The Washington Post's Social Security Fantasies

When it comes to Social Security, the Washington Post editorial page and the truth never enter the same room. The editorial page is probably the country�s main promoter of the �entitlement� problem. This is the trick in which Social Security is lumped together as an entitlement, with Medicare and Medicaid, and then pronounced a huge problem.

As the Post editorial board surely knows, the real story is that we have a broken health care system with rapidly rising costs. If the system is never fixed, then health care costs will devastate the economy. Insofar as we pay for health care through the public sector, exploding health care costs will also lead to serious budget problems. Honest people see these facts as demonstrating the need to fix the health care system. The Washington Post editorial board sees these projections as a basis for cutting and/or privatizing Social Security.

The Post�s edit includes the inaccurate assertion that President Bush�s Social Security plan was not privatization because it did not allow people to invest their money in private accounts. This is wrong. The plan called for private accounts to be initially managed by a centralized public system. It held out the possibility that people could then shift their accounts into the private financial system, once they accumulated enough money to make Merrill Lynch or Charles Schwab interested. Assuming the Post editors bothered to look at the Bush Social Security Commission�s report, they would know this.

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