It?s a natural tendency to look back at the end of each year to take stock of what?s been and then look forward to what will be. For many American seniors, that exercise will inevitably lead to relief (Whew, we made it through 2010) and trepidation (Will next year be just a difficult?).A new survey from the Pew Research Center reports America?s largest generation, Baby Boomers, are pretty downbeat?even more so than other adults?about the future.
Boomers are also more downbeat than other adults about the long-term trajectory of their lives — and their children’s. Some 21% say their own standard of living is lower than their parents’ was at the age they are now; among all non-Boomer adults, just 14% feel this way, according to a May 2010 Pew Research survey. The same survey found that 34% of Boomers believe their own children will not enjoy as good a standard of living as they themselves have now; by contrast, just 21% of non-Boomers say the same.2 Economically, Boomers are the most likely among all age groups to say they lost money on investments since the Great Recession began. Baby Boomers also are the most likely (57%) to say their household finances have worsened. And a higher share of Boomers than older Americans (but not younger ones) say they have cut spending in the past year. Among those Baby Boomers ages 50 to 61 who are approaching the end of their working years, six-in-ten say they may have to postpone retirement. According to employment statistics, the older workforce is growing more rapidly than the younger workforce.
And if Washington fiscal hawks have their way in the New Year, future generations of Americans will face even longer work lives and less Social Security benefits in their retirement, meaning even more economic uncertainty than workers and retirees are facing now. Hard to imagine, right?This is not the kind of future working Americans have dreamed for themselves or their children. That?s why the National Committee will mark the New Year with a new campaign to remind Washington that cutting Social Security benefits is NOT fiscal responsibility. We?ll mobilize our members and advocates as part of our National Committee Truth Squad to ensure the White House and Congress understands cutting benefits for millions of middle-class Americans under the guise of deficit reduction is simply not an option. We?ll have more details about our 2011 Social Security campaign the first week of January. Until then?