Social Security and Medicare: Separating Fact from Fiction

Social Security and Medicare: Separating Fact from Fiction  The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare (NCPSSM) is a nonpartisan, issue-based organization dedicated to preserving the integrity of two of the country’s most significant and widespread social and economic benefit programs. Founded by James Roosevelt (the son of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt) in 1982, the NCPSSM today has millions of members across the country. The core of its mission is to educate all Americans about the benefits of Social Security and Medicare, especially for our nation’s seniors.

Established in 1935, Social Security acts as a safety net for workers and their families at all economic levels, not just the poor. It is an equal opportunity program based solely on work history: Anyone who pays Social Security tax for at least 10 years is eligible to receive benefits upon retirement. The money paid into Social Security is invested in government bonds, which earn interest and are used to run the government. The program, in effect, pays for itself.

Contrary to what some believe, Social Security is not going broke. Recent projections, however, indicate that by the year 2033, Social Security will not have enough of a surplus to pay out full benefits in 30 years. This means that the integrity of Social Security is not just an issue for seniors but for everyone.

Medicare, too, is an issue for all Americans. Medicare is health care for people age 65 and older. Workers who pay the FICA tax are automatically enrolled in the program, but anyone can enroll in Medicare at age 65 regardless of whether they’ve paid the tax or not. Through its available plans, Medicare helps pay for routine doctor visits, hospital stays, and prescription drugs.

Because everyone is just one severe illness away from impoverishment, the NCPSSM encourages everyone to contact their state representatives and let them know how important Social Security and Medicare are to them. One phone call or email may make the difference!

To learn more about the NCPSSM, or to become a member, visit the organization’s website at ncpssm.org. And tune in to “Senior Solutions” tonight at 10 p.m. on Montgomery Municipal Cable Channel 16 to watch Mindy’s lively discussion with Laura Feldman, Grassroots Manager for the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare. (“Senior Solutions” airs every Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. and Wednesday at 10 p.m.)