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April 11 Buzz: Losers emerge as personal finance goes awry

April 11, 2011 | 12:20 pm

Most viewed and shared: Roth IRAs: A real "fiscal Frankenstein"

"It's time to retire Roth IRAs," writes Gerald E. Scorse.

There's no tax break on contributions. But from that point on, taxes simply vanish. As long as the account is at least 5 years old, there is no tax on any withdrawals made after age 59 1/2. There's no requirement that you make a minimum withdrawal — after age 70 1/2, or ever.

All of which makes Roths a perfect "fiscal Frankenstein." In return for little more than ordinary upfront taxes, Congress waived untold billions in future Treasury receipts. Then, too, Roths could be a drag on the U.S. economy. Since no withdrawals are required, assets can lie idle indefinitely.

The bottom line: Roths are good for individual holders, but terrible for America.

Most commented: Tim Rutten: Ryan's budget blueprint would push the aged into poverty

In response to Paul Ryan's budget proposal, Tim Rutten jumps to the defense of the elderly and poor. Are they no longer invisible?

Readers weighed in …

Why stop there, Paul Ryan? Why not turn the old people into Soylent Green -- it is the most practical, economical solution, and the leftovers could be used to feed our pets.

-- George2

Cut ALL foreign aid. Let other countries fend for themselves. We need to protect our own, FIRST.

-- StephenJ.Smith

So the scare tactics begin. We need to adjust Medicaid and Medicare to preserve them and ensure their viability. This is how protect the elderly. Pretending there is no problem is no solution. If Rep. Ryan's plan is adopted maybe Medicare will become a program I can depend on and more than just a drain on my paycheck.

-- MichaelGOP

An interesting discussion continues here, with some readers suggesting the federal spending cuts they'd make if they were in charge.

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-- Alexandra Le Tellier

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