Retirement Pension Mandates in Chile and the USA

Many people in the USA, including at least one candidate for President, advocate changing their retirement system to be more similar to Chile. In an article at Frum Forum, Noah Kristula-Green argues:

Conservatives don’t usually call for the US to emulate other countries when it comes to public policy, but one exception to that rule is Chile. The story of how Milton Friedman’s “Chicago Boys” turned Augusto Pinochet’s military dictatorship into a laboratory for successful free market policies which in turn lead to democracy is a milestone in the history of conservatism. At the September 7th GOP debate, presidential candidate Herman Cain specifically cited the “Chilean Model” of privatizing social security as a policy worth implementing.

So how many conservatives know that Chile’s privatized social security system makes use of a mandate to purchase private insurance in a regulated market, much like the tyrannical Romneycare and Obamacare?

….The success of the Chilean model is worth emulating: Romneycare and Obamacare were onto something when they mandated that people would have to purchase insurance options in a regulated market. You avoid the pitfalls that come from an entirely single-payer system while still creating a system that is able to provide benefits for all citizens of the country.

The article is mostly very good and provocative, and incited heated discussion, but neglects to mention that the mandate in Chile is not strongly enforced like the Social Security system in the USA and the Obama health plan. All these mandates should be abolished: government interference in the private lives of people is the biggest social problem in the world today. People should be free to pursue their dreams without looking over their shoulder worrying about whether their surrogate father will punish them.

One consequence of excessive regulation in Chile is that startups are starved for capital. The government prohibits pension funds from investing in startups, whereas in the USA, people know that that the Social Security funds are inadequate for retirement, so they invest in 401(K) plans that are subject to fewer regulations than in Chile, and these funds often dedicate a portion of their investments to venture capital funds, which invest in startups and startup incubators. Chile tries to remedy this deficiency with Start-Up Chile, but governments are often poor venture capitalists. China and USA governments are venture capitalists, too, reflecting the general acceptance of socialism among the people and candidates for President other than Ron Paul, as I noted in my last post about the Startup Scandals in Silicon Valley.

One Republican candidate for President, Rick Perry of Texas, stated in a book he wrote a year ago and in a recent debate that the Social Security system is a criminal Ponzi (pyramid) scheme, and has been attacked by the press and other candidates for his position.

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