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The Very Best of What a Government Program Can Be

Anna Turner guest blogs on The Huffington Post and writes a line with which we wholeheartedly agree: "Social Security represents the very best of what a government program can be." (On a related note, see our response to assertions that Social Security is a 'hidden welfare program.')

Turner argues that the crisis of Social Security is not really a crisis at all -- not with the program itself, anyway -- and that if we allow apathy to predominate, rather than the truth, young people who have not yet benefited from Social Security will indeed be unable to benefit at all when it's needed.

In other words, if there is a crisis, it's a crisis of apathy.

Turner asks us to recall exactly how we came to 'know' that Social Security would not exist when it came time to retire, and the title of her post (It's Our Social Security, Too) is a call to check the facts.

One example of a false claim about Social Security is that Congress has considered giving Social Security to illegal immigrants. This claim was first associated with Republican campaigns during the 2006 midterm elections and was perpetuated in the 2008 Republican presidential primaries.

Democrats, too, are not immune from making false claims about Social Security. President Obama has claimed that Republicans want to completely privatize Social Security, but few Republicans actually take that position.

Many young men and women have yet to realize the benefits of the Social Security program. But when it comes time for those same men and women to retire, or when those men and women become disabled and can no longer work to make ends meet, it would have been wise to oppose false claims about Social Security when it was possible.

As Turner writes, "It's easier to chip away at the program when an entire generation of voters grew up believing that the program was never going to make it anyway."

Sources:

It's Our Social Security, Too
Social Security for Illegal Immigrants?
Obama's (Latest) Social Security Whopper

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