Sane Conservative Ideas Watch

This strikes me as sensible: raising the early retirement age for eligibility for social security from 62 to 65. As this AEI study argues, such a move would do several things at once:

Increasing the EEA would extend the solvency of the Social Security trust fund by about five years, increase total annual retirement income as of age seventy for affected individuals by around 16 percent, and increase gross domestic product (GDP) by around 5 percent. Raising the EEA may be one of the most effective options available for improving retirement-income security and would improve the federal budget in one year nearly as much as the recent health reform bill was projected to do over ten years.

It makes even more sense looking at this graph:


As life-spans have gone progressively up, the average age of getting early social security benefits has gone in the opposite direction. There could be exceptions for those whose income comes from physical labor. But if we desperately need to tackle the long-term debt, if massive discretionary cuts in the short term might hurt the fragile recovery, a reform like this could help reassure global markets and Americans that we can avoid catastrophe and make some hard decisions.