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View Diary: The "Fiscal Cliff" and the Coming Retirement Crisis of the Middle Class (90 comments)

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  •  With The Paltry Amount I've Managed To Save In (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr Robert, Odysseus, worldlotus

    my 401k plan (which hasn't gone anywhere since Bush II took office in 2000), plus the equity my husband and I have in our home (luckily we didn't buy our house at the height of the housing bubble, and didn't let the banksters talk us into stripping the equity out of the home by refinancing over and over), plus Social Security, I should be able to scrape by. I know I am one of the lucky ones.

    One of the unlucky ones is my unmarried friend from high school - she has always worked at minimum wage jobs, hasn't saved a nickel, and doesn't own a house. She also is not in the best of health, and probably won't be able to work much past age 65 (she is age 59 now). Since she has no husband or children who could help support her in her retirement, she is going to be completely dependent on SS. She MIGHT get a small inheritance when her mother passes away (her father is deceased and she has no siblings), but she can't count on it - her elderly mother is in a nursing home, and the nursing home has put a lien on her mother's house, to make sure the nursing home bills get paid before Medicaid will kick in to pay the cost.

    •  The President needs to start talking about (3+ / 0-)

      stories like your friends and yours. Retirement really needs to be put on the public agenda in a big, progressive way.

    •  The singles and childless couples (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mr Robert, worldlotus

      are a growing demographic.  They won't be able to depend on their kids for help as they age and become infirm and/or demented.  (Not that all aged folk do, but a lot do.)  I think we will end up with tent city or under the bridge boomers that are as disposable as their diapers if current political trends hold.

      Democrats give you the Bill of Rights; Republicans sell you a bill of goods!

      by barbwires on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 01:11:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The flip side of this situation (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        barbwires

        is couples with children who are unable to "launch" successfully because of the cost of education/lack of job opportunities. The children continue to depend on their parents for financial support through their 20s (and sometimes longer), making it even more difficult for the parents to save for retirement.

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