Thursday, January 08, 2009

Still Secure

I was looking at Paul Krugman's blog today and he mentioned Bush's desire to privatize social security. I had almost forgotten about that. My 401K has lost over 30% of its value in the last year. I wonder what would have happened to our social security funds if Bush had been able to push through his privatization nonsense? Pretty frightening.

Allow me to clarify

There has just been a pretty long and kinda spazzy response to this post by Kevin, the old buddy that lives in bigfoot country. From what he is saying he seems to think I think the government should be the only safety net we have. To that I say, I have a 401K so obviously I don't think social security is going to be there for me as the only source of retirement income. What I am saying is that I think it's nice we have a social security system that does not invest in the private sector. That is why we have private 401Ks. If I make to the age where I can retire I will have to rely on my 401K (yikes), social security (double yikes) and the North Carolina state employees retirement fund (seems fairly stable). The experts say we should diversify and putting social security funds into stocks when I already have a 401k that invests in mutual funds is not diversification. I believe it's putting all of your eggs in one basket and even a snot nosed five year old knows that's not a good idea.


Kevie Baby said...

Yeah. I lost about 40% of any retirement investments I had. I guess it would be better if I were to entrust it all to the government to take care of me.... you know, something like Social Security....

Oh. Wait. Bad example. 15% plus of my income goes to Social Security and FICA combined, and I don't stand to get any return when I qualify for it.

O.K. Maybe I should have invested in some OTHER shell game run buy the government to make my future secure... like all the financially secure people do and those who are qualified as "rich."

Oooops. There I go again! Those people didn't rely on the government to make their future secure either. But then, I guess one could say they got rich by being smart, shrewd, and possibly by making wise financial decisions and hard work.

Sure. I might argue that they got there by ripping off the poor, like those guys who oversaw Freddy Mac and Fannie Mae, or Kenneth Lay and Bernard Madoff... and that because of that, they owe me some of their money, or that the government needs to step in and bail me out.... But that would mean that I am not capable of making my own choices or of being able to take care of myself. It might even mean that I don't believe in consequences for my own actions, only for the actions of others.

My parents must have done a pretty lousy job raising me, because thus far, because I don't want more government control of my life. I want less of it. I DO believe in consequences for ones actions; both good consequences and bad.

Holy cow! I just realized that even though I lost 40% of my investments, they are still worth MORE than what I have invested in the first place. Hmmmmm. 40% loss, but still have more in the account than I invested. Good consequence or bad consequence?

Investors, bankers, mortgage brokers and businessmen all are familiar with the term, "risk." The bigger the risk, the better the payoff (you hope!).

I guess I should have gone with the government taking care of me. Then I would REALLY have something to complain about, considering the size of the risk and all.

Spazzy (oops) Kevie Baby said...

Again, I venture forth, locked, loaded, and shooting my mouth off on your forum, my friend! :)

Tuesday and Thursdays, I move my office to my coffeehouse. I get there @ 5:30 in the ol' AM, and whist I type, plan, prepare, push pencils around, and everything else that is required of me in my job, I occasionally overhear some doozy conversations, and on less occasions, I am actually invited to join the dialogue.

My spazzy rant was less of a response to your posting as it was a response to those out here who have shared some of your leaning on this and other politically motivated issues, who have said (verbatim) that "it is the job of the government to take care" of every aspect of their lives, including financial security in their old age.

A silly, but very telling example of the "my government owes me" mindset was the uproar that ensued when I suggested that people needed to shovel their own sidewalks during the snowstorm that Seattle is still reeling from. The consensus (and I was the minority, here) was, as one Seattlite stated, "It's the government's job to shovel my sidewalks." That was a direct quote.

From there, the conversation went on to the other obligations the government has. I was appalled by the list of freebies the people expected from their government.

Remember that lady during the campaign that conservatives fried for her fanatical belief that President Obama would pay her mortgage, fill her gas tank, and whatever else it was she mentioned? (I saw the clip of her, but I filed it away like every sensible person, Democrat OR Republican should have: Somebody out of touch, who should not be lifted up as the poster child of a typical Obama voter).

Guess what? She actually IS a great example of the typical Obama voter I have encountered out here. And when I hear President Obama's speeches about how we as a people, with the government leading the way, can turn this country around with hard work and personal accountability, it amazes me to here the same voters who so glorified him become filled with apprehension that he is might be backing out of his campaign promises....

And I say, "What promises?" Where did you hear that he was going to take care of all your needs? I don't ever remember hearing that when I caught part of any of his speeches.

Want another example? Check out what is going on with the lawsuits against our governor (and one time person in contention for a cabinet spot our President's team).

Didn't a well-known and charismatic President once say that we should "ask not what your country can do for [us]?"

Aye yi yi.... I am a spaz! I promise to shut up for a while. (Hmmmm.... somebody should probably define what a "while" is!)


Kevin said...

Sheesh! what a spaz.