If Social Security were run like writes John Graham of the :,
[T]he U.S. government [would] cease depositing Social Security payments into seniors’ bank accounts. Instead that money will be allocated to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to rent and assign housing for seniors, to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to negotiate contracts with supermarkets and the like where seniors could pick up government-approved groceries for little or no money, and to the U.S. Department of Transportation to lease and assign appropriate vehicles for seniors’ use.New offices within these departments will be established to determine what the right prices should be for all the relevant goods and services, and providers will not be able to “balance bill” (except within approved limits, and with strict oversight) seniors who value their goods and services more than others.
Such a proposal would not last one day in the court of public opinion. And yet, I suspect that if FDR had set up Social Security like that, any plans to “voucherize” it today would draw the same charges as those leveled at Ryan’s Medicare proposal: Seniors are simply incapable of navigating these complex systems, and need federal “protection.” And if LBJ had originally established Medicare via “MediChoice” grants, no politician today would be able to impose the current, insane, Medicare bureaucracy on top of it.
Read the rest of John Graham’s excellent post.