REVIEW & OUTLOOK
Updated April 12, 2013, 12:13 p.m. ET
Now He’s After Your 401(k)
The White House pulls a switcheroo on retirement savings accounts.
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Thus do our political betters now feel free to define for everyone what is “needed” for a “reasonable” retirement. Not to be impertinent, but does this White House definition include being able to afford summers at age 70 at Martha’s Vineyard near the Obamas?
The feds may think $3 million is all you need after a lifetime of work, but that’s roughly the value of a California police sergeant’s pension if she works for 30 years, retires at age 50 and lives to normal life expectancy.
Out in the private economy, people generally have to work longer than that before they retire, and some of them do manage to save significant amounts. We’re talking about people who work for decades and abstain from buying the bigger house or the new car so they can contribute the maximum to their 401(k)s or IRAs. The people who defer gratification and build a nest egg to avoid becoming a burden on their kids or their fellow taxpayers. The people whose savings finance productive enterprise. You know, the bad guys.
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The Administration’s political motive here is two-fold: First, it’s a redistributionist play and a revenue grab. But for many on the left it’s also about reducing the ability of individuals to make themselves independent of the state. They have always disliked IRAs, just as they oppose health-savings accounts, because over time they make Americans less dependent on federal entitlements or transfer payments.
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Yeah, I know you all think I have a tin foil hat! So what.
Now the Wall Street Journal is in the same genre?
My concern is this is the first step towards exchanging your IRA/401K for an “enhanced social security benefit”.
I read somewhere that there is 14T$ in such plans. Held and controlled by ~2100 “custodians”. And the Gooferment needs about 13T$ to get back on an even keel.
Remember what happened in Cyprus?
Yeah, and I have a tin foil hat.
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