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January 12, 2005

Has Anyone Ever Told This Joke Before? It Seems So Obvious

In any discussion about Social Security, you constantly hear about a 1995 poll finding that more 18-34 year-olds believed in UFOs than believed Social Security would exist when they retired. This is always brandished as proof that we have to do something about Social Security.

I agree completely -- the ultimate arbiter of all public policy must be what 18-34 year-olds believe.


We must immediately start preparing our defenses against UFO attack!!!!!


Posted at January 12, 2005 01:54 AM | TrackBack

Is George W. Bush a UFO? He strikes me as someone who would really groove on anal probes and cattle mutilation. It would explain so much. The truth is out there...

Posted by: Hugo at January 12, 2005 02:00 AM

You have that wrong, Jon. The ultimate arbiter of all public policy must be what 18-34 year-olds believed TEN years ago.

Posted by: Alexis at January 12, 2005 07:29 AM

First let me say that I really enjoy the blog and feel your pain.

I have been reading a little about the impending SS crisis (the creation of private accounts blah blah) and I believe as most of the "sane" people do that in the long run americans will be much worse off than they would have been if SS stayed the same or was moderately modified or whatever.

The question I do have though, and I havent seen anything that even begins to answer it is as follows:
If we privatize SS in the short term we are creating an immediate shortfall where new money is not coming in but money is still being paid out. I have heard figures of around $2 trillion over 10 years (I think). Now if this is true and over the next 10 years or so trillions of dollars are being pumped into risky investments instead of the boring safer ones, what will happen the stock market?
Am I just really stupid or will it create another 90's style bubble of irrational exuberance? Will it cause 5-10 years of rediculous market growth followed by an even harder landing?

Posted by: Conor at January 12, 2005 10:12 AM

A long list could be made of funny and untrue things that 13-24 year olds believe or tend to believe. That this is employed as an argument is, indeed, pretty damned funny, or it would be if it weren't so unbelievably pathetic that no one ever calls them on it.

Posted by: Anna in Cairo at January 13, 2005 06:10 AM

My first post here. I'm trying to catch up on the SS issue and I appreciate all the info I'm finding here.

I was listening to Cheney's speech on Democracy Now! and it struck me that a really good argument could be made against their tactics by talking about other crises that will occur if we do absolutely nothing. For instance:

If we continue handling garbage at the same rate we are handling it today, we will be buried in 12 feet of garbage by the year 2020! There's a garbage crisis!


If we continue burying dead bodies at the rate we are today there will be 1 million unburied corpses by the year 2030! There's a corpse crisis!

Or perhaps we could just ask U.S. troops and the people of Iraq what you get when trusting this administration to plan ahead.

Posted by: Ravenmn at January 15, 2005 08:41 AM