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Jonathan Peterson


Jonathan Peterson, a former national and financial correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, is author of "Social Security for Dummies" and a director of executive communications at AARP.

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Jonathan Peterson'sPosts

Don’t Be Fooled: Social Security Not to Blame for Budget Woes

Posted on 01/3/2013 by |Social Security | Comments

Bulletin TodayThe immediate frenzy over the fiscal cliff may have subsided, but the drama is far from over: Next on the agenda is a debate over spending cuts — a debate that promises to be as rancorous as the one we’ve just seen. Already, budget-cutters are taking aim at Social Security. Yes, the way to calculate cost-of-living adjustments — the chained CPI, unfriendly in name and in its impact on retirees — is already back in the picture (see related video). But …

Why Inflation Matters for Social Security

Posted on 12/13/2012 by |Social Security | Comments

Bulletin Today | PoliticsOne of Social Security’s great strengths is that it offers meaningful protection against inflation. Each year, the program considers how prices are rising [as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers]. If prices go up, the Social Security benefits people have earned tend to be adjusted as well. For a typical household, this protection is huge – a point I tried to emphasize in my book, “Social Security for Dummies.” It helps people keep …

Check the Math: Social Security Is a Good Deal

Posted on 10/26/2012 by |Social Security | Comments

Money & SavingsIt’s a question lots of people have about Social Security: Do you get back as much as you put in? But this question only gets at part of the story: Social Security is a kind of insurance, not just an investment. It protects you and your family from things nobody wants to think about — death and disability. In other words, it contributes to well being and peace of mind in ways that may be impossible to measure. A few …

Have Social Security Questions? New Path to Fast Answers

Posted on 09/5/2012 by |Social Security | Comments

Money & SavingsIf you’re like most people at a certain life stage, you probably have more questions than answers when it comes to navigating the Social Security maze. The good news is that whatever your question, the odds are that someone else has asked it already. AARP has logged more than 11,000 questions about Social Security – and now there is an online tool to give you the answers on topics relevant for you. Curious how your retirement benefit is calculated? Would …