Goldman Sachs’ CEO Lloyd Blankfein is worried you might get to retire.
BLANKFEIN (In an interview with Scott Pelley of CBS News): You’re going to have to undoubtedly do something to lower people’s expectations — the entitlements and what people think that they’re going to get, because it’s not going to — they’re not going to get it.
PELLEY: Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid?
BLANKFEIN: You can look at history of these things, and Social Security wasn’t devised to be a system that supported you for a 30-year retirement after a 25-year career. …
Exactly! The world is full of 45 year old retirees planning to loaf about until they’re 75!
Let’s deal with this quickly. Most people start working at least part-time in their teens. A great many of us are on the job full time by the time we’re 20, and those are the ones of us most likely to need every penny of Social Security we can get when we finally do stop working in our late 60s, after 40 or more years of not being the CEOs of federally bailed out financial corporations. And last I checked, average life expectancy in the United States hasn’t reached 95. So we’re talking about, at the lucky outside, 15 years of retirement after, for many of us, spending close to our whole adult lifetime kicking into the fund.
Some of those 15 years are not going to be spent in the best of health.
Blankfein would like to see it whittled down to, well, probably, 0. He’s a Work Until You Drop advocate if I ever heard one.
I get a kick out of people who would have screamed Socialism! till they were hoarse at the time talking about what Social Security was originally designed to do as if they know what FDR intended and think we need to honor those intentions.
What Social Security was originally designed to do was get itself passed by Congress.
Ostensibly and initially it was intended to keep little old widder ladies from starving to death.
Even that modest goal was opposed by the Lloyd Blankfeins of the day.
But the larger plan was to put a program in place to be built on and expanded so that---and here was the crazy idea---nobody would have to work until they dropped or else face a cold and hungry and penurious old age.
The idea was that none of us should have to ask permission from the likes of Lloyd Blankfein to live past the age when we can push a mop or swing a shovel or load a truck, sew a stitch, drive a rivet, sweat pipe, bag groceries, flip burgers, gut fish, make beds, haul trash, dig coal, pick lettuce, or clean other people’s houses and raise their kids.
The idea was that it wasn’t the natural order of things that most people should break their backs, break their hearts, and have their spirits broken working all their lives to make a few people rich.
The idea was that there ought to be more to life than toil and sorrow and that at some point everybody should be able to lay down their tools and enjoy a few years of rest in comfort and security before they die.
When plutocrats like Blankfein say we can’t afford a system like Social Security was really designed to become, they mean:
I don’t want to pay for other people’s comfort and security. I don’t want to pay for it! I don’t want to see it! In fact, I don’t really want them to have either!
They should be grateful they have work to do until they drop.
Life is about winning and losing, and the winners should enjoy feeling like winners, and an important part of that feeling is knowing that the losers know they have lost!
Via ThinkProgress. Read Pat Garofalo’s whole post.