The Thanksgiving guide to making conservative arguments liberals can understand

You may worry about Social Security’s long-term solvency, but Aunt Carol, on the verge of retirement, doesn’t give a fig. As a self-employed businessperson, you may resent the 12.4 percent you pay in Social Security taxes, but Nephew Trevor — still working on his Master of Arts in Social Justice — thinks FICA is a houseplant.

Also, FDR is still probably a god to these relatives, so you’ve got an uphill battle convincing them Social Security needs reforming. Here’s one place to start: Social Security is funded by a regressive tax and it redistributes wealth from minorities to whites.

Here’s a line for you: For every $100 that white beneficiaries pay in taxes, they receive $113 in benefits, blacks receive $89 and Hispanics receive $58. That’s from liberal blogger Brad Plumer at Wonkblog (Note: every progressive under the age of 35 flatters himself as a “wonk.” So impress your nephew by throwing in a humblebrag faux apology like. “Sorry to get so wonky, but … ”)

Social Security’s redistribution isn’t due to some racist Republican rule change. It’s due to the nature of the tax (hitting your first dollar, but then stopping after about $110,000 in income) and the nature of the payouts. White people live longer and are less likely to be immigrants, so they earn more credits and collect for longer.