A MIND FOREVER VOYAGING THROUGH STRANGE SEAS OF THOUGHT, ALONE


This is my second blog.

My first blog chronicled my experiences over three years caring for my dad as he lived through and finally died from Alzheimer's. That is the book that is for sale.

This second blog kind of chronicles of life, what it is like to start your life over in your late 50's. After caretaking, you are damaged, file bankruptcy, and the world doesn't care what you did. After 8 months of unemployment, you wake each day knowing the world doesn't want you. Finally you do find a job, 5 weeks before homelessness, but doing what you did 30 years ago and getting paid what you did 30 years ago. So this is starting over.



The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

JOHN LOEFFLER WAS RIGHT!

From the president's State of the Disillusioned speech.

 "Let's do more to help Americans save for retirement. Today, most workers don't have a pension. A Social Security check often isn't enough on its own.  And while the stock market has doubled over the last five years, that doesn't help folks who don't have 401(k)s.  That's why, tomorrow, I will direct the Treasury to create a new way for working Americans to start their own retirement savings: MyRA."  

"It's a new savings bond that encourages folks to build a nest egg.  MyRA guarantees a decent return with no risk of losing what you put in.  And if this Congress wants to help, work with me to fix an upside-down tax code that gives big tax breaks to help the wealthy save, but does little to nothing for middle-class Americans.   Offer every American access to an automatic IRA on the job, so they can save at work just like everyone in this chamber can."

I didn't watch or listen to the speech, so I apologize for just now finding out about this little myRA shenanigan.

People that knew me back in the old days, before Alzheimer's care taking, would roll their eyes and remember me warning everyone that one day the fed would be taking over the IRA's and 401k's of everyone in the nation as part of a pension guaranteed act.  Now in fairness, this was something I learned listening to Steel on Steel.  John Loeffler was talking about this around 2003 or 2004.  He'd read a white paper from some think tank about the Pension Guarantee Act of 20xx; where all private and public pensions, along with social security would be rolled into one big pension fund for every retired american, illegal mexican, and whomever else was getting a piece of the pie.

Now most would immediately think, "gee, if the SS trust fund is bankrupt and most private and public pensions are bankrupt or severely underfunded, how is this going to work?"  Well, the way it works is you also confiscate all the IRA and 401k's people hold with about 5 or 6 trillion dollars stashed away and include them.

And when I would tell people about this, they would look at me like I was nuts, that the government can't do something like that and I'd just shrug and ask what planet have you been living on, fine, don't believe me, just wait and remember I warned you.

Now the workaround for this little plan is rather than directly confiscating the IRA/401k plans, the government could simply insist that 50% or 80% of the IRA/401k investments must be in government bonds - to protect people from market crashes.  Always to protect the people, don't you know.  Certainly not about an immediate influx of 4 trillion dollars to the feds.  Cause everyone knows a good solid backed by the faith and credit of the US government bond paying 1% while inflation is really around 8-12% is a great investment.

But what Obama proposed in the State of the Disillusion speech last month is something else entirely.  And it was such a magicians trick Houdini is spinning in his grave:

"Let's do more to help Americans save for retirement. Today, most workers don't have a pension. A Social Security check often isn't enough on its own.  And while the stock market has doubled over the last five years, that doesn't help folks who don't have 401(k)s.  That's why, tomorrow, I will direct the Treasury to create a new way for working Americans to start their own retirement savings: MyRA."  

Okay, first it is about how great the market has been for Obama, which when you are pumping 8 trillion into the market over 5 years I'd hope it was going up, it's not like it's a solar power or wind company you know, but doesn't help folks who don't have 401k's.  Well, anyone working can open an IRA right now, defer money to retirement, and been invested in the market.  Why aren't they?  Maybe because the cost of living in this country is going up so much, the cost of food, housing, and oh yea, Obamacare, that people can't save a frigging penny.  Hey, Mr. President, when you change health care so a policy that was 2500 deductible and cost someone 300 a month is now a 5k deductible and costs 800 a month, do you really think it's the IRA laws fault people can't save?

So what is the new myRA?

"It's a new savings bond that encourages folks to build a nest egg.  MyRA guarantees a decent return with no risk of losing what you put in.  And if this Congress wants to help, work with me to fix an upside-down tax code that gives big tax breaks to help the wealthy save, but does little to nothing for middle-class Americans.   Offer every American access to an automatic IRA on the job, so they can save at work just like everyone in this chamber can."

Did you catch it?  Paragraph one is how great the market has been, investing in stocks like the elite can do and poor don't, and the new myRA is….. a savings bond.  NOTHING TO DO WITH THE STOCK MARKET!  But you are guaranteed a decent return, let's look it up the 2 year is less than 1/2 of 1% and the ten year is less than 3%.  Decent?  When Clinton took office, people didn't want to 'lock up' their money long term in bonds paying 7.5%.  Old geezers like me remember, as kids, a passbook savings account paid 5%.

As for tax codes helping the wealthy, sure they do.  But that has nothing to do with what the problem is here because any person can open an IRA right now.  And most jobs offer full time workers 401k with some matching of some sort.  It's not the system of saving for retirement that is broken, it is the SYSTEM that is broke.  People are not thinking of retirement, they are thinking of making it to the end of the month because they lost their job of 25 years, now work part time jobs that provide no benefits, and have learned their health care costs are tripling and we are suppose to sigh, "thank you master for setting up a mandatory savings plan paying me less than 1% interest!"

What you mean mandatory?  Oh, did you miss that line?  Every American access to an automatic IRA on the job.  Great, so now we don't even get a choice, it will automatically be deducted to go into a myRA to buy government bonds.

Now, for those imaginary readers out there who are doubting me and thinking it is a good idea, here is a little lesson for you.  For 80 years, the government has withdrawn a mandatory percentage of paychecks to fund Social Security.  Beginning in the 1960's, under LBJ, the government starting taking out all the surplus money each year and putting in an IOU into SS - in other words, a government bond.

And how did that work out for you?  You betcha.  It's broke.  Six trillion of our debt is SS IOU's that have to be paid back.  And now they want to do an automatic, mandatory, new chunk of your paycheck out of your pocket to be taken by the government to buy savings bonds so the government can spend the money today and leave it to someone else down the road to work to pay your retirement income.

I will bet my left nut that congress and other members of DC, will be exempted from this mandatory tax.

I've warned friends to start getting money out of the IRA's and 401k's now, been warning them for years, and soon it will be too late.

PS   Anyone catch the story that the Mint was only able to make about 4 million worth of silver dollars last month, down 3 million from a year ago?  Couldn't get enough silver.  Just saying.

I'm going to sing my song
And sing it all day long
A song that never ends
How can I tell you, all the things inside my head.

The change in these past years
Has made me see our world
In many different ways
How can I tell you, love can change our destiny.

Love can change the world
Love can change your life
Do what makes you happy
Do what you know is right
And love with all your might
Before it's too late

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