The graph below from NPR.org is both insightful and fair (as is the accompanying article.)
But one thing has always struck me funny when discussing Social Security and Medicare with those on the left. When they are defending the benefits of the programs, they always refer to “contributions” into a social insurance system, and they sometimes argue that we shouldn’t include such contributions when calculating the federal tax burden.
But when these same people are defending the non-payment of income tax by the 47%, they are quick to note that many of that group pay or have paid Social Security and Medicare “taxes,” which, as we know, are heavy federal taxes.
So, my friends, you have to pick one: are they taxes or contributions?