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European nations begin seizing private pensions
The Christian Science Monitor ^ | Jan. 2, 2011 | Jan Iwanik, guest blogger

Posted on 01/04/2011 5:57:40 AM PST by Main Street

People’s retirement savings are a convenient source of revenue for governments that don’t want to reduce spending or make privatizations. As most pension schemes in Europe are organised by the state, European ministers of finance have a facilitated access to the savings accumulated there, and it is only logical that they try to get a hold of this money for their own ends. In recent weeks I have noted five such attempts: Three situations concern private personal savings; two others refer to national funds.

.The most striking example is Hungary, where last month the government made the citizens an offer they could not refuse. They could either remit their individual retirement savings to the state, or lose the right to the basic state pension (but still have an obligation to pay contributions for it). In this extortionate way, the government wants to gain control over $14bn of individual retirement savings.

The Bulgarian government has come up with a similar idea. $300m of private early retirement savings was supposed to be transferred to the state pension scheme. The government gave way after trade unions protested and finally only about 20% of the original plans were implemented.

A slightly less drastic situation is developing in Poland. The government wants to transfer of 1/3 of future contributions from individual retirement accounts to the state-run social security system. Since this system does not back its liabilities with stocks or even bonds, the money taken away from the savers will go directly to the state treasury and savers will lose about $2.3bn a year. The Polish government is more generous than the Hungarian one, but only because it wants to seize just 1/3 of the future savings and also allows the citizens to keep the money accumulated so far.

The fourth example is Ireland. In 2001, the National Pension Reserve Fund was brought into existence for the purpose of supporting pensions of the Irish people in the years 2025-2050. The scheme was also supposed to provide for the pensions of some public sector employees (mainly university staff). However, in March 2009, the Irish government earmarked €4bn from this fund for rescuing banks. In November 2010, the remaining savings of €2.5bn was seized to support the bailout of the rest of the country.

The final example is France. In November, the French parliament decided to earmark €33bn from the national reserve pension fund FRR to reduce the short-term pension scheme deficit. In this way, the retirement savings intended for the years 2020-2040 will be used earlier, that is in the years 2011-2024, and the government will spend the saved up resources on other purposes.

It looks like although the governments are able to enforce general participation in pension schemes, they do not seem to be the best guardians of the money accumulated there.

The table below is a summary of the discussed fiscal-retirement situations (source):

*These figures do not include the costs of higher taxes, price inflation and low interest rates, which additionally devaluate retirement savings.


TOPICS: Chit/Chat
KEYWORDS: 401k; confiscation; pension; pensions; retirement; seizure; tyranny

1 posted on 01/04/2011 5:57:42 AM PST by Main Street
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To: Main Street

Coming to a theater near you. Thanks to Obama and the Democrats. Let’s not forget the RINOS.


2 posted on 01/04/2011 6:02:41 AM PST by Main Street (Stuck in traffic.)
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To: Main Street
It looks like although the governments are able to enforce general participation in pension schemes, they do not seem to be the best guardians of the money accumulated there.

Ha! The very notion is absurd. You cannot trust a big-government socialist politician with even one dollar.

3 posted on 01/04/2011 6:04:19 AM PST by ThunderSleeps (Stop obama now! Stop the hussein - insane agenda!)
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To: Main Street

Europe could well be rapidly lurching towards scattered revolution and civil war across the bankrupt continent.


4 posted on 01/04/2011 6:04:36 AM PST by jpl (Our forebears really gave their lives so we could be groped by bureaucratic retards at the airport?)
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To: Main Street

I know of very educated, level-headed sensible people, physicians, etc. who have stated unequivocally that they would take up arms against their government if their life savings were seized.


5 posted on 01/04/2011 6:06:41 AM PST by TSgt (Colonel Allen West & Michele Bachman - 2012 POTUS Dream Team Ticket!)
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To: jpl

You hit the nail on the head. The writings on the wall.


6 posted on 01/04/2011 6:08:41 AM PST by Main Street (Stuck in traffic.)
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To: Main Street

This is happening in the US today!
Congress is running up the debt. This in turn forces Tim and Ben to print more money! They are causing inflation which is a much more direct method of confiscating savings and retirement funds.


7 posted on 01/04/2011 6:12:43 AM PST by updatedscreenname
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To: Main Street
This is one reason I really thank the Founders for the Second Amendment.

If the politicians try this in the USA, they better find themselves a really defensible place to live.

80 million Americans own firearms and probably the majority of them have some kind of IRA or private savings for retirement.

The congress critters need to do the math, and I'm not talking about balancing the budget, I'm talking about "Jethro's guzzintas".

80 million gun owners guzzinta 535 lawmakers how many times?

Young readers can google Jethro, Jeb, Granny, Ellie Mae, Texas Tea, etc.

8 posted on 01/04/2011 6:16:07 AM PST by USS Alaska (Nuke the terrorist savages, in honor of Standing Wolf.)
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To: updatedscreenname
"Congress is running up the debt. This in turn forces Tim and Ben to print more money! They are causing inflation which is a much more direct method of confiscating savings and retirement funds."

BINGO! Except it's even more underhanded and dishonest, since the Fed operates "automomously" and they don't have to vote on a damn thing to inflate the currency. Even worse, some idiots still think big, greedy corporations are responsible for inflation.

9 posted on 01/04/2011 6:22:55 AM PST by Mich Patriot (...politics is the second oldest profession...it bears a striking resemblance to the first." RReagan)
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To: Main Street
With RINOs and the DNC and the Communists in power,
this will happen to fund redistribution and reparations.

And it will look like THIS:



10 posted on 01/04/2011 6:24:13 AM PST by Diogenesis (Si vis pacem, para bellum)
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To: TSgt

We are armed.
The Hungarians, Bulgarians, etc., are not.


11 posted on 01/04/2011 6:31:56 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (Go Hawks !)
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To: Main Street

I am spending much of my savings this year on much needed dental work. By the end of the year, I’ll have every dental issue resolved.

I’d rather use the money NOW, than have it inflated away in the very near future.

I do not think I’m alone.


12 posted on 01/04/2011 6:32:12 AM PST by Le Chien Rouge
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To: Main Street

Anyone else notice the light bulbs going on over the democrats head?.


13 posted on 01/04/2011 6:45:23 AM PST by Vaduz
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To: DUMBGRUNT

ping


14 posted on 01/04/2011 6:52:50 AM PST by mountn man (The pleasure you get from life, is equal to the attitude you put into it.)
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To: Main Street

Ping for later


15 posted on 01/04/2011 6:58:01 AM PST by politicket (1 1/2 million attended Obama's coronation - only 14 missed work!)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
We are armed. The Hungarians, Bulgarians, etc., are not.

Well, they’re working on that.

16 posted on 01/04/2011 7:06:59 AM PST by TribalPrincess2U (demonicRATS= Obama's Mosque, taxes, painful death. Is this what you want?)
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To: Main Street

Yep, before they give up power they will rob the people first, they must be forced to give up power by starving the beast..eliminate taxes altogether, close the IRS..etc...


17 posted on 01/04/2011 7:16:46 AM PST by aces
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To: TSgt

They’ll tug their forelocks and bend knee when armed IRS agents show up at their front doors. It’s easy to talk now.


18 posted on 01/04/2011 7:48:00 AM PST by warchild9
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To: USS Alaska

Let’s see real people pull themselves away from their sports on television and “take up arms.” Such a thing will shock the world.


19 posted on 01/04/2011 7:49:47 AM PST by warchild9
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To: Le Chien Rouge

Smart people are converting their savings into gold, corporate bonds...and practical things, like dental work. I wish I was a few years older so that I could manage all this without taking that tax hit.


20 posted on 01/04/2011 7:51:36 AM PST by warchild9
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To: TSgt
"I know of very educated, level-headed sensible people, physicians, etc. who have stated unequivocally that they would take up arms against their government if their life savings were seized.

Count me in! This is my line in the sand. The government has stolen money from me for years to give to those who did not earn it, even those here illegally and to foreign countries. Should they touch one red cent of the money I legally retained for my retirement, that will be my 2nd amendment moment.

Stern and his SEIU gang of DNA deprived goons have been pushing this for the USA for some time.

21 posted on 01/04/2011 8:03:26 AM PST by Wurlitzer (Welcome to the new USSA (United Socialist States of Amerika))
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To: USS Alaska

Nobody will do anything. They have already taken it. You just don’t know it yet because that is being kept underwraps.

It happens in Europe it is bound to happen here.


22 posted on 01/04/2011 8:09:10 AM PST by dforest
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To: USS Alaska
80 million gun owners guzzinta 535 lawmakers how many times?

Never happen.

Like the lobster in the slowly heated pot the pols will just peck around the edges with more tax and inflation.

Also note that if a few dozen congress critters should disappear, there are many waiting to fill that slot. Whack a mole.

23 posted on 01/04/2011 8:12:03 AM PST by DUMBGRUNT (The best is the enemy of the good!)
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To: Main Street

This happened many years ago here. What do you think it was when they started putting SS funds into the general fund so they could spend it anywhere they wanted?
Our government was actually the first to take people’s pension funds.


24 posted on 01/04/2011 8:21:54 AM PST by sheana
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To: Main Street

European liberals - United States liberals - not much difference...


25 posted on 01/09/2011 6:04:41 AM PST by GOPJ (When liberals are FORCED to pay for Rush Limbaugh's show, I'll be happy to pay for NPR.)
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