Goodbye, Yellow Brick Road?

Are the Democrats going to seize 401Ks and other retirement accounts? They are the greatest mechanism for achieving financial independence, allowing people of modest incomes to retire as millionaires—millionaires who won’t need government to do everything for them. So of course the Democrats would like nothing better than to obliterate them.

That would not only be disastrous economically—see Argentina—but also disastrous politically, losing the Democrats a gigantic voting bloc for at least a generation. That doesn’t mean it won’t happen; Obama and the congressional leadership seem to want to charge every windmill they can find, let the consequences be what they may. As John Hinderaker says,

When citizens who have the ability to invest in our economy don’t dare do so, for fear that their savings will be stolen by the government, we are reverting to an earlier and far poorer economic era. But that, apparently, is what the Obama administration wants. Here, as in so many other ways, we are sailing in uncharted waters.

Well, not exactly uncharted. Look at Argentina.

You can’t say you weren’t warned.

UPDATE: Glenn Reynolds doubts it will happen, not only because too many lawyers have 401Ks—that’s Hinderaker’s reason—but for another reason as well: “Aside from that, I think that we would see — literally, not figuratively — members of Congress swinging from lampposts if that happened.” Maybe. But the fact that things like this have taken place elsewhere without sparking revolution gives me doubts.

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