Children masquerading as adults

Laurence Kotlikoff, whose work I mentioned in my post, The U.S. Government is Bankrupt, had some very strong words in response to Greenspan’s recent testimony on social security.

It’s nice that Alan Greenspan is finally prodding our politicians to address the nation’s long-term fiscal problems. But he’s using a feather, when a cattle prod is what’s needed. Whether or not Greenspan knows it, our country is in worse long-term fiscal shape than Brazil. Once financial markets absorb this fact, interest and inflation rates will soar and there will be economic hell to pay. Greenspan’s proposed cuts in Social Security are trivial relative to what’s needed and perpetuate the myth that we can finance the baby boomers’ retirement with minor fiscal adjustments.

Senators Kerry and Edwards — along with President Bush — are fixated on the next election and ducking their responsibilities to the next generation. Like previous politicians who’ve failed to address our long-term Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid problems, they are simply children masquerading as adults. What’s needed are real statesmen to propose and enact the radical and extremely painful reforms required to ensure our nation’s fiscal solvency.

For more, see Kotlikoff’s forthcoming book with Scott Burns, The Coming Generational Storm (prologue here, chapter 1 here)

Hat tip to Greg Ransom of PrestoPundit.