Other views: Fix it, yes, but don't dismantle it
The May 14 op-ed piece in The Forum by Chuck Chadwick blows right past important facts in regard to the Social Security privatization plan proposed by President George W. Bush. It seems as though Chadwick is merely in a rush to bolster the growin...
The May 14 op-ed piece in The Forum by Chuck Chadwick blows right past important facts in regard to the Social Security privatization plan proposed by President George W. Bush. It seems as though Chadwick is merely in a rush to bolster the growing unpopularity of the plan to privatize Social Security as proposed by the president.
Yes, others have acknowledged that Social Security has problems that need fixing. Bush is merely the first president proposing to dismantle Social Security as we know it by utilizing his privatization scheme.
Other presidents, upon recognizing and analyzing problems with Social Security, have demonstrated a more responsible leadership by making modest, not knee-jerk, adjustments to make Social Security solvent as United States population demographics have continued to change, with life expectancy increasing - in large part due to Social Security. In fact, a conversion to privatization will cost the United States Treasury additional dollars and hasten the growth of the federal debt.
People are free to invest in the stock market, mutual funds or bonds right now, so why create the redundancy within a sound Social Security? Many individuals who sank most, if not all of their life's savings into Enron or the once red-hot dot.com companies have suffered the consequences in a big way. When those bubbles burst, where was the Bush privatization crowd? Perhaps being grateful for Social Security, that's where. That's what Social Security is all about - insurance to provide a basic guaranteed benefit for the elderly and disabled.
Chadwick's claim that the president's plan allows you to make your own decisions about where to invest is just plain wrong. The president's plan would require your Social Security money to go into one of a handful of "funds" - all of which would be managed by the government. No individual would make their own decisions about which stock, bond or mutual fund to buy or sell.
When President Clinton proposed that all Americans be able to access health care plans via government using an approach similar to what President Bush has envisioned for Social Security, Republicans decried the folly of a "one size fits all" approach. Is it not interesting how a once criticized concept is now being lauded?
With all of the hype President Bush has put into his proposal for private accounts, it is more than a bit ironic that his proposal does not extend the solvency of Social Security, which is the problem from which private accounts was born. Go figure.
Zaiser, D-Fargo, has represented District 21 in the N.D. House of Representatives since 2003. He is a member of the Political Subdivisions and Judiciary committees.