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Public Statements

Issue Position: Social Security

Issue Position

Location: Unknown

Wolfe Defends Social Security

John Wolfe has continually pledged to protect your Social Security benefits from any Democrat or Republican who would deign to get his or her hands on it, whether from Wall Street or Washington.

The media rarely report that Social Security has collected well over 2 Trillion more dollars than it has paid out in benefits. And Social Security means more than just old age protection, as it pays pensions to disabled workers and supports the minor dependents of the disabled and deceased. Given that the media are owned by Disney(ABC), General Electric(NBC), Viacom(CBS), and Fox's Rupert Murdoch, it is little wonder that we hear only lies about Social Security's imminent demise.The Chicken Noodle Network(CNN) is no better. Contrary to reports in the corporate media, Social Security is a solvent and broad- based program that works well and has administrative costs of less than 1%.

Of course, these media jackals and their Wall Street allies would love to get their greedy hand on Social Security, so that they could charge the old and infirm 2 or 3 percent for every transaction and churn their accounts to their profit. But, had we had adopted Wall Street's privatization plan of 1999, where would the elderly be now? On January 14,2000, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 11,722. Today it is about 10,400. So, in 11 1/2 years, the D.J.I.A. has declined by 14% in actual numbers, but by more than 34%, if one factors inflation into the equation.
Does that sound like a winning formula for a happy and stable retirement?

If Social Security recipients began losing money because of bad investment advice or a bad economy, then their plunge into poverty would force the states and federal government to increase welfare and food stamp budgets. The children of the elderly would face added financial burdens. Right now, the poverty rate among the elderly is only 9%. Without a stable Social Security system, it would be about 45%.

Social Security contributions are assessed at a flat rate on all earned income below $106,000.00. It is not welfare. We pay for it. It has worked well for years. Government administrative costs are much lower than businesses', as the costs of advertising and 100 milion dollar executive salaries will never become a factor in the costs of providing Social Security. Wall Street hates Social Security because it is a working demonstration of how people can unite as a single co-op, free of Wall Street control or profit, and effectively solve a problem by themselves. There is nothing wrong with private pensions. They may or may not work well, given their tremendous operating overhead.

As a candidate for the United States Congress, Third District of Tennessee, I challenge each of my opponents to state unequivocally that he or she will never privatize Social Security. I ask them to stipulate that Social Security has a surplus of well over 2 Trillion Dollars and will be solvent until 2037, even if we do nothing. Because Social Security contributions are on budget, I ask my opponents to further stipulate that this massive Social Security surplus has served to stabilize the national debt and thereby reduced the government's borrowing costs.

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