Global Economy And National Politics Crushing Retirement Dreams
Despite your opinion about capitalism there is not much argument that America was founded, built and prospered on the economics of capitalism. However there seems to be a strong movemCredit: Amazonent away from capitalism and towards more socialistic liberal proposals.
The goal of this article is not to debate the merits of different economic strategies but to consider the effects of today's rough-and-tumble economic times on the dreams of those folks nearing or all ready at retirement age. Today's average retirement savings are rapidly disappearing.
In times past, homeowners could depend on the value of their homes to grow and provide a nice chunk of equity to add to their guaranteed retirement accounts. However we now know that the housing market in the U.S. has tumbled so far, that not only are houses not appreciating in value but many homeowners are finding themselves in situations where they owe more than the house is worth. Worse yet, many are finding that they can no longer make mortgage payments and are facing foreclosure.
A new class of homeowner is appearing. One that is willing to walk away from mortgage obligations, even if they can afford the payments, because they feel they are paying for a property that is now worth much less than the mortgage they owe. They can save their payments, walk away from the mortgage and pay cash for a similar home now selling far below the market value.
That once treasured job security has suddenly evaporated. For a number of reasons companies are downsizing and offering early out packages that will in no way offer security to the aging employee. Even those who have been able to retain their jobs are finding their salary and benefits cut to the bone. They also fear that any day they may join the ranks of the unemployed.
Older Workers Facing Tough Times
While being unemployed at any age is always depressing it can be disastrous for workers over 50 and an almost insurmountable problem for those over 60. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the jobless rate for those 55-64 hovers around 7%. Double the rate from just 10Credit: Bureau of Labor Statistics years earlier. Certainly low paying jobs can sometimes be found. But does this represent any of the guaranteed retirement accounts that our parents always talked about and enjoyed?
Those once prized 401 packages that depended, so much on the ups and downs of the stock market are in many cases now just so much worthless paper. Savings in bank accounts and other investment packages have eroded due to the present economy. Added to these problems is the negative economic outlook for the near future.
To save a faltering Social Security system plans are now being discussed to raise the retirement age to 67. If our political leaders do not find a way to fix the system, that now depends on fewer and fewer working citizens to pay into a system that must support a rapidly growing group or retirees, there may not be any money to pay Social Security benefits to future retirees.
No doubt this is a problem that will not soon be fixed by a sound economy. How could the internet possibly offer any help to these aging citizens. Actually the secret to finding income on the internet for this group of citizens is actually tied to their age.
It is impossible for anyone to be alive for 50 or more years without encountering personal experiences. Age is like a magnet. As you go through life, various life experiences stick to you and affect how and what you think. Why is this important?
Consider that it is not unusual for a person to began to wonder about his or her heritage as they grow older. Where did they come from. What did their parents and grandparents experience and what were their opinions and thoughts about their lives. Family members gather at a funeral of a lover parent or grandparent and began to complain that now all those experiences are gone forever. They are no longer available to answer questions or offer advice based on their experience. So much knowledge is now lost forever.
How much more knowledge and wisdom would be retained if these departed relatives had put their thoughts in printed words. The printed word is what builds libraries and allows institutions of learning to pass on knowledge. Hmm. Knowledge. The printed word. Articles. Unique content. Does this began to sound familiar?
Where is unique content demanded and sought after? The internet of course. Think of the diverse accumulation of interesting and informative content that could be delivered, if these folks only decided to filter their thoughts, opinions and knowledge through their personal experiences and commit them to print.
The internet provides the venues to accept this information and reward their effort with commissions based on ads that thousands of advertisers , who are desperately seeking unique articles, will place on these articles.
Venues such as Infobarrel, Squdioo, and others are ready and willing to accept these articles free of charge and make them available to untold thousands or millions of potential viewers and buyers. Once the articles are submitted they need little attention. They sit on the internet like little ATM machines, delivering commissions to the article authors year after year. Write more articles, make more income.
For the more ambitious person blogs can be built. These aging webmasters can build a solid following of interested viewers anxious for the next informative or entertaining article. Search the web and you will soon find many skilled trades people and professionals who are making a substantial income from their blogs. Need to patch a hole in your drywall? Someone has a blog with the answer. Have a legal question. Find advice from any number of blogs maintained by a professional. Want to know about NASA and space travel. It is all there.
The major problem is convincing these people who have given up on the thought of a pleasant retirement, that they too can find a second life as an author of internet content. But what about computer skills they may ask. The young folks have an advantage. They have been using these computers for most of their young lives. We have not had the time or the advantage to learn those skills.
The answer is simple. You can learn sufficient computer skills in a few weeks. The only way to get life experience is to live it, and you have 40 or 50 years start on those young computer nerds. While they may be able to hack their way into the pentagon computer system, they may not know the answer to a legal, social or trade question. They don't know the best places to visit on vacations, that they have not yet taken.
They have never sewed a quilt, tied a fishing fly, planted a garden, or built a dog kenCredit: Amazonnel. They don't know how to pick the best wedding gifts or the best silverware. While hacking into the nations computer systems may be more exciting, it may get you an all expenses paid vacation home you have not considered, complete with steel bars and nasty neighbors covered with tattoos and with really bad habits.
The Most Important Thing Is To Get Started Now
If you don't have a computer get down to the local library. They have plenty of them and they are free to use. Buy a book. Attend a few classes. Learn enough about computers to copy and paste and then began to put your thoughts in print. You may quickly discover why Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe and Ernest Hemingway spent so much time putting words together. And your guaranteed retirement accounts may become more than just a broken dream.