The Corner

So Sec Reform — The Subtext

Rich:

Isn’t the debate about SoSec reform really a debate about the tax code?

There is, after all, nothing to stop any American making private provision

for his retirement right now. If I can carve off a bit of my SoSec payments

& privately invest them, that’s just a bit more in my funds, a bit less I

shall depend on public provision for.

Since Congress just spends our SoSec payments anyway, why not just scrap

FICA withholdings and just fund a universal basic pension from general

taxation? The level, age at eleigibility, etc. can all be debated. Since

we all understand (? I think) that there will need to be SOME public

provision, though; and since no-one (except possibly Ralph Nader) wants to

outlaw private savings for retirement; aren’t we really just haggling about

deductions on people’s pay stubs? Which is to say, about the tax code?

Speaking of which: Look at how the Flat Tax is catching on in Eastern

Europe. Is such a thing really

so unthinkable here?

I’m going to get some bumper stickers made up: FLAT TAX, FLAT PENSION.

Let’s simplify things for a change, and put some lawyers and accountants out

of a job.

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