The NYT never paints wealthy liberals who don’t volunteer extra money to the state as hypocritical and guilty, but that’s no surprise. Moreover, as Tom Maguire notes (and I’m sure he’s not alone), the NYT is continuing the progressive bait-and-switch here: Social Security and Medicare were sold to America as earned benefit programs, not welfare. It’s the “secondary mission” of middle-class vote-buying — and the Boomers heading into retirement — that accounts for most of this story.
The NYT overlooks that the US welfare state contributes to the supposed income inequality problem progressives have been decrying for the past few years. Moreover, compared to other developed countries, the US system is unique only in terms of low upward mobility from the bottom among men (although cross-country comparisons of mobility can be tricky).