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Author: RetiredVermonter Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 19483  
Subject: Retired before 80! Date: 6/15/2011 3:43 PM
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Robert Powell, on "Market Watch", posted a commentary to the effect that many will be unable to retire until they are 80!

He indicated that the "paltry" amount many people may have to live on otherwise -- like $32,000/year or so -- would be far too little.

Paltry? Hell, we live on not much more than that now, and we're quite happy -- two of us!

You have to be intelligent about what you do and buy, obviously; forget costly hobbies or lots of travel (but not ALL travel); and watch your investments, sometimes adjusting them as needed.

Some people, sadly, have become accustomed to too many expensive "toys" and gadgets, too much debt, and too much "fast living", so they may feel screwed.

Sorry about that. Wise up and check what your living style is. Maybe you need to adjust it.

Vermonter
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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17214 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/15/2011 11:48 PM
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Retirement is going to be much harder for future generations. Social security could be there if politicians would make some small changes as was done in the 1980's. But neither party seems to understand the need for compromise. Businesses are cutting back or completely eliminating pensions. And 401k plans were cut during the recession and many will never be restored to their previous levels. Roth IRAs are great if you qualify, but we really aren't making it easy for current workers to raise a family and save for retirement at the same time. I worry about how we will handle it in 20 or 30 years when people don't have enough to survive on. Do we just take them out in the wilderness to die? Is that the kind of America we want?

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Author: RetiredVermonter Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17215 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 6:32 AM
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billjam:

I worry about how we will handle it in 20 or 30 years when people don't have enough to survive on. Do we just take them out in the wilderness to die? Is that the kind of America we want?

That seems to be what Republicans want -- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!

Vermonter

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17216 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 9:19 AM
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"I worry about how we will handle it in 20 or 30 years when people don't have enough to survive on. Do we just take them out in the wilderness to die? Is that the kind of America we want? "

And why do you think that those who have not saved have the 'right' to force others to support them in retirement?

Why should those who have not saved take by force from those who did not spend every last dime they made, but instead invested it for retirement?


Where did you get this 'entitlement' mentality?

Half the folks in FL live on only SS. They adapt.


t.

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17217 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 9:22 AM
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"That seems to be what Republicans want -- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!"

You mean like Pelosi and her hubby, whose riches went up 60% last year..from the 'investments' she made golden.

While in office, she has voted for bills that enrich her hubbies companies and interests, managed to 'get' IPO type stock in a dozen companies that went up..while regular investors had no hope. She lined her own pockets...

Ooops...she's one of the slimey lib dems.

Well, there went your theory.

Actually, it's the 'elites' who line their own pockets.

but, no...folks don't have any 'right' to think that everyone else owes them a big fat retirement income. Taken from other working people struggling to save for their own retirement.


t.

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17218 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 10:49 AM
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<<Social security could be there if politicians would make some small changes as was done in the 1980's.>>



You mean small changes" like LARGE tax increases?

The tax increase of the 1980s guaranteed the WWII generation a continuation of the benefits they expected to get, but the Boomer generation that began paying them didn't get any of those guarantees despite being those actually paying the taxes.

Ifr Gen X, Y and Z are smart, they wont be suckered that way to pay still higher taxes to support the boomer generation.


That's ultimately the weakness of unfunded, "pay as you go" Ponzi schemes like Social Security and Medicare --- you run out of suckers and find people are no longer willing to buy into a failing scheme.



Seattle Pioneer

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Author: RetiredVermonter Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17219 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 10:52 AM
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There you go again with the silly name calling -- "elites" and "libs" and "dems"... and even "slimey lib dems"! Amazing.

No more.

It's pointless.

Vermonter

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17220 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 10:53 AM
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<<I worry about how we will handle it in 20 or 30 years when people don't have enough to survive on. Do we just take them out in the wilderness to die? Is that the kind of America we want?

That seems to be what Republicans want -- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!

Vermonter >>



The rich and powerful aren't dependent on Social Security and Medicare.

If those programs are to continue without huge changes, you will need to gouge Gen X, Y and Z to pay for it --- and they don't seem anxious to see their taxes increased.


The baby boom generation was bamboozled into paying higher taxes to fund the retirement of the WWII generation. Had we been smart, we would have smiled and let the WWII generation retire on the taxes they themselves had been willing to pay.

That's what Gen X, Y and Z seem likely to do to the boomer generation.


Seattle Pioneer

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17221 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 12:44 PM
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"There you go again with the silly name calling -- "elites" and "libs" and "dems"... and even "slimey lib dems"! Amazing."


'elites' - those people in power and the Hollywood types who delight in spending OTHER PEOPLE'S money, not their own


'libs' - those people who delight in spending other people's money, but won't send in an extra dime voluntarily to the government. Half of them are folks who pay not a dime in income taxes.

'slimey lib dems' - those who pay no taxes but demand that the 'rich' fund all the benefits they receive, or expect to receive in retirement. those who vote for ever increasing give away programs, government subsidies, but never figure out how all of it will be paid for for the next 50 years. Just spend and spend and spend and spend.

OK?


t

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17222 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 1:12 PM
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- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!



of course, the rich and powerful can [afford to] take care of themselves

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17223 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 1:59 PM
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That seems to be what Republicans want -- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!

I'm a retired multimillionaire and I collect Social Security and will be getting Medicare benefits in the near future. Some Repubs want to reform those programs so people like me are means-tested out of some or all of our SS benefits and have to pay a lot more for Medicare. Dems are willing to bankrupt the country to keep those programs intact while telling lies about Repubs pushing grannies off cliffs. Thanks, Democrats, for helping me keep more of my money at the expense of working people.

--fleg, no granny

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17224 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 2:46 PM
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"- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!"


the very rich and powerful (0.00001% of the population) really don't need to be 'well cared for'. They can provide on their own and will.

You seem to have a bad case of wealth envy. See money - expect that YOU have a RIGHT to confiscate it and redistribute it. Why?


t.

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17225 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 2:52 PM
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fleg: "I'm a retired multimillionaire and I collect Social Security and will be getting Medicare benefits in the near future. Some Repubs want to reform those programs so people like me are means-tested out of some or all of our SS benefits and have to pay a lot more for Medicare. Dems are willing to bankrupt the country to keep those programs intact while telling lies about Repubs pushing grannies off cliffs."


I've got a few pennies saved. You can't retire early on SS...you don't even get it. However, any sane person will tell you even with half a million dollars in savings, which makes libs salivate since they see 'wealth', that only gives you $20,000 a year to spend at the 4% safe withdrawal rate, and you might wind up paying taxes on that. Double it, and you barely have enough money to live in suburbia, pay your own medical, dental, vision (est 7K/yr) for a single person, pay real estate and other state/local taxes, keep your car/house insured, etc.

I'm now collecting my SS that I paid into for my working career and just signed up for Medicare.

However, the train wreck is coming..the dems are determined to wreck the train - the current system is unsustainable, and even worse, the 33% reduction in payroll taxes is causing even more massive red ink in SS right now.... but Obama loves to give away money he doesn't have to 'hope' he might get re-elected next year.

Getting elected is the ONLY thing the lib dems want.

They could care less about solving the problems of the country.


t.

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Author: RetiredVermonter Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17226 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 4:06 PM
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Whoa now Fleg...

You say "I'm a retired multimillionaire and I collect Social Security and will be getting Medicare benefits in the near future."

If, as you say, you're well-to-do, are you saying it would bother you to be means tested, or to perhaps give up extra income that you may not really need?

A number of wealthy people are saying that they'd happily do that if it would help, but to each his or her own, I guess.

Vermonter

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17227 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 4:23 PM
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Vermonter: "If, as you say, you're well-to-do, are you saying it would bother you to be means tested, or to perhaps give up extra income that you may not really need?"

Medicare is already means tested. If you make more than XXXXX dollars a year, they charge you an extra $100/month for your Medicare Part B. They sock it to you if you just have retirement income.

I got most of my savings in regular accounts. They spin off interest and dividends and cap gains that have to be re-invested to maintain/grow the nest egg so you can take inflation adjusted increases out. That means nearly every year, I pay a lot of taxes for that 'growth' (and sometimes not as funds will realize cap gains even when they DROP!).....

And, while I take part of it out to live on, most is re-invested... but it 'counts' as part of my income...

and they jack up my Medicare another $185 /month.

If I had all that money in an IRA, they wouldn't jack me up. I just pay the lowest rate.


"Part B: (Medical Insurance) Premium

Most beneficiaries will continue to pay the same $96.40 or $110.50 premium amount in 2011. Beneficiaries who currently have the Social Security Administration (SSA) withhold their Part B premium and have incomes of $85,000 or less (or $170,000 or less for joint filers) will not have an increase in their Part B premium in 2011.

For all others, the standard Medicare Part B monthly premium will be $115.40 in 2011, which is a 4.4% increase over the 2010 premium. The Medicare Part B premium is increasing in 2011 due to possible increases in Part B costs. If your income is above $85,000 (single) or $170,000 (married couple), then your Medicare Part B premium may be higher than $115.40 per month. For additional details, see our FAQ titled: "2011 Part B Premium Amounts for Persons with Higher Income Levels"."

https://questions.medicare.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/2306/...


Woe to you if one of your stock holdings is taken over and you realize a 50K or 80K cap gains event. Wow..they sock it to you. Big time. Even though, as you know, you have to re-invest that back into your portfolio in another fund or stock. Each year, some of the best stocks are 'bought out' or merge and you are given a big fat income even though you never really got it.


t.

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17228 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 4:28 PM
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are you saying it would bother you to be means tested, or to perhaps give up extra income that you may not really need?

A number of wealthy people are saying that they'd happily do that if it would help, but to each his or her own, I guess.


I wouldn't consider voluntarily giving up any SS benefits until I get back all the taxes I paid in (including what my employers paid in) plus what it would have earned invested with my other assets.

I would rather keep my current private health insurance (for which we pay premiums of almost $1100 per month for the two of us with $1500 deductibles and 30% copays) than go on Medicare if Obamacare is not stopped. The economic underpinning of Obamacare is a huge cut in Medicare reimbursements, which can only lead to docs seeing fewer Medicare patients, thus creating shortages and long waits. As a doc I volunteer with at a free clinic said to me, "I don't see how doctors will be able to keep their doors open with those rates." If the cuts are cancelled, it will mean that much more debt heaped on the shoulders of future generations, a different but still undesirable outcome.

If the American electorate, particularly younger workers who are being fleeced by SS taxes for benefits they will never fully enjoy, comes to its senses and does something to stop the hemorrhaging of debt by means testing, I'll accept their verdict gracefully. It's what I would do in their place.

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17229 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 5:01 PM
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That seems to be what Republicans want -- while also making sure the very rich and powerful are well cared for!

And the Democrats seem to want to punish them for their success. There are a number of reasons why it won't help except to satisfy the desire for revenge nurtured by the envious and the resentful:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405270230425930457637...

This new fascination with tax rates of 70% or more is ostensibly intended to raise gobs of new revenue, so federal spending could supposedly remain well above 24% of GDP rather than be scaled back toward the 19% average of 1997-2007.

All this nostalgia about the good old days of 70% tax rates ... what Mr. [Robert] Reich and his friends always fail to mention--the individual income tax actually brought in less revenue when the highest tax rate was 70% to 91% than it did when the highest tax rate was 28%.
_________________

According to the IRS's own data, all the taxable income of everybody who makes over $100,000 per year added together would barely cover one year of Obama's deficit. So a 100% tax on income over $100k might balance the budget, but it would put an end to economic activity. Repealing the Bush tax cuts on the highest brackets would be only a drop in the bucket at best and just as likely to result no additional tax revenue, if history is any guide.

--fleg

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Author: ravvt Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17230 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 5:24 PM
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All this nostalgia about the good old days of 70% tax rates ... what Mr. [Robert] Reich and his friends always fail to mention--the individual income tax actually brought in less revenue when the highest tax rate was 70% to 91% than it did when the highest tax rate was 28%.


... and Democrats are constantly harping on that golden oldie: "We should just go back to the Clinton tax rates and all would be well" ...


... I think the Republicans should say: OK ...let's go back to the Clinton tax rate AND the Clinton level of spending. Instead of running trillion dollar deficits forever into the future, the budget could be balanced within a year or two ...

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17231 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 6:24 PM
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"According to the IRS's own data, all the taxable income of everybody who makes over $100,000 per year added together would barely cover one year of Obama's deficit. So a 100% tax on income over $100k might balance the budget, but it would put an end to economic activity. Repealing the Bush tax cuts on the highest brackets would be only a drop in the bucket at best and just as likely to result no additional tax revenue, if history is any guide"

When tax rates were punitive (70%), the rich invested in long term growth vehicles like real estate, then did swaps paying no taxes, took depreciation..and wound up paying next to nothing in income taxes. They invested heavily in tax free bonds since their after tax yields were higher.

Who do we know who bought a million in tax free bonds? Yep, Mr Obama....himself...... double tax free...IL bonds...no IL tax, no fed tax on them.

A lot of CA folks do the same as do New yorkers. They ain't dumb.


They have special mutual funds that are designed not to spin off much in the way of dividends or cap gains....managed to minimize annual taxes. They'd become a lot more popular.

So would ROTH IRAs which would mean you'd never pay taxes on the growth.

Plus, of course, a lot of activity goes 'under the table' as it becomes much more attractive to dodge the tax man. or barter.....




t.


t.

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Author: utahtea Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17232 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/16/2011 10:35 PM
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....You have to be intelligent about what you do and buy, obviously; forget costly hobbies or lots of travel (but not ALL travel); and watch your investments, sometimes adjusting them as needed.

Some people, sadly, have become accustomed to too many expensive "toys" and gadgets, too much debt, and too much "fast living", so they may feel screwed.

Sorry about that. Wise up and check what your living style is. Maybe you need to adjust it.

Vermonter


One thing I totally hate about this board is that every thread goes political so just a heads up, I skipped those posts.

Back to the original post by Vermonter....

I totally agree that most people have choices and a lot of people I know have chosen very badly on how they spend their money. I know so many people that have used the equity on their house like an ATM card and now they are underwater. These are people that should be thinking of retiring and now are faced with high house payments for the next 20 to 25 years when the house should be paid off. Some of the people have NOTHING to show for what they took out of their houses either.

CHOICES...it's a BIGGY. We chose to LBOM. We did take time to enjoy life, but it didn't have to be pleasures that cost a lot of money. Like Tuesday, we could have taken our grandson to any number of places that cost $20 to get in, but we went to the local water fountain (made for kids to play in) that was free. He had a blast! Vacations were always a priority in our family, but we didn't go to 5 star motels we couldn't afford, we camped. We didn't eat out, we cooked our own meals. We always waited till we could afford something before we bought it (except the house). We earned interest instead of paying interest on credit cards and car loans.

Choices people make....it's a real biggy and IMHO, has little to do with politics!

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Author: IBPore Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17233 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 12:39 AM
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There you go again with the silly name calling -- "elites" and "libs" and "dems"... and even "slimey lib dems"! Amazing.

No more.

It's pointless.

Vermonter


You are attempting to communicate with a poster who is either

a) a known psychopath.
b) a troll who enjoys tweaking the noses of sllimy lib elitists dems.
c) A person who is unable to sift the BS out of what he hears on Faux News and Rush Limburg.

IB Pore

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Author: IBPore Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17234 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 12:43 AM
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... I think the Republicans should say: OK ...let's go back to the Clinton tax rate AND the Clinton level of spending. Instead of running trillion dollar deficits forever into the future, the budget could be balanced within a year or two ...

I'd vote for that. No Iraq war, no Afghanistan war, no Lybian Not War. What's not to like?

IB Pore

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17235 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 12:47 AM
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(d) assembled in a garage by Weasels.


NTTAWWT!

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Author: RetiredVermonter Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17236 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 8:20 AM
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utahtea:

Yes! Wonderful reading your post(s), as always.

Common sense these days seems sadly UNcommon, doesn't it?

Vermonter

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Author: utahtea Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17237 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 1:30 PM
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Common sense these days seems sadly UNcommon, doesn't it?

Vermonter,

It sure does! It's not like these are stupid people either. One such person who has used their home as an ATM and their home is underwater has a masters degree in finance! It boggles the mind!

Utahtea

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Author: gdett2 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Ticker Guide Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17238 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 2:50 PM
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Utahtea,

Last night on NBC(?) news there was a firefighter and his wife, a secretary, who were walking out of a $750,000 home/mortgage mess. They were $300,000 underwater on it. I didn't hear where it was located.

Personally, I can't fathom buying that type of house for 2 people, paying the RE taxes or paying the huge monthly payments for a mortgage of that size.

Gene

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17239 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 4:58 PM
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Last night on NBC(?) news there was a firefighter and his wife, a secretary, who were walking out of a $750,000 home/mortgage mess. They were $300,000 underwater on it. I didn't hear where it was located.

Personally, I can't fathom buying that type of house for 2 people, paying the RE taxes or paying the huge monthly payments for a mortgage of that size.



without more detail, i can sort of see it....

sometimes you're in a place where you feel you have to take a risk.. when they paid 750k, there might have been a good chance it would double in 5 yrs. They bet, they lost. St*** happens.

maybe that's just me --i've gambled and won, i've gambled and lost ..



(when Mom died and left her (paid-off) house to me and sister, BIL didn't want to sell immediately, he thought it would double in a few years and he could meanwhile rent it. *i* said, too much risk for ME, too much work (renting it) ..so go ahead, but you have to buy me out .. )

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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17240 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/17/2011 11:22 PM
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Last night on NBC(?) news there was a firefighter and his wife, a secretary, who were walking out of a $750,000 home/mortgage mess. They were $300,000 underwater on it. I didn't hear where it was located.

Personally, I can't fathom buying that type of house for 2 people, paying the RE taxes or paying the huge monthly payments for a mortgage of that size.


Given those numbers I'd take a guess it was southern California. $750K didn't buy much at the height of the real estate lunacy so they probably weren't living in luxury. If you lived there it seemed "normal", I suppose, so you either paid the price or gave up on the American dream of owning a home. You assumed the party would go on forever, a belief encouraged by real estate brokers and mortgage lenders. I doubt a firefighter and a secretary had much financial training. Nor do much people.

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Author: gdett2 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Ticker Guide Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17241 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/18/2011 12:48 AM
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billjam,

I came in to my house part of the way through the story and DW was making dinner so I don't know the beginning of the story.

I saw the outside view and it was on a large lot, 2 story brick. It had a huge kitchen that had an island that looked like an aircraft carrier with all their boxes stacked in a large family room. My guess would be 3,500-6,000 sqft for this place. It was not modest in the least.

It appeared to be a warm area with a couple low palm/palmetto type trees. Maybe CA, FL, ??

Gene

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Author: utahtea Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17242 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/18/2011 3:07 AM
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Utahtea,

Last night on NBC(?) news there was a firefighter and his wife, a secretary, who were walking out of a $750,000 home/mortgage mess. They were $300,000 underwater on it. I didn't hear where it was located.

Personally, I can't fathom buying that type of house for 2 people, paying the RE taxes or paying the huge monthly payments for a mortgage of that size.


Gene,

So the question is, did they buy the home and then decide to walk away because the prices in their neighborhood keep going down and it was no longer a good investment and they couldn't see paying the high mortgage OR did they over extend themselves with the American Dream either by borrowing to much to begin with or taking money out of the home when the prices were high?

I do feel sorry for people that bought at the height of the home market only for them to lose half or more of their value in the last 5 years. Sometimes people buy a home, the price goes down and they have to move and they are stuck between a rock and a hard place. To bad buying a home has to be such a gamble sometimes. Without all the info on this couple, it's hard to say what happened.

Utahtea

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Author: Follydolly Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17243 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 12:32 AM
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If I had all that money in an IRA, they wouldn't jack me up. I just pay the lowest rate.


Ahem....when you turn 70 1/2 and you have a regular IRA, all those funds coming out in RMD's are considered income and your Medicare fees can be more than doubled. I am currently paying $220+ monthly for a single Medicare payment. And I notice that Medicare is paying a lot less and I am paying a lot more in co-pay.

I have enough $$$ to live comfortably. But I have two daughters always in financial straights. Yes, their problems stem from their life choices - something I am trying to rectify for my GKs. One of my daughters is a raging liberal because of her financial situation. She has been jobless for over a year, currently taking courses at the university to be a para-legal. Hope she finds work!

I don't care for people to judge those who have more money than they do. They do not know the status of other's financial responsibilities. Also, it is people who can afford to go out and spend that keep this economy afloat. If everyone had to scrimp and save to survive, we would become a third world country. The Housewives of LosAngeles/Beverly Hills, NY, NJ who spend spend spend are really doing the nation a favor.

The liberals and conservatives can yell themselves horse. IMO, most all the gov't are useless idiots on the taxpayer's dole. There is currently not one of them I would want to vote for President in 2012. We are in trouble.

Birgit

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Author: TMFPMarti Big funky green star, 20000 posts Home Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17244 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 2:07 AM
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I notice that Medicare is paying a lot less and I am paying a lot more in co-pay.

Something doesn't sound right here. The last I heard, doctors who participate must accept the Medicare specified amount for a service, of which Medicare pays 80% and you're responsible for 20%. (I don't know whether the Part B deductible went up for 2011 or not.)

I'm not yet eligible for Medicare, so I don't pay close attention. Pixy, are you around?

Phil
Rule Your Retirement Home Fool

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17245 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 2:28 AM
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I notice that Medicare is paying a lot less and I am paying a lot more in co-pay.

Something doesn't sound right here. The last I heard, doctors who participate must accept the Medicare specified amount for a service,


yes, but those numbers could be getting reduced
(not something i've noticed ... wondering if there's any way i could check)


of which Medicare pays 80% and you're responsible for 20%. (I don't know whether the Part B deductible went up for 2011 or not.)


the 80/20 sounds right, but i have that covered by supplement

some of what she's talking about is that B-premiums are based on income (and did go 'up' this year)


=
..... also curious

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Author: TMFPixy Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17246 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 6:28 AM
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Pixy, are you around?

Yep, I'm still kicking and lurking in the background. These days I take greater pleasure in observing discussions as opposed to participating in them. That requires less effort on my part and thus uses less energy, allowing me to expend more in other equally important areas of my life such as finally finding out who this Justin Bieber is that my granddaughters keep talking about.

The last I heard, doctors who participate must accept the Medicare specified amount for a service, of which Medicare pays 80% and you're responsible for 20%.

That's correct. Still, when Birgit says "... Medicare is paying a lot less and I am paying a lot more in co-pay ..." she's also correct. As an example, in 2010 Medicare may have approved a maximum payment of $100 for a procedure for which a doctor may have billed $125. Because the doctor accepts Medicare, you pay $20, Medicare pays $80, and the doctor eats the other $25.

In 2011 assume medical inflation drives up the same procedure's cost to $137.50. Medicare generously increases its approved cost to $110. This year, then, you pay $22, Medicare pays $88, and the doctor eats the remaining $27.50. In absolute terms, Medicare pays more, but approves less of the increasing cost. Additionally, you pay more and the doctor loses more.

It doesn't take a genius to determine at some point the doctor is going to refuse to accept Medicare because it's an unsustainable business model as it is currently structured. Approving less of the current charge for procedures each year as Medicare does now year-in and year-out simply won't work.

Personally, I fear for the medical system in this country. There ain't a free lunch and there ain't free medical care. Someone somewhere at sometime has to pay the piper. Pity the grandkids and great grandkids who will get stuck with the bill.

But December 21, 2012 is just around the corner, isn't it? Maybe we won't have to worry after all. And if the Rapture actually occurs on October 12, our problem is solved even sooner.

Regards ... Pixy, RYR Home Fool

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Author: TMFPMarti Big funky green star, 20000 posts Home Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17247 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 7:33 AM
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That requires less effort on my part and thus uses less energy, allowing me to expend more in other equally important areas of my life such as finally finding out who this Justin Bieber is that my granddaughters keep talking about.

Here's my method, which involves minimal effort and leaves me plenty of time to blow dust bunnies across the floor. Between E! Network's The Soup and you-tube's "What the Buck?" I can avoid that blank look when someone mentions someone from current pop culture. Comes with plenty of laughs too.

Phil
Rule Your Retirement Home Fool

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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17248 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 11:57 AM
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Medicare itself is still paying but the patient could be paying more if their supplement has changed its terms. If they are on Medicare Advantage, the gov't subsidized private insurance program which replaces Medicare and supplement, I believe the gov't is paying less so either premiums or copay are probably up. I also noted my Part D plan added a deductible for some classes of drugs that wasn't there in 2010. Again, that would vary from company to company.

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Author: IBPore Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17249 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/19/2011 6:49 PM
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Birgit: One of my daughters is a raging liberal because of her financial situation. She has been jobless for over a year, currently taking courses at the university to be a para-legal. Hope she finds work!

My SIL is a raging reactionary because of her financial situation. She has been jobless for over a year, currently NOT taking courses at the university to be a para-legal. Hope she finds work!

Why ascribe her politics to her job situation? In both cases (your daughter and my SIL), they seem trapped in dead-end situations. My SIL only looks for clerical jobs, which she can do easily. Absolutely no ambition.

IB Pore

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17250 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 10:24 AM
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I am currently paying $220+ monthly for a single Medicare payment. And I notice that Medicare is paying a lot less and I am paying a lot more in co-pay.

This reminds me of an old joke my father used to tell:

Mrs Goldberg and Mrs Shapiro went out to lunch together every week for years. One day they tried a new restaurant, and Mrs Goldberg says, "Oy, the food at this place is just terrible." And Mrs Shapiro replies, "Yes--and such small portions!"

Somehow I doubt that if Medicare was dismantled, and we were all forced to rely on the tender mercies of private insurance corporations that the private corporations would be paying more for our medical care and we'd be paying less ;-)

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17251 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 11:59 AM
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IB Pore: "My SIL only looks for clerical jobs, which she can do easily. Absolutely no ambition."

Must run in the family.

ANyone with a nickname of " I B Poor" probably is in the same boat.


You can't fix 'no ambition'...


The American Dream is getting an education, working hard, making money and enjoying a good life.

We don't reward 'so so' work with no job skills.......especially in a global environment



t

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Author: dbphd Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17252 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 1:56 PM
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t,

I doubt that many of the blue-color jobs will return in private industry. Maybe a renewed WPA program aimed at our infrastructure is required. The scary thing to me is our future demographics: I think those lowest on the socioeconomic ladder are having most of the children, and that their children are likely to be unskilled blue-color workers. I realize such thoughts are not PC.

db

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17253 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 2:34 PM
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Mrs Goldberg and Mrs Shapiro went out to lunch together every week for years. One day they tried a new restaurant, and Mrs Goldberg says, "Oy, the food at this place is just terrible." And Mrs Shapiro replies, "Yes--and such small portions!"


heh. Woody Allen stole that joke from your Dad for his movie "Annie Hall" (i repeat it all the time ..have to stop crediting Woody)



Somehow I doubt that if Medicare was dismantled, and we were all forced to rely on the tender mercies of private insurance corporations that the private corporations would be paying more for our medical care and we'd be paying less ;-)


o no! the free-market would make it ALL right.

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17254 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 5:04 PM
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Woody Allen stole that joke from your Dad for his movie "Annie Hall" (i repeat it all the time ..have to stop crediting Woody)

My father told me that joke when I was a child, long predating Annie Hall. Old Jewish joke.

the free-market would make it ALL right.

Remind me to make a big bet on insurance co's if Medicare is canceled. Something tells me they'll be pocketing the BIG difference between what I pay them and what they pay my doctor.

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17255 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 5:25 PM
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Old Jewish joke.


suspected as much...

probably true of a lot of Woody Allen.....




the free-market would make it ALL right.
===
Remind me to make a big bet on insurance co's if Medicare is canceled. Something tells me they'll be pocketing the BIG difference between what I pay them and what they pay my doctor.



would not bet against that....

without Medicare, i'm un-insurable, bankrupt within a year, dead a year later. perfect results for our GOP friends.


=

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17256 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/20/2011 7:38 PM
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without Medicare, i'm un-insurable, bankrupt within a year, dead a year later. perfect results for our GOP friends.

NOOOOooooooooo!

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Author: Follydolly Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17257 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/21/2011 12:14 AM
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Something doesn't sound right here. The last I heard, doctors who participate must accept the Medicare specified amount for a service, of which Medicare pays 80% and you're responsible for 20%. (I don't know whether the Part B deductible went up for 2011 or not.)

You heard right Phil. I do pay 20%, but the bills are so high, the 20% can run into the hundreds! Top that with increases in insurance and I am paying a lot (like everyone else). And because I seem to get older every year, I also seem to need more medical care, darn it all.

Back to retire before 80, my kids won't ever be able to retire, unless they win the lottery (fat chance)or I die and leave them something. I am trying not to do that;)) I hope my GK are learning from this, they need to graduate on top of their class and have a profession.

Birgit

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Author: IBPore Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17261 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/21/2011 12:42 PM
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I doubt that many of the blue-color jobs will return in private industry. Maybe a renewed WPA program aimed at our infrastructure is required. The scary thing to me is our future demographics: I think those lowest on the socioeconomic ladder are having most of the children, and that their children are likely to be unskilled blue-color workers. I realize such thoughts are not PC.

db


I think this concern has been expressed since antiquity. There is no rule, however, that says a child born into a blue collar family must remain forever blue collar. I cite mself as an example.

IB Pore

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Author: dbphd Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17267 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/21/2011 3:19 PM
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IB Poor,

I assume you understand the distinction between rule and likelihood. I was addressing likelihood in my remarks. I realize that many from blue color families have risen to great prominence and wealth, just not most. My dad started in the aircraft industry as a blue color worker, but rose through several levels of management before he retired. My first real job came after a post-doc, so I only experienced blue color work during a couple of undergraduate summer jobs that provided great motivation to stay in school.

db

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Author: telegraph Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17268 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/21/2011 4:34 PM
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"I realize that many from blue color families have risen to great prominence and wealth, just not most. My dad started in the aircraft industry as a blue color worker, but rose through several levels of management before he retired. My first real job came after a post-doc, so I only experienced blue color work during a couple of undergraduate summer jobs that provided great motivation to stay in school."


Yeah..we can start with Obama......

My dad started out in 1932 as a splicer for the telephone company in NYC. He worked 44 years for them...and rose to management and did fairly well for someone without a college degree. A few years in the military during WW2 got him some 'executive' experience in officer training school which likely helped.

I had a few summer jobs. One was working for an AM/TV/FM station during the summer as a 'broadcast technician'. If you stayed at that job, you'd be making decent money after 10 years....union ship.....probably $60K a year or more now. Maybe even into management. No , you woudn't have gotten rich, unless you lived way below your means, invested wisely, but you'd likely have a pension and benefits after 35 or 40 years.

Lots of folks have gone into HVAC work.....then started their own business if they were so inclined.....or electrician work...or plumbing..... or contracting or construction....you need to specialize to do well. I have a friend who is a tile person...expert....he keeps having to turn down work....does top end work on the large houses with lots of tile, or new houses. Gets top dollar for his work. What can you say?

Will he retire early? I dunno....maybe.....

Others I know like to work..they'd go nuts if they didn't. One is in real estate - commercial...keeps busy. owns some properties....on the side, he plays accordion maybe 10-12 times a month and brings in well over two thousand a month that way. He really loves doing that.....keeps him going...he's 73 or so now. Pays for his hobbies.....

t

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Author: StockGoddess Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17289 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/25/2011 11:27 PM
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Somehow I doubt that if Medicare was dismantled, and we were all forced to rely on the tender mercies of private insurance corporations that the private corporations would be paying more for our medical care and we'd be paying less ;-)

Yep. go rent the movie "The Rainmaker". Excellent movie about the tender mercies of insurance companies.


But that's exactly what certain Republicans are trying to do. Eliminate Medicare completely. PLUS they want to revoke Obama's recent law that prevents insurers from turning away people with pre-existing conditions.

Which means if you get sick and your insurance gaps due to being laid off and COBRA expiring, you're screwed, unless you're independantly wealthy. Just die quick and stop whining about it.

God Bless the compassionate conservatives... (oxymoron).

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17291 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/26/2011 2:32 PM
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Last night on NBC(?) news there was a firefighter and his wife, a secretary, who were walking out of a $750,000 home/mortgage mess. They were $300,000 underwater on it.

Given those numbers I'd take a guess it was southern California. $750K didn't buy much at the height of the real estate lunacy so they probably weren't living in luxury.

______________________

We didn't buy our first home until we were past our mid-40s because of the high prices at the time (Bay Area of California). For years we watched prices going up faster than our income. After the real estate crash of the early 90s we finally felt we could get a house for a reasonable price and we bought an 1,800 square footer with a 1970s interior on a tiny lot for $380,000 in 1994. We sold it in 2000 for $800,000 (including the 1970s kitchen that we never upgraded) -- more than double. So I can understand the expectations of those who bought near the top expecting things to keep on going up -- but not that they wouldn't have understood the risk just from looking at the recent history of real estate price swings.

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17292 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/26/2011 2:58 PM
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Back on 6/19 Pixy posted this:

It doesn't take a genius to determine at some point the doctor is going to refuse to accept Medicare because it's an unsustainable business model as it is currently structured. Approving less of the current charge for procedures each year as Medicare does now year-in and year-out simply won't work.

Exactly. When I needed hernia surgery two years ago, it took a week to get an appointment with the surgeon and I could have had the surgery one week after that.

When I go on Medicare in 1½ years, will my surgeon say, "Sorry--I can't pay my phone bill with what Medicare pays now, so I'm only taking one Medicare appointment a week and I'm booked for a year."? Or, "Sorry, we no longer accept Medicare patients."?

That's why I said in an earlier post that I'd rather keep my current expensive insurance with its high co-pays than go on Medicare with the shrinking reimbursements that are scheduled to occur over the coming years.

I'd rather live with insurance companies and their 4% profit margins on health insurance policies than with government's good intentions and unintended consequences.

--fleg

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Author: sunrayman Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17293 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/26/2011 7:40 PM
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. . . with government's good intentions . . .


+++
+++


Isn't that what the road to H3LL is paved with?


sunray
a man NOT interested in paving roads

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Author: SeattlePioneer Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17294 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/26/2011 7:59 PM
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<<But that's exactly what certain Republicans are trying to do. Eliminate Medicare completely. PLUS they want to revoke Obama's recent law that prevents insurers from turning away people with pre-existing conditions.
>>



Democrats have contributed to the real possibility that Medicare will be abadonned --- by grossly overpromising and underfunding benefits. This turn Medicare into a Ponzi scheme dependent on new generations of suckers to pay taxes to support a program that has stupendous liabilities and negligible assets.

Ponzi schemes tend to be abandoned when new suckers can't be found.

If Gen X, Y and Z are smart, they will take steps to insure that their taxes go into a new program that will fund benefits for THEM, the people paying the taxes.

They would be entitled to quit funding Medicare, and letting Medicare continue to provide benefits with the limited assets it has, but no additional funding.

<<Yep. go rent the movie "The Rainmaker". Excellent movie about the tender mercies of insurance companies.>> see how tender the mercies are when government decides to abandon promises it's made but no longer wished to fund. Earlier this year, more than 30,000 people on Washington State's Basic Health Care Plan were dropped when the legislature no longer wanted to fund the program.


<<Which means if you get sick and your insurance gaps due to being laid off and COBRA expiring, you're screwed, unless you're independantly wealthy. Just die quick and stop whining about it.>>


This claim is out of date. The Kennedy-Kassebaum Health Care Portability Act insures that EVERY STATE has provisions allowing people whose COBRA coverage is expiring to obtain new health insurance coverage regardless of pre existing conditions.



Seattle Pioneer

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Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/26/2011 8:19 PM
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Good article on Medicare in Fortune magazine

http://www.reuters.com/video/2011/06/25/french-fries-and-fat...


- We can try to fix Medicare in two ways. One is a proven winner, the other a proven loser. The stakes could scarcely be higher -- and right now we're betting on the loser.

One way to fix it is the Brute Force approach. That's the concept on which Medicare was built. The federal government dictates which services are covered and how much will be paid to doctors, hospitals, and others for everything they do. To keep costs under control, Washington restricts what it covers or dials down what it pays.

"It never works," says Mark McClellan, former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
----------


The other way to fix Medicare is the People Aren't Dummies approach. It's the concept on which most markets operate. Let people spend their own money -- even if it's given to them -- and let providers compete for it. Providers aren't dummies, so they'll innovate in ways that bureaucrats would never think of. Consumers aren't dummies, so they'll choose what works for them. Quality rises, and costs stay reasonable.

The People Aren't Dummies approach has a proven record, and it's the opposite of Brute Force's record. Medicare Part D, which took effect in 2006, lets users choose from competing private plans for prescription-drug coverage. "Most of those plans aren't at all what the law envisioned," says McClellan. Instead, they're what consumers actually want. And Part D costs are about 45% below what was predicted when it was created.

---------

So which approach are we banking on? You guessed it. Brute Force is the guiding principle for controlling Medicare in the health care reform law.




----

Lots more at the link. Enjoy. Good reading..



t

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Author: StockGoddess Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17301 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/30/2011 9:14 AM
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From what I've read, the Republican plan is to ditch Medicare altogether and just give every senior $15K and tell 'em to go buy their own insurance.

So if I'm an insurance company and I KNOW Grandma has a baseline of $15K do you think I'm going to leave any money sitting on the table? H*ll no, insurance costs will START at $15K! Simple economics. Why on earth would I charge less than that?

Plus which every slimy salesman with ten pages of fine print will take that money and then deny, deny, deny coverage where needed. Who is going to prevent all these seniors from getting robbed blind??

Is there a provision to adjust this amount for inflation? I doubt it. For some reason that always gets conveniently "forgotten" which means eventually this $15K won't be worth diddly. From what I've read, most senior health care costs will go up about 40% under this plan.

From everything I've read that didn't come from a Republican, but from a Canadian, Canadians have great health care for a fraction of what we waste on paperwork and insurance companies. I'm ready to go socialized (le gasp) medicine at this point. Do you know how EASY it would be to plan for retirement if I didn't have to worry about health care costs?? Just food and housing?? I could retire 10 years sooner, literally....and people who wanted private care could STILL pay for private insurance.

There. I've said it. Flame away.

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Author: billjam Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17302 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 6/30/2011 12:53 PM
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I've heard the $15K figure from people I know but haven't seen it in print. I wonder how realistic $15K would be for the average senior.

In the months prior to age 65 my BCBS premium was $6300/yr. That was with $2500 deductible and $1000 copay. So a total of $3500 out of pocket plus the premium would be $9,800/yr. And I had no prescription drug coverage. Assuming I had been forced to continue to purchase private insurance instead of going on Medicare at 65 I would have been hit with an age bracket adjustment. When I turned 60 my premium jumped 24%. Part of that was annual inflation adjustment but I would guess about 15% was age bracket adjustment.

With age bracket adjustments every 5 years it wouldn't take long to see total cost of $15K even without inflation adjustments. And the senior will still have to buy prescriptions or drug insurance on top of that.

Medicare was a godsend. Part B, Part D drug coverage, and a BCBS supplement combined initally cost me $3162/yr. This year it's $3388, up 7%. I bought private insurance for 10 years and saw the premium triple and had to more than triple the out of pocket exposure to keep it from being worse. And I have no medical conditions other than getting older.

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17314 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 7/5/2011 1:35 PM
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From everything I've read that didn't come from a Republican, but from a Canadian, Canadians have great health care for a fraction of what we waste on paperwork and insurance companies. I'm ready to go socialized

Here's an article that comes from a Canadian. Not just any Canadian, but the guy who's regarded as the father of the Canadian health care system. If you want to maintain your fanaties, better skip it.

Canadian Health Care We So Envy Lies In Ruins, Its Architect Admits

http://www.studentnewsdaily.com/commentary/canadian-health-c...

Back in the 1960s, Castonguay chaired a Canadian government committee studying health reform and recommended that his home province of Quebec -- then the largest and most affluent in the country -- adopt government-administered health care, covering all citizens through tax levies.

Four decades later, as the chairman of a government committee reviewing Quebec health care this year, Castonguay concluded that the system is in "crisis. We thought we could resolve the system's problems by rationing services or injecting massive amounts of new money into it," says Castonguay. But now he prescribes a radical overhaul: "We are proposing to give a greater role to the private sector so that people can exercise freedom of choice."
____________________

You write: Do you know how EASY it would be to plan for retirement if I didn't have to worry about health care costs?

Who do you suppose will pay for them if you don't? It will be HARDER to plan for retirement if our taxes go up to European levels--much higher income taxes and a VAT (national sales tax) of 19% on most items, 8% on food. That's how they pay for it. And that leaves less for savings. You seem to think that putting the government in charge will result in a free lunch. That's naive thinking at best.

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17315 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 7/5/2011 1:46 PM
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Medicare was a godsend.

Medicare is a godsend, right now for current users. And that's because you're not paying the full cost of your care. Current taxpayers are paying for it and some of it is being charged to your kids' and grandkids' credit cards. As more of us hit Medicare age in greater numbers (me in 1½ years) the costs to everyone else will become even more onerous.

And as reimbursements to providers drop to the point where they will be practically losing money on us Medicare patients, even more docs and other providers will opt out of Medicare or reduce the number of Medicare patients they see. You can't practice medicine if you can't pay the phone bill. A major feature of ObamaCare is the reduction of Medicare reimbursements starting in 2014 and continuing for a decade -- that's how it's supposed to be paid for.

More and more when you call for an appointment you'll be hearing one of the following:

1) I'm sorry, we no longer accept Medicare patients

or

2) I'm sorry, we had to reduce the number of Medicare patients we can see because we have to pay rent on the office. Will Thursday at 3:00 one year from now work for you?

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17316 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 7/5/2011 1:58 PM
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Here's something I should have added to the post about Canadian health care.

http://www.heartland.org/policybot/results/17494/Canadian_He...

On June 9 [2005], the Supreme Court of Canada struck down a Quebec law that had banned private health insurance for services covered under Medicare, Canada's socialized health care program.

A Canadian doctor, Jacques Chaoulli, challenged the constitutionality of the ban on private payment. He argued that long waiting times for surgery contradict the country's constitutional guarantees of "life, liberty, and the security of the person."

Canada's highest court ruled a province may not force an individual to endure poor quality health care services or unreasonable waiting times for medically required services, and hence could not prevent individuals from getting access to private health insurance.

"Access to a waiting list is not access to health care," the court said in its ruling.
____________________

The US has been a safety valve for Canadians not wanting to wait. If we get a system like theirs, your retirement planning should include setting aside funds to go to India, Costa Rica or Thailand to pay out of pocket for "free" treatment you do not want to wait for at home.

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17318 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 7/5/2011 4:04 PM
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http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/271006/entitlement-ba...

The budget blueprint crafted by Paul Ryan, passed by the House of Representatives, and voted down by the Senate would essentially give Medicare enrollees a voucher to purchase private coverage, and would change the federal government's contribution to each state's Medicaid program from an unlimited "matching" grant to a fixed "block" grant. These reforms deserve to come back from defeat, because the only alternatives for saving Medicare or Medicaid would either dramatically raise tax rates or have the government ration care to the elderly and disabled. What may be less widely appreciated, however, is that the Ryan proposal is our only hope of reducing the crushing levels of fraud in Medicare and Medicaid.

The three most salient characteristics of Medicare and Medicaid fraud are: It's brazen, it's ubiquitous, and it's other people’s money, so nobody cares.

Judging by official estimates, Medicare and Medicaid lose at least $87 billion per year to fraudulent and otherwise improper payments, and about 10.5% of Medicare spending and 8.4% of Medicaid spending was improper in 2009. Fraud experts say the official numbers are too low. "Loss rates due to fraud and abuse could be 10%, or 20%, or even 30% in some segments," explained Malcolm Sparrow, a mathematician, Harvard professor, and former police inspector, in congressional testimony. "The overpayment-rate studies the government has relied on... have been sadly lacking in rigor, and have therefore produced comfortingly low and quite misleading estimates."
________________

To provide some perspective, a quick google of health insurance company profits revealed that for Q1 of 2010 United Healthcare, one of the country's biggest insurers, had profits of $1.9 billion. That translates to less than $8 billion per year, not even a tenth of the known fraud and maybe less than 5% of the actual fraud from the government programs.

--fleg

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Author: fleg9bo Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 17319 of 19483
Subject: Re: Retired before 80! Date: 7/5/2011 4:16 PM
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I made a mistake in reading the United Healthcare profit number. It was $1.19 billion for Q1 2010, not $1.9 billion. That makes their yearly profit more like $5 billion, or only 6% of the admitted fraud -- and perhaps as little as 3% of the actual fraud.

It's much harder to defraud vouchers than it is to send phony claims into the government. Only the dead people who vote for Democrats are likely to get unauthorized vouchers.

--fleg

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