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Channels: Entertainment - News

Tags: seniors - taxes - benefits - defecit - retirement

 

 

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Life After 50

Views: 430
Added: Sun. Dec 09, 2012 12:24pm
Posted in: News


ALICE HORNBAKER SHOW

ON AIR WMKV 89.3 FM

WMKVFM.ORG INTERNET

WMKV SHOW 12-10-12

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Hello again. This is Alice Hornbaker for WMKV 89.3 FM and wmkvfm.org streaming around the world on the Internet Mondays and Thursdays at 2:20 p.m. and Fridays at 8:50 a.m. and as a blog on growingbolder.com, Facebook and Linkedin.com

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Both political parties toil with how to cut the national debt without making the nation’s seniors shoulder most of the financial burden.

How? Well on the table is the proposal is to raise the age of eligibility for Medicare, now set at 65, to age 67.

In an article by Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar of the Associate Press he points out serious consequences of such a move in the form of higher premiums for health insurance.

He pointed out that while increasing the Medicare age of eligibility might help ease politicians on opposite sides of the fence into a budget compromise, with its inaction serious consequences might result.

Increasing Medicare’s eligibility to age 67 may well increase premiums seniors must pay and increased costs to employers.

It also could trigger the number of uninsured, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Pollsters recently taken have shown that many Americans are willing to consider raising the age for those eligible for Medicare benefits if in the process it helps reduce national deficits.

What America didn’t know when Medicare became the law of the land was that Americans are living much longer than ever before in our history.

Did you know the U.S. life expectancy rose by approximately 8 years since 1965, when Medicare was enacted?

Tinkering with elders’ benefits always brings outrage. Do you remember in the 1980s when President Ronald Reagan and the then Democratic congressional leaders together agreed to gradually increase the age for Americans to receive Social Security benefits from 65 to 67? The roar was there. But the deed was done.

Now comes Medicare’s turn If Social Security‘s future participants must wait to age 67 to get it, why not make Medicare’s beneficiaries wait until that same age? If Congress did, America’s debt problems would not be solved, but it certainly would help get America closer to a balanced budget.

As for those already near 65, they could be exempt from such a change.

Reporting in the field of aging for more than four decades, I saw this crunch coming. When I first started out reporting in the field of aging, it was a big story in the mid-1970s to interview a local American who had celebrated his or her 100th birthday.

Today it is so common it barely is mentioned in the press.

Fact: We are living longer. But the dilemma is if seniors’ benefits continue to be lessened or altered, will America’s longevity numbers now at record highs take a deep dive and living to age 67 to collect benefits would be rare?

Something to ponder, isn’t it?

For WMKV 89.3 FM and wmkvfm.org, this is Alice Hornbaker.

To order my novel “WOLD in Cincinnati” visit any bookstore or go to amazon.com, iuniverse.com (click on bookstore).



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