the United States is to receive a reasonable interpretation of its language, and its powers, keeping in view the objects and purposes, for which those powers were conferred. By a reasonable interpretation, we mean, that in case the words are susceptible of two different senses, the one strict, the other more enlarged, that should be adopted, which is most consonant with the apparent objects and intent of the Constitution. – U.S. Supreme Court Justice Joseph Story

    The first and governing maxim in the interpretation of a statute is to discover the meaning of those who made it. – James Wilson, signer of the Declaration

    With respect to the words general welfare, I have always regarded them as qualified by the detail of powers connected with them. To take them in a literal and unlimited sense would be a metamorphosis of the Constitution into a character which there is a host of proofs was not contemplated by its creators. – James Madison

    We must confine ourselves to the powers described in the Constitution, and the moment we pass it, we take an arbitrary stride towards a despotic Government. – James Jackson, First Congress

    Our peculiar security is in the possession of a written Constitution. Let us not make it a blank paper by construction. – Thomas Jefferson

    On every question of construction carry ourselves back to the time when the Constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed. – Thomas Jefferson

    Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated. – Thomas Jefferson

    The Constitution says, “Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts, and excises, to pay the debts, &c., provide for the common defence and general welfare of the United States”. I suppose the meaning of this clause to be, that Congress may collect taxes for the purpose of providing for the general welfare, in those cases wherein the Constitution empowers them to act for the general welfare. To suppose that it was meant to give them a distinct substantive power, to do any act which might tend to the general welfare, is to render all the enumerations useless, and to make their powers unlimited – Thomas Jefferson

    Our tenet ever was…that Congress had not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but were restrained to those specifically enumerated, and that, as it was never meant that they should provide for that welfare but by the exercise of the enumerated powers, so it could not have been meant they should raise money for purposes which the enumeration did not place under their action; consequently, that the specification of powers is a limitation of the purposes for which they may raise money. – Thomas Jefferson

    They are not to do anything they please to provide for the general welfare, but only to lay taxes for that purpose. To consider the latter phrase not as describing the purpose of the first, but as giving a distinct and independent power to do any act they please which may be good for the Union, would render all the preceding and subsequent enumerations of power completely useless. It would reduce the whole instrument to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and as they sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please…Certainly no such universal power was meant to be given them. It was intended to lace them up straightly within the enumerated powers and those without which, as means, these powers could not be carried into effect. – Thomas Jefferson

    I consider the foundation of the Constitution as laid on this ground that ‘all powers not delegated to the United States, by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states or to the people.’ To take a single step beyond the boundaries thus specially drawn around the powers of Congress, is to take possession of a boundless field of power, not longer susceptible of any definition. – Thomas Jefferson

    The powers delegated by the Constitution to the federal government are few and defined. Those which are to remain in state governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce. … The powers reserved to the several states will extend to all objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the states. – James Madison

    If Congress can employ money indefinitely to the general welfare, and are the sole and supreme judges of the general welfare, they may take the care of religion into their own hands; they may appoint teachers in every State, county and parish and pay them out of their public treasury; they may take into their own hands the education of children, establishing in like manner schools throughout the Union; they may assume the provision of the poor; they may undertake the regulation of all roads other than post-roads; in short, every thing, from the highest object of state legislation down to the most minute object of police, would be thrown under the power of Congress. … Were the power of Congress to be established in the latitude contended for, it would subvert the very foundations, and transmute the very nature of the limited Government established by the people of America. – James Madison

    You see, those hungry to lord it over their fellow Americans started early to attempt to pervert this (literally) general statement about the good of the country. It was, however, decisively smacked down for the pathetic attempt at a license for freedom-killing big government that it was.

    You should have stopped while you were only moderately behind. But if this information has enabled you to see the wisdom of constitutional government, we’d welcome you aboard as a fresh patriot.

  17. And having reviewed all that and more (which I and they, I am sure, found very convincing and dear to our hearts) the Supreme Court has never held Social Security unconstitutional.

  18. The Supreme Court hasn’t been long on doing it’s job since FDR packed it full of anti-constitutionalists during his reign. Looking to them to find something which is unconstitutional as actually constitutional is like expecting criminals to condemn one another. Besides, even the few good ones on the bench haven’t had a challenge to its constitutionality to consider for a long time. The SCOTUS doesn’t just go looking for things to rule on; a case has to be brought before them.

    Frankly, if you can read the U.S. Constitution–especially Article 1 Section 8 and the Tenth Amendment–as well as the multiple statements of the founders which indicate Social Security and other socialist programs are unconstitutional–and still believe, in defiance of all reason, that it is still constitutional, there truly is no more sense in me wasting my time on such a delusional socialist as yourself.

    Goodbye, Mr. Leftist Looney-Tunes.