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Old 11-25-2010, 01:55 AM
 
Location: In a state of denial
1,290 posts, read 1,357,709 times
Reputation: 897
Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
Yes, death is the ultimate emergency. But why pay big bucks for a funeral? What is the point? Why not instruct your family to have your remains cremated immediately and scatter your ashes over the Pacific, Atlantic, Mount Washington, or wherever? Gone is gone. Let not consumerism consume even our final and most sacred act.
The family still has to pay for cremation. Mine is planned and paid for already. The total came to ~$3,000 a couple of years ago. It's a "pre-paid" deal so all my family has to do, when I die, is give the funeral home the paperwork.
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Old 11-25-2010, 02:40 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
8,592 posts, read 5,962,651 times
Reputation: 14600
Back to the primary idea of the original post, namely that many seniors are building up debt with the idea that they will die and the holders of the debt will just have to take the loss, that seems at least mildly sleezy to me. It does serve to point out how screwed up our financial system still is that it would allow such things on a large scale. Haven't we learned anything from the fact that unrestricted accumulation of huge amounts of personal debt (mainly but not limited to credit cards and real estate loans) is one of the prime reasons for the economic meltdown of 2008/2009? Of course that last sentence of mine has nothing to do with seniors particularly - I am just putting the matter in a wider context.
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Old 11-25-2010, 02:48 AM
 
15,621 posts, read 9,322,518 times
Reputation: 8574
"Originally Posted by newenglandgirl
Yes, death is the ultimate emergency. But why pay big bucks for a funeral? What is the point? Why not instruct your family to have your remains cremated immediately and scatter your ashes over the Pacific, Atlantic, Mount Washington, or wherever? Gone is gone. Let not consumerism consume even our final and most sacred act."

I hesitate to bring this up because of the emotions it will stir, but it may help someone with no other choice. If no one claims the body, the government has to dispose of the remains at their expense. I will advise my family to do exactly that when I die.
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:13 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
8,592 posts, read 5,962,651 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bideshi View Post
I hesitate to bring this up because of the emotions it will stir, but it may help someone with no other choice. If no one claims the body, the government has to dispose of the remains at their expense. I will advise my family to do exactly that when I die.
This is an interesting concept, and one that is utilized mostly by default rather than as an intended strategy, as you plan to recommend to your family. You're right about one thing - it is an emotional issue. Perhaps that is why I find your advice to your family so astonishing. In order for them to be tempted to follow the advice, I would have to assume that they are absolutely and totally destitute, because one can have a cremation and a simple but dignified service for two or three thousand dollars. I know that factually our remains are just an "empty shell" and will revert to the elements (so maybe your solution is the ultimately rational one!), but I cannot imagine abandoning the remains of a familty member to the government; it seems to me simple respect for the deceased would demand better. I recognize that we all make our own choices, and I respect your right to make yours. So I am just giving my own reaction to your proposal, which is not the same as condemning it.
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:37 AM
 
4,070 posts, read 7,101,466 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
Yes, death is the ultimate emergency. But why pay big bucks for a funeral? What is the point? Why not instruct your family to have your remains cremated immediately and scatter your ashes over the Pacific, Atlantic, Mount Washington, or wherever? Gone is gone. Let not consumerism consume even our final and most sacred act.
Definitely the right idea. Funerals are big business. I have left instructions to put me in my most comfortable clothes, cardboard casket, and cremate me immediately. No funeral service. No viewing. If people didn't care enough to come see me when I was alive, no sense showing up when I'm dead.
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Old 11-25-2010, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
7,384 posts, read 13,002,805 times
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I don't care at all if I owe money when I die. Why should I? I certainly won't be worrying about my credit score.
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:12 AM
 
15,621 posts, read 9,322,518 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
I respect your right to make yours. So I am just giving my own reaction to your proposal, which is not the same as condemning it.
My father told us "When I die, just put me in a sack and throw me in the river. I'd rather have you spend the money on yourselves than give it to a funeral home." We didn't do that, of course, and spent a lot of money on his funeral. He would not have been at all pleased. So we were just doing what society expected of us, it wasn't really for him, it was for appearances. Over the years I have come to understand his position on many things. Especially about escaping the money traps that are set up for us all through our short lives. I feel exactly the same way about expensive weddings. My wife and I were married in a government office (33 years ago), our son was married in a government office, and our daughter was married in the local court house. That's probably 100k saved right there. It is foolish, I think, for people to spend the down payment for a house on a wedding. I don't expect many to agree.
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Old 11-26-2010, 12:23 AM
 
15,621 posts, read 9,322,518 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellwood View Post
Definitely the right idea. Funerals are big business. I have left instructions to put me in my most comfortable clothes, cardboard casket, and cremate me immediately. No funeral service. No viewing. If people didn't care enough to come see me when I was alive, no sense showing up when I'm dead.
Not so many years ago, people were buried on family land behind the house with a simple marker. Laws were passed prohibiting this to insure that funeral homes would profit. There's big money in death.

Look at laws as to who stands to profit and you will begin to understand how it all goes. Is that wind generator in your back yard really an unacceptable eyesore and a threat to public safety, or just a threat to the power companies profits? Why did we leave Sadam in power after Desert Storm when we could easily have removed him? Why else would all the surrounding Arab oil states buy billions of dollars worth of weaponry from us if there was no threat in the region? And so it, and everything else, goes.
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Old 11-26-2010, 01:04 PM
 
Location: Lead/Deadwood, SD
870 posts, read 1,265,172 times
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It's selfish to pass the buck. If thats how people want to be remembered I guess that's their deal, but that mindset seems to be defining the beginning of this century. The I and the Me and the Now. Anything protecting the future is too often labeled as a form of paranoia, or too expensive, or some sort of unfounded conspiracy. If the generations to follow build on this idea it won't be long before things will crumble as other empires before have. Only this time it will be more global. Or we could teach, learn, take note to the facts, and do the best to give to those that will follow us instead of taking from them before they are even born.
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Old 11-26-2010, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Paradise Lost
291 posts, read 246,911 times
Reputation: 197
Default Where's the beef?

When you die, the universe ceases to exist and all problems likewise. That's the good news.
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