Mr. Paul Krugman
The New York Times
229 W. 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036

Dear Mr. Krugman:

The reference in your January 4 column to Social Security’s “large and growing trust fund” is being challenged by experts on the right and left who say there is no cash in the Trust Fund and that, despite your reassurance, the bonds in the fund do NOT have the same status as “bonds owned by Japanese pension funds and the government of China.” Allan W. Smith, Ph.D., Professor of Economics Emeritus, Eastern Illinois University, admires you as a “progressive-thinking economist” but he cites evidence that you are flat-out wrong about these bonds. “They are not marketable, they have no cash value, and they are not real assets,” he says. It is time for you to correct the record.