Instead of helping people to save for their retirement and creating a program where they owned what they saved, we created Social Security. That youth-tax Ponzi-scheme taught people to not plan for their future (trust government): turned people into dependents, and Americans savings went down. Americans save less than about any other society in the world - why should they? The government will take care of them. So many are far worse off today than they would have been had there been nothing but empty promises, backed by inflation devaluing the returns in their golden years. Imagine if we’d taught society to take responsibility for their own retirement? SS has even helped break down the family bonds since people don't have to care for parents or grandparents and think "that is governments job”.
If you let the govt. just take you money from you, and give it back to you at a later date you will have security. Not Senior citizens live under the constant threat of having their livelihood dramatically altered (no security).
It was set up to HELP people save for their retirement... but what is the effect?
- It was started to contribute up to 10% of your retirement money - now days it has been redesigned so that 50% of your retirement funds are supposed to come from SS. (As usual the program grew).
- Is it helping people? Enphatically NO! It is teaching people that they don't have to save for retirement, because Uncle Sam is doing it for them - taking away personal responsibility.
- It harmed family bonds. Kids are ignoring parents (and their duties to them) because their parents have SS. Parents aren't being as good to their kids, which they used to have to depend on to take care of them in old age: because they have Social Security instead.
- It harmed societal bonds: now the young and old are polarized into special interests: with dramatically divergent interests. The young, poor and starting out, have to contribute to the older and richer folks -- because that's the way it is done. Whereas without that, they COULD save and have compounding interest for far longer, making their old age much better.
- It is bankrupting the country, but because a lot of voters are older, the system actually gets worse.
- It harmed societal evolution and learning. Without SS, if they had been taught to save for themselves they would have had the PERSONAL responsibility to plan for their own retirement (learning). Yes, there would be many that would have failed to plan, and they would have to work until the day they died... but that would have been THEIR responsibility and they would have set the example for the next generation to learn something (learning opportunity). Without those examples, people and society learns less (and evolves/grows less).
- It's not your money: it is not a problem where your money is put into an account and saved for you later. Your money goes out to others when it is paid in -- and then government spends it and leaves an IOU. That IOU says that kids in the future will pay for your retirement, like you did for others when you were a kid. It's not savings, or you'd have control over the money and it would be in an account.
- Fraud (and waste) is rampant: in 2015 they did an audit and found that there are 6.5M Americans on Social Security who are over 112 years old, and a few thousand having birth dates from before the Civil War. 
What they are learning now is how to be a leech off of society, and bankrupt the young, and not give their children the same chance at prosperity that they had). So the program grew, the problem got worse, and it costs the nation a fortune.
To give you a taste of the real world
- Govt. takes $121 (roughly 15%) out of the average Americans paychecks for SS ($3146/year)
- Multiply that by 45 years (from 20-65 years old) = $141,570.00 that they have planned for my retirement
- That's UNDER 3 YEARS PAY (at current rates)... of course they don't give you full pay and cap around $3K/month.
- They designed this when life expectance was 67 yrs old (and retirement was 65) -- for 2 years payout to the ones that made it that old (average). Life expectancy today is 79 years old - so that's ≈14 years of payout, on ≈3 years of income. That money comes from others.
- This is understating the problem since complications of inflation (devaluing your earning), wage increases (your salary is back loaded), it makes the problems worse.
If you saved the same money (≈$250+ a month) and put it into mutual funds, some stocks, some gold, some saving, etc. (helping to stimulate the economy), with compounded interest you would will easily have over $1 million by the time you retire. That's an annuity of $6K/month (twice Social Security), that money was being used to help investments (America grow), and when you died you would have the original $1M to leave your kids/charity.
Which is better?
This is not even taking into account the MORAL argument of should the govt. be allowed to TAKE money from you, because IT thinks that it is in your best interests.
I know I am better at managing my money that the govt. is. Progressives think they know more than you. But the whole point is, 'IT IS MY MONEY' to do with as I choose, even if I choose wrong. It is NOT the govts. or progressives money.