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May 12 / Jonathan

Brad DeLong’s “Statement on Social Security Reform”

In a longish and somewhat technical open letter to the Democratic Policy Committee, economist Brad DeLong lays out the current state of the Social Security argument. Must reading.

Did nobody inside the White House bother to run the numbers? Did nobody care? This breaks my heart–for in yet another of my hearts-of-hearts, I am a technocrat who believes in administrative competence, and think that the President of the United States should not be sent out to make speeches that only an underbriefed fool would write because of the nonsensical things that they say.

Until the center of policy making and implementation in this administration is moved outside the White House to someplace else where people seriously concerned with the substantive design and implementation of policy, nothing the White House proposes–nothing, no matter how good it sounds at first–can be expected to turn out to be anything other than a large pile of mud.

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