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The Origins of the Ownership Society – How the Defined Contribution Paradigm Changed America - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Origins of the Ownership Society: How the Defined Contribution Paradigm Changed America

Edward A. Zelinsky


President Bush's vision of an “ownership society” continues the process of the last three decades by which the defined contribution paradigm has become the primary framework for retirement savings and, more broadly, a fundamental tenet of tax and social policy. In a defined contribution society, the policies more likely to be adopted are those which channel government subsidies for retirement, health care, and educational savings through individual accounts controlled by the taxpayer himself. In contrast, defined benefit arrangements—as exemplified by the traditional pension plan and the feder ... More

Keywords: retirement, health care, savings, defined contribution, defined benefit, pension, individual retirement accounts, 401(k), ERISA

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780195339352
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195339352.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Edward A. Zelinsky, author
Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University