While doing my taxes this year, I discovered IRS Form 4029 which allows an individual to opt out of social security and medicare. To do so, you must be conscientiously opposed to accepting benefits of any private or public insurance that makes payments in the event of death, disability, old age, or retirement; or makes payments for the cost of medical care; or provides services for medical care. While I am conscientiously opposed to public insurance, I have no objections to private insurance. Of course, there are a couple other stipulations. You must also join a collectivist organization with a belief in the supernatural which has been in existance since at least 1950.
Individuals who wish to be self-sufficient or participate in private insurance programs rather than be part of the state's welfare system are unable to do so. I find this to be egregious. I have contact my elected representatives in Congress to let them know how I feel, but I'm not expecting much considering that both Senators Boxer and Feinstein have petitions on their home pages to preserve social security as is.
Here's the short note I sent to Congressman Sherman and the Senators, and the non-responsive form letter response from Ms. Boxer.
Congressman Sherman, As President Bush and Congress are currently working on the reform of Social Security, I would like to propose that one of the reforms include the ability of citizens to opt out of participation in the Social Security and Medicare insurance programs. Being a responsible individual, I plan to save enough money during my productive years to fund my retirement until death. I am conscientiously opposed to accepting welfare from the state and would be happy to waive all rights to Social Security benefits in return for not being required to contribute to the program. Such an option is available to members of certain religious organizations, and I would appreciate your support in ending such unconstitutional discrimination. Thank you for you time and I would be delighted to hear your thoughts on the issue. Sincerely, Christian Warden
Date: Fri, 4 Mar 2005 09:21:31 -0500 From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: email@example.com Subject: Responding to your message March 4, 2005 Mr. Christian Warden 18531 Prairie Street, Apartment 214 Northridge, California 91324-3156 Dear Mr. Warden: Thank you for writing to express your concerns about President Bush's plan to partially privatize Social Security. I appreciate hearing from you. Social Security is a crucial insurance program and an indispensable safety net for our people. It has been enormously successful. Before Social Security, over half of all seniors were poor. Today, 10 percent live in poverty. That is still too many, and we want to take care of that. What we do not want to do is go back to the days when 50 percent of our seniors were living in poverty. Under the President's plan, Social Security benefits would be cut by 45 percent. The average yearly payment would be only $5,700, which is 35 percent below the poverty line. That would be a tragic reversal of fortune for our people. Certainly we know that Social Security needs periodic adjustments. However, President Bush is misleading the American people by calling this a "crisis." According to the Social Security Trustees, there is enough money to pay full benefits until 2042. And according to the Congressional Budget Office, there is enough money to pay full benefits until 2052. Now more than ever -- as we are faced with an aging population, the imminent retirement of the baby boom generation, the costs of the war on terrorism, 40 million Americans without healthcare, and a ballooning budget deficit of well over $400 billion -- we cannot afford to divert needed funds away from an already stressed Social Security system. ^L This is too much of a risk to take with funds that so many workers are counting on for their retirement. Privatization would also impact people with disabilities, survivors of deceased workers, and 3 million children who depend on Social Security benefits. I feel strongly that we should not weaken Social Security or compromise its financial condition. Rest assured, I am committed to preserving the integrity of Social Security for generations to come. And it is not difficult to solve this challenge, just as we did in 1983. Again, thank you for taking the time to voice your concerns. Please continue to keep me informed about the issues that matter to you. Sincerely, Barbara Boxer United States Senator
Disclaimer: As a child, my mother received welfare. And while it allowed her to spend time raising me, given the choice, I would not want to be a burden on my neighbors.
The state is that great fiction by which everyone tries to live at the expense of everyone else. - Frederic Bastiat