Sunday, January 7, 2007
Solutions for Social Security and Medicare
Given the funding shortfalls that the two major old age support programs will face in coming years something has to be done. I propose that we subsidize the consumption of tobacco and trans fats. Consumption of both products reduces your life span on average. Studies have shown that every pack of cigarrettes sold is a net benefit to society when the additional taxes paid are factored in as well as the shorter life span of smokers, meaning lower Social Security and Medicare pay outs over their lifetimes even when higher medical costs at the end of life are accounted for. The same could very well be true of trans fats. Since a person who dies sooner pays in the same of amount of Payroll taxes, but takes out less, this a natural way to improve the solvency of Social Security and Medicare. A subsidization level should be found for both products such that life spans are shortened sufficiently to alleviate part of the pension fund shortfalls. Everyone under 35 should heartily support this measure.