Even in the age of so-called e-government, there are few instances when government information is truly personalized and even fewer when the government takes the initiative to make sure that information reaches individuals. In most cases, one has to know information might exist and go hunting for it. One notable exception to this is the annual statements that the Social Security Administration mails to Americans saying how much their monthly Social Security check will be when they retire. But now, according to a statement on its website, SSA will be sending Social Security Statements only to workers age 60 and older.
As Michael Hiltzik points out, this will mean less information to Americans and that will, in turn, benefit “unscrupulous investment brokers, annuities hawkers and their friends in Congress as they tried to peddle retirement deals.” They love to tell us that we can’t count on Social Security and the annual mailings have, for more than a decade, served as “a powerful rebuttal” to that mantra for some 150 million Americans once a year.
- Information Regarding the Social Security Statement, Social Security Administration (03/13/2012).
- An antisocial move by the Social Security Administration, By Michael Hiltzik, Los Angeles Times (March 20, 2012).