February 26, 2011 in Letters, Opinion

Ponzi pension plan


Gary Crooks’ declaration, “Still, there remains a $2.5 trillion Social Security surplus in the form of U.S. Treasury notes” (“Smart bombs,” Feb. 20) is one of the most laughable statements I have ever read. Bernie Madoff probably made similar statements to his “investors.”

Let’s see if I get this logic. The government deducts money from our checks to cover a modest future retirement, then uses that money to overspend and tells us that it has given us an IOU? Mr. Crooks thinks that these IOUs are a surplus and that this surplus will require additional taxes. With logic like this it is no wonder that our country is in an economic mess.

Every good Ponzi scheme requires new money to pay the earlier “investors,” and Social Security is no different. If the current group of wage earners stops paying into the system there will be no future payments to current retirees. When Bernie Madoff did this he was rightfully indicted for his crime. It is hard to believe that Mr. Crooks really believes that unfunded liabilities are surpluses.

Tony Caruso


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