Sunday, February 06, 2005

Mossback steps into the Social Security issue...


As usual, he gets it wrong...

  • Original intent is not an argument that I've heard much about, to say the least. The big argument is quite simple: cheap labor conservatives want to do away with this insurance program as a defined benefit program. Period. Everyone else doesn't. End of story.

  • As the program exists today, Social Security entitles me to a defined benefit when I reach certain ages. It is, in effect, property to which I have a claim. Cheap labor conservatives want to in effect confiscate this property.

  • He comments that the "basic problem with social security as it’s presently funded is that population has to increase faster than lifespan or it goes broke." This of course is quite false; for at least the following reasons 1. economic growth ameliorates the situation- the worst case scenarios being floated about assume a growth rate of 1.6% for the next 45 years, 2. social security actually doesn't go broke- as anyone who's read the actual law can see for themselves, and perhaps darkly, 3. this is from the same SOBs that are underfunding home defense and defenses against pandemics, so there's always a good chance that massive decreases in population could happen which would render the system solvent.

  • There's lots of ways out besides destroying the system. (Individual accounts would do just that- they would remove the defined benefit and insurance features of the system). You could, among other thing, fund the system through taxes on unearned income, put in a government venture capital fund, insured by the Feds, bring back the estate tax, etc.

There's lots of ways to do it.

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