Thursday, January 27, 2005

Family Freedom Accounts

Ezra calls for guesses at the next next term for SSecurity Privitization. I tried to come up with one.

I thought I had it with Legacy Accounts, but Family Freedom Accounts (mentioned in Ezra's comments) blows it out of the water. The key would be tying the positive aspect(s) of the program (heiritability) to the label as closely as possible. Liberty accounts is a possibly better suggestion.

Liberty and security are opposites in politics. When one feels threatened, security becomes paramount (war on terror). When one feels secure (economic stability of eighties and nineties, arguably of the fifties and sixties too) government is seen as an obstacle (war on The New Deal).

That said, we can pursue one of two strategies:

1. Call for security and draw parallels to war on terrah.

2. Call for freedom through security by allowing partial priitization with gurantees on benefit levels that would be financed from the general fund.

1 would seem contrived and complicated and overly intellectual, falling onto a neat pre-packaged narrative for the media. 2 is the kind of doublespeak that Bush has used so effectively against us.

I propose the Democrats draft legislation to gurantee benefits (from the general fund), make some small privitization gesture, and label it the Family Financial Freedom Plan (or act or something). This would block any Republican use of the terms, paint any opposition as opposed to freedom (in this case, economic freedom, the good kind), and practically shift the burden of Social Security off of regressive payroll taxes and onto progressive income taxes.


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