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No Social Security until age 65?

By Jennie L. Phipps ·
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Posted: 10 am ET

I've already made up my mind that part of my retirement planning is to continue typing on this keyboard until my fingers don't work anymore. So I'm inclined to believe that a proposal from the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, to get rid of the option to take Social Security at age 62 is a good idea. The report advocates raising the first opportunity to claim benefits to full retirement age -- 66, rising to 67 in about 2020.

The author of the recently released report, Andrew Biggs, a scholar in residence at the institute, outlines these advantages:

  • Prolong the life of the Social Security trust fund by five years, a modest but significant increase.
  • Raise median income of older Americans by $7,500 a year, including both increased Social Security benefits and savings and other pension income.
  • Boost gross domestic product by about 5 percent through increased productivity, adding billions to the economy and tax revenues.

Biggs says keeping people working until 66 or 67 isn't a physical problem for most these days. He points to another study by David Cutler, a Harvard researcher, conducted for the Retirement Research Center in Boston, that concluded that 65-year-old men have the capacity to work 90 percent as hard as men in their late 50s, and work capacity only declines to 70 percent at age 75.

So Biggs says to keep most people who were born in 1952 and later on the job for another four or five years, while continuing to make Social Security disability available to those who are physically or mentally unable to work that long.

Biggs would offer one big concession. He suggests reducing significantly or eliminating Social Security payroll taxes for people who work and contribute to Social Security longer than 35 years, because the formula for calculating Social Security doesn't reward longer service. "The median individual receives only around 2.5 cents of additional benefits in exchange for $1 of additional taxes at the end of his work life," he writes.

Eliminating payroll taxes would "sweeten the pot" for those asked to work longer, he says.

That would make me lots happier. How do you feel about it?

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John Q
December 25, 2010 at 10:49 am

I was layed off from one of the major banks after giving the com- pany fifthteen years of my life sometimes seven days a week and twenty-four hours a day. i had three young kikds at the time,so i took my severance pay in lump sum and the goverment took 40%,i could not tie-up my money not knowing if i would find another job. The government do not take into consideration these problems people faces in these times. after paying fees and penalties,i still had to pay more taxes at the end of the year. this is not fair to hard working people. this created health problems for me.

December 25, 2010 at 8:10 am

Mabey we should look at regulations concerning social security. I know of a few people that can work as well as myself, but thet get a check every month because of stupid reasons. There children also gets checks. If we would tighten up on these things we would not have to change the retirement age.
I will not be able ti rew-tire because some lazy person got my money? COME ON<<<< whats wrong with this country..

Lou D
December 25, 2010 at 7:46 am

I agree with Michael 009. I've worked for 45 years at a physical job and I'm tired. These desk jockeys from these think tanks have no clue about real people. The option to retire at 62 should be my decision. Most of us can't retire at 62 because we can't afford the health costs. The majority of us don't get pensions with health insurance. Some of us have lived within our means and saved our money. If I can retire at 62 and start receiving some help from the government that I have contributed to for 45 years, It should be my decision.

December 25, 2010 at 7:33 am

Iam 55 and have paid into SS for 40 yrs.I have been a laborer my whole life and iam tired!! Now to say i have to wait until iam 65 to collect SS all this time the government took my money saying i could retire at 62 THIS IS WRONG!!!! LIEING @$#%^*. I can hardly get out of bed in the morning!!

December 25, 2010 at 6:11 am

all that is being forced is non payment BACK to social security the money stolen from our ivy league groopies to pay for their social programs like war and big bizz. this country derserves to fall as rome did. again the backs of the middle class carry the burden for a few lousy dollars. put those ivy league sobs in the middle class work force and see what happens.

December 25, 2010 at 3:07 am

Reducing or limiting Soc. Sec. payroll taxes for older workers who have contributed 35 years or more is a terrible idea! In most cases,those people are making more money than than at any time in their lives and are contributing more to keep Soc. Security viable. At a time when the solvency of the entire program is in jeopardy, I believe it's foolish to curtail any contributions,including the one's our Congress and President just agreed upon!

December 24, 2010 at 10:29 pm

It is no fun that everything is being taken away from the people. We need to learn more about who we hire for congress and the senate and etc. we have nothing left except the clothes on our back. you can't do this and you can't do that. you can't have this now give it back.
Were taxed on this and taxed on that, now when do we get our money back.
Living in the USA does have it pleasures.

December 24, 2010 at 10:22 pm

I think it is bad.

Ken Rayhorn
December 24, 2010 at 7:35 pm

I am 62 right now and do not plan on full retirement until 65 but my question is between now and then,will there be more raises and can implement any kind of retirement plan TODAY for tomorrow. I have retired undr cicil service forwith 32 years but also with 12 years of paying 100% into the SS fund. Now I am penalized on both ends with Windfall Elimination and other earmarks that went through undetected years ago. Where does it all go and stop. I also lost my pension under the SS plan because of another law to do with age versus time with this company. In good consience, I can't accept anymore of Congresses good tidings!!

December 24, 2010 at 4:03 pm

I'm totally confused, can someone help me ? I have been reading comments about cutting on social security and even doing away with it, but they extend unemployment benefits for millions, people on social security have paid in to the fund all their lives, some people on unemployment have only worked for a couple of years but will now draw benefits for possibly longer than people on social security, I'm confused, would it not be better to just work and get laid of and not sign up for S.S.