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Mark Skousen —
Mark Andrew Skousen is an American economist, investment analyst, newsletter editor, college professor and author... (wikipedia)
I find it ironic how New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg is so focused on such small issues as drink sizes, while ignoring the massive infrastructure challenges in New York - lousy roads, third-world airports, traffic jams, etc.
The fundamental flaw in Social Security and Medicare is that they violate the 'welfare principle' in economics. The welfare principle forms the fundamental basis of all charitable work in churches and other private organizations: assist those who need help, and equally important, don't assist individuals who can take care of themselves.
Millions of Americans were duped by the federal government and the Federal Reserve into buying homes they could not afford and failed to count the cost. When the financial crisis of 2008 hit, they could not keep up the monthly mortgage payments and defaulted.
One suggestion my wife and I have used in our personal finance courses we teach at college is simply writing down all expenditures and seeing where the money goes. That alone will cause heads of households to think twice about x, y or z expenditure, and to consider carefully whether they really need something or not.
All workers, whether they are employed in the private or public sector, should avoid living 'paycheck to paycheck.' Studies show that every household wastes 10% or more of its salary or income on unnecessary expenditures or by not taking the time to shop for better prices. It's all a matter of proper budgeting.