If I read Doug Bandow’s “Social Security’s War on Families” correctly (Views, August), the high-end projection of the cost of Social Security and Medicare would be $50 trillion.  If privatization of Social Security is accomplished, we could expect a $20-trillion decrease over the next 75 years.  This is using high-end figures, which generally become lower-end.  Am I correct that this still leaves Social Security in a $30-trillion deficit 75 years down the road?

The Democrats’ solution to Social Security is to have Social Security taxes applied to 100 percent of taxpayers’ salaries and to add a Social Security tax to dividends and capital gains.  Does Mr. Bandow have any figures on how much money this would raise?  The other possibility is a one-time tax on all wealth.  As Mr. Bandow stated in his article, “all wealth” amounts to only $35 trillion.  So, if they took it all, they still would not be able to bail out Social Security.

        —Larry J. Hall
Elizabethtown, KY

Mr. Bandow Replies:

Subjecting all income to Social Security taxes, like most other tax-hike proposals, would not close the fiscal gap.  The best hope for salvaging America’s fiscal future is through a system of privatization that reduces future payments to program recipients (who opted for private accounts) and, thus, ultimate Social Security outlays.