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"The government could easily choose to default on these special issue bonds that are held only by the government trust funds without the international consequences that would result from any attempt to default on its general debt," Smith writes. The "IOUs" that the trust fund holds "are nothing more than accounting entries showing that the government has 'borrowed' and spent every dollar of the $1.5 trillion surplus generated by the 1983 payroll tax increase, leaving the fund with no real assets," Smith continues. "Only IF the government chooses to raise taxes or borrow massive additional amounts in order to repay its debt to Social Security will the program be able to continue paying full benefits after 2018, and that is indeed a very big if."

While Ms. Epps may be "glad that she is a part of all the people who while they were working contributed to a system that guarantees a retirement income to each of us." I do not feel her enthusiasm. Being 29 years old, I do not like the idea that I will pay into a system from which I will never see a benefit. No offense to Ms. Epps, but I don't feel responsible for supporting her in retirement.

Andy Mathews


Todd Yoggy, profiled in the January issue of Home Style ("At Home With: 10 Things Todd Yoggy Can't Live Without," Jan. 5), was the interior designer for Goochland mansion Dover Hall. His business partner Mark Spangler was the architect who designed the home. Style regrets the confusion.

Letters to the editor may be sent to: letters@styleweekly.com

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