Center for American Progress

: Beyond Social Security Privatization
Past Event

Beyond Social Security Privatization

Retirement Income Security for the Long-Run

12:00 AM - 11:59 PM EST

Panel Photo: Beyond Social Security Privatization: Retirement Income Security for the Long-Run
L to R – Gene Sperling, Sarah Rosen Wartell, Dr. Peter Orszag, Dr. Christian Weller

Beyond Social Security Privatization:
Retirement Income Security for the Long-Run

If the Bush administration’s plan for Social Security privatization is the wrong way to enhance retirement security for Americans, what is the right way? At an event on March 18, 2005, a panel of experts on retirement and savings policies discussed the principles that should guide effective retirement savings policies and presented specific ideas for substantially enhancing retirement income security, while strengthening Social Security for the future.

March 18, 2005

Event Features:
•  Video:  Sarah Rosen Wartell | Dr. Christian Weller | Dr. Peter Orszag | Gene Sperling | Q&A
•  Transcript
•  PowerPoints:  Dr. Christian Weller |  Dr. Peter Orszag
•  Reports:  The Retirement Savings Gamble and A Progressive Framework for Social Security Reform

Sarah Rosen Wartell Sarah Rosen Wartell , Chief Operating Officer, Senior Vice President, General Counsel, Center for American Progress: “Progressives, and in particular the gentlemen who are here today, have offered an array of responsible options that could help to strengthen Social Security and our ability of our American workers to save for their retirement so that all Americans, not just the wealthy and the lucky, are able to live their retirement years comfortably and with dignity.”
Christian Weller Dr. Christian Weller , Senior Economist, Center for American Progress: “By the time people retire, we still have more than 20 percent of people without a pension outside of Social Security. Even among those people who have a pension, the pension wealth is increasingly unequally distributed … Improving pension security… can be done by following these particular principles, making it easy for people to save, fund progressive incentives, and offer low-cost and low-risk options to save.”
Peter Orszag Dr. Peter Orszag , Joseph A. Pechman Senior Fellow in Economic Studies, the Brookings Institution, and Co-Director, Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution: “We should make the whole system a lot simpler and easier to use. And the way that we do that is by changing the default at each stage of the process, that if you do nothing, you’re doing the right thing. What do I mean by that? I mean automatic enrollment so that you’re in a plan unless you opt out.”
Gene Sperling Gene Sperling , Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress: “We need to protect the logic of the three-legged retirement security system, which is that your personal savings and your home equity is subject to risk.  Your 401(k) is subject to risk.  Your Social Security is the one leg that is a rock solid, risk-free, guaranteed benefit. 

More on this event and panelist bios.


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