Saturday, January 17, 2009

Social Security

Once upon a time, I sat around with my friends in our dorm and bemoaned the fact that the government took money from every skimpy pay check to feed social security. I knew there would be nothing left when I was ready to draw on the fund. But I rationalized the deductions in two ways: there was a damned thing I could do about it (without breaking the law and going to jail) and it would help my mother when she was ready to draw social security.

Well, yesterday I turned 62 and officially am eligible to begin withdrawing from the "account" Uncle Sam set up for me when I was 18. Not that I am going to do it, since today I am gainfully employed, but I am happy to say I was wrong back in college. Social security is still around -- nominally at least. And boomers like me are beginning to tap into the fund.

Yes, I know the fund is a myth and that there really isn't a pile of money bags lying around in Fort Knox waiting for me to hold out my hand. And I know Uncle Sam and his elected representatives have been syphoning from that mythical fund for decades. Still, for the nonce, it is nice to know that it is there and that I can actually begin drawing on it any time now.

So, happy birthday to me. Onward to the next part of my life.