Re: Maybe this bit of income equalization...
The system as I understand it involves deduction of payments from each paycheck (most) people receive, these funds flowing into the program. At some point, the wage earner accrues a contribution level deemed to qualify them for eventual payments upon retirement. Whether we call them payments, FICA taxes, fees, or whatever being to me essentially meaningless. The government, rather than dumping the cash into a drawer somewhere, buys treasuries. The money is essentially invested at interest.
I'm missing the difference between this and any other form of retirement system, except for the fact the the SS system is funded as one works, while a system provided as part of one's compensation by an employer may not be, although I believe the law now requires (most) employers to demonstrate partial funding of this obligation. In my view, the accounting fiction regarding Social Security is the fact that beginning I believe with the Johnson administration politicians of all stripes have engaged in what is, again in my view, dishonest accounting in reporting the annual payment surplus over payouts as general revenue so as to reduce the apparant size of the annual deficits they have been running. This is to me the equivalent of a business reporting revenues and ignoring items on the liability side of the ledger in order to falsify their financial status. Enron accounting.
Perhaps you could expand on your "but it's not" response and explain what I have wrong.