It was time for a lesson. There’s so much demagoguery in D.C. about Social Security that The Washington Post decided to spend a whole page answering questions about it. But, in the process, this company-town newspaper may have clarified a little too much. For instance, they write, “So policymakers will have to decide whether it is more important to worry about people alive 20 years from now or 50 years from now.” Is this any way to run a retirement program?
Workers are each paying 12.4 percent of their income either alone or with half coming from their employers and the best we can hope for is that some other generation gets screwed over instead of us? If we really must pit one generation against another, what kind of society will we descend into? The Post goes on to say, “Some believe future generations will be richer and more productive, and thus able to afford the bill.”
But leaving future generations the bill for our lives is morally bankrupt period. Still, the idea is pretty darn popular among politicians who live by the Keynesian motto: “In the long run, we’ll all be dead.” As long as the collapse happens on someone else’s watch, seems they couldn’t care less. We don’t need to give our grandkids the shaft. If workers could control their own accounts, politicians couldn’t steal the money to pay for more spending on their pet pork projects. We could provide for a better retirement and leave some of the earnings to our kids and grandkids, instead of sticking them with the bill.
This is Common Sense . I’m Paul Jacob.