Social Security

Social Security

Social Security is one of the centerpieces of America's social safety net. It was created in 1935 by the Social Security Act (unemployment insurance and welfare were also instituted by this law).  Social Security is a federally administered and funded insurance program to alleviate poverty among the elderly. Social Security functions as a contributory system wherein workers and their employers contribute taxes to the program throughout their working lives, and are then able to utilize the fund upon retirement. The Social Security Act has been expanded and amended over the years.

Commentary

Lessons from FDR: When the Right Cries Wolf, Bite Back

August 14, 2010

Cry Wolf Quotes

[Social Security is] the end of democracy.

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The American Liberty League pamphlet. 1935.

The lash of the dictator will be felt and 25 million free Americans will for the first time submit themselves to a finger print test.

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Representative Daniel Reed (R-NY)

The Senate Finance Committee stands between us and stands between businesses that are almost prostrate, stands between us and destruction, and we feel that we can come to you for support and for protection. You will have no taxes to pay anything with if you do not keep American industry alive, and we have a right to depend on you gentlemen to do it, no matter what propositions, impractical propositions, are brought up.

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Elon H. Hooker, president of the Manufacturing Chemists Association. Senate Finance Committee hearings.

We believe that this measure, if adopted, means at best an annuity of doubtful value for the aged of the future and unemployment benefit of doubtful value for the normally temporarily unemployed of the future--at the terrific cost of retarding the reemployment of those who are unemployed today.

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John Harrington, general counsel for the Illinois Manufacturing Association. Senate Finance Committee hearings.

Related Laws and Rules

Resources

Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) is a progressive think tank that concentrates on social and economic policy, both domestic and international.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) is a think tank focused on tax and fiscal policy. They provide in-depth analysis of state issues.