Conason on Social Security
A lot of lefty pundits have been criticizing Barack Obama for suggesting that maybe something needs to be done about Social Security. Joe Conason joins the bandwagon, suggesting that the program’s fiscal problems exist only in conservative “propaganda.” The conspiracy must be pretty vast, including as it does the CBO, GAO, the program’s trustees, and officials in the Clinton administration–all of whom have said repeatedly that the program has a shortfall. Conason also argues that the administration’s predictions about Social Security are based on pessimism about economic growth. But the trustees aren’t pessimistic. They predict that productivity growth will stay where it has been over the last 40 years, and that wages will grow slightly faster than they have. Higher-productivity scenarios only push the insolvency date back a little.
Conason’s headline is “A Phony Social Security Debate.” No kidding.