Monday, April 05, 2010

A Chilean Model for Pensions and Health Care

(fm the BC thread "Stop me before I steal again")

The Chilean system in the United States is the federal workers Thrift Savings Plan. About 8 years ago I attended a debate between, Former Labor & Social Security Minister for Chile José Piñera, the late Former United States Senator Paul Simon, and Tim Ferguson, Editor, Forbes Global on the subject. Piñera was pretty convincing on the subject, especially given how the economy has performed in hindsight. TSP offers several managed funds that a worker can divide their contributions among that range from government securities through fixed income to a and a broad market index to small cap equities and an international equities fund. They will even shift investments over time based on a contributor's anticipated retirement date. To compare this system, available to the people who staff the Social Security Administration, with that offered to the rest of the country is to induce wonder at how they get away with it.

The Bush plan was killed in 2003 through sheer demagoguery and the Left continues to attack the Chicago Boys with slander. As with other victims of their vitriol the intensity of the reaction and it's avoidance of reasoned analysis is what makes clear that the objects of their scorn could succeed in liberating millions of people to live in comfort without fear or dependency and that they would strengthen America.

Your comparing this to the Health Care insurance plan does not make sense to me. The government already extracts a large regressive tax from labor. The question is how to effectively use the workers contributions to provide for a national pension and retirement plan. I see no reason why participation would have to be compulsory. If you wanted to start a discussion of how this may be a model for replacing the current Medicare plan, that other enormous tax next to FICA on the W-2, with a voluntary privatized national basket of managed Health Insurance plans under federal oversight, then please go ahead.

The key point to me here is that the employees of the federal government, who overwhelmingly voted to support the Democratic Party, rely on a set of managed free market based plans for both their retirement and health care that are far superior to those they would consign the rest of the population to.

(who I challenged on his claim the government can't sell pickups)
Concur except the plant wasn't purchased with SS money, it was stolen from it's lawful creditors.

(who is trying to figure out the new PJM comments numbering system)
40+ top posts and 18 comments in the thread, they only get counted once as I see it.

(who noted Bankrupt Birmingham voted for Obama)
Did a little searching and found maps of the 1860 election returns by county. There was a lot of support for Bell and the Constitutional Union Party throughout the South, about 30-40% of the vote in most places. Jefferson County looks like an outlier back then too.

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