The Democrats put on a sad spectacle at the Capitol today, rallying their armies of the ignorant to oppose any reform in the Social Security system:
This really is demagoguery at its worst. Federal employees already have a private contribution plan. No member of Congress relies on Social Security for his or her retirement. I doubt whether any Democratic member of Congress really believes that Social Security reform would be a bad thing. But naked politics rules, and the Democrats are once again betting that the ill-informed will be a majority on this issue.
In a pitifully inadequate counterpoint to the Democrats’ raucous, partisan demonstration, Secretary of the Treasury John Snow participated in “Teach Children to Save Day” by giving a talk on the importance of being thrifty to a fifth-grade class in the District:
Of course those children would be better off saving than hoping to someday receive government checks. But the Social Security program makes it impossible for many millions of Americans to save, by sucking up the 15% of their incomes that otherwise could be available for saving. By making saving impossible, it relegates millions of Americans to retirement on the dole, at the whim of Congress. This doesn’t apply to wealthy or prosperous Americans, who save through 401(k) programs and other vehicles, and essentially ignore the Social Security system, but Social Security destroys the potential for a secure, independent retirement for many millions of blue collar and middle-income Americans. The Democratic Party’s cynical exploitation of these people is one of the scandals of the current political era.
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