Social Security: What Role for the Future? takes a fresh look at the questions essential to understanding the future of old-age protection under Social Security. Experts in economics, actuarial science, and public policy examine such front-burner issues as the effects that variables such as mortality, births, inflation, wage levels, and pension benefits will have on the income of future retirees; the implications and effects of alternative levels of funding and financing on Social Security; and the prospects for publicly and privately financed income programs. The authors conclude with an examination of social security programs around the world and pose critical questions about the future direction of Social Security in the United States--questions that Congress and the American public will have to address in the coming years.
The contributors include Robert H. Binstock, Barry P. Bosworth, Robert Brown, Gary Burtless, David M. Cutler, Jagadeesh Gokhale, Edward Gramlich, Stephen Goss, Robert Hagemann, Dalmer Hoskins, Estelle James, Diane Macunovich, David Mullins, Alicia H. Munnell, Robert J. Myers, Martha Phillips, Sylvester Schieber, Margaret Simms, C. Eugene Steuerle, and Carolyn Weaver.
Copublished with the National Academy of Social Insurance
"Timely and important. . . . [Privatizing Social Security] presents a forceful case for a radical shift from the existing unfunded, pay-as-you-go single national program to a mandatory funded program with individual savings accounts. . . . An extensive analysis of how a privatized plan would work in the United States is supplemented with the experiences of five other countries that have privatized plans." —Library Journal
"[A] high-powered collection of essays by top experts in the field."—Timothy Taylor, Public Interest
"Very accessible presentation of facts, analysis of underlying problems, comparison of opinions, and argument for proposed reforms."—Future Survey Exhaustively researched and deeply entrenched in practical issues and mathematical calculations... a highly recommended ray of hope against a looming national crisis." —Wisconsin Bookwatch "Diamond and Orszag bring some welcome realism and decency to the debate."—Robert M. Solow, Institute Professor Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Nobel Laureate in Economics
As this volume suggests, the distributional consequences of these proposals are substantially different and may disproportionately affect those groups who depend on social security to avoid poverty in old age. Together, these studies persuasively show that appropriately designed investment-based social security reforms can effectively reduce the long-term burden of an aging society on future taxpayers, increase the expected future income of retirees, and mitigate poverty rates among the elderly.
Using three samples of local newspapers from across the country, Arnold analyzes all coverage over a two-year period--every news story, editorial, opinion column, letter, and list. First he investigates how twenty-five newspapers covered twenty-five local representatives; and next, how competing newspapers in six cities covered their corresponding legislators. Examination of an even larger sample, sixty-seven newspapers and 187 representatives, shows why some newspapers cover legislators more thoroughly than do other papers. Arnold then links the coverage data with a large public opinion survey to show that the volume of coverage affects citizens' awareness of representatives and challengers.
The results show enormous variation in coverage. Some newspapers cover legislators frequently, thoroughly, and accessibly. Others--some of them famous for their national coverage--largely ignore local representatives. The analysis also confirms that only those incumbents or challengers in the most competitive races, and those who command huge sums of money, receive extensive coverage.