Lower retirement age = Lower unemployment

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jayse's picture

I haven't heard anyone mention this too much so I thought I would give it a shot on here about my idea.

Lower retirement age for Social Security from 62 to 60.  Would need some sort of "stimulus" to help offset the initial cost of giving SSI to a whole new group of people, but then in turn it would give the chance of millions of older people an option to retire, thus creating millions of new job openings to get younger and middle aged people filtered in to replace the new retirees.

Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated ;)


Kerry's picture
My brother would say that you

My brother would say that you don't know your history on this.  As my brother once pointed out to me, when Social Security was conceptualized in the 1930's with 'benefits being obtained when you reach old age at 65'', the average life expectancy was less than that--even for women.  So, the point (as my brother puts it) was that those who promoted Social Security were just seeing it, then, as another ponzi-like scheme that government could capitalize on (perhaps to do more with like they do now--spend it on other projects)--more money going in than going out.  However, perhaps something they didn't predict, our life expectancy has improved (and most of that is NOT based on the technological wizardry of modern medicine but the overall improvement in nutrition and lifestyles of the population--the technological wizardry cannot be used to improve everyone's life expectancy).

While I've heard of this 'lowering the retirement age to improve unemployment', I've also heard of 'raising the retirement age to make Social Security more solvent'.  Which do you think is more likely to happen?  Well, when Social Security was started, they knew more people would die before they got it than those who would get it by the very age they started with--are they going to change that now?   Hide and watch....   

jayse's picture
maybe raise the cap of SSI

maybe raise the cap of SSI tax up from only 90,000.  I believe I have heard Thom say to eliminate it completely (the cap) but maybe a middle ground somewhere around 250K-300K as a compromise.

It would definately meet major resistance - As a political pessimist I don't think it ever will.  I just think its a neat idea.

If the rich are getting richer and richer these days, why cant the working class get an additional 2 years of retirement?

Kerry's picture
Because, right now, the rich

Because, right now, the rich control corporations and government....in fact, as I've told my brother, there ought to be a new word for it--'corporate-government collusion'--then, we might could come up with some better words to fix it....

mike12771's picture
i know if they lower the age

i know if they lower the age of retirement to 55 it would help the economy,i started working at a very young age,and paying into ssi for 39 years and 29 years to go.i feel if the retirement age was lower more jobs can be available for the 17.5% unemploied.for a man working to the age of 65 or 68,you become slower at your skills,as a corporations point of view you can bring in the younger faster worker to the workforce to replace the worker whos ready for retirement. 

demandside's picture
Without the social contract,

Without the social contract, we become wolves to one another.

In Germany, the GDP went up 300% in 30 years with 20% fewer workers. Work must be redefined and expanded.  Creating a social net is the precondition to reducing working hours and sharing work.  If everyone had health care, people would share their work and not be chained to alienating work and commuting from Modesto to SF.  Redistribution is the key to restoring trust and public spirit.

In the US, myths of trickle down prosperity and corporate beneficence prevail. The top tax rate was over 70% from 1938 to 1982.  Corporations that paid 40% of their profits in taxes in 1960 pay 10% today. According to the myth, increased profits produce greater investments and more jobs.  In truth, corporate profits have skyrocketed and are "invested" or "speculated" in foreign currencies and buying back their own stock.

John Kenneth Galbraith decried the public squalor existing alongside private affluence. Economics changes with the times.  Once saving was the elixir and then spending was the elixir.  Lowering the age of retirement and uncoupling work and income security would be signs of social evolution.  Crisis is an opportunity to rethink private and public, market and state and change production and consumption patterns..If alternatives and social justice are repressed, the treck to feudalism will be on a fast track. As a Polish proverb says, "you can make fish soup out of an aquarium but can't make an aquarium out of fish soup."  The public sector must be developed and not denounced as a foreign body or troublemaker.