Boomers are Doomed. I know.

004dBoomers are Doomed. I know.

Just face it. The nation would probably be better off if the Baby Boomers had stayed in the womb. And yes, I am one of them. We took a nation with a thriving middle class and made it into the current economic nightmare. They should make all of us put an asterisk on our tombstones and a little note at the bottom – Part of a Generation that looked after the individual and forgot humanity.

I look to my students and tell them they are the great hope of this nation. I tell them they bear the responsibility of fixing the failures of my generation.

I’m trying to build a future for this country, one student at a time.

And let me tell you another thing – if there was ever an entitlement generation, it was mine not this one. We went to college when it was virtually free and absorbed a host of government benefits virtually all of which we deny this generation. And if this clearly hypocritical and nation damaging behavior wasn’t enough, we shower disdain and contempt on our young people.

We were always looking to find ourselves, the latest self help books, cultish belief systems, fashionable get rich quick schemes, self interest politics and a fascination with style over substance.

I’ll write about this more later. I’ve too much anger for one post and I want to think about it some more. There are a number of things that were admirable about my generation and it would not be fair to ignore those.

James Pilant

Baby Boomers retirement: Why Boomers are doomed.

“No one wants to talk about just how unprepared the Baby Boomer generation is for the years when they will no longer be able to work,” Oppenheimer’s John Stoltzfus told Business Insider in a recent interview.

Now he’s laying out reasoning. Here’s Stoltzfus’ 11 reasons to be concerned about this aging demographic:

  1. The wholesale demise or dismantling of traditional defined benefit pension programs by corporations looking to cut expenses and liabilities that has occurred in the past 10 to 15 years.
  2. The widespread underuse of 401(k) plans (defined contribution plans) by eligible plan participants as well as those who qualify for but don’t enroll in 401(k) plans at all. We’d note that 401(k) plans often replace traditional pension plans when an employer closes the defined benefit plan but still wants to offer employees a retirement savings plan in the employment benefit menu.
  3. Potential for increasingly later age requirements ahead to get full Social Security benefits as Washington lawmakers work to preserve the program for Boomers and generations that follow.
  4. Reduced cost of living increases likely ahead for those receiving benefits in a pro-austerity environment.
  5. A pronounced and general ignorance by the general public of the importance of asset allocation and long-term planning in allocating money within 401(k) plans.
  6. The tendency for 401(k) participants to select low yielding nonfluctuating choices on 401(k) menus as a result of the tech bubble, the financial crisis of 2008, other past bubbles, along with prominent news items that accentuate the negatives of investing vs. the positives in a landscape of job insecurity.
  7. General lack of discipline and commitment to a personal investment program by many individuals either as a result of job insecurity or personal choice.
  8. Emphasis by too many individuals on DIY programs that focus mostly on fee containment and present the individual with programs heavy on brochures or website generalities and little access to the 1:1 or team capabilities available from experienced market and retirement professionals.
  9. Taking early distributions from 401(k) plans to meet nonemergency needs.
  10. Taking early distributions from 401(k) plans as the result of personal emergencies tied to job loss, health, and other unavoidable issues.
  11. Low interest rates in traditional savings vehicles and in much of fixed income product over the past five years that has compounded the likely problem ahead instead of compounding the money placed in them.

via Baby Boomers retirement: Why Boomers are doomed..

From around the web.

From the web site, Larry Gross Online.

’m a baby boomer and while I used to associate those two words with being young, I no longer can fool myself. Being a baby boomer now means I’m older.

Being older also means not understanding young people—at least not all the time. I think this is why I found this article on The Huffington Post sort of interesting. It gives five reasons why we, the boomers, don’t understand young people. Of course, there are more than five reasons but it’s a start.

You can click here to read the article, then, when you come back, I’ve got some comments on three of the five reasons why us boomers don’t understand young people. I’ll wait for you.

Meltdown Monday: Like watching my fantasy baseball team get slaughtered, only it matters (via Minding the Workplace)

David Yamada and I definitely see eye to eye on this issue. I have no retirement investments on Wall Street, so I am one step further away. Still, I am very upset by the self destructive tendencies of the Congress of the United States and its effect on world markets. I’m looking to the elections in 2012. Surely we can do better than this!

James Pilant

I confess that I have spent my day alternating between semi-productive writing and e-mailing tasks and less productive glances at the stock market reports. At the bell, the Dow has finished another 600 points down. Like millions of Americans, what happens with the stock market bears directly and indirectly on my financial health. And like many fellow Americans, I am a bit player in this casino economy. Some of my retirement savings are invested i … Read More

via Minding the Workplace

“Bag Ladies” On Social Security?

Bag Lady

From the Chicago Sun-Times by Terry Savage

Fear of being a “bag lady” is the secret worry of every older woman. I’ve written and talked about this before, and the subject always gets a nod or a grimace of recognition.

No woman wants to be a burden on her children – or grow old alone, worry about money.

With our President and the Congress and the beltway commentators all determined to cut Social Security, we can expect the situation to get worse, probably much worse as what’s left of the safety net is dismantled.

Read a little more –

*Women are likely to have a longer period of chronic disability and are more likely to need care in a long-term facility or from a paid caregiver. This is compounded by the fact that women are more likely to be alone in old age and less likely to have a family caregiver.

*Fifty-five percent of female retirees and 71 percent of female pre-retirees are concerned that they might not have enough money to pay for health care costs in retirement, compared to 42 percent of male retirees and 63 percent of male pre-retirees.

People, real people, not financial funds, not mortgage foreclosures companies, are supposed be looked after by our government. We are not supposed to be tossing grannies on to the fire of maximized profits. But we are.

Making every American regardless of circumstances rely totally on their own resources for virtually every contingency seems to be the philosophy of government. But a bank can navigate a depression better than a human being and a bank is unlikely to get a degenerative disease that bankrupts a family and destroys every vestige of financial security.

We should be looking out for each other not making sure of the highest possible return on investments.

James Pilant6