Looks to me the original intent of SS was a tax on poor workers with a surplus to be spent by Congress on pork. The paying of retirement SS to some while workers paid in was the excuse for the onerous tax on the poor. We started by claiming income taxes would be only on the rich. As we have seen for almost a century, we all pay income taxes if we have earned income. The poorest worker pays 17% of his/her gross income in income based taxes. The officially 'Rich' president paid the same, maybe a percent more if no one lied, this time. It was about the surplus.