Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Bush's Complex Social Security System

A commenter on the DailyKOS has come up with a great idea for an attack on the Social Security "reform" movement (link):

Average Guy (not a redneck, just a decent looking middle-class guy) sitting on his couch watching a TV. Kids running in and out of the house.

Wife calls out from the kitchen: "Honey, the privatized Social Security account is due."

Husband: "Gee, Honey, I just don't know whether we should go for the hedge funds or the junk bonds this time. What do you think?"

Wife: "Oh, I don't know hon. Maybe we should call the family stockbroker."

Husband looks into camera dumbfounded: "Uh, family stockbroker?"

CAPTION ACROSS SCREEN: Privatizing Social Security is for People Who Don't Need It. Count on the party that created it to save it. THE DEMOCRATS

This is an aspect of the privatization debate that most people just haven't thought about. There may be more people involved in the stock market today than ever before (I have a 401k, but hell if I know what I am invested in right now), but there are still a lot of people who have no experience with it and don't want any experience with it!

A winning argument in this debate is that the current Social Security system is simple. It doesn't require a whole lot of thought to deal with the current system. Bush wants to replace this simple system with a complex Frankenstein monster of investment options. The Bush system will require people to hire accountants if they want to understand what they are getting into. Either that or start to learn the meaning of terms like dividend, price/earnings ratios, market capitalization, and so on.

Isn't having to do our taxes once a year complicated enough?


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