Wednesday, May 24, 2006

France - One Step Away From Socialist Paradise

Robert Samuelson, the only reason I continue my Newsweek subscription, wrote The Politics of Make-Believe, April 3, 2006 edition, and summed up France's impending step into socialist paradise thusly:

"This cannot continue indefinitely. In 2005, France's labor force was 2.7 times as large as its 65-and-over population; by 2020, it's projected to be only twice as large. France's policy is to have a shrinking share of its population, working short hours, pay for rising pension and health costs. In 2004, the average retirement age was 59. Average taxes are already about 50 percent of national income; effective marginal rates (the rates on additional income) can hit 60 percent. How much higher could these go without crushing work incentives? Sooner or later, France will have to adopt policies that lower unemployment, lengthen work hours, raise retirement ages and cut promised benefits."

Don't look now - I know I don't have to tell Liberals that, they won't anyway - but we could be going the way of France if the Democrats regain power. We are getting older, too. Social Security, as now structured, is not sustainable. In less than two decades, Social Security will have to fall back on its Trust Fund. One problem with that. The only things in the Social Security Trust Fund are United State government IOU's made out to the United States government. The name of that tune is the "Raise Taxes Big Time Polka." And the next tune after that is "We Just Flushed Our Economy Down The Toilet Blues."

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