December 28, 2006

Chile Today — Better Off Than Yesterday; Prove ‘Us’ Wrong

Yesterday’s post that discussed the problem with radically raising the Social Security taxable earnings limit was a sneak preview of what will continue to happen if the USA “stays the course” with Social Security: ever-higher taxes, less economic growth, and eventually, a situation similar to the virtually intractable one found in Germany.

A while back, I said that I would defend Chile’s privatized Social Security system (praised here shortly after Augusto Pinochet’s death) beyond the awfully good back-of-the-napkin defense done at that comment.

Well, thanks to this post and this post by George Reisman, I’m interjecting two intermediate and necessary steps in the process.

I’ll dig into the alleged present difficulties in Chile’s retirement system, (even though, after 25 years, no one in Chile advocates going back to the old statist model, which was essentially the Social Security system the US has, i.e., the one that is heading for the cliff), AFTER these two items are addressed:

  • Step 1 — Acknowledge the fundamental truth about what Reisman has to say in his two posts regarding what Pinochet accomplished. Particularly, acknowledge that what he installed and eventually transitioned to was an improvement on what his predecessor Allende had “accomplished” and was on his way to installing (i.e., a Castro-like dictatorship). If you can’t admit to the fact that what Pinochet did netted out to a good/less bad thing, then you won’t acknowledge the essential reality of Chile’s history. What’s the point of holding a discussion with those who hold to such demonstrable ignorance. The Chilean retirement system debate then becomes a relatively minor diversion not worthy of serious discussion with someone who otherwise won’t admit the obvious.
  • Step 2 — Fix, in the body of the post, the obvious error made by “staff” where he claims that only 10% of Chile’s population has adequate retirement coverage. Even by the twisted logic of Chile’s quoted politicians and the New York Times in the article cited, it’s 30%. Fix it, in the body of THAT POST, and I’ll start digging some more. I’ve already proven that a majority, and perhaps a substantial one, has adequate retirement coverage. If the post isn’t modified, then I’ll assume that the site’s new proprietor chief propagandist is not legitimately interested in getting an answer, and I’ll consider it a non-negotiated surrender.

K? Waiting ….. (whistling cheerfully)


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