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Willisms

« Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 58 -- Chinese Tourism. | WILLisms.com | George Voinovich, Losing It. »

Reform Thursday: Week Seventeen.

reformthursdayblue.gif

Thursdays are good days for reform, because they fall between Wednesdays and Fridays.

That's why WILLisms.com offers a chart or graph, every Thursday, pertinent to Social Security reform. The graphics are mostly self-explanatory, but we include commentary on some of them where and when necessary.

This week's topic:

Debunking Common Misconceptions About Social Security Reform.

MYTH #1-

From AARP's infamous, ignoble, and ubiquitous "Kitchen Sink" advertisement:

This commercial contains a rapid-fire series of erroneous claims, but let's focus on just one, that "private accounts... lead to huge benefit cuts."

In a previous Reform Thursday installment, we explained how the "benefit cut" claim does not hold up.

Last time, we looked at married males of various ages and income levels. This time, how about young, single females (John Kerry's most ardent supporters in 2004):

youngwoman.gif
Click to try out the calculator yourself.

We used the following income levels-
Lower: $15,000 - $19,999
Middle: $35,000 - $39,999
Higher: $60,000 - $64,999
Higher Still: $85,000 and higher

Notice how each income group receives higher benefits under Bush's plan, compared to no reform, with those earning less actually seeing a far greater proportional improvement.

But, isn't this calculator rigged to make the President's plan look better than it really is?

No.

As we explained before, The Heritage Foundation's calculator, if anything, uses rate of return estimates for personal accounts that are lower than in the real world. In other words, unlike the thoroughly discredited calculator Congressional Democrats and their left-wing allies are peddling, the Heritage calculator is part of the reality-based community.


But, let's get back to the "benefit cuts" debunking, shall we?

Future growth in benefit levels paid out by Uncle Sam will indeed have to slow down unless taxes are dramatically increased (not gonna happen under this President). But, and this is the important part-- under the status quo, benefit cuts are inevitable, whether or not personal accounts are created. Thus, for AARP to claim that it is private accounts which will lead to benefit cuts is disingenuous.

Meanwhile, those who choose to participate in individual accounts would have the chance to earn a far greater rate of return, more than making up for the benefit gap. The personal accounts would only need to earn 3% annual interest above inflation to guarantee higher benefit levels.

In other words, gramps will still get his check, almost certainly with higher benefits, but the benefit payout will become less of a burden on the government.

The AARP commercial in question:

aarpcommercial.gif

Click image to view commercial (Real Player required).


-----------------------------------------------


MYTH #2-

Social Security reform is "bombing with the public."

Not.

While some polls show a lack of support for reform, take a closer look at them and you'll find that they are often not even polling the issues at hand.

Meanwhile, Scott Rasmussen, one of America's few accurate pollsters in 2004, just this week found support for reform:

rasmussenreformpoll.gif

But, isn't it the personal accounts people dislike?

Nope.

Personal accounts are very popular, especially among those whom Social Security would actually affect.

When people are informed that they would have a choice, support dramatically increases for the President's reform plan:

choiceonsocialsecurity.gif

Why do the elite media continue ignoring polls which accurately reflect the President's reform principles (and show support for reform), while harping on the negative polls, which often do not offer accurate or complete information?

You can answer that yourself, or you can examine two separate studies on left-wing bias in the media on Social Security (conservative perspective and non-partisan, non-ideological perspective).

Even union members support personal accounts, as long as those over 55 are protected, which, don't forget, is a major principle of President Bush's reform push (no changes for those over 55). A poll that doesn't include that crucial bit of information is not even measuring public opinion on the relevant issue at hand. Just this week, even, Teamsters President James P. Hoffa extended an olive branch to the White House, praising President Bush for his work on this issue while scolding Democrats for their obstruction.

Meanwhile, Harry Reid's Nevada constituents are not happy with the way he is handling Social Security reform:

harryreidshomebase.gif

...and there is an ample body of further polling evidence to support the idea that people eagerly support Social Security reform, especially once they realize older Americans would not see any changes and younger Americans would have a choice. The elite media, meanwhile, just focus on the polls that fit their anti-reform narrative.


Previous Reform Thursday graphics can be seen here:

-Week One (Costs Exceed Revenues).
-Week Two (Social Security Can't Pay Promised Benefits).
-Week Three (Americans Getting Older).
-Week Three, bonus (The Templeton Curve).
-Week Four (Fewer Workers, More Retirees).
-Week Five (History of Payroll Tax Base Increases).
-Week Six (Seniors Living Longer).
-Week Six, bonus (Less Workers, More Beneficiaries).
-Week Seven (History of Payroll Tax Increases).
-Week Seven, bonus (Personal Accounts Do Achieve Solvency).
-Week Eight (Forty Year Trend Of Increasing Mandatory Spending).
-Week Nine (Diminishing Benefits Sans Reform).
-Week Ten (Elderly Dependence On Social Security).
-Week Eleven (Entitlement Spending Eating The Budget).
-Week Twelve (Benefit Comparison, Bush's Plan versus No Plan).
-Week Thirteen (Younger Americans and Lifecycle Funds).
-Week Fourteen (The Thrift Savings Plan).
-Week Fifteen (Understanding Progressive Indexing).
-Week Sixteen (The Graying of America).

Tune into WILLisms.com each Thursday for more important graphical data supporting Social Security reform. We'll address more myths in future installments.

Posted by Will Franklin · 26 May 2005 11:34 AM

Comments

WILLisms.com Social Security Reform would be a great reference for our officials in Washington to study! Each reform Thursday confirms why Social Security Reform is so important for our future generations. It is hard to argue with the facts. I believe our future generations deserve a better retirement investment.

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at May 26, 2005 12:42 PM

Politicians need to QUIT palying politics with our money! HELLO!

Posted by: Cindy T. at May 26, 2005 12:58 PM

You got an Instalanche, Will.

Congrats.

Posted by: Hoodlumman at May 26, 2005 02:33 PM

Conservative or liberal... Why would anyone not be for Social Security Reform? Unless there is something I have completely missed? I can't see any reason Americans would not be totally supportive of reforming what should be called Social Insecurity. It would give people a choice. Isn't choice what our liberal citizens keep screaming in the streets?

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at May 27, 2005 02:08 PM

Great information on Social Security! I like your charts and your weekly posts...Nice blog!*****I give it a five star rating.

Posted by: Heidi at May 29, 2005 06:31 AM

Reviewing WILLisms.com Social Security Reform Thursday has been enlightening! If I had questions before? I don't now! I agree WILLisms.com is a Five Star Blog! ***** Especially Social Security Reform!

Posted by: Jody at May 29, 2005 07:16 PM

Of course I am going to have to agree with the above!

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at May 29, 2005 09:00 PM