I've run into several articles over the past few days that have been fascinating reading: in-depth investigations, news reports that lay bare important developments that are usually 'under the radar', and so on. I don't have time to blog about each of them as they deserve, but I wanted to provide links to them so that you can check them out for yourselves.
First, we've discussed the pension crisis in these pages on numerous occasions. Now comes this devastating analysis from Daily Reckoning.
... many retirees are in for a rude wake-up in the next few years.
That’s because U.S. corporate pensions are woefully underfunded and may have to cut payments to seniors in order to stay solvent.
Forget Social Security (which we all know is a broken system living on borrowed time). Now many corporate pensions are in the same boat and may soon start reneging on the promises made to workers.
To back up what the article says about Social Security, CNBC reminds us that it faces a $32 trillion shortfall.
A projection, known as the "infinite horizon," takes into account all the program's future liabilities, even those beyond the 75-year period that Social Security actuaries typically use in their calculations.
Under the infinite horizon, Social Security will have $32.1 trillion in unfunded liabilities by 2090, $6.3 trillion more than last year's projection.
The infinite horizon calculation is the most important part of the trustees' annual report, said Laurence Kotlikoff, a Boston University economics professor ... "We're not broke in 20 years to 30 years, we're broke now," Kotlikoff said. "All the bills have been kept off the books by Congress and presidential administrations for six decades."
Changing the subject to academic, theological and archaeological skullduggery, the Atlantic has a long, in-depth article titled 'The Unbelievable Tale of Jesus' Wife'. It traces the origins and provenance of a fragment of papyrus that allegedly spoke of Jesus Christ's wife. It turns out that the document is (to say the least) highly suspect, and the probable product of a fraud spanning continents and decades. Very interesting reading - and a reminder never, ever to take such sensational claims at face value. There's usually a hidden agenda, and sometimes a very strange, twisted one (as appears to be the case here).
Another interesting article comes from Popular Mechanics. It's titled 'The Write Stuff: How the Humble Pencil Conquered the World'. There turns out to be a lot more to the pencil than meets the eye, including some fascinating historical details of how the modern version was developed as a substitute for embargoed graphite during the French Revolution and Napoleonic Wars.
Finally, the twisted, far-left-wing, progressive (and dare I say evil?) influence of international financier George Soros is becoming clearer as his network of agents and sympathizers is increasingly exposed. Two recent articles shed light on the matter:
- Our World: Soros’s campaign of global chaos
- Leaked Doc: Soros Open Society Seeks to Reshape Census, Electoral Districts
All the articles I've mentioned are highly recommended reading.