RE: [MadisonLUChA] Re: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]
Victor M. Arellano, Esq..
Lawton & Cates, S.C.
10 E. Doty Street, Suite 400
P.O. Box 2965
Madison, WI 53701-2965
(608) 282-6237 - Telephone
(608) 282-6252 - Facsimile
The information contained in this transmission is intended only for the personal and confidential use of the designated recipient named above. This transmission may be an attorney-client communication, and as such is privileged and confidential. If the receiver of this transmission is not the intended recipient or an agent responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that you have received this document in error, and that any review, dissemination, distribution, or copying of this message is strictly prohibited.-----Original Message-----
From: MadisonLUChA@yahoogroups.com [mailto:MadisonLUChA@yahoogroups.com]On Behalf Of Salvador Carranza
Sent: Monday, November 06, 2006 10:04 AM
To: Charlie Balakonis; Susan Fernandez; Peter Munoz; firstname.lastname@example.org
Cc: Marisela.Avello@...; lamb4loan@...; PAINTINGU@...; worker1; Kent Craig; MadisonLUChA@yahoogroups.com; CommunitiesUnited@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [MadisonLUChA] Re: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]This kind of attitude is what is preventing this country from enacting a real and comprehensive immigration reform. The rhetoric and demagoguery of peole calling immigrants "illegal" is the main reasons that we can't move forward in a rational and common sense manner. People that come to this country without documents or who overstay their visa are not criminals or "illegal" . This is a CIVIL VIOLATION. Just like speeding, not paying for your dog's rabbies shots or not registering your car with the DMV. With Civil Violations, people are asked to pay a fine and then are given the chance to regularize their status. That is what we should be doing for the millions of people in this country that were forced by either our economic or our political policies to flee their homes and their families and risk their lives so that they can come to this country trying to survive. NAFTA displaced a million farmers from their land. Where do you think they had to go to be able to feed their families? Aren't five thousand lives lost in the deserts of Arizona payment enough for the chance for a better life in our country? And on top of that, yes they make enormous contributions to our nation. Over 154 BILLION a year to our economy and 7 BILLION a year to our Social Security administration (and those are the administration's own numbers, by the way). Thousands of communities would cease to exist if they didn't have immigrants to work in their factories, pick their harvest, Milk their cows and process their food. Here in Wisconsin, thousands of school districts have been able to maintain their enrollment levels thanks to immigrants, and they would have to close like the Florence District almost had to, if they didn't have this new enrollment to rely on. And every major study has shown that, as would be expected, undocumented immigrants use less than half the services than the population at large. So all these cries of "burden" to our communities is all B.S. It is like we are the new King George Taxing people and wanting to give them nothing in return. We need a new Boston Tea Party for immigrants!! The truth is, as Bill O'Reilly himself recognized, is that immigrants, as they grow in numbers, threaten the White Priviledge and Power. It's all about bigotry! All that undocumented immigrants ask for is for a chance to have a job to feed their children. How cruel and blind are you to attack these the poorest of the poor when you haven't walked even a block in their shoes? Almost every faith community has supported the right of people to seek a way to protect and support their families and to be treated with dignity and compassion. I am a Christian, and it floors me the hipocrisy of other so called Christians in the Republican party and the Conservative Communities that attack our immigrants. Haven't they remembered that the Lord said "For whatever you do to the least of MY poeple that you do unto ME?". They will have to answer some day to HIM, and when that happens, may the Lord have mercy on their souls!!
LUChA----- Original Message ----
From: Charlie Balakonis <balakonisnassoc@...>
To: Susan Fernandez <susan@...>; Peter Munoz <pmunoz@...>; email@example.com
Cc: Salvador Carranza <salcandresen@...>; Marisela.Avello@...; lamb4loan@...; PAINTINGU@...; worker1 <worker1@...>; Kent Craig <Kent@...>
Sent: Thursday, November 2, 2006 9:49:30 PM
Subject: Re: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]SUSAN - Thank you so much for such your well-thought-out and mannerly response to Senor Munoz, who did not deserve such a courteous response after the vitriol and insults in his remarks. I was planning to send my own response to him - and still intend to do so - but saw your e-mail, with which I agree 100%, and wanted to let you know how much all of the people I know agree with that sentiment as well.CHARLIECharles L. Balakonis
Lawrence-Balakonis & Associates, Inc.
balakonisnassoc@...----- Original Message -----From: Susan FernandezCc: balakonisnassoc@... ; 'Salvador Carranza' ; Marisela.Avello@... ; lamb4loan@... ; PAINTINGU@... ; 'worker1' ; 'Kent Craig'Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2006 8:00 PMSubject: RE: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]Hi Peter,The issue here is not about taxes that illegals pay - it is about the fact that they are illegal in the first place. It is ludicrous to reward illegals for breaking our laws to enter our country. We have created this mess and need to clean it up by deporting those here illegally and take the lumps in the economy until it balances out again. Our healthcare system is in disaster zone, schools have all sorts of additional issues and greatly due to illegals. Why should they have free services in our country and we have to pay for them. Something is terribly wrong! I have a huge heart for charity and helping others and have taken families into our home to help them get back on their feet. I tell you this so you understand this has nothing to do with a heart for the poor and the plight of these people. It is a huge problem when our government no longer enforces it's own laws - it infringes greatly on our rights as US citizens. US citizens trying to work in Mexico, for example, have a ton of hoops to jump through in order to do so. We need to stand for America as other countries stand for theirs.Sincerely,SusanSusan FernandezPrincipalPower Search Inc.7211 Obelisco CircleCarlsbad, CA 92009760-930-0066 Phone760-930-0842 FaxSusan@...Marketing and Sales RecruitingConsumer Products * Consumer ServicesHealthcare * Technology * InternetRetail * Marketing Services Since 1989-----Original Message-----
From: Peter Munoz [mailto:pmunoz@...]
Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2006 3:55 PM
Cc: balakonisnassoc@...; Salvador Carranza; susan@...; Marisela.Avello@...; lamb4loan@...; PAINTINGU@...; worker1; Kent Craig
Subject: RE: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]
Thank you for sending Mr. Balakonis petition. It is pathetic the way these folks resort to lies for political and discriminatory purposes. The fact is that the vast majority of un-documented immigrants are paying taxes and contributing to the SS system without receiving any benefits. Their SS payments have accumulated enormously to the point that there is a huge surplus of undesignated SS contributions (see below). The US Chamber of Commerce has taken the position that these undocumented workers are essential to the economy and our immigration laws need to be changed to ensure their valuable contribution to the economy is recognized through legalization (see below or at http://www.uschamber.com/issues/index/immigration/essentialwork.htm).
Mr. Balakonis has either sadly fallen victim of lies and propaganda, at best, or is a devious and discriminatory despicable scoundrel if he knowingly is disseminating misinformation for political purposes. Mr. Balakonis is copied on this message, along with the discernible addresses in the messages below just in case they have been victimized. For their benefit, below is factual information regarding this important issue.
Centro Hispano of Dane County
810 West Badger Road
Madison, WI 53713
Facts on Immigration
Bolstering Social Security
April 6, 2005
On April 5, the New York Times ran an article on Social Security that illustrates just how much our economy has become dependent on the labor of undocumented immigrants.
The Social Security Administration’s (SSA) chief actuary estimates that three quarters of undocumented immigrants pay Social Security tax, an estimate that makes undocumented workers responsible for about 1.5% of total wages reported to the SSA.
Taxes paid by undocumented immigrants go into the SSA’s “suspense file,” when the Social Security number does not match SSA’s records. In 2002, the suspense file grew by $56 billion in reported earnings, with about $7 billion in Social Security tax and $1.5 billion in Medicare tax paid. This tax contribution represents about 10% of the current Social Security surplus—the difference between what is being collected in Social Security taxes and what is being paid out in benefits.
This year, Congress will attempt to tackle both Social Security’s long-term viability and reform of our immigration laws. The two are related. Without taxes paid by immigrants, our Social Security system would be in much worse shape than it is currently projected to be.
The main reason there are so many immigrants contributing to the suspense file, as opposed to the main SSA account, is that there are too few opportunities to work in the U.S. legally. It is time to stop denying the reality that immigrant workers are vital to our economy, and to change our immigration laws to provide more opportunity for these workers to work legally.
The entire New York Times article follows.
Illegal Immigrants Are Bolstering Social Security With Billions
NEW YORK TIMES
By EDUARDO PORTER
April 5, 2005
STOCKTON , Calif. - Since illegally crossing the Mexican border into the United States six years ago, Ángel Martínez has done backbreaking work, harvesting asparagus, pruning grapevines and picking the ripe fruit. More recently, he has also washed trucks, often working as much as 70 hours a week, earning $8.50 to $12.75 an hour.
Not surprisingly, Mr. Martínez, 28, has not given much thought to Social Security's long-term financial problems. But Mr. Martínez - who comes from the state of Oaxaca in southern Mexico and hiked for two days through the desert to enter the United States near Tecate, some 20 miles east of Tijuana - contributes more than most Americans to the solvency of the nation's public retirement system.
Last year, Mr. Martínez paid about $2,000 toward Social Security and $450 for Medicare through payroll taxes withheld from his wages. Yet unlike most Americans, who will receive some form of a public pension in retirement and will be eligible for Medicare as soon as they turn 65, Mr. Martínez is not entitled to benefits.
He belongs to a big club. As the debate over Social Security heats up, the estimated seven million or so illegal immigrant workers in the United States are now providing the system with a subsidy of as much as $7 billion a year.
While it has been evident for years that illegal immigrants pay a variety of taxes, the extent of their contributions to Social Security is striking: the money added up to about 10 percent of last year's surplus - the difference between what the system currently receives in payroll taxes and what it doles out in pension benefits. Moreover, the money paid by illegal workers and their employers is factored into all the Social Security Administration's projections.
Illegal immigration, Marcelo Suárez-Orozco, co-director of immigration studies at New York University , noted sardonically, could provide "the fastest way to shore up the long-term finances of Social Security."
It is impossible to know exactly how many illegal immigrant workers pay taxes. But according to specialists, most of them do. Since 1986, when the Immigration Reform and Control Act set penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants, most such workers have been forced to buy fake ID's to get a job.
Currently available for about $150 on street corners in just about any immigrant neighborhood in California , a typical fake ID package includes a green card and a Social Security card. It provides cover for employers, who, if asked, can plausibly assert that they believe all their workers are legal. It also means that workers must be paid by the book - with payroll tax deductions.
IRCA, as the immigration act is known, did little to deter employers from hiring illegal immigrants or to discourage them from working. But for Social Security's finances, it was a great piece of legislation.
Starting in the late 1980's, the Social Security Administration received a flood of W-2 earnings reports with incorrect - sometimes simply fictitious - Social Security numbers. It stashed them in what it calls the "earnings suspense file" in the hope that someday it would figure out whom they belonged to.
The file has been mushrooming ever since: $189 billion worth of wages ended up recorded in the suspense file over the 1990's, two and a half times the amount of the 1980's.
In the current decade, the file is growing, on average, by more than $50 billion a year, generating $6 billion to $7 billion in Social Security tax revenue and about $1.5 billion in Medicare taxes.
In 2002 alone, the last year with figures released by the Social Security Administration, nine million W-2's with incorrect Social Security numbers landed in the suspense file, accounting for $56 billion in earnings, or about 1.5 percent of total reported wages.
Social Security officials do not know what fraction of the suspense file corresponds to the earnings of illegal immigrants. But they suspect that the portion is significant.
"Our assumption is that about three-quarters of other-than-legal immigrants pay payroll taxes," said Stephen C. Goss, Social Security's chief actuary, using the agency's term for illegal immigration.
Other researchers say illegal immigrants are the main contributors to the suspense file. "Illegal immigrants account for the vast majority of the suspense file," said Nick Theodore, the director of the Center for Urban Economic Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago . "Especially its growth over the 1990's, as more and more undocumented immigrants entered the work force."
Using data from the Census Bureau's current population survey, Steven Camarota, director of research at the Center for Immigration Studies, an advocacy group in Washington that favors more limits on immigration, estimated that 3.8 million households headed by illegal immigrants generated $6.4 billion in Social Security taxes in 2002.
A comparative handful of former illegal immigrant workers who have obtained legal residence have been able to accredit their previous earnings to their new legal Social Security numbers. Mr. Camarota is among those opposed to granting a broad amnesty to illegal immigrants, arguing that, among other things, they might claim Social Security benefits and put further financial stress on the system.
The mismatched W-2's fit like a glove on illegal immigrants' known geographic distribution and the patchwork of jobs they typically hold. An audit found that more than half of the 100 employers filing the most earnings reports with false Social Security numbers from 1997 through 2001 came from just three states: California , Texas and Illinois . According to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office, about 17 percent of the businesses with inaccurate W-2's were restaurants, 10 percent were construction companies and 7 percent were farm operations.
Most immigration helps Social Security's finances, because new immigrants tend to be of working age and contribute more than they take from the system. A simulation by Social Security's actuaries found that if net immigration ran at 1.3 million a year instead of the 900,000 in their central assumption, the system's 75-year funding gap would narrow to 1.67 percent of total payroll, from 1.92 percent - savings that come out to half a trillion dollars, valued in today's money.
Illegal immigrants help even more because they will never collect benefits. According to Mr. Goss, without the flow of payroll taxes from wages in the suspense file, the system's long-term funding hole over 75 years would be 10 percent deeper.
Yet to immigrants, the lack of retirement benefits is just part of the package of hardship they took on when they decided to make the trek north. Tying vines in a vineyard some 30 miles north of Stockton, Florencio Tapia, 20, from Guerrero, along Mexico's Pacific coast, has no idea what the money being withheld from his paycheck is for. "I haven't asked," Mr. Tapia said.
For illegal immigrants, Social Security numbers are simply a tool needed to work on this side of the border. Retirement does not enter the picture.
"There will be a moment when I won't be able to continue working," Mr. Martínez acknowledges. "But that's many years off."
Mario Avalos, a naturalized Nicaraguan immigrant who prepares income tax returns for many workers in the area, including immigrants without legal papers, observes that many older workers return home to Mexico . "Among my clients," he said, "I can't recall anybody over 60 without papers."
No doubt most illegal immigrants would prefer to avoid Social Security altogether. As part of its efforts to properly assign the growing pile of unassigned wages, Social Security sends about 130,000 letters a year to employers with large numbers of mismatched pay statements.
Though not an intended consequence of these so-called no-match letters, in many cases employers who get them dismiss the workers affected. Or the workers - fearing that immigration authorities might be on their trail - just leave.
Last February, for instance, discrepancies in Social Security numbers put an end to the job of Minerva Ortega, 25, from Zacatecas, in northern Mexico , who worked in the cheese department at a warehouse for Mike Campbell & Associates, a distributor for Trader Joe's, a popular discount food retailer with a large operation in California .
The company asked dozens of workers to prove that they had cleared up or were in the process of clearing up the "discrepancy between the information on our payroll related to your employment and the S.S.A.'s records." Most could not.
Ms. Ortega said about 150 workers lost their jobs. In a statement, Mike Campbell said that it did not fire any of the workers, but Robert Camarena, a company official, acknowledged that many left.
Ms. Ortega is now looking for work again. She does not want to go back to the fields, so she is holding out for a better-paid factory job. Whatever work she finds, though, she intends to go on the payroll with the same Social Security number she has now, a number that will not jibe with federal records.
With this number, she will continue paying taxes. Last year she paid about $1,200 in Social Security taxes, matched by her employer, on an income of $19,000.
She will never see the money again, she realizes, but at least she will have a job in the United States .
"I don't pay much attention," Ms. Ortega said. "I know I don't get any benefit."
Essential Workers: Needed Workforce for the Future
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) estimates that the number of people in the labor force ages 25 to 34 is projected to increase by only three million between 2002 and 2012, while those age 55 years and older will increase by 18 million. By 2012, those aged 45 and older will have the fastest growth rate and will be the largest age-group in the labor force by far. According to estimates released in February 2005 by the United Nations, the fertility rate in the United States is projected to fall below "replacement" level by 2015 to 2020, declining to 1.91 children per woman (lower than the 2.1 children per woman rate needed to replace the population). By 2010, 77 million baby boomers will retire and, by 2030, one in every five Americans is projected to be a senior citizen.
Experts estimate there may be as many as 10 million undocumented workers throughout the country who are working hard and performing tasks that most Americans take for granted but won't do themselves, in such industries as construction, landscaping, health care, restaurants and hotels and others. The combination of a need for workers and an inadequate immigration system has caused an unacceptable status quo.
By not creating adequate legal avenues for hiring foreign workers and not addressing the status of workers already here, Congress and this administration are not fully safeguarding the economy for the future. While there are fluctuations in employment rates, the long-term threat of a shrinking labor pool lingers in the United States . The Chamber advocates the expansion of temporary visa programs for essential workers, creating paths to permanent residence for these workers when appropriate, and providing a way to earn legal status for undocumented workers who have been supporting our economy for the last decade or more.
A bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill has recently been introduced by Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Ted Kennedy (D-MA) and Representatives Jim Kolbe (R-AZ), Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and Luis Gutierrez (D-IL). This bill will improve security and border enforcement; increase employer sanctions for knowingly hiring illegal aliens and establish an employment eligibility confirmation system; create a new temporary worker program; and provide undocumented workers who are in the country and working at the time of the bill's introduction a process to qualify for legal work status following security and background checks. The bill also provides for reimbursement to the states for certain health care expenses related to the treatment of undocumented immigrants.
U.S. Chamber Position
We support the expansion of temporary visa programs for essential workers, creating paths to permanent residence for these workers when appropriate, and providing a way to earn legal status for the millions of undocumented workers already in the United States . Immigration reform remains a top priority, and we'll continue to work with our coalition, the Essential Workers Immigration Coalition, to urge the new Congress to advance reforms and encourage President Bush to resume the migration negotiations with Mexico .
Essential Worker Immigration Coalition
From: merryd [mailto:merryd2mc@...]
Sent: Thursday, November 02, 2006 11:19 AM
To: McCaslin, Dion L. CIV NAVAIR 2035, ,; mrc; Rob Schwartz; Craig and Susan Clark; dar >> Daniel Armichardy; garmicha@...; benperidot; pi2 >> pi2 >> Bonnie Simpers; Annie Sutten; morpheus62; Erclark4; Terrence Sheely; Paragon Spirit; Hughes, Summer; Dave Parnell; Jill Leonard; hawk408; Pete Easley; PAINTINGU@...
Subject: [Fwd: Social Security Giveaway]
-------- Original Message --------
Social Security Giveaway
Thu, 02 Nov 2006 11:53:50 -0500 (EST)
From: Dawn Lamb [mailto:lamb4loan@...]
Sent: Wednesday, November 01, 2006 9:32 AM
To: Sara Schmuckle; Ryan and Crystal Tyler; Rusty & Amy Ashby; Robin Hagen; Rick and Kris Rosenquist; Richard Battenschlag; Rebecca Johnson; Matthew Kaae; Margi Liberty; Lorie and Kelly Calvert; Leah & Garrett Lund; Kathey Truschel; Karen Pohl; Judy Wooten; Josie & Dan Deaver; Joel and Casey Johnson; Jeremy Skalland; Jeff Payton; Janel Lauer; Holly & Steven Panzer; Glenn Oberholtz; Gary & Karen Poor; Fred Hagen; Elaine Kaae; Eileen Battaglia; Don Puglisi; Diane Morgan; Dawn Buzbee; Daniel Owen; Cindy Ashby; Chris and Corrie Marquardt; Chip and Julie Krueger; Cheyana Schaumann; Cathyand Mert Tuthill; Catherine Gallagher; Caroline & Jim Sanchez; Carol Ann Whittington; Candy Link; Butch Tamburo; Bob Kim; Bob and Sherry Blankenship; Bob and Mary Gillispie; Bob and Marian Buzbee; Bob and Linda Coale; Betsy Skalland; Barbara Mack; Annette Tamburo; Amy Durnil; Amy and John Battenschlag
Subject: Social Security
From: Fernandez, Rafael [mailto:rfernand@...]
Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2006 12:11 PM
To: Adrian Lamb; lamb4loan@...
Cc: Ana Christopher; Anne-marie Boyer; Betty Morimoto; Bill Spoo; Brad Owens; Camille Hernandez; Cheri Wengronowitz; Danene Mitchell; Deirdre Smith; Ed Perosky; Eva Marshall; Fred & Robin Hagen; Gene & Jenny Vanderpol; Jan Hosig; Jane Vitolo; Jenny & LJ; Joan Berry; Kurt Grossclose; Larry Martin; Lori Wilson; Marisela.Avello@...; Mel Meinhardt; Michele McDonald; Patti Tisdale; Paul Hoffman; Robynne Hill; Sara Schmuckle; Susan Hoffman; Susan Wagner; Tim & Dee Shelton
Subject: RE: Social Security
Rafael H. Fernandez
From: Susan Fernandez [mailto:susan@...]
Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2006 12:06 PM
To: Alison Rabka
Cc: Ana Christopher; Anne-marie Boyer; Betty Morimoto; Bill Spoo; Brad Owens; Camille Hernandez; Cheri Wengronowitz; Danene Mitchell; Deirdre Smith; Ed Perosky; Eva Marshall; Fred & Robin Hagen; Gene & Jenny Vanderpol; Jan Hosig; Jane Vitolo; Jenny & LJ; Joan Berry; Kurt Grossclose; Larry Martin; Lori Wilson; Marisela.Avello@...; Mel Meinhardt; Michele McDonald; Patti Tisdale; Paul Hoffman; Fernandez, Rafael; Robynne Hill; Sara Schmuckle; Susan Hoffman; Susan Wagner; Tim & Dee Shelton
Subject: FW: Social Security
From: Charlie Balakonis [mailto:balakonisnassoc@...]
Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2006 10:57 AM
To: Chris White; Teresa White; Jim Weidenbaum; Carl Viener; Mary Ellen Troup; Andy Thompson; Rick Terrill; Johnny So; Dick Skuse; Jeffrey Siegel; Andy Schuyler; Frank Romeo; Steve Ritchey; Terry Recker; mike pogue; Paul Pelt; Domni Newton; Dale Nesbit; Chris Murphy; Shannon Miday; Susan Wagner McKenna; Dave Matlosz; Chris Malcolm; Ron Loeb; Paul Leake; Paul Lanier; Fred Lanier; Don Hughes; harriette; Tom Haddock; Joel Gray; David Gendusa; Beth Gaunt; Jeffrey C Gamwell; Shannan Funderburk; Michael Fruchter; Randy Franklin; Tom Ford; Susan Fernandez; Chris Dunn; Mike Domenicone; Joe DeLapp; Collingwood, Larry R.; Gail Collingwood; Eileen J. Colaianni; Bob Cignarella; Maureen Caruso; Chris Campagna; Lanier Browning; Angie Browning; Donna Brown; Harold Bodine; Annette Apergis
Subject: Fw: Social Security
Charles L. Balakonis
Lawrence-Balakonis & Associates, Inc.
My mom was a homemaker and dad worked all his life and paid into SS. Dad has passed away and now my mom can barely make ends meet. While the possible "illegal" alien in front of her at the grocery store buys the name brands, my mom goes for the generic brands, and day old breads. She doesn't have out of state calling on her phone, because she can't afford it and shops at the thrift shops and dollar stores while the "illegal"