May
10
2015

#Harvard And #Dartmouth Sound The #SocialSecurity Alarm

Better late than never. Welcome to the party pal* (via Hot Air):

New studies from Harvard and Dartmouth researchers find that the SSA’s actuarial forecasts have been consistently overstating the financial health of the program’s trust funds since 2000.

“These biases are getting bigger and they are substantial,” said Gary King, co-author of the studies and director of Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science. “[Social Security] is going to be insolvent before everyone thinks.” …

Researchers examined forecasts published in the annual trustees’ reports from 1978, when the reports began to consistently disclose projected financial indicators, until 2013. Then, they compared the forecasts the agency made on such variables as mortality and labor force participation rates to the actual observed data. Forecasts from trustees reports from 1978 to 2000 were roughly unbiased, researchers found. In that time, the administration made overestimates and underestimates, but the forecast errors appeared to be random in their direction.

“After 2000, forecast errors became increasingly biased, and in the same direction. Trustees Reports after 2000 all overestimated the assets in the program and overestimated solvency of the Trust Funds,” wrote the researchers, who include Dartmouth professor Samir Soneji and Harvard doctoral candidate Konstantin Kashin.

There are two schools of thought here on Social Security reform: “Means Testing” and “Partial Privatization”

“Means Testing” will just turn Social Security into a welfare program. Politicians on both sides will pander to the poor and turn out more populism. They will claim to want to raise the ‘Social Security Tax’ on the rich and businesses so that you can get a bigger piece of the Social Security, because it will be “fair” or something.

Privatization or “Partial Privatization” would keep politician’s dirty hands off your money. Right now, that money is being used a slush fund and some don’t want lose it. Putting YOUR money in private accounts will put you in control. Some think you shouldn’t have any control over your lives, but I disagree. It has also worked so well in Chile, why can’t it work well here?

I am sure the left-wing pundit class is already writing up how Harvard and Dartmouth are a bunch of “right-wing hacks” or something. “Hacks” is a maybe, a good case can be made on that point. However Harvard and Dartmouth are not “Right-Wing” of any sort. If both these schools say that there is a problem with Social Security, we all need to sit up and listen. The progressive “reality-based community” needs to wake up to the facts of the present and future, instead of living completely in the past.

Well, see ya’ later!

Mood: Amused
Music: “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult
Book: “A Nation Of Takers: America’s Entitlement Epidemic” by Nicholas Eberstadt

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