Tuesday, August 2, 2011

the pension check is not in the mail

My dad worked for the same company for 44 years and found security in that.  I remember him telling me, when I was young, to find a good company to work for and that company would always take care of me -- for instance, they would provide a good pension.  That's how his generation thought, and I think on some level it was true, that corporations looked out for their employees.  That hasn't been true for many years now, as short-term, bottom-line mentality took over as well as merger mania, and there seems to be very little job security these days.

State and local governments, after years of extreme budget cuts, have also become a lot less secure places in which to work that they used to be.  I was reading today about a city in Rhode Island that is declaring bankruptcy because future pension costs for their current and retired employees have accrued far beyond any future ability to pay.  This is a common problem these days for states and cities and we'll see a lot more of that and it's easy to feel their pain, but what about the employees who have worked for decades and are counting on that retirement?

And now that "entitlements" are on the table in Washington, that means that future Social Security is in jeopardy for many people who will be counting on it.  Some people have a 401 (k), many do not, and how long will that last anyway?  I wonder how many future retirees will live in adject poverty.


Jon said...

This blog is getting way too depressing!

Howard said...

I agree, Jon.. Tomorrow I'm going to tell a joke.