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One of the most iconic images of the Berlin Wall shows a soldier in East Berlin throwing off his weapon and making a leap to freedom in the West. The Berlin Wall was built to keep people in. If East Berlin had been a better place to live, there would have been no need for a wall. The House of Representatives has voted to build a healthcare wall. It won’t go up immediately.
When the Social Security Act went into effect in 1935, there was no need for a wall since the early recipients were paid a lot more than what they paid in. The first monthly payment was issued on January 31, 1940 to Ida May Fuller. She paid a total of $24.75 into the Social Security System. Her first check was for $22.54. After her second check, Fuller already had received more than she contributed over the three-year period. She lived to be 100 and collected a total of $22,888.92. In 1940, benefits paid totaled $35 million. In 2009, nearly 51 million Americans will receive $650 billion in Social Security benefits. Not everyone had to pay into SS in its early years. Over time, this changed. The system needed more people to pay in so those retiring could be paid. A wall has been built to force people to participate in a bankrupt system. The same will be true for healthcare.