Lynn Swearingen (c) copyright 2010 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

For the purposes of this satirical piece, one will need the following definitions to assist in decoding the secret methods of stripping away the populations nest egg.

SSA : Sorry Suckers All gone : Formerly known as Social Security Administration

AARP : Another Association Ripping off People : Formerly known as American Association of Retired People

GRA : Grab Retirement Assets  : Guaranteed Retirement Accounts

Introduced in the past have been Bills indicating that American Corporations are being irresponsible with their employees monetary investments (401K/IRA) and that the simple little American Folk need protecting from the big bad businesses. In order to do this, Administrations in the past have helped the under-informed idiots (us) by setting up programs that are designed to “help” us save for retirement. Seeing as the Federal Government has done such a fine job with the SSA program (never mind that for the first time since the overhaul in 1983 the program is in the red, is projected to be “less bad” and then recover nicely until it fails again in a few years) – history shows that another “assistance program” might not be such a great idea.

“While defined contribution plans have some strengths relative to defined benefit plans, participants in defined contribution plans bear the investment risk because there is no promise by the employer as to the adequacy of the account balance that will be available or the income stream that can be provided after retirement.” And furthermore, “The Agencies are considering whether it would be appropriate for them to take future steps for them to facilitate access to, and use of, lifetime income or other arrangements designed to provide a stream of income after retirement.”

We’ll just put that little data point at the back of our “unevolved-cannot-make-decisions-for-ourselves” brains until we work forward with this problem.

According to the WSJ article mentioned above, one of the reasons that Social Security won’t be around or might experience issues is doomed to fail has hit a “bump” in the road is the benefits paid out to “non-workers” (i.e. homemakers or disabled individuals that didn’t pay in) when contributors exit the system (i.e. die ). So basically those who have stayed home to raise a family, keep a home and support their spouses are sucking the system dry. We know that subsidized Child Care has been offered since 1930, so why those lazy uninformed family makers chose to stay home is beyond the ken of important bureaucratic scholars, however I digress.

Now back to the American Corporations that are screwing the little people.

If only there was a way to help out on a Federal Level. A way to ensure that “We the People” could be guaranteed to contribute to our retirement while investing in the Government that has shown ineptitude in the past through fiscal idiocy the best interests at heart for our “golden years”. Currently the concept is proposed as an Automatic IRA, (aka GRAs) we hide the “Opt Out” part in pages and pages of legislation forcing Congress to pass the bill to find out what is in it, and then give the option of investing in “R” Bonds which of course some blue ribbon panel/commission/oversight committee could appropriately administer after they have been created, I just betcha’ it could be pulled off. In fact, if we offer employers no fiduciary liability if:

they use a provider that is on a list of approved providers or uses R-Bonds.

Wonder who those “approved providers” might be and who approves them?

If only some “big names” could be attached supporting this idea, Congress could have access to the 4.5 Trillion dollars just floating around out there doing nothing but waiting for folks to age. Hey – look here:

The Heritage Foundation Automatic IRA Builds Retirement Security

AARP Applauds House Introduction of Automatic IRA Bill

The Pew Charitable Trusts Applauds Introduction of Automatic IRA Legislation, Urges Bipartisan Support

Of course not everyone is “buying into” this proposal. Do some research America. Read the text published in the Federal Register (although it is too late to comment, one can use the information when speaking to ones legislator).   If you don’t know what an “R” Bond is, take a look here for a bit more information noting the following statement:

Now, all that said, there is a reason to be politically aware here.  Governments have in the past forced people to convert assets that were more valuable for those that were less valuable.  And, we have the example of Argentina doing it in the present with pension assets, and also when their currency blew up – most debtors faced a forced conversion to less valuable bondsWith the pension nationalization, it was done in the name of protecting people’s pensions, but ended up benefiting the finances of the Argentine Government.

So, be aware.  R Bonds, as currently proposed, are a bad idea.  But there are worse ideas not yet proposed that might be proposed in the guise of protecting your future.  Let us work to make sure they never get implemented.

Note that our fearless leaders cannot even come up with their own ideas to steal secure our retirements, they had to follow the Argentinian Governments concept of  “state intervention in troubled sectors of the economy”.

A jar of silver coins buried in the backyard has more chance of success. At least it would be a real investment.