Gillespie and Welch: Your mind, health and retirement are terrible things to waste

Today, there are three great blots on the American Dream. Unsurprisingly, in all three areas, the state, at various levels, calls most of the shots, either through straight-up racketeering or by rigging the rules in a way that makes it nearly impossible for people to escape.

Americans, ever inventive, keep constructing elaborate workarounds to circumvent the tired regulations that support these three vast empires of concentrated political power.

But it’s time to stop sneaking out windows and creeping through back doors. Forget “winning the future” — if America has any hope of winning the present, it’s time to confront head-on our profound problems with education, health care and retirement.

The specific paths to improving each area are different, but the problems stem from a single dynamic: A tightly controlled, politically operated system created to address the issues of the past is at odds with current and future needs and demographics.

We are personalizing and tailoring everything else in our lives to our different needs. Yet, despite their centrality to our lives, education, health care and retirement offer us considerably less choice than we have at the 7-Eleven soda fountain.



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