We're taught we should work hard and save for the future, like for our retirement. If we end up not using all our savings, we can pass them on to our kids and grandkids. This is defined as good behavior; these actions are defined as good deeds. And the laws are structured to support those doing these good deeds.
Now, in the category of "no good deed goes unpunished", there's this:
"The problem with retirement accounts is that they're hostage to future Congresses' greed." That is the lead in a short item on Instapundit, and it is absolutely true. It extracts, and links to, a Wall Street Journal article that tells of a Senate Finance Committee proposal being tucked into the highway funding bill that would require most inherited IRAs and 401(k)s to be emptied out within five years of the time they're inherited. This has been proposed as a means of increasing government tax revenues (from income taxes) by $4.6 billion over the next ten years. (Shall we play "guess the party" as to whose proposal this is?)
And you know this is just the beginning.
Guess I'll go back to an old standard:
Rule 1: Never trust the government.
Rule 2: When you have an absolute iron-clad guarantee, see Rule 1.