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Old 10-22-2007, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,764 posts, read 16,886,160 times
Reputation: 9324

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forest beekeeper wrote:
No ambulances, no MRIs, no CAT scans, no phone bills, no electric bills, no water bills, no sewage bills, no school bonds; all together it was a simpler and far cheaper time to live in.
I have a few additions to your list, and I'm sure there are others too: No Internet Provider bills, no cable TV bills, no extended warranty payments, no Cell Phone bills, etc.....AND we lived just fine without all of those things that we've now become dependent upon and addicted to.

blessings...Franco
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Old 10-22-2007, 12:52 PM
 
Location: Monterey Bay, California -- watching the sea lions, whales and otters! :D
1,918 posts, read 6,244,061 times
Reputation: 2651
Quote:
I agree, the Boomers didn't wreck Social Security -- blame their parents, then -- after all, they're the ones who went crazy having lots of babies, large families, and now we are paying the price.
Quote:
Willys" That comment must be born in extreme ignorance. American families, up until the boomers, were rather large. Many of those families, being agrarian, had lots of kids... as in child labor. Sure, there were a lot of boomers, but they were born to those large numbers of aunts and uncles from the great depression, the foundation of social security itself. The size of families has been in steady decline since. It wasn't until after WWII that citizens began trending to the cities.
Sorry, folks, I may have not stated that clearly -- I was ignorant being so flippant about that statement. I am at the forefront of the Boomers, and I was thinking of when I was born (1947) -- just after WWII ended, that many of the families around us had many more children than what most couples seem to have nowadays. Maybe it was being in New York State, or just my neighborhood, but it seems I know of many, many people my age who came from families of 4 to 6 or more children. That seems like a lot to me now because most people I know only have one or two children, on average -- at least that's how it seems. But then again, it's true that my grandparents (or great grandparents) had many more children, and those off-spring went onto create some of us boomers. I guess I really was sounding stupid...

I didn't mean to mislead anyone about that -- and I really shouldn't shoot off my mouth without stats to support what I say. I also keep forgetting that the "Boomers" include people much younger than myself, and, therefore, they may have come from smaller families. And Nancythe Reader pointed out the obvious about my own experience with my grand and great-grandparents. I'm sorry....
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Old 10-22-2007, 01:48 PM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,057,804 times
Reputation: 2141
Mathguy,

My point is about the general population and the demographics the averages are showing, not about those who save and plan (a minority for many reasons - some their own fault and some not). The average numbers in 401k's that are supposed to be funding future retirements are frighteningly small - no where near the $500k you cite (which is probably not enough for a comfortable and secure retirement). It's more on the order of $50k at most on average. The reality is that there are many millions who will have nothing but social security. You can argue till the cows come home about preferences and individual responsibility, but the country as a whole has a broken retirement system when so many do not have anything but SS. When the numbers are that large, it affects the economy and all of us one way or another.

I've read analyses that say for an inflation-proof lifetime annuity of $50k/year, you need a million dollars. In a lot of places, $50k/yr is not a whole lot of money to live on.
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Old 10-22-2007, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,697 posts, read 49,488,800 times
Reputation: 19146
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
... I've read analyses that say for an inflation-proof lifetime annuity of $50k/year, you need a million dollars. In a lot of places, $50k/yr is not a whole lot of money to live on.
Other places in the US $50k/yr is far above the average household income, and will set you up reasonably better off than neighboring families many of whom are still raising children.
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Old 10-22-2007, 05:31 PM
 
13,140 posts, read 36,749,565 times
Reputation: 12122
Default Futuristic Medicines and Technologies

Maybe someone else has mentioned this as i just scanned some of the 13 pages of posts but most forget about the new medicines and technologies in the future to keep us younger and active as many Biotech companies are working on these now including the first ever clinical trials for actually curing Alzheimer's (Comentis Pharma) and also first Human ''Adult Stem Cell'' trials will begin next year for Parkinson's, Spinal Cord paralysis and ALS (Geron Corp and BioGen) although i'm realistic we won't see these pay off for another 10 to 20 years.

...If i'm alive at 80 and old and broken down (i hope not) and on SSI and on other gov. programs and they give me a Star Trek type pill that will make me 30 years younger and healthy and can work again and be a productive citizen then that has to be good for our country.

Last edited by Six Foot Three; 10-22-2007 at 06:59 PM..
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Old 10-22-2007, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,697 posts, read 49,488,800 times
Reputation: 19146
Quote:
Originally Posted by 6 FOOT 3 View Post
Maybe someone else has mentioned this as i just scanned some of the 13 pages of posts but most forget about the new medicines and technologies in the future to keep us younger and active as many Biotech companies are working on these now including the first ever clinical trials for actually curing Alzheimer's (Comentis Pharma) and also first Human ''Adult Stem Cell'' trials will begin next year for Parkinson's, Spinal Cord paralysis and ALS (Geroncorp and BioGen) although i'm realistic we won't see these pay off for another 10 to 20 years.

...If i'm alive at 80 and old and broken down (i hope not) and on SSI and on other gov. programs and they give me a Star Trek type pill that will make me 30 years younger and healthy and can work again and be a productive citizen then that has to be good for our country.
Yes that would be wonderful, however comparing medical costs from a century ago, to today's expenses, it makes sense why today's is so expensive.
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Old 10-22-2007, 07:52 PM
 
52,032 posts, read 41,851,918 times
Reputation: 32463
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
Mathguy,

My point is about the general population and the demographics the averages are showing, not about those who save and plan (a minority for many reasons - some their own fault and some not). The average numbers in 401k's that are supposed to be funding future retirements are frighteningly small - no where near the $500k you cite (which is probably not enough for a comfortable and secure retirement). It's more on the order of $50k at most on average. The reality is that there are many millions who will have nothing but social security. You can argue till the cows come home about preferences and individual responsibility, but the country as a whole has a broken retirement system when so many do not have anything but SS. When the numbers are that large, it affects the economy and all of us one way or another.

I've read analyses that say for an inflation-proof lifetime annuity of $50k/year, you need a million dollars. In a lot of places, $50k/yr is not a whole lot of money to live on.
I guess you missed the part where I said SS is not going away? I absolutely support SS so I don't know why you are lecturing me over it's need.

What I'm merely pointing out is that a basic 401k will give you about the same benefit at retirement age that you'd have gotten if you'd put in your 35 years and gotten an "old school" pension.

Plus, you get the 401k even if you move around jobs either due to your actions or the companies....this is a plus to being able to be a mobile worker and not being trapped in a job.

Also, they can't change the rules on you....and they can't "underfund" you.

Your stats on average 401k are wierd. They haven't been around commonly for a long time and matches etc. just started kicking in. Sorry, but if you raid your 401k that's tough. It's also NO DIFFERENT than a guy with a traditional pension that hocked himself way into debt and then was pinched in retirement because he owed tons of money.

Are you telling me you don't like 401k's but would rather everyone have traditional old style pensions or did you misread my post and think I was talking about doing away SS with private 401k's....you've lost me. ???
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Old 10-23-2007, 12:18 PM
 
29,809 posts, read 34,894,042 times
Reputation: 11730
Default There is 401 data

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mathguy View Post
I guess you missed the part where I said SS is not going away? I absolutely support SS so I don't know why you are lecturing me over it's need.

What I'm merely pointing out is that a basic 401k will give you about the same benefit at retirement age that you'd have gotten if you'd put in your 35 years and gotten an "old school" pension.

Plus, you get the 401k even if you move around jobs either due to your actions or the companies....this is a plus to being able to be a mobile worker and not being trapped in a job.

Also, they can't change the rules on you....and they can't "underfund" you.

Your stats on average 401k are wierd. They haven't been around commonly for a long time and matches etc. just started kicking in. Sorry, but if you raid your 401k that's tough. It's also NO DIFFERENT than a guy with a traditional pension that hocked himself way into debt and then was pinched in retirement because he owed tons of money.

Are you telling me you don't like 401k's but would rather everyone have traditional old style pensions or did you misread my post and think I was talking about doing away SS with private 401k's....you've lost me. ???
There is data on 401 and tax shelter account balances for different age groups. The numbers given are not that far off. What is important is that with a 4% drawdown you would need 1 million to give you 40K per year and not worry about outliving your balance. You then increase that 4% to match inflation etc etc. That is an amount of money you have and while you could outlive it the reality is that if you don't the balance goes to your heirs at birth. A pension of 40K may have the yield of 1 million but you don't actually have that much money. Depending on the options selected when you and your spouse pass there is nothing for your heirs. If you pay into your pension then there is a guaranteed dollar amount but you will normally have exceeded that at some point. The ideal situation is still if available Pension, Investment and Social Security. Again teaching while not the highest paying while working does afford you the option to still fund a three tier retirement.
Media Biz Wall Street pulls the plug on Comcast (broken link)

Average 401(k) account balance up 10 percent - Retirement - MSNBC.com
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Old 10-23-2007, 03:18 PM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,057,804 times
Reputation: 2141
No, I'm not opposed to 401k's. They are great as far as they go and help the savvy have a more comfortable retirement. Got one myself. The point I am trying to make is that overall, the retirement system is broken because huge numbers are not saving at rates that will afford a decent retirement. The pension system afforded a fairly guaranteed amount by essentially taking the volunteer factor out of the equation. That is until the corporations reneged on the bargain they made with employees - a form of theft. SS does the same thing but really only ensures people won't starve to death in old age.

There are lots of reasons for why most 401k's are not big enuf to support retirements. They range from lots of people who are too irresponsible to save, don't understand the investment options, or don't make enuf money to have anything left over to save.

My mother was in that boat. She simply didn't have excess cash after feeding and housing us to put away money. She didn't waste it and she didn't spend foolishly. She seems to be happy to live on her SS with only occasional help from her kids for unexpected expenses. We continue to be amazed that she can live on so little, but she does have kid-subsidized housing that makes it possible and a fierce desire not to depend on anyone else.

Individual responsibility is good as far as it goes, but the ugly fact is that huge numbers do not have adequate resources to fund retirement. When they get old and can't work anymore, it will cause big social and economic problems that we all will be affected by, even if we individually made smart and responsible decisions for ourselves. I personally believe I will be fine because I have saved and have the resources to fund a comfortable and secure retirement. But I have to live in a society that can affect me. The current reliance on SS and individual savings is simply not working for the society as a whole.
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Old 10-23-2007, 03:30 PM
 
29,809 posts, read 34,894,042 times
Reputation: 11730
Default True True True

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
No, I'm not opposed to 401k's. They are great as far as they go and help the savvy have a more comfortable retirement. Got one myself. The point I am trying to make is that overall, the retirement system is broken because huge numbers are not saving at rates that will afford a decent retirement. The pension system afforded a fairly guaranteed amount by essentially taking the volunteer factor out of the equation. That is until the corporations reneged on the bargain they made with employees - a form of theft. SS does the same thing but really only ensures people won't starve to death in old age.

There are lots of reasons for why most 401k's are not big enuf to support retirements. They range from lots of people who are too irresponsible to save, don't understand the investment options, or don't make enuf money to have anything left over to save.

My mother was in that boat. She simply didn't have excess cash after feeding and housing us to put away money. She didn't waste it and she didn't spend foolishly. She seems to be happy to live on her SS with only occasional help from her kids for unexpected expenses. We continue to be amazed that she can live on so little, but she does have kid-subsidized housing that makes it possible and a fierce desire not to depend on anyone else.

Individual responsibility is good as far as it goes, but the ugly fact is that huge numbers do not have adequate resources to fund retirement. When they get old and can't work anymore, it will cause big social and economic problems that we all will be affected by, even if we individually made smart and responsible decisions for ourselves. I personally believe I will be fine because I have saved and have the resources to fund a comfortable and secure retirement. But I have to live in a society that can affect me. The current reliance on SS and individual savings is simply not working for the society as a whole.
Very true and very accurate. We can debate why all we want but the underlying problem is there. We will have people on government support from cradle to grave in increasing numbers and even more jumping on the entitlement bandwagon towards the end. The big culprit is longevity not that it is bad but is currently unpaid for.
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