The Champions of the 401k Lament the Revolution They Started “Every great cause begins as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.” --Eric Hoffer. | "The most radical revolutionary will become a conservative the day after the revolution." --Hannah Arendt | "Could you have ruined yourself somehow?" --Hannah and Her Sisters [more inside]
America's retirement crisis: 29% of people 55 or older lack savings or pensions, says the Government Accountability Office (GAO). 1 in 4 people aged 65 or older is still working, many because they have no choice but to keep working as Social Security cannot cover their living costs. These working seniors find themselves too poor to retire, too young to die.
Attempting to be the oldest person to paddle the Mississippi River from source to sea (and in World Record time) Dale Sanders is not your average 80-year-old. Meet Dale Sanders. The intro to the story (in an audio nutshell). The 170 videos uploaded to his YouTube channel to document his trip (in oldest to newest order). He also did it to raise awareness for juvenile diabetes. His "Source to Sea" Facebook page and a link to his blog.
It’s sleazy, it’s totally illegal, and yet it could become the future of retirement. Is it time to bring back the tontine? [more inside]
On Monday, at the 2015 American Library Association Annual Conference, actress and author Sonia Manzano announced her retirement from the cast of Sesame Street, where she has played the role of Maria for more than 40 years. [more inside]
William McPherson was the editor of the Washington Post Book World and won a Pulitzer Prize. He retired early to explore and document Eastern Europe just after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Now he is poor and living in a welfare-subsidized housing project. His article in The Hedgehog Review is a clear-eyed personal look at surviving on an economic knife's-edge in America.
The Sad State of America’s Aging Sisters: Why are there so few nuns today?
You may wonder whether the global church the sisters belong to is interested in keeping the convents open. It sure seems like it isn't. By 2005, the Catholic Church had spent $1 billion on legal fees and settlements stemming from priests sexually abusing children. Yet church leaders have allocated no funds to take care of elderly sisters, and while priests’ retirement funds are covered by the church, the sisters have no such safety net. When their orders run out of money, that’s it.[more inside]
“Why would you want to be a nun if the archdiocese is going to treat you like they do?” Ann Frey at the Wartburg said. “Their whole lives they’ve been obedient and done what they were asked to do, and now nobody is helping them?”
The most rapidly expanding U.S. metro area is a Manhattan-sized retirement village – with more golf carts than New York has taxis. “They own everything,” said Andrew D. Blechman, author of “Leisureville,” a book about The Villages and other retirement communities that ranks Morse’s as the biggest. “You basically have a city of 100,000 people, owned by a company.”
Sometimes life seems really short, and other times it seems impossibly long. But this chart helps to emphasize that it’s most certainly finite. Those are your weeks and they’re all you’ve got.
The approximate moment when grumpiness kicks in for men is around age 70. Researchers found that as men grow older — from, say, 50 on — they have fewer obstacles and annoyances to worry about in life and, furthermore, they are more equipped to deal with adversity. But around age 70, life — or at least the perception of happiness — begins to go downhill. [more inside]
It's official: David Letterman, the bridge between Johnny Carson and today's viral-video-driven talk shows, is hanging up his desk at the end of his current contract next year. The news was broken by, of all people, REM's Mike Mills via Twitter. Letterman surpassed Carson's record for hosting longevity last year, and many thought that his latest extension would in fact be the last. [more inside]
Thomas Scully, the Administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services under President George W. Bush, once said, “Fifty percent of the social safety net was created by Henry Waxman when no one was looking.” After 40 years and 17 consecutive terms, Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) is retiring from Congress. [more inside]
“I’d say that my great days, they’re all done,” she said. “I figured out after the last record I did that I’m what is known as now, a legacy artist, which means basically, you’re on your own. . . . It’s been a long road, and it’s been a great road — I’ve been very lucky so much over my life. But at this stage I feel like I’m only going backwards.”[more inside]
Steve Ballmer bid farewell to Microsoft employees today after nearly 14 years as CEO, and he did it in his usual understated fashion. [more inside]
Looting the Pension Funds: All across America, Wall Street is grabbing money meant for public workers. By Matt Taibbi. [more inside]
At age 99, Mr. Newton still gets up and goes to work 3X a week. The company doesn't need him to do the work, and in fact the company didn't actually hire him. He showed up at age 86 on a Monday after the property had been sold. He worked for the previous owner, and he came with the property.
A healthy, inexpensive, environmentally friendly solution for housing millions of retiring baby boomers is staring us in the face. We just know it by a dirty name. How The Trailer Park Could Save Us All.
Rising Demand for Long-Term Services and Supports for Elderly People (pdf, 574 kb) - "By 2050, one-fifth of the total U.S. population will be elderly (that is, 65 or older), up from 12 percent in 2000 and 8 percent in 1950. The number of people age 85 or older will grow the fastest over the next few decades, constituting 4 percent of the population by 2050, or 10 times its share in 1950. That growth in the elderly population will bring a corresponding surge in the number of elderly people with functional and cognitive limitations."
“Do you really want to invest in a system where you put up 100 percent of the capital, [you] take 100 percent of the risk, and you get 30 percent of the return?” Frontline correspondent Martin Smith speaks with authors, policy experts, and investment managers about the history and current reality of the 401(k).
"At the end of his life, the boxer Joe Louis said, ‘I did the best I could with what I had.’ It’s exactly what I would say of my work: I did the best I could with what I had.” [The New Yorker] "The writer Philip Roth announced his retirement in a little-noticed interview with a French magazine [Les Inrocks] and said that Nemesis, which was published in 2010, would be his last book."
Dave Hartnett was surprised with an award this week for his services to tax avoidance. He was celebrating his retirement as head of the UK's tax and customs department, where he agreed "sweetheart" deals with Goldman Sachs and Vodafone, letting them off outstanding tax bills. Cue some pleasantly awkward confusion as the partygoers realise what is going on.
After 25 years, thousands of car problems solved, and possibly millions of minutes spent laughing helplessly at themselves, Click and Clack, the Tappet brothers, are hanging up their microphones. [more inside]
I've been dreading this day since I became manager in 1997," Red Wings general manager Ken Holland said. This day, today, Detroit Red Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom retired from the game of professional hockey after 20 NHL seasons. Lidstrom is considered to be one of the best defenseman ever to play the game. [more inside]
My Faith-Based Retirement. NYT business journalist Joe Nocera discusses being financially unable to retire.
Napkin finance. Each sketch links to a post about investing. From a financial planner best known for losing his house.
"We’re not going to say, 'Give it to me and let my grandchildren suffer.' I think they underestimate seniors when they think that way." But 71-year-old Barbara Sullivan cannot imagine asking people to pay higher taxes. And as she considered making do with less, she started to cry." (slnyt) [more inside]
In 2002, Doug Monroe placed his parents in assisted living. A decade later, he's looking back at "the weighty financial and emotional costs that come with a parent's immortality": The Long Goodbye.
After 33 years, it has been announced Andy Rooney will make his 1,097th - and final - 60 Minutes commentary this Sunday.
The Global Aging Preparedness Index The GAP Index is a measure of how countries are prepared to deal with their elderly/retired - this is a recent report put together by the Center for Strategic International Studies and looks at how things stood in 2007 and looks ahead to 2040. Hint: you don't want to be old now in South Korea or old in 2040 in Spain. via cfr.org
The Gray And The Brown - why the baby boom generation's concerns about race may mean that it's stabbing itself in the back as it moves into retirement.
End of an Era / Mental Health Care Announcement: Doctor Demento is retiring from the airwaves after 40 years in the looney biz. If you're one of his patients, that's the bad news: "He has come to agree with his manager and his family that it's necessary. The broadcast has been losing money for some time." The good news is that he'll continue producing shows for his own website's visitors every week for $2 a pop, for all you junk music junkies.
The story starts in 1992 or so, when the 14 year old Brit, Dominic Stanton, bought turntables and started spinning early drum'n'bass. He transitioned from DJ to producer, made demo tracks, and got signed by age 17. He went on to produce broken beat* and jazzy downtempo*, even into the realm of disco edits. Then about two weeks ago, the 31 year old musician called it quits.
The point is that I am no longer Domu. He is a character, always has been, and as of Friday 13th November 2009, he no longer exists. Neither does Umod, Sonar Circle, Bakura, Yotoko, Rima, Zoltar, Blue Monkeys, Realside or any of the other names I put out music under. I am cancelling all my gigs and not taking any more. My hotmail is closed, my Twitter is closed and my Facebook is closed.Furthermore, his website is closed and the original post of his farewell message is lost, though you can still view the cached version or find it copied elsewhere. Domu's website now simply states This really is The End . . . Step inside for an abbreviated journey. [more inside]
"I once proposed a solution somewhat tongue in cheek to the problem of pensions: turn retirement upside down ... people would be supported by society up to the age of 30. During that period they would study, travel, prepare for a profession, reproduce and give full-time care to their young ... After 30, they would work until they dropped dead or became incapacitated." Letter from physicist Cylon Gonçalves da Silva to The Economist in response to this original article on the problems of an ageing global population.
Castro Retires. "I neither will aspire to nor will I accept -- I repeat -- I neither will aspire to nor will I accept, the position of president of the council of state and commander in chief," says Castro in Cuban newspaper Granma - where he regularly posts his thoughts on international news. [more inside]
Long rumoured, after 35 years on the show, Bob Barker is leaving the Price is Right. His first ever show was September 4th, 1972 (note how much less spazzy the audience is on that intro?). No longer will we hear his reminder to have your pets spayed or neutered, but there's still the DJ&T Foundation that he started to help distribute vouchers and help support low cost spaying and neutering of pets.
He's 74-years-old, which makes him the world's oldest primate. He was a movie star. He lives a comfortable life as an older retiree. In his spare time, he paints. In fact, if you like, he will paint a painting just for you, and the money you donate for it supports his primate sanctuary. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Cheeta.
Retirement village VS permanent residence on a cruise ship. Crazy? Not so fast! Bea Muller has been doing it for years (and not on just any ship, mind you). It's not a hoax.
AOPs on ASBOs - for non-Brits, that's Grouchy Old Nuisances. For instance, Roger Trotman, who feels like me about people who park their cars carelessly, or Alexander Muat, who just wanted a little peace and quiet, or John Kirkpatrick, who'd heard his neighbour warbling 'Jumping Jack Flash' just one time too many. It's enough to drive you to do a little 'Happy Slapping'
UAL (United Airlines) dumps four pension plans[optional audio interview with Businessweek expert] ; bankruptcy court authorizes shifting of USD 5 billions (allegedly largest pension default in U.S. history) in pension obligations to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. As a result the burden of private failure and incompetency will be shared by all taxpayers (whose taxes finance PBGC which is already operating on a 23 Billion deficit) and by beneficiaries of the pension plans who will see their pension severely cut : pilots from 100K to 30K pensions but also less privileged workers will be hit. For instance Mrs Tamuk, spokeswoman from Association of Flight Attendants said her pension will be reduced from $1,700 a month to $800 a month.
One man's retirement math: Social Security wins At the heart of President Bush's plan to sell Social Security private accounts is a simple notion: You're always better off investing your retirement money than letting the government do it. By doing it yourself, you can stow some money in the stock market, and over the long run will get a better return on that investment than today's Social Security system offers. The idea is broadly accepted. That's why the administration's plan to partially privatize the system sounds appealing to many. But that better return won't always happen. Just ask Stanley Logue of San Diego. For 45 years, the defense-industry analyst paid into the system until his retirement in 1994. But with all the recent hoopla over reform, Mr. Logue, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduate, decided to go back and check his own records. Would he have done better investing his money than the bureaucrats at the Social Security Administration?
Retirement Reality Check Lazy days for the current generation, mostly, but not for current working stiffs says Allstate. Since more and more states and cities are making homelessness illegal don't ever expect to get off the grind.
An announcement from Trey: "So Coventry will be the final Phish show...For the sake of clarity, I should say that this is not like the hiatus, which was our last attempt to revitalize ourselves. We're done. It's been an amazing and incredible journey."
There go my dreams of retireing in Ouagadougou or Baghdad but Vancouver, B.C. and mmmmmmAmsterdam are still in the running. A little help, please?
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