Per capita, in 2017 dollars, 1970 Americans spent $1,797 on health care. In 2017, $10,739 . In return on that $9,000 annual investment: Life expectancy rose from 74.7 to 78.6, adding 3.9 years.
In 1993, the annual cost for tuition & fees to attending a UC as an in-state was $5,000. Today, it's $15,000 . That's a 3x increase during a period when inflation was 1.7x. A Gen Y-er would have paid $20,000 in tuition for a 4-year degree. A millenial, $60,000. That $40,000 is money that could otherwise have been saved.
Since those costs were lower as a percentage of income for boomers, Gen X and Gen Y, those prior generations had a better chance to save. Today, they also have highest incomes, and again, can save if that's how they prioritize their finances.
Millennials, not so much. For sure, health care and education affects earlier generations, but they were better able to save in 401(k) plans because the portion of their income that went to health and education was substantially less than for millennials.
I sense that people may blindly upvote posts reporting figures, especially if they come with sources.
If you spend all your money on things to impress people or because "you deserve them", then you end up with an empty pot.
Healthcare is expensive. If you are on Obamacare, it is subsidized.
Housing is expensive if you want to live in a "good" neighborhood. There are a lot of "okay" neighborhoods that people can afford just fine.
College is expensive, but it really depends on which university you go to. As much as anything, the college issue is intentional misdirection by the people who are steering parents and kids into those choices. There are very economical options, but the price tags and ramifications of those choices are usually not spelled out very well to the people making those decisions.
Edit: Childcare is absolutely expensive, to the point that I really expect having a parent stay at home to swing back around to being more normal. We have three kids and if my wife worked, it would cost more to have them in daycare than she would make while they were there.
My wife's career never started. Her degree was worthless so she was working as a barista before we had kids. She does some work on the side, but she was never going to generate the kind of income I do solely based on our respective career choices.
If I lose my job, we can live off savings for several years. If I am unable to find work, the economy has bigger problems that are independent of my wife working or not. If I die or become disabled, that's what insurance is for.
No one enjoys divorce. In some cases it is a necessary evil, but I don't think anyone would ever characterize it as pleasant.
I absolutely agree there are things that could be changed to make life better for many people.
However, you live in the present, under the rules as they are. And from there you gain leverage to change the future.
Living as if the rules were different when they aren't just sets you up for failure.
It's the whole idea of "be so good they can't ignore you".
Now you're getting it.
Also, the "wealth tax" exists, it's called the capital gains tax, and it only goes up to 20%. It should be 100%.
Obviously I don't expect an answer to that - just something to consider.
Asset appreciation is exponential. Income is linear. The only way to get ahead financially is to use leftover income to build a portfolio of appreciating assets.
Right now the US has ~4 workers per retiree. That's going to be dropping to about 2 in the next few decades. And despite frantic efforts from the Japanese, the services that the elderly need are hard to automate. These services generally suffer from Baumol's cost disease: nursing et al are very 1:1 jobs with or without the help of technology.
It seems residential homes charge the 'guests' loads and pay the staff (carers, nurses, cleaners etc.) very, very little.
I think it's more like a 1/3 drop will take 45 years:
not that it changes your overall point by much.
How's that? I'm not familiar with the industry at all, but every place I've seen has far fewer nurses than patients. Is there a source on this information? Or some inside information I am unaware of? Or are you just exaggerating by using the term 'very'?
Absolutely yes. Patients may be frail and suffering cognitive decline that demands compassionate expertise if one is to provide humane care.
Sadly (I guess...) I suspect the generation responsible for all of this is going to end up paying some unexpected prices when the time comes as they age out of power and have to look to millenials for care.
Are they going to age out? It seems as though politicians are staying politicians as long as possible - I feel like they last dying gasps of that generation will be clinging to power with shaky palms all the way into the grave. There's new blood, absolutely, but look who is still running the houses. "Cold dead hands" comes to mind.
My guess is younger generations, once better politically ensconced, will flip the script on boomers by funding broad social benefits out of social security and Medicare. (For example, by reducing Medicare benefits while making them available to all age groups.)
The boomers will be a unified block all voting for social security and health care for the elderly.
Everyone else will be split around various special interests.
So maybe in 20 years?
I think you’re overestimating the probability of this factor. Twenty years isn’t a bad estimate, but I’d guess closer to 10.
(Not that I actually believe there should be a privatised healthcare system.)
However, the narrative of "blame the boomers" is a con.
Blow this off if you want, but just realize that unless you're a russian bot or an ally of the American oligarchs you're working against your own self interests.
The con is blame the problems of one group on another group to separate them and get them fighting each other. This distracts everyone from the real causes of the problems. It's the same as blaming the brown people, which is pretty popular right now too. (Not a coincidence: in both cases the groups have a hard time understanding each other and it's very easy to identify the other group.) Another big one is getting people to identify as Ds and Rs and letting them blame and fight each other. (They are somewhat harder to identify, but the red hats help.)
It's important for millennials to understand this because without addressing the actual problem you are not going to end up with an actual working solution.
You'll go after boomers and still see no improvements. No doubt the people benefitting from the con will say you simply need to go after them harder. Guess what? That other group of people aren't actually demons and anyone demonizing them is bs'ing you, whether wittingly or not.
That's not to say boomers haven't benefited from the current system -- they have (generally). But their main advantage there is that they vote. (I don't know the full solution to that, but one thing is we have to make voting easier.)
I think the main problem is the massive money in politics. The people with money have always used it to influence politics in order to get more money. But they seem to have basically won outright at this point, with firm control of congress and the supreme court. The executive is mostly under control. The guy at the top is a wild-card but can be managed and is incompetent in any case.
Anyway, I wish I had a lot of answers but I don't. Just keep your eyes open and don't fall for the con. That's probably not enough to ensure a good outcome, but if you don't it's enough to ensure a bad outcome.
I wholeheartedly agree. We need absolutely zero friction to onboard younger generations.
What does this look like to you? Do we provide an app where people can input their social security, driver's license, or other ID number? How do we keep it from being abused if this information was stolen by a third party?
Ideally we could have something as simple as download -> vote -> submit. And also provide a website version that doesn't even need to be downloaded.
How do we get something like this approved? What states would be the most likely to go for this?
I don't know, really.
An app & web site are great for convenience, but large-scale hacking needs to be very difficult to do and easy to detect and verify... vs. highly motivated & well-funded state-level actors. That's not easy. On a related note, people generally also have to have a level of trust and comfort with the system.
While those "details" are worked out, maybe some enhancements to the existing mechanisms will help...
* pre-paid postage on mail-in ballots? I've heard that the post office will deliver mail-in ballots even without postage, but when the envelope clearly says "postage required" not a lot of people are going to attempt that route.
* Same day voter registration? There's some increased potential for fraud. But it's also the day where all the political officials & volunteers of all parties from big to small are mobilized and watching. It should be possible to have a system for this that is very difficult to perpetrate fraud against it at any scale.
* Make voting day a Saturday or Sunday? (A national holiday is tricky. A lot of people don't get paid when they don't work, it doesn't matter if it's a national holiday or not. And I expect a new national holiday will be largely used for purposes other than the intended one.)
* 6am to 9pm polling hours? This is tough. There are real people working the polls all day, from before they open until after they close, sometimes a long time after. IDK, maybe 6am to 8pm?
* Give people a sandwich or a pizza when they vote? I guess more generally, get food trucks to come out and work the polling places which accept vouchers from the polling place?
IDK. There are surely people who've worked on this for years so my off-the-top-of-my-head ideas are surely hopelessly naive, aside from the ones I've gotten from those people.
This isn't going to end well...
Not sure it's cute but it's definitely odd. Fleecing implies that something was taken from millennials.
> have to look to millenials for care
Are you implying that millenials are more selfish than previous generations? Do you have a basis for that assertion?
We should push for building new cities or upgrading existing small ones. We can create them to fit with lifestyles of the young: walkable, bike- and pedestrian-friendly, well-served by public transportation, etc.
Having good jobs nearby would be important. I believe developing new cities close to major universities (in smaller towns) and possibly adjacent to existing job centers would help garner critical mass to kickstart their momentum relatively quickly.
I’m in the process of looking for my first house and my mother said to me the other day, “why don’t you try something out in the country”. I have 40 years left to work, why don’t YOU move out to the country!
At some point, we’re going to have a bunch of vacant schools because all these old farts won’t leave.
The Thatcher/Reagan de-industrialisation through the 80s meant a huge number of children deprived of opportunity as whole regions and cities lost their major employers. In the UK it was effectively the start of our drug problem. Criminalisation had only arrived in the late 60s. Then we got the big recession of the early 90s.
Most of those de-industrialised areas had huge crime and drug problems, lost opportunities and parents who were broke, jobless and without hope. London and the South East was turbo-charging banking so we got Harry Enfield's comedy "Loadsa Money" character on tv, and plenty of market traders becoming stock traders. If you were early into IT you avoided it too.
So London and the South East was mostly OK, the rest, not so much. For those coming onto the job market it was a time of very high youth unemployment and limited chances. By the late 90s it had settled and most were busy spending it.
Some of those hardest hit areas are still not fully recovered. The cities have, mostly.
My father's generation were lost in the Great Depression, then got to go to WW2.
His father's in WW1.
We can learn from history that we don't treat the unlucky at all well, or try and prevent damage to the next generation. Oh, and that we mostly don't learn from history.
In the 90s recession youth unemployment was over 20% nationally. Can't find any decent regional or city figures now, and the tories changed the way unemployment was measured during that recession, so anything earlier is incomparable. In Scotland, the NW and NE, and probably the Midlands it was well over that.
Apprenticeships had recently disappeared (my generation was probably the last where some got a chance to leave school at 16 and go into a 3 or 4 year apprenticeship, as a few of my school friends did). Instead of going into work with prospects they ended up on long term unemployment benefit, maybe crime or drugs for some. Those who came out of college with engineering or manufacturing related skills find there's loads more chasing the industrial and engineering jobs that remained with poor chances.
Or simply take a dead end job unrelated to their qualifications, because money - the Deliveroo and Uber of their day, and many tried to move, failed, and got the dead end job somewhere expensive (SE). A CV with 5 or 10 years of all the wrong experience for a chosen career. Sure, some made it through unaffected too.
Kids coming onto the job market late 90s were fine, the economy was booming. Still far more so in the SE though. Those in the early and mid 80s mostly were too, unless they got unlucky with employer in the 90s recession, or bet on the about to die skills.
That generation had few chances of being paid as much as mum or dad, buying house or getting a mortgage until late or even the lifetime career prospects they might. Looking at them now, many got to OK. Though much later, on less money, in a smaller house, probably with more career and job switches and a far harder journey. Not a better deal at all.
Sheffield, Scotland and Liverpool probably still haven't forgiven the Tories for those years. Scotland certainly hasn;t looking at election results. Manchester and Leeds are pretty vibrant now, after many years repair and struggle. I don't know, but would imagine the story in the US rust belt would be frighteningly close.
In Sweden we had had high youth unemployment for 15 years (it's "low" now at 16%), but as people study or get a bit older they get work. Today though, it almost doesn't matter what you do. You either have to take a 100 year mortgage, or pay some significant rent, to live in e.g. Stockholm. And if you don't you are looking at declining job markets. It just seems like getting screwed has become ingrained in the system. Heads they win, tails you lose. Things are going well, you pay a lot. Things go bad, you are paid nothing. Maybe that was always the case and it is just easier to be informed now.
The biggest difference I see is housing. They keep getting more and more absurdly expensive with no signs of stopping. Even in countries far less attached to the idea of ownership than the UK. Which is more neoliberal policy again - public housing is right out of fashion everywhere it seems, even places that once did public housing really well.
The Loadsamoney character was a plasterer. Even manual trades were doing well in the South East.
As an example, I know someone with type 1 diabetes. The inflation-adjusted cost of insulin has gone up something like 700% over the last 20 years and the number of jobs offering health insurance has declined while the employee’s cost percentage has risen, so the percentage of people who can just absorb it is shrinking.
And to answer the OP's question, yes, in the nineties the "generational robbery" was a topic: Real estate was booming, making existing (old) homeowners rich and pricing out first-time buyers.
Most of these shows more or less ended with the characters getting married, having kids or otherwise ending that period in their lives. In Sex and the City, Miranda moving to Brooklyn because Manhattan is too expensive is a major event in the last season.
Guess they recovered nicely.
"""Andy, Dag and Claire have been handed a society priced beyone their means. twentysomethings, brought up with divorce, Watergate and Three Mile Island, and scarred by the 80s fall-out of yuppies, recession, crack and Ronald Reagan, they represent the new generation - Generation X. Fiercely suspicious of being lumped together as an advertiser's target market, they have quit dreary careers and cut themselves adrift in the California desert. Unsure of their futures, they immerse themselves in a regime of heavy drinking and working at no-future McJobs in the service industry."""
This is a political incentive problem. Retired people tend to have free time to engage in politics (or at least watch TV all day and get fed "news") and they turn out to votes in droves (as they don't have to e.g. take a day off to vote!), while young people mainly have the power to pull off a shitstorm in social media and that's it, they don't vote enough for politicians to prioritize them over retirees (how can they, when they have to work two jobs to survive and are threatened with losing their job for missing work to vote - no matter if it's illegal, someone depending on the job will NOT complain).
In addition, retirees are way better organized and actually have the free time on their hands to do stuff like mass phone calling of representatives.
EDIT: Thanks for educating me regarding some states not offering those options. Although, in those states, I would think most employers would make it easier for their employees to vote on voting day. I mean, I realize that some may not, but that would be the exception not the rule.
Except if you don't have those. Or they exist but are deliberately too hard to get right (e.g. Georgia's Exact match laws where they discard your ballot if it doesn't exactly match your known information, or Ohio's practice of purging voter rolls etc.)
I didn't pin just voting on "less free time" but also political engagement aside from consuming social media posts. Meaningful engagement with politics takes a lot of time and energy.
Also, Social Security benefits young families who aren't earning money.
The student loan mess is terrible, but it's not a case of missing government funds but too many -- community colleges are in pretty good shape, but people borrow too much for useless private colleges thanks to modern marketing techniques and modern cultural nonsense about 4yr college degrees for all.
Also, a little perspective is in order. Millennials in
USA don't have a WWII or Vietnam war or Jim Crow laws or a big government supported KKK. They have the Internet and the rest of modern technology and high efficiency/productivity goods and services. Quality of life is pretty darn good compared to ancestors. It mostly feels bad due to wealth inequality, not absolute poverty.
We've got a lot of problems to solve, but this pearl clutching hand wringing for millennials is just MAGA without the red hats, ignoring the reality of how the 99% lived in the past.
Millennials in the USA and many other allied nations have the wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, with additionally European youth dealing with the refugees caused by said wars and the right wing that has risen by piggybacking on said refugees.
We don't have Jim-Crow-Laws but still disproportionate amounts of PoC and immigrants being targeted by police and systematically discriminated against by wider society.
We don#t have government-supported KKK, at least not openly, but at least Germans have groups of Nazis outright murdering people ("NSU" if you're interested) and presumably aided or at least protected by secret services. Most of Islamist terrorists across Europe turned out to be known to police, most notoriously Anis A. (the Berlin murderer).
> It mostly feels bad due to wealth inequality, not absolute poverty.
That's the core point. We see the ultra rich flaunt their riches to the point of obscenity while spreading "you can get rich too" while knowing we can't ever realistically rise to that level of richdoms (and we know it, too, which makes it even more obscene). Corporate exec make way over 100x, some probably over 1000x, the money as the cleaning maid wiping their toilets. This disconnect is it what riles up young generations.
If you go back far enough, sure. For most Americans economic conditions have been downhill since the 1970s, though.
What is the catalyst for any action/change in regards to reversing these trends? I feel like I've been reading versions of the same article for the last 10 years with negligible change.
One of the reasons I suspect AOC gets so much attention (apart from her very unabashed personality) is because she represents the Millenial generation, always ridiculed as being "lazy" and "coddled". Finally someone in Power who:
* is a millenial and
* understands millenial priorities
Ironically, the policy proposals that the most outspoken Millenials embrace would actually strengthen programs that help the older generation.
I don't think most have a serious position worth considering. I say this as someone lumped in this demographic whipping boy.
There is plenty to be legitimately angry about too. I just don't trust this generation to come up with solutions that aren't literally "let's try real communism. This time it will work!"
What makes you feel this generation would go that far? I haven't seen anything that's led me to believe they think this way, in my understanding, they are more aware of and accepting of fundamentally "socialist" concepts such as government assistance and high-taxation. That's a far cry from communism.
Also, there are large and loud political movements pushing for Scandinavian-style democratic socialism which has been successful, it's simply dismissive to act like all millennials don't understand politics and are just trying to be edgy.
The United States government is coming out of a month-long shutdown because the idea with political traction (the big, beautiful wall) was completely unworkable.
Let's not underestimate what flies and doesn't fly in the arena of American political thought.
Politicians are fairly simple people at heart. If pandering to you will get them (re-)elected then they'll pander to you.
As of 2018 a couple can leave >$22 Million without paying any tax on it. That's enough for your children, their children and their children's children (and potentially on and on) to never have to work. Generational wealth like this is how we get and perpetuate "classes".
My unscientific opinion on this is that these articles will continue to appear as living standards in rich countries continues to fall due to living costs outstripping wage growth, and the outsourcing of more and more work to other countries.
The wealth enjoyed by the rich world in the post-WW2 order has been built up by international cooperative agreements done to maintain peace but also generate income and build markets (Highway Bill, GI Bill, Marshall Plan, EEA trading bloc, GATT/WTO etc).
These days, it feels like we are experiencing the last trickle of dividends from those days. The structure of the economy has been predominantly service-oriented economy for decades now, but now it's about doing more with fewer people.
Realistically, I don't know what kinds of jobs will continue to provide middle-class salaries in the volumes that were available before. If you worked as a customer support rep, you've been offshored. If you worked as a trucker, automation is coming; you won't be fired, but you won't be driving as much and you won't get paid as much.
Thousands of trucker and miners looking to 'retrain' as front-end developers is a pipe dream pushed by politicians since time immemorial. There simply aren't enough jobs in those roles.
To me, net worth by age group is the troubling chart. If I read this correctly, median net worth for all age groups under 44 years old is significantly negative. The scale isn't clear since the chart is indexed. What do you think is the source of so much debt? My guess: student loans and home mortgages.
That's not what that graph shows. It's the cumulative change in net worth. For example, it's saying that the net worth (infl adj) of 55-64s hasn't changed since 1989. Not that it's zero.
guess which age group is not represented in congress
What I've noticed is that there is a huge inequality gap among millennials as well, a lot of millennials have crushing debt and poor job prospects yes -- but others get a job at FAANG at 21. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out as millennials age.
The problem with this beyond the wealth gap is you're going to see an over correction with hard left policies. This is going to be yet another interesting election cycle. I just hope enough moderates remain to create reasonable solutions to these problems.