Thursday, February 11, 2010

How the Social Security Administration Views the World

I just went to the Social Security Administration's Web site to check the maximum tax for 2010. They don't make this really easy to find, but I've always been able to locate it. This time, just for kicks, I clicked on their "Information For" drop-down list thinking that I'd just click on "employees" and start there.

Employees? There is no such category. OK, maybe I'm a "Taxpayer" or some synonym. No, sir. On reflection, that makes sense. The government doesn't like to remind us that we actually pay taxes (unless we haven't paid enough).

That's when I went through each category, trying to figure out which one I fit in:

American Indians/Alaska Natives: No.
Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders: No (why are these special groups singled out?).
Attorneys: No.
Congress: No (they get their own category?? there are only 535 of them! And they have their own staffs!)
Employers: No.
Financial Planners: No.
Government Agencies: No.
Government Employees: No.
Health & School Professionals: No.
Human Resource Managers: No (but this is probably where I'll find the information I was originall looking for).
Immigrants: No.
Job Seekers: No.
Kids: No. (Really? Kids get their own category in our government retirement system's Web site?)
Medicare Outreach Agencies: I have no idea what the heck this is, but I'm not a member of one.
Press: No. (Unless Athwart History qualifies. OK, no.)
Representative Payees: Um...
Representatives: What is this? I have no idea, so I assume no.
Researchers: No.
School Officials: No.
Self Employed: No.
Social Agencies: No.
Software Developers: Hey, what? Yes, I am one! Er, wait, though, do software developers get special Social Security benefits? I don't think so. This must deal with developing software to calculate benefits or taxes or something, so while I might go here to find the information I'm looking for, it's not my category.
Vendors & Contractors: No.
Veteran-Owned Small Businesses: No.
Women: No.
Wounded Warriors: No.

So there you go. I don't fit into any of the SSA's categories. They list 26 of them. As I count it, that's 11 covering protected groups (like those Asians and Pacific Islanders), 9 covering people who actually might have particular questions (e.g., Press) and 6 that I simply can't categorize (Congress? Kids?).

I guess regular taxpaying employees just don't rate. I noticed the same thing on Obama's Web site back when he was running for President in 2008. He had all sorts of categories of people he would help out. I didn't fall into a single one. Oh, well. I suppose I should take pride in this.

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