social security

A good collection of the best reading material for understanding the manufactured social security crisis that I’ve found, for my reference, and yours:

  • WHAT CRISIS? - the Washington Post weighs in.
  • A Question of Numbers - a good history of the attacks on Social Security by the NYT. (article is now behind a wall of pay – here is a mirror, for now.
  • EPI’s Facts at a Glance - just the facts, ma’am.
  • Galbraith on SS
  • Would Borrowing $2 Trillion for Individual Accounts Eliminate $10 Trillion In Social Security Liabilities? - The CBPP says “Sadly, No”, and also provides the Only Fact You Need to Know about social security’s solvency:

    In other words, if the tax cuts are made permanent, their cost will be three to five times larger over the next 75 years than the size of the Social Security shortfall. Furthermore, just the cost of the tax cuts for the top one percent of the population — a group whose annual incomes average about $1 million — is roughly the same size as the Social Security shortfall (0.6 percent of GDP).

  • Paul Krugman (whose book Fuzzy Math is a good intro to Social Security, taxes, and our government’s budget in general) has an excellent series of op-eds on Social Security: Start at 12-07-04 and keep reading.
  • Josh Marshall has a good commentary on social security from the perspective of national debt, as well as a summary of the issue.
  • Kevin Drum highlights Alan Greenspan’s role in prescribing a tax increase on the lower/middle class to fund social security and then subsequently advocating its giveaway in tax cuts to the wealthy, leaving SS out to dry. Billmon quotes an interview that gets into the details.