Saturday, February 9, 2013
Am I A Maker or A Taker?
Most of my life, I have worked and paid taxes. I had my first real job when I was sixteen years old and still in high school. I was a hostess at a "mom and pop" style Italian restaurant. My mother always teased me that I would never get the smell of garlic out of my system.
During my college years, I went to school for two out of three trimesters and worked during the third trimester. For four months every year, I held down two jobs. During the week I worked in a dentist's office, and on the weekends I worked at a downtown hotel, as a desk clerk. I checked people in, checked people out and ran the switchboard.
After college, I taught school for three years, then began working in the corporate world. There was never a period of time when I wasn't working.
So, I worked from age sixteen into my sixties. Have I gone from being a "Maker" to being a "Taker"? I paid into Social Security during my whole working life, so I don't feel like I am getting "something for nothing". Some argue that I will surely take out more than I put in, but I'm not sure about that. Since I started paying Social Security tax about fifty years ago, shouldn't that money be worth a lot more now? If it had been there earning interest, it would be. However, I understand the government didn't leave it sitting there earning interest; they raided the funds to use for other things.
Also, Social Security benefits are taxable anyway. So I am still paying taxes. Am I dependent on the government? Not entirely. I have an IRA and savings, so the money I receive from the government is not all I depend on. So, am I a "Maker" or a "Taker"? I'm still not sure.