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by Michael Maiello
This week, President Obama will boldly propose to lower the retirement age to 63 and to increase Social Security benefit payments by 10% across the board while also indexing future payments to a measure of inflation that includes health care costs, which tend to rise faster than other parts of the economy. Though denounced by critics as an irresponsible socialist, Obama’s proposals make sense and are the best way forward for the United States.
The fact is that private savings vehicles will not be able to generate enough wealth to see most Americans through a multi-decade retirement, particularly in the absence of a private pension system. The 401(k) plan, named for the section of the tax code that allows workers to invest for retirement with pretax dollars, has failed. Under the pressures of globalization, American workers simply don’t make enough money to save enough for retirement and…
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