As it stands, if the bill that was passed in the House were to be rubber stamped by the Senate (it won’t be, but let’s just say), then all the retirees that are living off Social Security would get absolutely nothing in the deal. That’s because, as I outlined in a discussion on the specifics of the 2008 Tax Stimulus package, only those with incomes over $3,000 who paid taxes would be eligible for the stimulus checks. If you’re living on Social Security, that’s not considered income so unless you earned over $3000 and paid taxes, then you would be out of luck.
Luckily the Senators (mostly the Democrats), who have yet to reach an agreement, have retirees in mind because they recognize this significant shortfall in the bill passed by the House. While the details of what they’re trying to do isn’t clear yet, you can read about the fuss the chambers are going through. The Senate has two weeks to get a move on in time to meet the arbitrary deadline of Feb 15th.
3 responses to “2008 Tax Stimulus & Retirees on Social Security”
And here I thought the goal of a “stimulus” package was to “stimulate” the economy. How silly. Apparently the Senators (mostly the Democrats) think it’s about some arbitrary notion of fairness along with the opportunity to add a whole bunch of padding to it.
This isn’t about putting money in everyone’s hands. It isn’t about making sure everyone is treated equally. It is about stimulating the economy. It is about pumping up consumer spending during a period of slow or negative growth.
Personally, I would have preferred to see the stimulus package tailored to give more money to the very poor and less to middle class and rich people. I am a rock-ribbed conservative and would ordinarily balk at the idea of sending income tax rebates to people who don’t really pay income taxes in the first place. Still, in this particular situation the idea isn’t to craft grand tax policy. It isn’t supposed to achieve some ideal balance. It is supposed to get money spent ASAP. Poor people are much more likely to spend money. Middle class people (like me, for example) are much more likely to either save it or retire debt.
Still, the time for discussing this is past. This is one of those times when an adequate solution right now is much better than an ideal one later on. The longer the Senate (mostly the Democrats) drags this out in pursuit of fairness (i.e. making sure very constituency is paid off), the less of an impact it will have. Nothing could be more foolish than delaying economic stimulus so long in pursuit of “fairness” that it actually arrives too late to do any good.
It does not make any sense when the people that need it most are we the people that are collecting social security and disability, and cannot afford our medications. The government does not look out for the people any longer.
I am old and retired and work a little part time to make ends meet.I got my utility bill today and MLGW is charging me $10 min. for gas. I cannot afford heat so I turned it off and used a heater and lots of warm clothes. If government is giving out money- then WE should have had a little more than $300. My friend-same age as me-she and her busband got $1200. I will use mine for bread, milk and spam.