Example Persuasive Speech
affect them. Ever since it started back in 1935, The Social Security system has never been secure. While the
system has been “fixed” a number of times, the fix-it jobs haven’t done the job. For example, writer Keith
Carlson points out that in 1983 Congress raised payroll taxes, extended the retirement age, and said that the
system would be in good financial shape until 2056. These extinctions will most likely grow to the point where
the coming working generation, us, will have to pay at least 50% of our paychecks to Social Security in order to
support the current retiring generations.
But then, says Carlson, just 9 years later, a report came out saying that Congress had been wrong.
The report said that Social Security money wouldn’t even last until 2056—it would run out by 2050. Remember
that year, 2050? That’s the year we are supposed to retire! Do you think this news is bad? Just two months
ago, the AARP Bulletin reported on the Bipartisan Commission on Entitlement and Tax Reform. This
commission warned that entitlement programs like Social Security are growing so fast they could “bankrupt the
country” by the year 2035—when we ’re only 50! How are we going to be able to afford to retire, and where
has that 50% of our paycheck gone? Will we not benefit from our own money? Think about how much money
you will not get. If you work for 35 years, and make the current national average income of $30,000, this
means that $525,000 of your hard earned money will not be accessible for you! That seems fair.
So what should we do? Run for Congress and change the system? That’s not a bad idea except the
track record for Social Security shows that one more fix-it job won’t fix the system. Besides, we have to be 30
years old to be U.S. senators, and we have to start our own retirement plans long before then. In fact, in his
book, Retirement 101, Willard Enteman says that we should start a personal savings plan the day we get our
first paychecks. In fact, he provides you with this graph [hold up graph] which shows that if our goal is to save
$200,000 by age 65, we better start early before saving gets too expensive.
You can see that if we start here, when we’re 20, we can read $200,000 by saving just $50 a month. If
we wait until we are 35, we’ll have to save $115 a month. If we wait until we are 45, we’ll have to put away
$300 a month. And if we wait until we are 55, we’ll need $987 a month. Look at the difference. To read
$200,000 by age 65 would cost $50 a month if we start at 25, and $987 a month we wait until we are 55.
What’s my point? The Social Security system can’t promise us financial security when we retire.
What’s the solution? We have to start our own savings plans—and the earlier we start, the easier it will be to
live comfortably in our old age. And maybe, just maybe, we’ll be able to keep more than just half of our
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