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The real threat to retirement is beginning to emerge
Old 03-28-2008, 12:40 AM   #1
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The real threat to retirement is beginning to emerge

The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis - TIME
The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis

Egypt rice prices rise | Finance and Economy

I'm up a bit late running anti spyware/virus programs. While I'm waiting I thought I would post on what I think is among the most threating to your early retirement - the population explodtion - and old term isn't it.

From about 1900 to 2050 the world population will go from 1 billion to 10 billion; we are at 7 billion now. So it is aprox 40% increase over the next 45 years. No one is talking about it. Why? Because the majority of the population growth will be in 2nd and 3rd world nations as will the pain.
We will begin to hear about increases in starvation due to the high cost of food in those areas. In the USA we will have food at a higher cost but we will blame it on increased energy cost not the demand by the increased population.

The use of biofuels will speed up the starvation as more farmland is used to produce it. Energy and other commodities will increase as China, India and other counties do everything they can to keep their large populations fed, housed, warm and happy so they don't take to the streets.

So expect more stories about:
- starvation around the world increasing
- increasing; inflation
- protectionism for food products so that the local governments can keep their citizens fed at a reasonable price.
- higher energy prices

As individuals and a country have huge debts we will not be able to do much about it.
I'm not very optimistic about the future of the world.

So does anyone have a path to solve the crisis we are in? And I'm talking about now because 45 years is not that far away; so it needs to be implimented now.
(This isn't about how we got here; Bush or the current presidential candidates.)

My only solution that I can think of is mother nature - some bug that gets our world population in line with what the earth can support.
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:29 AM   #2
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I guess this is one reason success rate more than 80% for is meaningless,

From The Retirement Calculator from Hell, Part III ---- Thus, any estimate of long-term financial success greater than about 80% is meaningless.
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Old 03-28-2008, 05:29 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by dex View Post
The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis - TIME
The World's Growing Food-Price Crisis

Egypt rice prices rise | Finance and Economy

I'm up a bit late running anti spyware/virus programs. While I'm waiting I thought I would post on what I think is among the most threating to your early retirement - the population explodtion - and old term isn't it.

From about 1900 to 2050 the world population will go from 1 billion to 10 billion; we are at 7 billion now. So it is aprox 40% increase over the next 45 years. No one is talking about it. Why? Because the majority of the population growth will be in 2nd and 3rd world nations as will the pain.
We will begin to hear about increases in starvation due to the high cost of food in those areas. In the USA we will have food at a higher cost but we will blame it on increased energy cost not the demand by the increased population.

The use of biofuels will speed up the starvation as more farmland is used to produce it. Energy and other commodities will increase as China, India and other counties do everything they can to keep their large populations fed, housed, warm and happy so they don't take to the streets.

So expect more stories about:
- starvation around the world increasing
- increasing; inflation
- protectionism for food products so that the local governments can keep their citizens fed at a reasonable price.
- higher energy prices

As individuals and a country have huge debts we will not be able to do much about it.
I'm not very optimistic about the future of the world.

So does anyone have a path to solve the crisis we are in? And I'm talking about now because 45 years is not that far away; so it needs to be implimented now.
(This isn't about how we got here; Bush or the current presidential candidates.)

My only solution that I can think of is mother nature - some bug that gets our world population in line with what the earth can support.

Bird Flu Pandemic.
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Old 03-28-2008, 07:48 AM   #4
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Gloom & doom. It's been predicted for as long as I can remember. Happens some places, not in others. Just have to wait & see.

Finally, it was warm enough to go fishing two days ago.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:10 AM   #5
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My concern about threats to retirement is when all us baby boomers are fully into it,we are going to be taking a lot out of the system through pension and medical related issues,i just hope the govment doesnt start changing the rules of the game when i'm in my 70s or 80s.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:13 AM   #6
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One of these days, the sky really *is* going to fall and the apocalyptic, foil-hatted doom and gloomers will be right. I'm confident of it. For all I know, this or any number of their reasons to believe the end times are starting may in fact come true.

I'm not impressed by their track record, though.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:18 AM   #7
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One of these days, the sky really *is* going to fall and the apocalyptic, foil-hatted doom and gloomers will be right. I'm confident of it. For all I know, this or any number of their reasons to believe the end times are starting may in fact come true.

I'm not impressed by their track record, though.
"The world will only end once. All other downturns are merely buying opportunities."

Said by someone a lot wiser than me.
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Old 03-28-2008, 08:26 AM   #8
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My concern about threats to retirement is when all us baby boomers are fully into it,we are going to be taking a lot out of the system through pension and medical related issues,i just hope the govment doesnt start changing the rules of the game when i'm in my 70s or 80s.
That has occurred to me as well, but for the most part my die is cast. If it happens I'll have plenty of company, but if the situation warrants there's always being a greeter at Walmart.
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Old 03-28-2008, 10:41 AM   #9
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Nature has a way to balance things out. Or the great Al Gore will save us.
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:36 PM   #10
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Hey Walt34 you might want to rethink the Walmart greeter position. My Walmart has already done away with them!
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Old 03-28-2008, 12:52 PM   #11
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Pandemics have a way of putting a crimp in population growth. As we, as a species, get more crowded, pandemics become more deadly.
There are always wars and as food and energy supplies get more scarce, conflict and wars become more common.
Biofuels, while taxing food production now and in the near future, will disappear over time (10-15 years is my guess). Biofuels are a stop gap solution.
I do believe population will continue to be an issue, I just believe that it won't be a total collapse of civilization as we know it.
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Old 03-28-2008, 01:52 PM   #12
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Hey Walt34 you might want to rethink the Walmart greeter position. My Walmart has already done away with them!
I went into Walmart early this morning. There was a group of employees in a circle. One of them started a cheer.....give me a W....give me an A.......etc. They all started clapping in rythum and cheering loudly for Walmart. It was embarrassing.
I could barely keep from laughing. Is this some kind of morale building excersise? I wonder if it keeps them happy and gets their minds off the barely above minimum wage they make. How in the heck are Walmarters ever going to save for retirement?
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:02 PM   #13
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If all 'goes' in the handbasket...and your plan is to be the Walmart greeter you should expect to be in a line of a few million ahead of you.
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Old 03-28-2008, 02:05 PM   #14
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Pandemics have a way of putting a crimp in population growth. As we, as a species, get more crowded, pandemics become more deadly.
There are always wars and as food and energy supplies get more scarce, conflict and wars become more common.
Biofuels, while taxing food production now and in the near future, will disappear over time (10-15 years is my guess). Biofuels are a stop gap solution.
I do believe population will continue to be an issue, I just believe that it won't be a total collapse of civilization as we know it.
I agree with most of your points and would just refine the last sentence.
There may not be a world collapse but we may not recogonise it. I think of it in terms of the following:
3rd world - mass starvation; poverty and opression greater than can imagine
Developing world - development stops - some fall back into 3rd world status
Developed world - great increase in poverty; unemployment; cost of living.
All three will have political unstability and searching for a leader with a solution - another round of dictators.
The greatest growth in population will be in the 3rd world and the developing world.
I'm not sure a pandemic will slow things down. The Spanish Flu killed 50 - 100m out of a pop of 1B - 5-10%
Spanish flu - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
If that percentage was applied to today's population it would be between 350 and 700m.
This might sound hartless but from our 7B population we most likely need to be closer to a population of 4 to 5 billion.
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Old 03-28-2008, 03:47 PM   #15
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If all 'goes' in the handbasket...and your plan is to be the Walmart greeter you should expect to be in a line of a few million ahead of you.
Exactly! Who's to say that there will be plentiful low pay part time jobs at that point. When everyone wants a minimum wage job, and there are only a finite number of them, then they become more difficult to find (especially for ancient people who are all wrinkled and way overqualified).
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Old 03-28-2008, 07:55 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by jambo101 View Post
My concern about threats to retirement is when all us baby boomers are fully into it,we are going to be taking a lot out of the system through pension and medical related issues,i just hope the govment doesnt start changing the rules of the game when i'm in my 70s or 80s.
I assume you're joking. If I believed the 'govment' wouldn't change the rules after I retire, I'd be gone yesterday! I'm convinced they will change, several times, the only question is when and how...
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Malthus talked about this topic...
Old 03-29-2008, 07:51 AM   #17
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Malthus talked about this topic...

Dex, this is a Malthusian view of population vs. resources. It was proved wrong 300+ years ago, and it's wrong today. The combination of freedom, and free enterprise brought changes and technologies that not only fed an expanding world population, but brought wide spread increases in standards of living. The greatest threat to us in the future is exactly what you seem to suggest: "Someone" with a "plan". Even with the collapse of most communist states, and the historic failures of centralized planning, we still seem to buy into this approach.

When you bring someone in in a white horse, and give them the power to solve your "crisis", that horses hooves are going to start stomping on you, trampling your freedoms. A note about food prices: They have dropped continually over the past 100 years as a percent of income. The environmentalists pushing "renewable fuels" have forgotten the 3rd rule of Economics "Everything is a tradeoff". If you use a large portion of existing acreage for non-food production, it will cause shortages and price increases for food.

We seem so quick to panic, to assume that the sky is falling. History in free society has shown that our best resource and solution is the work and creativity of free people in a free society. (For your info: Rule #1 is "Incentives matter", and Rule #2 is "There is no such thing as a free lunch".)
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Old 03-29-2008, 08:17 AM   #18
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Dex, this is a Malthusian view of population vs. resources. It was proved wrong 300+ years ago, and it's wrong today. The combination of freedom, and free enterprise brought changes and technologies that not only fed an expanding world population, but brought wide spread increases in standards of living. The greatest threat to us in the future is exactly what you seem to suggest: "Someone" with a "plan". Even with the collapse of most communist states, and the historic failures of centralized planning, we still seem to buy into this approach.

When you bring someone in in a white horse, and give them the power to solve your "crisis", that horses hooves are going to start stomping on you, trampling your freedoms. A note about food prices: They have dropped continually over the past 100 years as a percent of income. The environmentalists pushing "renewable fuels" have forgotten the 3rd rule of Economics "Everything is a tradeoff". If you use a large portion of existing acreage for non-food production, it will cause shortages and price increases for food.

We seem so quick to panic, to assume that the sky is falling. History in free society has shown that our best resource and solution is the work and creativity of free people in a free society. (For your info: Rule #1 is "Incentives matter", and Rule #2 is "There is no such thing as a free lunch".)
The World Bank defines extreme poverty as living on less than US$ (PPP) 1 per day, and moderate poverty as less than $2 a day, estimating that "in 2001, 1.1 billion people had consumption levels below $1 a day and 2.7 billion lived on less than $2 a day." [10] The proportion of the developing world's population living in extreme economic poverty fell from 28 percent in 1990 to 21 percent in 2001.[10] Looking at the period 1981-2001, the percentage of the world's population living on less than $1 per day has halved.
Poverty - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Maybe your are right - I read the wikipedia article and was surprised that poverty has decreased.
I have a difficult time thinking that a 40% increase in population and the demand it puts on resources will allow a better lead to a better life than we have now.
I think I only have another 35 years on this planet. I have it in my plan to move out west to a smaller town and away from the crowds.
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Old 03-29-2008, 12:02 PM   #19
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Hey Walt34 you might want to rethink the Walmart greeter position. My Walmart has already done away with them!
Oh, rats! Now I'll have to think up a new career goal.

In high school I pumped gasoline & cleaned windshields but they've done away with all that too. Except in NJ.

Think I'll go have a glass of wine while I ponder this dilemma....
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