Monday, April 26, 2004
How raw a deal is Social Security for black Americans? Citing research by Harvard professor and former Clinton Administration official Jeffrey Liebman, President Bush's Commission to Strengthen Social Security concluded last August that blacks "receive nearly $21,000 less on a lifetime basis from Social Security's retirement program than whites with similar income and marital status."
Largely due to differences in life expectancy, Social Security essentially pumps money from the pockets of blacks into those of whites. Having survived childhood diseases and youth violence, 25-year- old black men starting work in 1999 could expect to live to 70.2 years versus 75.9 for white males, the National Center for Health Statistics reports. Black women could expect to reach 76.4 years compared to 80.8 for white females.