Privatization Pep Rally

Max Sawicky sawicky at
Wed Jul 29 08:06:37 PDT 1998

That's basically what he said too. Tell me, does nayone question that
>privatization is a "done deal"? The Albuquerque forum was just a way to
>figure out the details.

Yeah. A lot of people involved in fighting it. Note that slogans can be appealing but when the details come into view, opinion can turn around very rapidly. The flat tax is a good example of an idea whose public support is *very* fragile in a setting of public debate.

These forums have nothing whatsoever to do with 'figuring out details.' Policy is not made at these affairs. They are dog-and-pony shows to popularize very simple themes. We have six months to explain to people why privatization of almost any variety will mean higher taxes and lower benefits. There will be a serious push next Spring to actually do the deal.

>Has anyone seen the recommendation that the FICA tax be raised 1.1% for
>both taxpayer and employer, and this would keep SS solvent until 2075. Are
>there any serious problems with that suggestion? Are the numbers on this
>tax hike hard enough to make this a serious proposal?

These are the standard numbers that everyone uses, sort of the 'currency' of discussion. They could be wrong but nobody can say what the correct number is, since they are all based on projections of future events.

There is no economic problem with the tax hike. There is a giant political problem with it right now, because people think there's some kind of free lunch out there that will come from using the stock market in some way or another. They've also been gulled by right wing propaganda which exaggerates the scope of the problem with the program's future funding.


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