AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.
this is a well considered assessment of the Bowles-Simpson deficit solution proposal:
The Audacity of Austerity - the Deficit Reduction Panel Speaks - Arlington conservative | Examiner.com
now, let's watch the special interests emerge to assure the good ideas have no chance to be put into action... plan is broad-based and bold. It does not tinker at the edges of our debt bomb, but rather it seeks to re-frame the debate by presenting undeniable facts and brutal, but necessary reforms if we are to arrest our slide into banana republic status.
Despite the early backlash, there is no denying that the Commission's plan is an honest attempt to deal with the single greatest threat to American prosperity.
The debate can no longer be about who gets what. We must recognize that as a nation, we have over-promised and we no longer have the means to meet those obligations without bankrupting our society.
To fix it, we all must shoulder the pain.
Social Security would be completely sustainable were it not for fraud and actuarial mismanagement.
One's Social Security benefit can be viewed, compared to products in private enterprise, as either a disability policy or a lifetime annuity. Insurance companies have built monolithic buildings and bonused their top executives billions using fair actuarial numbers. The benefits are not fair actuarial numbers.
Tom and his employers have paid $117,000 into the Social Security system on his behalf. He is eligible to receive $1910/month starting next October. He works part-time now, so contributions between now and then will be negligible. His life expectancy is 16.28 years from age 66. If he handed that $117,000 to a private company, his annuitized monthly payment (figuring 4% interest) would be $826 -- as compared to the $1910 he'll receive.
If Tom wanted to generate $1910/month for his lifetime with a private annuity, he would have to invest $328,000 as compared to the $117,000 he's invested with Social Security.
Does anyone wonder why SS is unsustainable?
Thank you, Quazi!
Please be aware that this is NOT the final report. For any Commission report to come before Congress for action it must first garner at least 14 votes from members of the Commission. The fact that these co-chairs released it on their own should tip off the nation that they will NOT get the 14 votes necessary. The Commission is divided ideologically between two very opposite proposals that have the other side digging in their heels
1- the conservative/Republican members want to concentrate on making cuts in the SS program over the long haul
2- the progressive/Democratic members want to increase the monies coming into SS as soon as possible by adjusting or popping the cap
Neither side will consider the viability of the other until their position is first adopted. Some even go as far as to say that if their position was adopted, it eliminates the necessity of the other side being adopted at all.
There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.... John Rogers
--Many (if not most) Democrats would support SS cuts for people with higher incomes, and oppose an across-the-board increase in payroll taxes.I agree with Maggie that SS benefits can be viewed as a "disability policy or a lifetime annuity" -- and would argue that the right would like SS to operate more as a safety net and the left more like a retirement plan.
--Many/Most Republicans would yes, like to see a smaller, less expensive program - but would tend to oppose redistribution (cut benefits of some and give to others) as a singular soultion.
Now the mud is slung non-stop and no governing gets done unless one side can completely throw the other side out and then proceed to screw everything up all on their own. Granted, I think Democrats screw up less than Republicans do - but that's not the point.
Governing requires working together. Politicking requires name-calling, bitching, moaning, and whining until you fool the people into thinking your side will do everything right and your opponent will kill you.
But, never mind, because the demagogues will tell you that compromise will kill you (because all they have is fear).
Keep in mind - Reagan worked with Tip O'Neil all the time.
study which you might find useful.
It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.
"Wealth of Nations," Book V, Chapter II, Part II, Article I, pg.911