Would the Wall Street Journal engage in fear mongering on Social Security? Here's what they wrote today:
Q: Will I receive Social Security benefits?
A: That's a big "It depends." If you're over 65, no sweat. If you're 45-65, you might see some changes from the relatively generous benefits enjoyed by your parents. If you're under 45, you have plenty to worry about.
Actually, I don't think this is fear mongering but only because I think they believe it. The problem is that they just don't get it. Social Security isn't protected by the trust fund. In and of themselves, the Social Security trust funds are more trustworthy than any of the country's financial institutions but they're still promises written on paper. Social Security has something far stronger going for it than the trust funds. Widespread, unshakeable public support. The writers at the WSJ are in the small minority that doesn't support Social Security. They think that eventually the rest of the country will see things their way. That hasn't happened in more than 75 years. I see no reason to think that will ever happen.
As I've written before, the concept of Social Security started with Bismarck in Germany well over a century ago. Social Security has persisted in Germany despite its devastating loss in World War I, hyperinflation during the Weimar Republic, Germany's devastating loss in World War II, the division of the country after the Second World War, the Cold War and the eventual reunification of the country after the fall of the Berlin Wall. If all that couldn't destroy Social Security in Germany what sort of catastrophe would take to destroy Social Security in this country? Nuclear holocaust?