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Work is the new retirement
Old 04-20-2005, 01:23 PM   #1
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Work is the new retirement

The financial aid thread jives with some thinking I've been doing.

My theory: retirement is no longer a viable option for the bulk of the American workforce, and especially for new entrants. It's a dream for most people, and that's all it's ever going to be.

A few contributing causes (and in parenthesis, corporate America's spin on them):

-No more pensions; they've been replaced by portable retiree-managed plans like IRAs, 401Ks, etc. This is an exercise in cost and risk-shifting from corporations to individuals, and it means that individuals must make saving a priority in order to reach retirement.

(If you want to quit work you have to pay for it. We'll give you a push out of the gate with a matching contribution and some program structure, but after that you're on your own.)

-Overconsumption and the resulting salary addiction.

(You have to work if you want to buy the nice stuff we're pushing. And your spouse should work, too.)

-Increasing numbers of health insurance benefit cuts, in some cases to zero, to retirees who were assured they would be taken care of.

(You have to work to maintain your coverage. You quit, you die.)

-A shrinking, relatively inexperienced population behind retiring baby-boomers.

(Whoops...what were we thinking when we let Charlie go home? Hire him back on a contract. So what if he double-dips, and we have to lay off the new guy?)

-High-school graduates forced to buy their way into the workforce with six-figure five-year undergraduate degrees and correspondingly high student loans. Payments on which, by the way, eat into the student's ability to save for retirement when they most need to be saving because of the power of compound interest.

(You have to work to pay off the student loans you had to take out in order to work. And we won't hire you if you didn't play the game.)

It's frigging bleak. And I think the root cause is the corporate drive for efficiency. Retirement isn't productive. You toil not, neither do you consume...or at least not as much. So why shouldn't corporate America make it as hard for you to reach that goal as it possibly can? And if you're like too many people who won't or don't know how to try, then so much the better.

Jeez...time to lay on the couch and have a brew. I don't know, gang...is it just me?

Ed

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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-20-2005, 07:08 PM   #2
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Good post , Gratefuled. I see this in my youngest son's life. So many things are harder, more expensive, less available than when I was his age.

At least the young still get a lot of sex.

Mikey
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-20-2005, 07:13 PM   #3
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Re: Work is the new retirement

[quote=mikey

At least the young still get a lot of sex. *

Mikey[/quote]

Hey Mikey! Unclemick, Charlie and I do not need to
be reminded of this. OKay? Needless cruelty!

JG
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 09:54 AM   #4
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Well written Ed.

It's not easy, and doesn't appear to be changing for the better in the future.

Many, if not all of us, have the power to get started in the right direction, but with the way our current system is set up, with health insurance, epecially, it makes it very difficult to sever the corporate apron strings. A consume-oriented culture surely doesn't help, either.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 11:00 AM   #5
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Quote:
Well written Ed.

It's not easy, and doesn't appear to be changing for the better in the future. *

Many, if not all of us, have the power to get started in the right direction, but with the way our current system is set up, with health insurance, epecially, it makes it very difficult to sever the corporate apron strings. *A consume-oriented culture surely doesn't help, either.
Are we still talking about sex?
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 12:09 PM   #6
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Re: Work is the new retirement

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My theory: retirement is no longer a viable option for the bulk of the American workforce, and especially for new entrants.
Age related problems will eventually force almost everyone to retire, at least everyone that makes it to old age.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 12:37 PM   #7
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Quote:
Are we still talking about sex?
If we are, I'd prefer that neither the terms "sever" or "apron strings" are included. "Health insurance" also doesnt wow me.
:-X
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 01:34 PM   #8
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Hmmm

I had a boss who retired - got huge discounts to go on cruises - ace ballroom dancer and still er functional in his seventies.

He was also given to burnt orange and neon green golf pants
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 02:17 PM   #9
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Quote:
I had a boss who retired - got huge discounts to go on cruises - ace ballroom dancer and still er functional in his seventies.
I read an article a couple of years ago that older gents who are good at dancing were in demand as dance partners on cruises for the older ladies, and I seem to remember something about discounts for those gentlemen.

If some of you male ace dancers are so inclined, cruises can be one way to LBYM--give up the house, go on cruises, and dance your way in ER. (Mikey, you are a good salsa-dancer, right, although you are already set with your ER, plus your wife may not like it.)

I remember the article saying that on-board romances were discouraged, though.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 03:45 PM   #10
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Re: Work is the new retirement

John, a limpdick at your age could be a sign of arterial damage.

Numerous studies have shown that life expectancy in a male is about 15 years after this condition manifests itself.

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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 04:04 PM   #11
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Re: Work is the new retirement

I've never been much of a dancer.... maybe I should start taking lessons so I'll have a "second career" to fall back on!!!
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 06:00 PM   #12
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Re: Work is the new retirement

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John, a limpdick at your age could be a sign of arterial damage.

Numerous studies have shown that life expectancy in a male is about 15 years after this condition manifests itself.
Great post Zipper. Some of us have considered JG a limp dick for a long time. (I couldn't resist it, JG, it was there so I took it). Just kidding!
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 06:47 PM   #13
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Re: Work is the new retirement

A lot of that makes sense to me Ed, but we sure did have quite a few people take "early outs" recently with my federal agency when they were offered. Granted, some of them might have just took the retirement plan and moved on to another job, but i'm not sure what percentage of them did.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 06:53 PM   #14
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Re: Work is the new retirement

I don't mind guys. Take your best shot. If anyone can
shrug it off, I can. I also don't mind admitting I am not the man I once was. In fact, that was part of the inspiration for our official flag's motto (long may it wave). OTOH, Viagra was introduced at exactly the right moment to keep me "in the game". So, in that sense I got lucky once again, and so did a number of females As far as the 15 years Zipper gives me......................let's see..........oops, gotta go now

JG
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-21-2005, 06:59 PM   #15
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Re: Work is the new retirement

I wish I could get my hands on some Viagra. I wonder what i'd do for a perfectly healthy 33 year old :-).
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-22-2005, 08:23 AM   #16
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Re: Work is the new retirement

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I wish I could get my hands on some Viagra. I wonder what i'd do for a perfectly healthy 33 year old :-).
A surprising number of "healthy" people experiment with Viagra from the talk I hear. Personally I think 3 or so hours of continuous sex sounds potentially painful for all involved, but I can see the interest in trying. However, there are ways to prolong that without taking drugs, although those look scary, too.

Unfortunately I've heard of people with heart issues and blood pressure issues experimenting with it. I know many a man's desired way to go is during sex, but why try to make it happen today?
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-22-2005, 08:23 PM   #17
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Re: Work is the new retirement

At the risk of zigging the thread back to the subject ...

gratefuled, I agree with the concern 100%. I wonder though if it is the fault of corporations, or simply their reaction to the changing economy as well. The average Joe is always looking for more for less. We have created our own monster, methinks.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-22-2005, 09:15 PM   #18
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Quote:
A surprising number of "healthy" people experiment with Viagra from the talk I hear.
A lot of drugs are OTC down in Mexico, and while in college, I knew a football player who picked some up while on vacation.... he didn't think that they could really work, so he took one just for the hell of it. You can guess how football practice went
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-22-2005, 09:54 PM   #19
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Re: Work is the new retirement

Quote:

My theory: retirement is no longer a viable option for the bulk of the American workforce, and especially for new entrants. It's a dream for most people, and that's all it's ever going to be.

A few contributing causes (and in parenthesis, corporate America's spin on them):


Jeez...time to lay on the couch and have a brew. I don't know, gang...is it just me?

Ed
It isn't just you, but I might add to your list that the younger workers I see spend a whole bunch of money on worthless electonic gizmos, have no concept of saving, don't realize that there could be a hundred people in foreign countries willing to do their work for a fraction of their wage, hock themselves into wage slavery with McMansions and fancy cars, and have a devil may care work ethic. Perhaps a gross stereoptype and perhaps a hint of truth.

Now back to the more important topic of sex.
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Re: Work is the new retirement
Old 04-22-2005, 11:06 PM   #20
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Re: Work is the new retirement

You know, I think there is a large contingent of Americans who don't have a choice but to keep working, but at the same time I am surrounded by people at work who make 20k plus more than me who haven't saved a dime. There are a lot of people out there who are still shooting themselves in the foot.

My wife and I self financed two B.S.'s and a Masters, ended up 60k in debt, and turned that around in 4 years to 100k in savings, plus we own our house. We are lucky in many respects, but like I said there are plenty of peers who make more than us. Not saying what you posted isn't true, but the majority of the wounds are self inflicted.
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