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What do baby boomers and younger generations owe each other?

  1. Jan 30, 2006 #1
    Terrorism and geopolitics, global warming, social security, pollution and energy, affordable education, universal health care, cosmopolitan consumerism, etc. - are we elders eventually shortchanging youth, or are they lacking the communal initiative we consider our domain?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 31, 2006 #2


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    I think the youth of today owe me a nice comfortable retirement. Now when are they going to get off their bu.. and let me take a well deserved break?
  4. Jan 31, 2006 #3
    They owe each other nothing. Both owe the country. We should not focus on the symptoms of a sickness, but the root cause of the problems. What we need is respect for our country, religions and families. When we have that then the other problems will dissapear because we all work together for a greater good.
  5. Jan 31, 2006 #4


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    What's the purpose of a country? In fact, what is a country?

    From the overall post, I kind of get the impression that you're saying its important to have an organized framework that makes individual effort mesh more efficiently with the group effort in order to improve the lot of all (there's probably a more inspirational way to say that). I wouldn't want to say the tool used is more important than the desired goal, though.
  6. Jan 31, 2006 #5
    The purpose of a country is to protect its citizens. No more and no less. a country is a collection of people who agree to abide by a civil law confined by a geographical region. That's my explanation: dunno what the dictionary says.
    Yes, I think that was a succinct explanation of my post. I believe that if you have deep respect for country, spiritualism and family then the citizens will work together for the common good. It can't be done through laws or ecenomic systems: it has to stem from the people. If you concentrate on the tool then the goal will fall into place with little effort.
  7. Jan 31, 2006 #6
    Focusing on the importance of the "tool" is what clouds the goals. Politicians work so hard to get elected and then reelected that they often lose site of the fact that their job is not campaigning and playing the game for reelection but actually helping people and their community.
  8. Jan 31, 2006 #7
    The difference is the tool, so comparing the two tools is not compatable. It's like mixing apples and oranges. Consider the fact that election is the tool to power. TPolitician's goal is not good, it is to suck power and money from the people: they can't loose sight of what they never saw. They focus on the tool, election, and they get their goal. However when the goal changes the tool used to get it must change. Don't you think that if we used the tool I mentioned that people wouldn't help but work for each other? Respect is the height of selflessness and it is the only way to make people care about each other and not themselves. As I said, you can't do it through laws, ecenomics or politics. You have to strike people in their heart, because that is what governs their actions.
  9. Jan 31, 2006 #8
    we should not be obligated to pay for social security for baby boomers.
  10. Jan 31, 2006 #9


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    We ourselves (I am in my mid-50's) have been paying into that fund all our working lives (myself, since the age of 13 or so, since I mowed, clipped, dug, etc, at the local cemetary and was paid from town funds until I was old enough to get better-paying construction work, etc, to buy my way into college). Many years, I have paid the maximum amount payable, and I won't get that much back in benefits. If you want fairness, you should insist that our politicians keep the system solvent, and pay your fair share so we can keep this safety net operating. If you want, you can insist on means-testing so that well-off people get reduced benefits or none at all, but remember, the well-off have had to pay in just like the rest of us and they have a lot more clout than the generation X-ers, who have not worked to create their own political base. In the 60's, we young people were mobilized by the Vietnam war, and ended up with some political clout as a result. We forced the age of majority down to 18 in most states (draft age), saying that if you're old enough to be drafted and sent to get shot at, you're old enough to vote in elections and you're old enough to buy a beer at the local bar. The beer part has been ratched back up in most states, but at least here in Maine, we've got some 18-year-olds running for City Council positions, etc and showing some promise.
  11. Jan 31, 2006 #10


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    Or you could mature to the level of being an 18 year old and start saving some money for these things you know will cost a lot of money.

    We young people are told all the time we should work hard and pay for our own schooling, so let's do a cost analysis of this. Canada's education is very cheap compared to the US, so it's about $6000 per year to attend a credible university, that's $24,000 paid for schooling (including books). School is 8 months per year, for 4 years; total of 32 months. At my old job, I was making about 30k per year working in a warehouse. 30/12*32 = $80,000 of lost income. Total cost of $104,000 to attend school over 4 years.

    If people are expected to plan for things like this when they're 18, what the hell is wrong with people who are 70 and have no money? Are they retarded? Keep working until you figure out how to save your money.

    I just realized that most of this forum is Americans, so my post sounds awfully harsh because my post was mainly directed towards people using a system like Canada's. In Canada we have public healthcare for everybody. Most surgery is free, checkups are free, and you can purchase inexpensive government insurance to cover the cost of ambulances, dental, and medication. In Canda, your personal cost of living after retirement is significantly lower than that in the US simply due to the difference in medical systems. You can comfortably retire in Canada as long as you're not a total idiot; retirement in the US is a lot more difficult because you need to save so much more.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2006
  12. Jan 31, 2006 #11
    I'm just dang well sick of taxes. I can't save because I'm saving everyone else!
  13. Jan 31, 2006 #12

    what is fair though? Paying for your own personal retirement sounds fair to me. But social security doesn't work that way, it is pay as you go. you have been paying into the fund for the old geezers of today. the only funds available when you retire will be the money that our generation puts in, which by that time the retiree to worker ratio will plummet to around 1:1 -1:3 (originally the ratio was something like 1:20). SS will fail unless benefits are severely reduced for my and your generation. SS is a vicious cycle and it has to end somewhere. Why not start with my generation? SS should be made optional. I'd much rather save and invest all my SS tax dollars than give it to the government.
  14. Jan 31, 2006 #13


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    The Republicans will tell you that you are paying these outrageous taxes to fund "entitlement programs". Right now, we are paying taxes to support the biggest tax reduction for the wealthy that has ever been conceived, and the largest military spending of any country in the world anywhere, any time.

    Hint: When my wife and I married, we were both unemployed because the mill that we worked at was shut down, and she could not get any unemployment benefits, since she was really young and hadn't built up any benefits. We both came from families of modest means (an understatement!) but we had faith in each other and we had our pride. We lived within our means and saved money even when we had nothing but hand-me-down pots and pans with junk-shop silverware and a few pieces of mismatched dinnerware in our tiny attic apartment. We both found new jobs (had to move to do that) and worked really hard and earned the modest things that we have today. I drive a beat-up 4-cylinder Nissan truck that's 10 years old, and her car is a 5 year old Subaru. We watch our expenses very carefully. Anybody who does the same will eventually prosper. If you are an "American Consumer" you will live in debt forever and retire in poverty. We have not had a mortgage or a car loan for many years, and we paid for our little (downsized) log cabin and woodlot with cash.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2006
  15. Jan 31, 2006 #14


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    This privatization scheme is a lie dreamed up by the investment bankers and pushed by the Bush administration. SS is not insolvent, and will not be for many decades, with just the tiniest bit of tweaking. Since the Reagan administration allowed the raiding of "overfunded" pension plans by corporations, there has been a move afoot to put all the risk on the individual, instead of on the companies they work for, resulting in zillions of 401K plans, in which the company sometimes contributes a littl bit, but you are locked into the investment funds chosen by the administrators of the plan. I currently have 2 such funds active, and one self-directed plan, and one traditional retirement plan. You had better hope that future presidential administrations are not so free with their powers, or you may end up with nothing. It only takes one good crash to reduce your personally-directed investments to crap, and it could happen just about the time you want to retire. Want to be a greeter at Wal Mart? You'd better be good, cause the competition will be stiff.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2006
  16. Jan 31, 2006 #15


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    Well, the Baby Boomers got screwed, then they screwed the youth (possibly far worse).

    I remember reading an article written by a baby boomer himself or herself saying that the baby boomers, like her or him, are getting spoiled and always have been spoiled.

    The reason why this won't stop is also because the youth does not vote. Why should the government assist the youth more than the baby boomers? The youth won't help them get re-elected.

    Note: The government obviously screws the baby boomers regardless of their capacity to re-elect, but it's easy to see that the youth is getting screwed even more so, which makes sense because they don't really lose too many votes that way. If they need money, take it out of education first.
  17. Jan 31, 2006 #16
    Just heard parts of "The State of the Union". Heard something about the "line item veto". What the heck is that? Another plug for the rich baby boomers?
  18. Jan 31, 2006 #17
    Mental illness, starting in early adulthood, is a condition manifest by the lack of bootstraps.
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