The Instigator
Pro (for)
4 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

Social Security should be optional and individuals should have the option to opt out.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/13/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,038 times Debate No: 77602
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)




Debate itineraryRound 1:Acceptance only. It is permissable to give definitions and to giveOBJECTIVEbackground information. No subjective arguments may be made in this roundRound 2: Pro will bypass this round to give con a head start since pro initiated the debate and chose the topicRound 3: standard debate rules. do whatever you wish to buttress your argumentsRound 4: closing statements and final remarksWhen using specific examples of events to back up your point please refrence a media source accessible for free through the internet that elaborates on that example.Thank you for accepting this debate. I hope we will have a meaningful and interesting discussion about this topic.


Hello, I am OpticalLegend and accept this challenge as the Con side. This is an important debate and I hope to clear some misconceptions and fallacies which manifest themselves on the Pro side of this debate. Thank you.
Debate Round No. 1


I greatly thank and am appreciative of my opponent for accepting my challenge. I look forward to having an interesting, yet provocative, discussion on this issue which is becoming increasingly important. As stated in the debate itenarary in round 1, which unfortunatley didn't format in the organized manner as I intended, I will bypass this round.

I wish my opponent the best of luck.


OpticalLegend forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2


My opponent did not submit an argument last round so therefore I shall start.

Social Security is a "Ponzi" scheme [1]. The money that gets automatically deducted from people's paychecks each month does not go into a savings fund somewhere, it goes into the pockets of a current retiree. So when someone who pays into the system for 40+ years reaches the age of retirement, that person will have $0 waiting for them in savings in their social security fund. What happens is when the next younger generation pays into the system, the new retiree receives what the new young person pays into the system. It is essentially an "intergenerational transfer of wealth". Why is this a problem? Although this system of robbing peter to pay paul may have worked in the '30s and '40s under FDR's New Deal, today it is unsustainable. Why? Because due to inflation and the rapidly growing retiree population and the fact that people are living longer than ever before, it is becoming unsustainable. In 2010, there was a negative cash flow of $74 Billion into the fund and this deficit continues to grow each year. By 2034, the reserves of the program will be depleted. [2] We are essentially robbing 1 peter to pay 2 pauls.

I would also like to add that the money Americans give to the government over their 40+ year careers will grow to be much more if they invest it in a 401 (K) or an IRA and let it grow at the market rate. Let's say for argument's sake that wages, prices, inflation etc... remains static for the following scenario. The median wage in the US, according to the census is $50,500 a year [3]. Let's say someone earns that wage for 40 years. That means each month the Social Security department will deduct about $260.92 a month from that person's paycheck [4]. If we assume that wage remains static for 40 years that person would pay $125,241.60 into the system ($260.92 x 12 months x 40 years = $125,241.60). The average Social Security benefit is $1,180.80 per month [5]. The average lifespan in the US is about 79 years [6]. That means if the person in question retires at 65 years old and dies at 79 years old they will collect 14 years of benefits which would amount to $198,374.4 ($1,180.80 x 12 months x 14 years = $198,374.4). Since the person got out more than they put in they received a decent return on their investment into the social security fund. Let's say, however, this person, instead of being forced to pay $260.92 into the Social Security fund each month, invested it in a retirement account such as a 401 (k) or an IRA which grew on average at 7% a year [7]. After doing this for 40 years, that retirement account will be worth $625,080 [8]. This amount is significantly more than the ~$200k the retiree would have gotten out of the social security administration during retirement. Not only that, it is the retiree's actual money. It is not simply an act of transferring wealth from one age group to another. It is a real tangible asset. Let's say unfortunately, the retiree didn't live until 79 years old and lived until he got 70 years old. The money left over in the retirement account can then be passed down to a spouse or children or even a charity if the person desires where as with social security, you can't put in your will that you want someone else to receive your benefits.

So the point I am trying to make is the person in this scenario did not have the choice to take his own money and put it into a retirement account. $260.92 is forcefully taken out of his paycheck and put into a fund which will yield less than if he were to put it in a standard retirement account and invest it and let it grow at the market rate.



OpticalLegend forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Because my opponent did not submit an argument, I continue to advocate which I stated in the previous round.

In closing, I am not against the idea of Social Security. I think that it was a necessary program in the era of the Great Depression and World War 2 to help lift America out of economic turmoil and aid struggling seniors. But since then, many more tools and methods have become available to save for retirement and build up a "nest egg". Some of these methods are much more effective than social security and provide the holder with a real tangoble asset which they can pass down to their spouse or children.

I am not saying take away Social Security. It should still be left in place but it should be made optional for those who are savvy investors and savers and would feel that they can save more effectively using an alternative method to the social security system.

I urge everyone to vote CON.

Thank you!


OpticalLegend forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by qwertyytrewq01943 1 year ago
I didn't realize that I said to vote CON in my closing argument. I meant to say that I urge everyone to vote PRO. Sorry about that
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Hayd 1 year ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro wins more convincing argument for the reason that Con failed to refute them (due to forfeits). I award conduct points because Con forfeited.