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The Plot Against Social Security: How The Bush Plan Is Endangering Our Financial Future

1 rating: 3.0
2005 non-fiction book

Social Security in the United States currently refers to the federal Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI) program. The original Social Security Act[1] and the current version of the Act, as amended[2] encompass several social welfare … see full wiki

Tags: Books, Nonfiction
Author: Michael A. Hiltzik
Genre: Politics, Social Security
Publisher: HarperCollins
Date Published: May 31, 2005
1 review about The Plot Against Social Security: How The...

Leave well enough alone...don't mess with Social Security!!!

  • Dec 19, 2008
  • by
When I first began investigating the idea of privatizing Social Security I had a pretty open mind about the whole thing.  Over the past few years I have read a number of books and articles about the subject.  And while I tend to be conservative on social and economic issues I make every attempt to read and evaluate both sides of issues.  I can be persuaded by a sound argument.  In "The Plot Against Social Security:  How The Bush Plan Is Endangering Our Financial Future" author Michael Hiltzik makes a very strong case that privatization is simply a bad idea.
One of the strongest arguments Hiltzik makes appears very early in the book.  The fact of the matter is that in the 70 year history of the Social Security program there has never been a major scandal.  Compare that to the shenanigans you read about every day by investment houses and large corporations and you quickly begin to realize that the risks incumbent in private accounts far outweigh the potential rewards.  There are simply too many variables and fluctuations in the markets to predict with any accuracy what kind of a return an individual could reasonably expect in such a program.  And the consequences for those unfortunate people whose retirement date just happens to coincide with an economic downturn could be devastating.  You might just as well play the lottery.  In addition, the rosy forecasts put forth by supporters of the privatization scheme fail to mention many of the inherent costs involved in switching to private accounts.  Those costs will have to be borne by each and every one of us and could cut our rates of return significantly.  To be sure, the preponderance of the evidence presented in "The Plot Against Social Security" would clearly suggest that such a plan is really unworkable and would ultimately ruin the Social Security program.
In the final analysis, whether it be with society at large or in your own extended family, the responsible will ultimately wind up subsidizing the irresponsible and the frugal will have to bail out the spendthrifts.  A switch to private accounts would only encourage more irresponsible behavior.  In contrast, Social Security offers each one of us a pretty sure thing.  It really is a good deal for the overwhelming majority of Americans.  Hiltzik has convinced me that even though the system might need to be tweaked a bit the critics of Social Security have consistently overstated the magnitude of the so-called "crisis".  It would appear that many of these critics oppose the program more for ideological reasons than anything else.
If you have not considered the issues involved in the Social Security debate then "The Plot Against Social Security:  How The Bush Plan Is Endangering Our Financial Future " is a "must" read.  It behooves each and every one of us to become informed about this issue before the system gets tampered with. There is an awful lot at stake here.  Highly recommended.

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