The woman in this 1989 poster, informing people of Social Security's 800 number, is not a model but an employee of the Social Security Administration. A complete gallery of photos and posters is coming soon.


"I was the Commissioner of Social Security under three Presidents (Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon), I began working on Social Security on January 1, 1939, and I have read just about every book written on the subject. The Battle for Social Security is the best Social Security book to come out in a long time, and indeed is among the best ever written on the subject. It is a lively and highly readable journey through the establishment of Social Security, its expansion, and the present attack on the program's principles. I believe everyone who has a stake in Social Security - that means everyone - should read this book. I enthusiastically endorse it."

-- Robert M. Ball, Foremost expert on Social Security alive today

"[A] fine history of America's most important government program...the best single explanation for Bush's humiliating failure to 'reform' Social Security...Altman tells the story wonderfully...moves briskly...interesting story line." Full review

-- Robert G. Kaiser, The Washington Post

"Altman...provides a detailed and fascinating look at the birth, development, and currently endangered status of Social Security...Highly recommended for public and academic libraries."

-- Duncan Stewart, Library Journal

"Nancy Altman's' comprehensive history of Social Security provides a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at America's political and legislative process. This is a must-read for the policy leaders who will now determine Social Security's future. Altman breathes new life into the players and politics, both past and present, that have made Social Security the success it is today"

-- Hon. Barbara Kennelly, Former congresswoman and current President of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare

"Altman's book was written with a general audience in mind, but it provides, with first-rate scholarship, much that is new for scholars of the American welfare state. The Battle for Social Security is a well-crafted, fascinating and thought-provoking history of a social insurance program that affects all Americans. I highly recommend it for both audiences, expert and lay."

-- Ted Marmor, Professor of Political Science, Management and Law, Yale University

"Altman, a pension-rights advocate, traces the history of Social Security from its introduction in 1935...This is a thoughtful, well-researched case against President Bush's efforts to reduce Social Security protection."

-- Mary Whaley, American Library Association

"A fast-paced read which shows why, as my grandfather said, we need some 'safeguards against misfortune...in this man-made world of ours.' In this world where Social Security is under attack, this book is a must read to be able to refute the people who want to dismantle it."

-- James Roosevelt, Grandson of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and former associate commissioner of Social Security

"As Nancy Altman proves, there is no reason why history and policy analysis have to be dull. Her new book on social security, aimed principally at the non-expert is fun to read, while telling the important story with accuracy and insight. It is a must-ready for all who would understand the current ideological struggle, "From FDR's vision to Bush's Gamble."

-- Senator Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.)

"Thorough, compelling, and engagingly written, The Battle for Social Security is essential reading for anyone wondering whether our nation's most successful domestic program is sustainable in the 21st century. Altman delivers the knockout punch to private accounts and other proposals to radically reform Social Security, while showing the way to truly strengthen Social Security within the principles that have guided this vital institution since its inception."

-- John Rother, Director of Policy and Strategy, AARP

"I love Social Security like my mother's cookies - it embodies our best ideals for America. Now it is the job of younger generations to carry the vision forward. That means knowing where Social Security came from. If you want a history with some action, read The Battle For Social Security. I enthusiastically endorse it."

-- Hans Riemer, Washington Director, Rock the Vote