Social Security, as it now operates, is totally unconstitutional. Congress has no power to create or operate or fund a compulsory national retirement fund. In basic terms, the Courts have allowed it to exist based on two unpalatable points: First, the social security tax is just that: a tax. It is not a contribution to a retirement fund or a trust fund, or an investment, or anything like that. It is a tax. Hence, Congress can increase, decrease, or eliminate it, at will, with no recourse by anyone. Second, social security benefits are an "entitlement". While entitlements are anathema to the Constitution, the courts have allowed entitlements, as long as they don't run afoul of the equal protection provisions of the Constitution. But because they are Entitlements, Congress can increase them, decrease them, eliminate them, change eligibility criteria, or whatever, as long as "we" are all treated "equally." That is to say, people in the same classifications have to be treated equally, regardless of race, gender, what state they live in, and so on. But we want Social Security. We like Social Security. We don't want it to go away, or shrink precipitously as we grow older (NOTE: I am 68 years old and collecting SS). There are two possible ways to make Social Security Constitutional. One, of course would be to promulgate a Constitutional Amendment to permit it (in effect, waiving the Tenth Amendment). The second would be to convert it into a true "trust fund." Take Congress out of it. A SS Trust Fund would have to be managed by some sort of a committee that would ensure that it is, and remains, economically viable. That is to say, IT CANNOT DRAW FUNDS FROM THE TREASURY, after possibly an initial funding initiative to make it initially solvent (and recognize at least some of the billions paid in by living contributors). So it would have to be set up with an annual BALANCED budget, and have enough flexibility to not go bankrupt as the boomers continue to retire, without dramatically reducing the stipends received by those who are currently drawing monthly checks. Clearly, the contribution levels would have to increase. First, the cap on annual contributions would have to go. It would be (roughly) 13% of unlimited earnings, paid jointly by employer and employee. Non-wage income (mainly capital gains, dividends, and interest) would have to be assessed some small percentage. Disability stipends would have to be re-assessed. Should they be part of Social Security, or should they be maintained by the Federal Government? I say, let Washington pay for them, because the recipients have simply not paid enough to be eligible to retire. Finally, and most painfully, some sort of means-testing would have to be implemented. If assets are high (levels to be determined), or if other sources of income exist, then the payout might have to be adjusted for the system to remain solvent. But all of this would not be controlled by Congress. All Congress would do is institute legal and criminal penalties for not paying or for fraud. The decisions would all be crafted by an elected Social Security Trust Fund Board. Or something like that. Social Security is unconstitutional, and it's time to do something about it.