Thursday, February 17, 2005

Alan Greenspan and the Meaning of "Trust"

Alan Greenspan and the Meaning of "Trust"
GregĀ Anrig, Jr.
The Century Foundation, 2/15/2005
When Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan testifies before the Senate Banking Committee on Wednesday, it will be the first time he will comment publicly on President George W. Bush's proposal to privatize Social Security. Great weight will be given to his statements. But in light of Greenspan's long, tortured relationship with Social Security, his views should be treated with the same skepticism that Dr. Phil shows toward his guests.
Greenspan famously chaired a bipartisan commission that in 1983 issued recommendations for strengthening Social Security. Those reforms, which President Reagan signed into law in April of that year, made a promise to American workers: your payroll taxes will be increased in order to finance the build up of trust funds, which will secure Social Security benefits when you retire in the 21st Century. The Greenspan Commission's plan has worked even better than imagined, with projections today showing that promised benefits can be paid in full until 2052, according to the Congressional Budget Office.....