U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
Old 09-29-2017, 08:28 PM
2,076 posts, read 873,452 times
Reputation: 5106


People have lived on less, with less, in the past than they do today. The majority of seniors have enough resources to live well if they use their heads, and live within their means. If not, there's public assistance. No one has to starve or freeze to death in the winter. i'm 71 now, but 40 years ago there were news stories about retired people living on dog food. What amazed me was that with just a hotplate and a pot and running water and a refrigerator, they could have cooked very low cost nutritious meals from scratch, rice and beans with cheap cuts of diced pork or beef, lentils with cheap cuts of stewing beef diced in, and bread and butter, pasta and sauce, peanut butter and jelly, boiled eggs, grilled cheese, etc. Instead they ate dog food.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 09-29-2017, 08:35 PM
Location: Frederick, Maryland
899 posts, read 479,319 times
Reputation: 2831
Originally Posted by Nanny Goat View Post
I think it's scary that people are living longer, to me anyways. Where I work, we have had many seniors in the 94-99 range! They have money so they live much better than most--but the physical and psychological effects of living that long are difficult even in a protected environment where their needs are being met. I can't imagine living that long w/ just moderate means or w/ less than moderate means.
I agree. My MIL is 100. She started getting lonely at age 90. All of her friends and family of her generation were gone or senile. She was sharp, living on her own and driving until 97. She got her first speeding ticket at 97! She's been ready to die since she was 96.

Anyhow, she's in a nursing home now with dementia, though otherwise healthy. She cries everyday and wants to go "home" to be with her husband. She claims she's in an airport but she keeps missing her plane. Dear merciful God....please take her!

No way would I want to live that long. It's too painful.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 08:40 PM
14,266 posts, read 24,016,895 times
Reputation: 20100
Originally Posted by HollyhockGarden View Post
Well. I wanted to read this article, but when I go to the link, the Washington Post wants to charge me $1.00 to read the article. Went to their website and got the same thing. Maybe it is because it is the end of the month and I have already read my allocated # of articles.

I cannot bring myself to pay Jeff Bezos $1.00 to read this article, so I will have to skip it. Maybe, in a few years, when I am in my Golden Girls situation, we can pool our funds and get a subscription. Or maybe I am being overly optimistic.

I clicked on the link and there was no charge to read the article. Maybe, you are over your months' quote of articles from the Washington Post.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 08:41 PM
3,455 posts, read 2,336,523 times
Reputation: 7004
I read that story today. Depressing, especially the stats about how little people have saved for retirement, for various reasons.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 08:42 PM
3,455 posts, read 2,336,523 times
Reputation: 7004
Originally Posted by SoCal25 View Post
And this has nothing to do with other demographic characteristics such as propensity for dual income households or the fact the SSN encourages working longer? Or that the babyboomer generation has a reputation for being a rapacious generation that spent profligately on their wants and status symbols?

Retirement security, particularly around medical costs, are an issue but anyone can pick out a few hard luck stories, cherry pick some stats and build any story they want. Making everything into an us v. them issue detracts from really fixing the problems of this country.
???? Talk about a generalization.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 08:46 PM
802 posts, read 469,943 times
Reputation: 2662
Originally Posted by LoriNJ View Post
???? Talk about a generalization.
Of course it is.... I'm not even saying it's an accurate reputation, just pointing out a common trope....
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 09:01 PM
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,745 posts, read 4,222,880 times
Reputation: 6866
These retirees appear to be (nonunion) members of the working class. It makes sense that they would not have had sufficient funds to sock away for retirement and that they would have been particularly hard hit by the recession. They would also be the ones most reliant on their Social Security check. Unfortunately, "...Social Security benefits have lost about a third of their purchasing power since 2000." I have to admit, that was bit of a shocker.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 09:20 PM
Location: South Florida
195 posts, read 106,657 times
Reputation: 1158
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Interesting. "People are living.....more expensive lives,......" One aspect of the general picture is that our standard of living is such that we would no longer be satisfied with what was considered "normal" life 50 or 60 years ago.

Stuff costs more because it is more complex; one example is cars. When I was a kid, our family car did not have air conditioning, or seat belts, or electric windows. Ditto about our house - no air conditioning, although we did have central heat. One full bath only, for four people.

Also, it was a bit harder, though by no means impossible, to live way beyond one's means. There may have been credit cards when I was a kid, but that was not part of my family's universe; there were no credit cards in our household.

No, I have no wish to return to those times. I have a credit card which I enjoy for its convenience. My car has air conditioning and seat belts, which I very much appreciate, and it has electric windows, which I hate with a passion. But all in all, I'll take modern life. But it is more expensive.
I've got you beat. Our tiny house had one bathroom for EIGHT people! And you are right... most of us grew up with much less than we have now. My family didn't even own a car until after the 6th child was born. Nowadays our kids have to have one when they turn 17.

If we wanted to go back to living the simpler lives many of us had growing up I'm sure that our cost of living would go down but, personally, I have gotten quite used to the "new" normal and I will keep my air conditioning and power everything and I will happily pay a little extra for the comfort and convenience.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-29-2017, 11:38 PM
Location: Wisconsin
21,543 posts, read 44,068,928 times
Reputation: 15160
Relative to the WaPo article and impoverished seniors, personal finance needs to be taught in grade and high school, the power of compound interest, present and future value of money, budgeting, etc.

Can't say I learned anything of what I know today about money when I was growing up. I learned it in the workplace working with bankers, investment managers, real estate investors, and top-flight attorneys - and reading financial publications.

Most valuable course I ever took in my late 30's was a commercial real estate investment course which taught present and future value of money, income streams, etc. Course was held in San Diego. Sat next to the atty son of the then atty general of the US (William French Smith II), who declared that one week was the equivalent of a semester of college - worth its weight in gold. This coming from a rich kid.

Children need to be taught these things as soon as they can read, add and subtract/multiply and divide - with personal finance/investment courses continuing into high school, imho.

Last edited by Ariadne22; 09-29-2017 at 11:51 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 09-30-2017, 01:39 AM
21 posts, read 19,296 times
Reputation: 72
Hi all,
I got a little creative with a non-bubbled search engine that I use for research and came up with another link to the same article (apologies for the late post). This article mentions the 1,400 mile drive and the $10.00 an hour job, so it appears to be the same article. Here is the link: The new reality of old age in America | INFORUM

Don't forget that Generation X and Generation Y, and the generations behind them will not be able to afford a home until they are well into their 40's, if at all.

This is the squeeze that the moguls put on us starting long ago.


Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top