BirdBrain wrote: We need more regulation in the business sector, not less..
regulation does not include a federal entity denying you an opportunity to set aside a portion of your income tax free for the purpose of retirement, and that's what were talking about here. The 'proposals' on the table and being openly discussed are 'regulating' the private sector by taking away the tax free benefit.
I looked at the RFI from the Labor and Treasury Depts. It *seems* harmless, unless you know the code. The ENTIRE publication is assuming that "Lifetime annuity payments" are better than and individuals right to control, and responsibility for, their own retirement. (If that is your argument, which it appears it is, it's a weak one. However, feel free to think this is a 'good idea'. I disagree.)The entire thing is "worrying" about ways to get more companies, or the government, to offer guaranteed lifetime payments, and how to encourage people to choose them..... However, if you follow the link and read the pdf
, pay attention to "questions" 21-23. They talk about your annual/periodic 401K report, listing "what you would be paid monthly at your current rate of investment, if you retire at x years old..." These are EXACTLY the things that are on your periodic Social Security statement. Talking about my PERSONAL retirement, using the SAME terms as social Security, is a red flag the size of Texas, as far as I'm concerned. Maybe that doesn't worry you, but dont call me 'paranoid', please.
I got my funds out, and I feel that I'm diversified enough. My occupation does not pay in. The problem is my wife's job pays into her 401k, and that money is figured into her contract, and it's next to impossible to get it out, or pay dearly. If it looks like on the horizon that the tax free benefit is going away, or getting replaces with T bills or GRA's, you bet your sweet a** she will pay the penalty and get her $$ out , too.
Anybody with half a brain has known for a long time that the profligate gov't spending over the past 2 decades means there's no way 401K funds could remain exempt from taxation, particularly when the bulk of the baby boomers start making withdrawals and essentially stop paying taxes on the bulk of their income.
The Dems and Republicans
, desperate for some way to avert an economic calamity that bankrupts SS and Medicare, will smack their lips at the prospect of getting their hands on all those 401K dollars.
It may not happen next year, as you say 'anything CAN happen', but it's going to happen. NOw the argument changed from 'that's just crazy talk, no way that's ever going to happen' to 'so what if it happens? it's a good idea! why are you so paranoid'?