Today the New York Times noticed though they framed it as a dispute between two camps. There is no dispute. All you need is a working knowledge of annuities and government and the facts of the situation are indisputable.
If the critics are right about that, it means even the cities that diligently follow their actuaries’ instructions, contributing the required amounts each year, are falling behind, and they don’t even know it.
Because they don’t WANT to know it and will NEVER employ anyone who could possibly wise them up. Public plan actuaries are hired guns selling the their credentials to clients who demand to be lied to. They oblige.
Eight hundred years from now the wikipedia entry on defined benefit plans in the public sector could include a similar passage:
asset-smoothing and 8% interest assumptions were commonly thought to be one of the best ways to treat underfunded plans. The actuarial reports that exuded were black, thick and vile smelling with a greenish scum mixed in it.