Title Page, Copyright Page

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Contents

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p. xi

About the Authors

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p. xiii

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Preface

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pp. xv-xvi

When we began writing this book, we faced an obvious question: Why another book about Social Security? As we wrote and rewrote sections and chapters, we struggled to keep our focus on a coherent response to that question. This book is not just about Social Security: it uses the case of Social Security ...

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Chapter 1 Introduction

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pp. 1-16

Is any American adult still unaware of the crisis of Social Security -- or, more generally, as the title of an article in Forbes Magazine declared, "the end of pensions" (Dan Ackman, "The End of Pensions," Forbes. com, May 11, 2005)? Certainly most adults who do not yet receive Social Security or private pension ...

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Chapter 2 Words, Concepts, and Principles in Contention

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pp. 17-42

Even though as children we rehearse the sticks and stones mantra, we soon learn that words can be weapons. Propaganda is the weaponry in any war of words and, because words are the currency of all argument, the distinction between a difference of opinion and a distortion of fact is a particularly important ...

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Chapter 3 Trust and Trust Funds

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pp. 43-64

The term trust figures prominently in the discussions about social Security as a central element of both its short-term and its long-term sustainability. On the one hand, trust is a principle that provides legitimacy to the operations of the federal government. It is the confidence we place in the social ...

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Chapter 4 Preservation or Privatization

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pp. 65-115

Both sides agree that changes need to be made. Exactly what must be changed and how quickly the change needs to be implemented are immediate points of disagreement. But these choices have taken a backseat to the question of when we should decide. Timing the changes in the program, per se, has become secondary ...

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Chapter 5 Markets and Social Insurance

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pp. 116-142

If we hold the distortions, misstatements, and other political maneuverings to the side of the contemporary discussions, what is left of the Social Security debate? One large part consists of a set of comparisons between two organizational models, two ways of trying to maintain some rationality of organization ...

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Chapter 6 Politics and Pensions

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pp. 143-179

Rather than acknowledge the connections among the social, political, and economic-technical aspects of the debate over Social Security, and postemployment income insurance more generally, discussions have too often been divided between two sorts of issues. First, we consider the economic-technical matters ...

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Chapter 7 Changing Actors for Changing Times

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pp. 180-213

We began chapter 1 by pointing to the obvious, that the fiscal problem facing Social Security -- and it is a very real problem -- can be fixed by either or a combination of two adjustments. The outflow of benefit expenditures can be reduced, the inflow of revenues can be increased, or some combination of the ...

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Chapter 8 Questions of Principal and Principle

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pp. 214-232

In spite of the many important program features involved in this debate, much of the analysis and discussion of alternative approaches to postemployment income security has focused on comparative rates of return on investment, often with some sort of standard of fairness of distribution implied if not explicitly ...

Notes

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pp. 233-256

References

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pp. 257-268

Index

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pp. 269-284