Friday, March 8, 2013

401ks Don't Cut It

Again I'll lift an entire post from Atrios (but I won't take the
credit, because I am not Juan Williams).
A big point I'm trying to make on Social Security is that the 401K
experiment has been a failure. We have a set of policies - including
big tax expenditures for tax deductible employer/employee retirement
benefit contributions - which are supposed to lead to the majority of
seniors being able to retire in relative comfort and security. And
what we're seeing now, decades later, is that experiment is a failure.

All this gets beaten back by the glibertarian crowd as "people should
just save and invest, blah blah blah." Well, fine, but they aren't.
Not enough. For whatever reason. So we're going to have a bunch of
seniors in poverty and near poverty. What are we going to do about it,
now and for the future?
I know people who raided 401ks and annuities trying to bail themselves
out of a bad housing investment. Now they've got nothing.

Even absent that sad situation, 401k's just aren't adequate for most
people to save for retirement. Pensions are facing extirpation.
Social Security for many people will be it.

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