Social Security is NOT Medicare!

This is an actual question from a Harris Interactive poll:

78 million baby boomers, now ages 44 to 62, are about to retire and will begin collecting Social Security and Medicare retirement entitlement benefits, putting tremendous strain on the resources available to pay benefits to future generations.

How do you feel about the future of our country’s Social Security program?

Please select all that apply.

– Fearful
– Optimistic
– Frustrated
– Secure
– None of these

For the definition of Social Security, please click here.
For the definition of Medicare, please click here.

Social Security and Medicare are different programs. Both are growing issues for the general budget, but Medicare’s impact is roughly five times larger. To the degree their finances can be independently judged, Social Security is very well-financed, Medicare is not at all. Whether through ignorance or malice, it is common to see factual statements about both of them lumped together as “entitlement spending”, and then conclusions drawn about only Social Security.

entitlement growth

In this question, the setup includes Social Security and Medicare and the help links include Social Security and Medicare. But the actual question is only about Social Security. This is dishonest.

I am not looking forward to seeing how this research is used.

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