In response to:

Difficult Economics Lessons

Stan_in_Texas Wrote: Jul 11, 2012 11:13 AM
While I agree with your assessment of the need for social security being brought on by mortgages, I disagree that we would be better off by not havinga mortgage. If one chooses to rent a house instead of buying, the end result is that they have paid nearly the same amount of money in rent as they would have in paying a mortgage. The only difference is that at the end of the 30 years the owner has something of value and the renter has paid for a house that the landlord owns. The real need of social security is created by its very existence. If social security did not exist and had never existed, then people would not rely on it and would plan for their own retirement by investing and saving.
One of the more difficult lessons to teach economics neophytes -- and, many times, trained economists -- is that economic theory cannot say anything definitive about subjective statements, such as what's better, good, bad or worse. Let's try a few examples to make the point.

Cabernet sauvignon wine is better than fume blanc. Turkey is better than pork. Matter in the solid state is better than the plasma state. Each of those statements begs the question: Where's the proof? With subjective statements such as those, disagreements can go on forever. It's simply a matter of personal opinion. One person's...