Wednesday, June 15, 2005

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Pasquin the Old Replies

I have paid social security taxes for two years more than John Tierney has been alive, starting to work in 1951 when I was 12 years old. In those years, I have managed to earn a high-school diploma, a B. A. in history, an M. A. and Ph.D. in English, serve three years in the United States Army, and become a Life Master in the American Contract Bridge League. In those years, I also paid social security taxes each year. I am almost sixty-seven and am still working and paying social security taxes. On a good day, I can drive a golf ball the length of two and one-half football fields. I didn’t go to Yale, but from what I have seen lately, I suspect the quality of its educational prowess. My grade average was substantially better than 76 or 77. I also draw social security. In addition, I also have a modest “private” retirement account (IRA). For my life, however, I cannot understand why any of these things are pertinent to whether I should work until I am seventy or seventy five.

I know a good many people in my generation who are in good to excellent health. I know a good many who aren’t. And, unfortunately, I know a good many who are dead, and most of the dead never got to retire. President Bush the Dumber wants to save social security with the same fervor that I want to see more Republicans elected to Congress. Ah! the insane logic: Old people can race bicycles for 40 kilometers; Pasquin is an old person; Pasquin should work forever so that John Tierney can support Bush’s inanity.

Meanwhile, I think I’ll plan my vacation.