Please pay attention to those two words. Notice what they mean when used together.
After the Great Depression of the 30s, the government under President Franklin Delano Roosevelt put together the Social Security Administration for the everyday working people to pay into the system to make sure upon retirement they would have a financial base to fall back on. It was not originally intended to be all, but over time, and the failure of wages to keep up with rising consumer prices, has all too often turned out to be all a person had to fall back on. It was never intended to be a government-run program, though the treasury department did have oversight over the money itself. Which was why originally, the first payments paid out were written on government checks. As computer and on-line programs came into existence, the Treasury Department moved the system into an automatic deposit for our bank accounts, and now the social security payments we get come directly into our bank accounts. Saves them money on paper and postage, but also it could now be handled by the Administration itself.
Later Medicare was another program that came into being as a way to ensure people who retired and no longer had employment insurance would have healthcare. We also paid into it as another savings account that would not pay us back, but which would insure we had healthcare in our old age.
Why, you ask, are you telling me all this? It is because of the present Washington cronyism that works together to scare the hell out of everyone. Cancel or gut our social security? No, they have no authority to take the money that we all have paid into the systems. Look at your social security money as a savings account which belongs to you, and which is being watched over, with interest, by a stand-alone administration. If any government were to take that money and use it for something else, that would be like going to your bank and stealing your personal savings account. That would be totally illegal. The money belongs to you. It is, however, held under certain restrictions built into the plan 80 years ago. You cannot get a lump sum back when you retire. You do not get all of the interest paid into it. You did not pay income tax on the money that went into the system, and some of the interest paid into your account is used to help the administration pay overhead and the people who administer your account.
Same rules and limits dictate your Medicare. Now if, like me, you also get Medicaid because your income is small enough to allow you to have it, that you possibly could lose. But only if it completely shut down forever. But if you are SLMB, or QMB, and have been getting it for some time, you are probably grandfathered in. But it is a supplemental program tied into Medicare.
Now, think about SSI or SSDI, and Medicare or Medicaid you are getting before you turn 62 or 65 or 70. SSI stands for social security implemental, SSDI for social security disability implemental. These programs are set up by the government and are what we used to call welfare. They have nothing to do with the Social Security Administration – they have nothing in common with them other than the same two words were used as a title. That is what is actually in danger of being gutted, or even cancelled. But many people are actually disabled and unable to support themselves, whether because you are mentally or physically disabled. The problem with that system is that many people have learned to play the system, and simply do not want to work because of laziness or just plain dishonesty. Those are the people who need to be sorted out from the legitimate users, and are among the biggest users of alcohol and drugs. Most of these folks go through false medical organizations, or people who are malpracticers, and the hospitals who lie about who they are taking care of, and sending bills to get paid for things they are not actually doing for anyone. This is also the system that money was taken from to pay for wars, or other things that it was never meant for. Quite a few legitimate organizations, like my assisted housing system, are now starting to give drug tests and alcohol tests to these folks who use SSI and SSDI to get into the systems.
So when you start worrying about what might happen to you if you collecting any form of social security, be sure you know what it is you are collecting. You should know if you are just getting back legitimate funds based on your working life and paying into the SSA, or if you are using the welfare program.