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View Diary: Abbreviated Pundit Roundup: Detroit, the royal baby, and more (80 comments)

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  •  I hope you're not suggesting (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    salmo, pundit

    that all - or even part - of our Social Security money should be turned over to the Wankers of Wall Street.   The federal government should guarantee the pensions of Detroit and sic the (heretofore toothless) SEC on the speculators and rentiers who robbed those pension funds in the first place.

    "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

    by SueDe on Tue Jul 23, 2013 at 08:09:02 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  I don't have a coherent suggestion yet (1+ / 0-)
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      I agree that a massive effort to claw back the stolen pension money is a necessary step, not only for the funds themselves, but also to instruct the next would be criminal.

      As to Social Security, I haven't thought it through.  Here's what I know.  I observe that this will be a massive - some say $1,000,000,000,000 - problem, and that the alternative to finding a solution will be enormous suffering, including homelessness, starvation, premature death, etc, involving millions of people.  I know those people; they are my relatives, friends, business partners, neighbors, etc.  That matters.  Even the most ruthless Conservative should be able to see that this would pose a significant economic problem for the nation - the bail-out the banksters argument, this time for the middle class.  It should also matter to them.  

      In a better world, where the rich haven't already gamed the tax code to the point where governments are ready for their bathtub experience, there might be alternatives.  But in this one, the only place where a store of value exists on the required scale is the Social Security System.  I think the ultimate solution will be to take what assets the pension systems do have into the Social Security Trust Fund, and fold the public employees retirement obligations into Social Security benefits.  That will necessitate changes like lifting the cap on contributions.  Changes like raising the retirement age, chained CPI and other such schemes will slip in more easily through the opening such an adjustment will provide.  Of course, lurking in the details are enormous complications and inequities, and the specter of Wall Street's greedy tentacles, vampire squids, etc.  As I said, I don't have a coherent suggestion yet.

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