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Just an Old Man
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35,199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When you reach the age of 65, get ready to get screwed by the Government. You get to go on SS and pay thru the nose for everything you should be entitled to. Like Medicare is supposed to help pay for you medical problems. Well it is supposed to. In order to help cover costs you need a supplement insurance and that ain't cheap. I got in on the ground floor on one such thing.

It was good for a while but the last two years prices have gone up. Last year I had to pay $18.00 a month for the premium. This year it went up to $54.00 a month. A 200% increase. Last year I paid $5.00 for each generic Drug. This year My $5.00 pills jumped up to $38.00 a Month. I guess they have to cover the costs somehow. So from the increase on my useless insurance and up to my pills, it was a $66.00 a month increase.

While I shouldn't bitch as this is still the cheapest one that I have found. But it's the increases that blow you away. If is was just me I wouldn't complain but my wife is on the same shit.

No increase for SS this year thanks to our Pres.But that doesn't mean that prices aren't going to go up.

I would like to fish more but with everything going up but my SS. Fishing will have to wait until I can squeeze money out for gas.

Sorry to take time out of your day to read this vent. But after putting it here I feel better.

I forgot to add that my supplement insurance carrier also gets to play with my Medicare.
 

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Make my day
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4,820 Posts
Hay OMJ, atleast you get SS. By the time I am eligible they will have jacked the retirement age into the 90's if I get anything at all.
 

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Robert
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3,012 Posts
I wonder where a lot of seniors would be if the Republican's had been able to implement GW's proposal to invest a portion of their SS into a private account to play the market? While it may not be much, SS and Medicare are at least a basic safety net; I can't imagine what things would look like without them. How many people do you know in their 40's and older who have nothing set aside for retirement yet have all the toys and are a couple paychecks away from disaster? The big lie being told is that the government can't run anything efficiently. Well, I for one am glad the military isn't privatized. What do you think Medicare premiums would be if it were turned over to the private market.
 

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Premium Member
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7,341 Posts
Not all old folks see the glass as half empty. Sure, prices are going up but they have been going up for the entire 72 years that I have been around and will continue to go up even more as time goes by. On a planet that has finite resources we are facing infinite human reproduction. As the population increases worldwide and the resources remain the same or dwindle the competition for and the prices of those resources will continue to escalate. Get used to it. Plan for it.

But the good news is I saved like crazy while I was still working and am now reaping the rewards. While many of my peers were buying 'upscale' everything and spending lots more than they brought home I was saving/investing 20% of my take home pay. My theory was that the 80% I was living on was still more than many people earned and if they could live on less I could too. Now I'm used to it and pissing away money just to have something new or better seems damned stupid. In fact, my financial adviser called last week to suggest I spend some more money since my account has just surged in the past year. But instead of buying that new 4X pickup that I lust for I am replacing all of the appliances in the house with new energy efficient models-something that will save more in the future.

As Robert said, many people are so leveraged that they are just weeks away from disaster should their cash flow dry up. If you are pushing 50 and don't have at least a half million bucks in your 401K by now it is likely that your retirement is going to be bitter indeed. You can have fun now or you can have fun later but you may not be able to afford both. I'm damned glad I waited until later because this retirement stuff is really,really sweet.

Ive
 

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Not all old folks see the glass as half empty. Sure, prices are going up but they have been going up for the entire 72 years that I have been around and will continue to go up even more as time goes by. On a planet that has finite resources we are facing infinite human reproduction. As the population increases worldwide and the resources remain the same or dwindle the competition for and the prices of those resources will continue to escalate. Get used to it. Plan for it.

But the good news is I saved like crazy while I was still working and am now reaping the rewards. While many of my peers were buying 'upscale' everything and spending lots more than they brought home I was saving/investing 20% of my take home pay. My theory was that the 80% I was living on was still more than many people earned and if they could live on less I could too. Now I'm used to it and pissing away money just to have something new or better seems damned stupid. In fact, my financial adviser called last week to suggest I spend some more money since my account has just surged in the past year. But instead of buying that new 4X pickup that I lust for I am replacing all of the appliances in the house with new energy efficient models-something that will save more in the future.

As Robert said, many people are so leveraged that they are just weeks away from disaster should their cash flow dry up. If you are pushing 50 and don't have at least a half million bucks in your 401K by now it is likely that your retirement is going to be bitter indeed. You can have fun now or you can have fun later but you may not be able to afford both. I'm damned glad I waited until later because this retirement stuff is really,really sweet.

Ive
Bingo! Both Robert & yourself nailed it. People just do not want to be responsible for their actions, and want to live in a state of denial. We see this all of the time. I am looking at this as someone who has built two businesses, and came from a place where success was far, far out of reach.

I see this every time someone who has hundreds or thousands of posts on boards like these bitches about the price of gas, equipment, etc. You know what - take off your diaper, put your head down for five years, put the hobbies aside and focus on building a better career, a better knowledge base for your chosen profession, or build your own business - build some capitol - build some net worth. People need to get used to the fact that there is no free ride, there are no guarantees - that you are only as good as your last project, your skill set, the value that you bring to a particular situation, and what the market will bare. And you need to get used to the fact that we live in a world economy, where entire countries of people are hard-wired to work harder than you ever dreamed of. Is your current situation a shithole? Then learn from the mistakes that put you there and come out on the other side a wiser person. I think that our ability to learn from our mistakes is one of our greatest assets.

Or, like Leland, you can embrace what you do, the fact that you are in a situation where you are exposed to new things and get to learn everyday - once again - a great gift. Where people seek you out for your expertise. Be content with that situation and not bitter because maybe you can't fish every day, or buy a $700 rod on a whim (as I read in a post several weeks ago).

Did you screw around too much when you were younger to retire comfortably? Too bad. Suck it up and be a man. Take responsibility regardless if you are 25 or 55 or 75. Are you 30 years old and have less than $50K in retirement accounts? Quite reading this, drop what you are doing and figure out what is going to change that. Wake up every day and ask yourself, "What can I do today to make the most amount of money." Do that until you have the means to take some time off, enjoy the fruits of your labors, and go play. Like Iveoflone pointed out, if you are pushing 50 and don't have $500K, figure out how to quickly change that, or just be resigned that your ship has sailed and you are SOL.

Of course, you want to fish. So instead of paying attention to the markets this last Spring, you were focused on Steelhead or stone flies on the Yak. Meanwhile, Ford was $1.00 / share. You could have invested $10K and realized $120K half a year later. That's OK - go fishing. Don't be responsible. Because ultimately, we still need people to ask the question. "Sir, would you like fries with that?"
 

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aka Dave Hoover
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1,348 Posts
But the good news is I saved like crazy while I was still working and am now reaping the rewards. While many of my peers were buying 'upscale' everything and spending lots more than they brought home I was saving/investing 20% of my take home pay. My theory was that the 80% I was living on was still more than many people earned and if they could live on less I could too. Now I'm used to it and pissing away money just to have something new or better seems damned stupid...As Robert said, many people are so leveraged that they are just weeks away from disaster should their cash flow dry up. If you are pushing 50 and don't have at least a half million bucks in your 401K by now it is likely that your retirement is going to be bitter indeed. You can have fun now or you can have fun later but you may not be able to afford both. I'm damned glad I waited until later because this retirement stuff is really,really sweet.
Some sage advise. I'm very lucky to be drawing a pension at 47 by virtue of serving in the Coast Guard for 20yrs. But while on Active Duty, I too saved at least 20% of my take home pay and sometimes as high as 30%. I also invested in real estate where and when I could. Any pay increase I got, I put 30-50% of it immediately into savings and still got a rising standard of living. Less mortgage debt, we shunned debt. Over the last 25yrs with one exception, we bought used cars and paid cash, even for the one new car. We also run our cars into the ground before replacing them. Our newest car now is 11yrs old with 125K miles but we have a cache of money saved ready to buy the next one. I still got a long way to draw SS and I still have to get a 2yr old to get through college but every year we max out contributiions to 401K's and ROTH IRA's. I hope we'll be able to deal with tax grab the govt throws at us down the road as they seem to always want to punish the prudent to bail out others much less so. But I'm confident we'll have a comfortable retirement when we get there.
 

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Some sage advise. I'm very lucky to be drawing a pension at 47 by virtue of serving in the Coast Guard for 20yrs. But while on Active Duty, I too saved at least 20% of my take home pay and sometimes as high as 30%. I also invested in real estate where and when I could. Any pay increase I got, I put 30-50% of it immediately into savings and still got a rising standard of living. Less mortgage debt, we shunned debt. Over the last 25yrs with one exception, we bought used cars and paid cash, even for the one new car. We also run our cars into the ground before replacing them. Our newest car now is 11yrs old with 125K miles but we have a cache of money saved ready to buy the next one. I still got a long way to draw SS and I still have to get a 2yr old to get through college but every year we max out contributiions to 401K's and ROTH IRA's. I hope we'll be able to deal with tax grab the govt throws at us down the road as they seem to always want to punish the prudent to bail out others much less so. But I'm confident we'll have a comfortable retirement when we get there.
Hey Dave -

Here's a quick thought for you.... I am former Military so I have some visibility on the pay scale. If you do not need that tax deduction and to shelter money, don't put funds into a 401K / ROTH IRA unless someone is making matching contributions. Put it into an account that you have access to - like a straight up brokerage account. Yeah, you will have to pay the taxes now, but if higher taxes on those who are prudent is going to be the future you can hedge your bets by making that your money now. Like an initial investment in solar, it is a hedge against higher prices / taxes in the future.

Just a thought - I am also weighing paying now or paying later.
 

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Dues past due
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In the spring of 2007 my wife and I looked around at the housing market and our modest & simple lifestyle as a middle class family. We were perplexed how we would ever get ahead as 2 young professionals working in the non-profit sector. Of course we want to retire comfortably in 35 or 40 years, but how? We couldn't even get that small amount of credit card debt paid off. Extra small jobs seemed to always for that little crap like the car taking a dump on you. We knew there had to be a better way.

So we got creative and looked for a solution that has already paid HUGE dividends and isn't done yet. Click here for the Caretaker Gazette, the publication that changed our lives. Granted, our situation is the ultimate needle in the haystack. But when you decide to grab life by the balls, amazing things happen.

If you're young, flexible, and determined to get ahead in life, spend the chump change on the subscription. It could just be your golden ticket.

Lunch is over now, time to go solve the rat infestation problem in the red barn. Sure, the tides look good down on the beach and I'm itching to cast the first poppers I tied on my own, but planning for my retirement calls.
 

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Smells like low tide.
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7,951 Posts
I highly recommend stashing the allowable max each year in a ROTH IRA. If you don't know about the ROTH IRA, then where have you been? Find out about the ROTH now! I opened one about 11 years ago, and it was the best thing I ever did financially.
Of course then you are doomed to read about the stock market and trading and must become a good Technical Analyst and pay attention to the Market and your stocks so you don't get blind-sided and so that you will know when to sell and not have to rely on the opinion of so-called "experts."
If you don't have time to educate yourself about the markets and trading, then you will have to hire a financial advisor or pay for good advice, since free financial advice is usually worthless. This may be better for you than doing it all yourself, as stocks and the Market are a really ugly place to put your thoughts.

However, picking a financial advisor itself is very risky business. You never want to let yourself get "shepherded" to the slaughter. My first financial advisor (associated with Morgan Stanley) was a "shepherd" type. I fired him after he tried to keep me in my tech stocks back in 2000. Glad I did. The carnage would have been much worse.
I read several books on investing in the stock market, including William O'neil's books, and subscribed to Investor's Business Daily, and learned how to pick my own stocks and trade them. It is most important to know when to sell. You don't want to "hold them forever thru thick and thin." That is bad advice, standard bunk from the Wall Street "shepherds." (Remember, all shepherd eventually want to either fleece you or lead you to slaughter, or both!) You only make money when you sell at the right time. Otherwise all your gains are just "on paper" or "electrons."
You must also be ready to sell at a loss when things start to go bad, and not hang on "hoping' for things to reverse back to the upside.This is one of the most difficult aspects of investing...admitting you timed your buy wrong or just made a bad buy. Admitting you made an error and selling with no further questions asked is how you protect your nest egg capital.
I often use stop-losses, both fixed and trailing.
Mutual Funds? A racket, plain and simple. Those are for people who don't want to educate themsevles about the markets. They are run by "shepherd" types who pay themselves a commission no matter how bad their fund management luck turns out. Managing your own portfolio, and being in a few good individual stocks may seem riskier, but the returns can be significantly greater. Diversification reduces risk, but also returns. Right now, cash is king! Tomorrow?

When I was 49, I had no retirement account at all. I'm still making up for lost time nearly 11 years later. It sucks. I was paying attention and was fully invested last April. Any body's dog or pet monkey could have made a bundle in the stock market last year it was so easy, since many stocks were way oversold. Not so easy now, except that by last Friday, many stocks were again beaten back down to or below support levels by the week of heavy selling. There may be some bargains out there, but the selling may not be over....is this merely an overdue "correction" after the big runnup from the bottom in March 2009? Or is it the start of another big leg down....yes heading into a "W" and not just the ""V" some were hoping for? Or? Very risky business we are talking about here.
You see, the Markets are jungle, full of predators and pitfalls.
I think I was happier when I was a penniless surf bum living day to day.
 

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Remember when you could remember everything?
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7,182 Posts
When you reach the age of 65, get ready to get screwed by the Government. You get to go on SS and pay thru the nose for everything you should be entitled to. Like Medicare is supposed to help pay for you medical problems. Well it is supposed to. I
I never fail to be amazed at how some folk can think on one hand that social programs are somehow magically 'supposed' to be there when they need them but yet spend their whole lives being dead-set against any legislation or legislator who supports such a program because it's 'wasteful' or 'socialism'. I can't wait until the Tea Party members start needing help with their own health care and have only themselves to blame for being against last year's health care bills.

I know Jim's been a lifelong social liberal and would never, ever vote against such legislation, even if it did increase his taxes! He knows a good thing when he sees it. (Just kidding Jim!) Sure, change can be scary to folks who are set in their ways, but that doesn't mean all change is bad.

K
 

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Remember when you could remember everything?
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7,182 Posts
People just do not want to be responsible for their actions, and want to live in a state of denial. . . .
The sheer number of folks who say they didn't know their retirement account had lost half its value until they saw their monthly statement just cracks me up. Step one in taking responsibility for your own financial security is managing your own retirement accounts.

Ever heard of a Stop Loss order? Most folks haven't. They're almost always free, can be renewed or edited at will and the only time they incur a charge is when a position falls below the preset value and automatically triggers a sell order. If shares of one stock in your retirement account were at $100 and you found out a month later they were only worth $25 by reading your monthly statement, whose fault is it you didn't have a Stop Loss order set at $90?

K
 

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Just an Old Man
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35,199 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I never said I was poor. Besides my SS which is a good sum, I still get a Pension from Boeing. It is a good sum but it doesn't have a cost of living in it. I get the same thing every month that I did when I retired ten years ago. I was just bitching about how things have gone up in the past three years.

Things would be different if My wife's kids would just quit trying to get all I have.
 

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AKA flyman219
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921 Posts
Things would be different if My wife's kids would just quit trying to get all I have.
Sell the house and buy a big motor home. If they can't find you they can't ask for money. A friend of mine did that and is doing just fine with his wife somewhere that his flaky kid doesn't know about in Mexico last time I checked.

Mike
 
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