Whither Social Security & Medicare?

It’s hard to know what to do with the GOP threats to Social Security and Medicare[1]GOP threats to Medicare and Social Security take center stage in last days before election (msn.com), kinda like their threat to invalidate the ACA aka “Obamacare” – they have no plan, just an ideological hate of anything that helps people and stops every penny from going to their donors and big corporations, who are often the same thing.

Anyway, given I’m 65 years old this year, I’ve been mired in the confusing swamp of Medicare Part-A/B/D, Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans. There are so many websites, this points to that, which refers you there, which takes you back to the start.

The worst part is if you make a mistake and choose the wrong option, the doors slam shut and you are locked in until this time next year.

When trying to recover from the website fracas, I started to wonder what I’d actually paid in. The answer was pretty interesting, and maybe the answer was a coincidence. First-up this image is from my social security statement. No made-up numbers or hypotheticals.

If you have not pulled yours, it’s worth doing, assuming the GOP don’t actually get to gut Social Security, the website will give you an estimate what your payments will be when you reach my age. You can get started here: https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/

In addition, it will give a summary of how much you and your employer have paid in, here’s mine. Yours will depend on how long you’ve been paying in, and how much you were paid.

So, add the two and you get just shy of $250,000. A quarter of a million. So much for socialism, that’s what I’ve paid to be part of this exclusive club that includes every 65-and-older citizen. My monthly payment from social security is $1711. Medicare payments are deducted from that.

The average life expectancy for a white American male in Colorado is 78[2]COLORADO MALE LIFE EXPECTANCY BY COUNTY (worldlifeexpectancy.com). That’s 13-years from now.

$249,785 / 13 = $19,214 per year

$19,214 / $1711 = 11.23 years

That’s without any interest earned on the money that’s been paid-in over 30-years in my name. There’s a gamble, I might die early, I might live longer. It’s a game of averages. What it isn’t is socialism. It’s my money.

If the GOP think they can take that money and force grossly over-expensive medical insurance plans on Americans in exchange for their entire social security payment, I have other ideas. This from the party who are blocking President Biden from taking actions on student loan forgiveness[3]Where Biden’s student loan forgiveness program stands (msn.com).

As Gilbert O’Sullivan said, nothing rhymes.

This feeling inside me could never deny me The right to be wrong if I choose,
And this pleasure I get From say winning a bet Is to lose

Gilbert O’Sullivan – Nothing Rhymed, 1971

11/9/22 Corrected Obamacare, added link for life expectancy – Thanks Gabe!

3 thoughts on “Whither Social Security & Medicare?

  1. Hi Mark! how timely. I’ve been dealing with Annual Enrollment at work and my turn for dealing with this head-on is coming next year. Today, I was told that even if I continue working past my birthday, I have to start paying Part B or get penalized? and if I’m in the HealthFund with a HSA, I have to stop contributing? I even talked to Medicare, but it seems even they don’t have the answers for me, Social Security Administration is the final authority? Thanks for the kick in the pants to get me started.

    1. Yes, that true about part b. Yes u have to have insurance or sign up for Medicare part a/b which will be deducted from your social security payment. It’s pretty affordable compared to insurance, I pay $138 for both out of $1711. If you propose not taking social security until you are older and increase your payment by delaying.

      The penalty for part-b is really a mod to the insurance companies

      Part-d can be expensive, and that’s where the insurances plans come in and are worth considering.

      At least here the county runs seminars to explain it all that were great.

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