Star Parker

The positive compounded annual returns of investing over a 45-year working life will overwhelm the inevitable years of downturn.

The awakening that needs to occur is to appreciate that the breakdown of Social Security, as well as Medicare, reflects the inevitable failure of social engineering. It seemed like such a bright idea 75 years ago, when there were more than 40 individuals working for every retiree, to provide a government retirement stipend financed with a payroll tax. But it doesn't work quite as well when there are three, on the way to two, working and paying for each retiree -- today's reality.

Tax increases and benefit cuts, with the goal to make the existing Social Security system solvent, would only make a bad deal even worse for every working American.

We need, in the words of Abraham Lincoln, a "new birth of freedom." Restore an American retirement system based ownership rather than socialism.

This is a bi-partisan reform opportunity where Barack Obama can truly make history.

Wealth doesn't come from income. It comes from ownership. Investing in personal retirement accounts, rather than paying Social Security taxes, would be a boon for America's black community. Median financial wealth of black households, excluding home ownership, is about a hundredth that of white households.

Maybe there will be an epiphany in the White House and historic change will again come from an unlikely source.

Star Parker

Star Parker is founder and president of CURE, the Center for Urban Renewal and Education, a 501c3 think tank which explores and promotes market based public policy to fight poverty, as well as author of the newly revised Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What We Can do About It.