Just so you're aware of the facts, almost the entire email is false. But that's what happens when you forward a rumor email.
1.) That participation in the Program would be Completely voluntary,
No longer Voluntary
There was no provision in the original Social Security Act of 1935 for a voluntary program. There were only exemptions such as railroad workers.
2.) That the participants would only have to pay 1% of the first $1,400 of their annual Incomes into the Program,
Now 7.65% on the first $90,000
There was no provision to limit social security to only the first $1,400 of income. It originally was limited to the first $3,000. In addition, there was nothing in the legislation that permanently fixed the collection rate to 1%. The Social Security Act of 1935 included a schedule that started the tax collection rate at 1%, but gradually increased the rate up to 3% over 12 years. Supplemental legislation over the decades have increased that rate.
3.) That the money the participants elected to put into the Program would be deductible from their income for tax purposes each year,
No longer tax deductible
The Social Security Act of 1935 actually stated that SS taxes could NOT be tax deductible: "DEDUCTIBILITY FROM INCOME TAX SEC. 803. For the purposes of the income tax imposed by Title I of the Revenue Act of 1934 or by any Act of Congress in substitution therefor, the tax imposed by section 801 shall not be allowed as a deduction to the taxpayer in computing his net income for the year in which such tax is deducted from his wages.
4.) That the money the participants put into the independent 'Trust Fund' rather than into the
general operating fund, and therefore, would only be used to fund the Social Security
Retirement Program, and no other Government program, and,
Under Johnson the money was moved to The General Fund and Spent
Nearly all false.
Social Security funds have not ever been moved to the "general operating fund". What is true, but not really even hinted in the email, is that Social Security surplus funds have always been allowed to be invested. In other words, the government can "lend" money to itself from the Social Security trust. Originally, any money taken from the trust was to be used to invest in securities. Now that money has been lent out for use on a much wider scale, including the purchase of bonds and in some ways turned into a slush fund. That's where the idea of using Social Security as a "general fund" comes from. The issue is that the government borrows this money, then continues to run deficits anyway, and can't repay back into the SS trust fund.
5.) That the annuity payments to the retirees would never be taxed as income.
Under Clinton & Gore
Up to 85% of your Social Security can be Taxed
Mostly false, with a small amount of truth.
The Social Security Act of 1935 in itself never specified that annuity payments would never be taxed as income. What did happen is that the Treasury Department ruled a few years later that benefits would be excluded from federal taxes. That ruling stayed in effect until 1983, when amendments to Social Security were passed that allowed benefits to be taxed. The POTUS in 1983 was Ronald Reagan, and he signed the bill allowing up to 50% of benefits to be taxed, depending on income thresholds. Under Clinton, the percentage of taxable income on benefits was raised to 85%, but that only applied to the higher income thresholds. You can read in detail here: Research Notes Special Studies by the Historian's Office
Q: Which Political Party took Social Security from the independent 'Trust Fund' and put it into the
general fund so that Congress could spend it?
A: It was Lyndon Johnson and the democratically controlled House and Senate.
I already mentioned earlier that the SS funds were never "put into the general fund". What did change under Johnson in 1969 was how the fund was accounted for in the federal budget.
Q: Which Political Party eliminated the income tax deduction for Social Security (FICA) withholding?
A: The Democratic Party.
As mentioned already, SS withholdings were never tax deductible.
Q: Which Political Party started taxing Social
A: The Democratic Party, with Al Gore casting the
'tie-breaking' deciding vote as President of the
Senate, while he was Vice President of the US
I've already pointed out that in 1983, Ronald Reagan signed a bill to amend the SS program, overruling the Treasury Department, and to allow SS annuities to be taxed. The bill received overwhelming bi-partisan support in both the House and Senate.
Q: Which Political Party decided to start giving annuity payments to immigrants?
AND MY FAVORITE:
A: That's right!
Jimmy Carter and the Democratic Party.
Immigrants moved into this country, and at age 65, began to receive Social Security payments! The
Democratic Party gave these payments to them, even though they never paid a dime into it!
No one, even U.S. citizens, are allowed to collect SS annuities unless they have paid into the system first. The email is misleading because it's confusing Social Security with Supplemental Security Income (SSI). SSI is not part of Social Security, because SSI is not financed by Social Security withholdings. Instead SSI is a welfare program funded by general revenues. SSI was signed into law by Richard Nixon, a republican, back in 1972.
Just stating the facts here, folks. If you question any of that, try reading the actual Social Security Act of 1935: http://www.nationalcenter.org/SocialSecurityAct.html