Read that. Ok, so far?
If every boomer had $1million saved in his 401k (equal to about $640k in after tax savings... keep this number in mind for further down the thread on drug costs for seniors), the present value equivalent of those defined benefit plans of yesteryear that somewhere along the line came to be seen as a birth right, do you know what the market capitalization of the U.S stock market would have to be (assuming that their investments were primarily domestic)?
You would have to add about $7 - $10 Trillion to the total market cap of the U.S. equity market... that would mean that many more cars built and sold, that many more houses built and sold, that much more Oil, Nat Gas, Coal et al, produced and consumed, that many more bombs built and dropped... everybody would be rich, good looking, in shape...
Does this Utopia exist anywhere on this Earth?
These expectations were never intended to be met. Never. Ever. These were political sales jobs over the past 5 decades that somehow people believed.
For example, from the article:
The traditional pension plan is disappearing. In 1980, some 39 percent of private-sector workers had a pension that guaranteed a steady payout during retirement. Today that number stands closer to 15 percent, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute in Washington, D.C.What percentage of the population was covered by "guaranteed" pensions in each generation previous to 1980? The article makes it sound like pensions have been the norm since mankind crawled out of the muck.
It goes on to say that many boomers plan to "work till they drop". And? Isn't that the way its ALWAYS been? Let me get this straight... who in their right mind thinks that they should be able to go to school until 30, work until 62, and then live another nearly 30 years on the dole? That's what has been pitched to the American people by the University system (populated by you-know-who) for the past couple of generations... but it has no basis in reality.
Here's my personal favorite:
A 55-year-old man with typical drug expenses needs to have about $187,000 just to cover future medical costs. That's if he wants to be 90 percent certain to have enough money to supplement Medicare coverage in retirement, the EBRI said. Because of greater longevity, a 65-year-old woman would need even more to cover her health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket health expenses: an estimated $213,000.OMG!! Who believes that this stuff???!!! Every single one of us is going to die... maybe we will go a few weeks sooner and leave a little more for the family when we go. Forget working to save the extra $400k for you and your spouse's drug needs in old age... eat healthy, have lots of sex, wine, song, and exercise... you will come out much farther ahead than funding the drug companies... leave the $400k to your family and not the drug companies.
There is an EXCELLENT article this month in National Geographic Magazine - "Population 7 Billion". I can't link it... I highly recommend thinking people get a copy of the magazine and read it.
Forget the doom-n-gloom of the population story... the untold story is that older people on top of a population bubble can get financed with outrageous benefits and older folks on top of a population bust cannot. FDR was NOT a genius... and Bush was NOT a moron... the population data is everything. If, after reading this excellent data point you still think a any U.S. president's policy was the critical input... well, you are a true believer. No point debating with true believers.
What we have had for "political leaders" for generations have been LAWYERS (no offense to you legal beagles... some of my best friends are lawyers... snicker... its just that we need folks with an understanding of economics and science - not word smiths) willing to overlook the data and run a know-nothing campaign and fill the electorate with know-nothing policy Horse Sh*t.
Its just math.
Folks... our lives are a self-rescue story of sorts from now on... if you want something a certain way you will need to see to it yourself. The Government is NOT here and they are NOT here to help you.
Oil remains firm in the futures market, with a slight Contango going out on the time curve. The Crude call option market has gotten quite rich... the market seems to think Oil prices head much higher. Nat Gas has stopped embarrassing itself for the moment.
I think Oil could peak out well over $100 next year... if Oil gets north of a certain number, say $130 next summer, I think the political repercussions could get very, very interesting.... it is quite possible that the electorate will continue to deny what is actually happening and turn over the incumbents not a few times before they come around to what we are truly facing.
I am so focused on all of my homestead projects this Spring... I can't wait to get at it. I have been drawing up plans for my garden like I was an architect... I am moving the garden to east side of my barn, right behind my house, and making the old garden a hog yard. I ordered 100, 8 foot cedar boards and already have 150 cinder blocks for making my permanent raised beds.
Stand back! This is serious... a rabid gardener is on the loose....