Self Sufficient Lifestyle Replacing Fat Retirement
The economic collapse and terminal decline of America’s self-indulgent lifestyle has impacted the 50 and older generation particularly hard. Those in the golden years of their careers are facing unprecedented unemployment and a bleak financial future. Many are faced with working into their late 70′s at a lower paying job as a comfortable retirement becomes a distant memory.
Contrary to the political propaganda the United States is still shedding thousands of jobs a month. American employers must produce at least 125,000 jobs a month just to handle young people entering the labor force. We are nowhere near this and estimates don’t have us reaching this number for several more years.
Even at that point the labor market is neutral. The United States needs to add 500,000 jobs a month for several years to dig out of the hole created by 20 years of downsizing and off shoring labor to third world countries.
The trend of outsourcing jobs to cheap labor markets has not slowed down. Older employees are particularly at risk as they usually make a higher salary and drive up health care costs.
It is hard to adjust from a well paid management position with all the perks to door greeter at Wal-mart making minimum wage. This was not part of your retirement plan and you are not prepared for it.
You are unemployed and your 401k is worthless. You still have 16 years to pay on the underwater condo you picked up 4 years ago. You cannot afford the tuneup on that cherry red midlife crisis you’re driving around. Your high blood pressure medicine is unaffordable without that corporate health insurance and you can’t climb a flight of stairs.
Your golden years have become a nightmare as you struggle to keep a roof over your head and your stomach full.
Patricia Reid is not in her 70s, an age when many Americans continue to work. She is not even in her 60s. She is just 57.
But four years after losing her job she cannot, in her darkest moments, escape a nagging thought: she may never work again.
College educated, with a degree in business administration, she is experienced, having worked for two decades as an internal auditor and analyst at Boeing before losing that job.
But that does not seem to matter, not for her and not for a growing number of people in their 50s and 60s who desperately want or need to work to pay for retirement and who are starting to worry that they may be discarded from the work force — forever.
Since the economic collapse, there are not enough jobs being created for the population as a whole, much less for those in the twilight of their careers.
via NYT: ‘The new unemployables’: Workers over 50 – Business – The New York Times – msnbc.com.
It is unfortunate that retirement has become an elite club where your financial portfolio determines quality of life.
Food, water, shelter an occasional beer and some entertainment…that’s all you need. Rather than working to build the ever fleeting retirement nest egg work on become self sufficient and build a life that doesn’t require a 401k.
Sell everything. Buy a few acres where property taxes are cheap, raise a garden, get some chickens and a pig. Build a tiny cottage or live in an old camper. Work outside get fresh air and be healthy. Live happily on nothing and stop fearing retirement.