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Forum Post: European retirement ages under fire, will the US see retirement at 70?

Posted 11 years ago on Feb. 17, 2012, 12:09 p.m. EST by foreeverLeft (-264)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

As countries try to balance budgets, retirement ages are under attack. The 50 and 55 retirement for Greeks have really taken it on the chin even in Europe. Do you think our government will increase the retirement age to 70 in the US?




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[-] 4 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

Raising the retirement age in the US is completely ignorant. We currently have too many elderly that are homeless as it is. You have a lot of people that lost jobs and lost all of the money put in for retirement. They are too young to qualify but are not hired due to ageism.

If there is one thing that people need to get, it is that just because the retirement age is raised does not mean that they will be employed.

[-] 4 points by Faithntruth (997) 11 years ago

Excellent point about agism. It is almost impossible to prove that a company let a person go or did not hire them due to age, which makes the law to protect against agism just about useless. Perceptions about older workers are mostly negatively biased, but also tend to be wrong. Older workers are often more willing to work for lower pay because they are not supporting children, and they often have a wealth of knowledge to share with younger or new employees. They tend to take less personal time than younger people. A balanced work force of mixed aged employees is really the most beneficial to a company. One of my oldest coworkers also happened to be the physically strongest! No frail old man, was he!

[-] 4 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

It is almost impossible to prove. You are so right. Everybody inside any company knows it and sees it. The first people to go are those that are at the top and those at the bottom. So, if you have someone that is five or even 1 or 2 years from retirement they get nailed right away after so many years of service. Sometimes they are forced into part time work and know in advance that they are screwing them on pensions or on putting them in a position so that they are forced to quit. Then, if they quit they can screw them out of unemployment benefits.

I think the negative perceptions are intentionally put out there to justify the above.

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23729) 11 years ago

Great post, GirlFriday. You make a very valid point that there are not enough jobs for older folks to remain employed. And, keeping people in the workforce longer ultimately hurts all the younger folks.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

There are/were jobs that many of them had. It was merely looking at those that had dedicated x amount of years and made the most money and had accrued the most vacation time and cutting them for that reason only. It is a crappy thing to do. In doing so they jacked themselves out of years of experience.

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (23729) 11 years ago


[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

So true. Another persistent bias age discrimination.

Besides many jobs are physically punishing. Especially after doing them for many years.

Lets not get into supporting people being worked to death. There is already plenty of abuse of the worker already.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago


[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 11 years ago

Good to have you back here with us.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

Thanks. :D

[-] -1 points by Mooks (1985) 11 years ago

I kind of like the way the US is doing it now, with a slowly increasing retirement age. People born 1960 or later are statistically more likely to live longer be healthier longer. I don't think it unreasonable to slowly raise the retirement age as life expectancy goes up. It has to, otherwise SS's ratio of people paying in to people taking out will go down even faster than it already is, and that is obviously not going to be sustainable.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

It is very unreasonable. Again, because raising the retirement age does not mean that these people will be employed.

[-] 1 points by Mooks (1985) 11 years ago

I see your point. I just don't see how it is financially feasible not to raise it. People are spending more and more years being retired before they die relative to the amount of years they paid into the system.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

Lift the cap.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 11 years ago

Why is it that the simplest, most correct solution, always escapes them??

If it gets too fat, we could even talk about using the excess to fund universal health care.

End the CAP on FICA!

[-] 1 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago


[-] 0 points by Mooks (1985) 11 years ago

That would basically be a 12.4% tax increase on those making over $100,000 a year. Maybe raise the cap to like a $1 million per year, it would still raise a lot more money and not hurt upper middle class families.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

How unfortunate. Lift the cap and the 2038 problems are resolved.

[-] 1 points by richardkentgates (3269) 11 years ago

"To understand retirement trends, researchers monitor labor force participation over time. Such studies reveal that a larger share of 65-year-old men* worked in 1940 than their counterparts do today"


His argument doesn't account for life expectancy of the elder that return to the workforce from retirement or the lower life expectancy of people that perform labor as a career. Just FYI.

[-] 1 points by Mooks (1985) 11 years ago

I doubt that laborers really have a much lower life expectancy. You would think the exercise would be good for them compared to sitting on their ass all day. This article supports that:


And even if laborers do have a lower life expectancy, it is surely still increasing. Those are more years in retirement taking out money relative to years actually working and paying into the system.

[-] 0 points by B76RT (-357) 11 years ago

you can retire before the optimum retirement age, but you will get less in S.S.

[-] 1 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

Yes, I know.

[-] -2 points by JanitorInaDrum (134) 11 years ago

Well, anyone that lost money due to the stock market thieves should be much smarter now. I'm sure at least 95% of all Americans must have relieved Wall Street and DC of the responsibility of handling their savings.

No? They haven't? You mean more than half of all Americans still have money tied up in the stock markets?

I certainly won't shed a tear if they get epically gouged this time and lose every nickle of it. Why would anyone be saddened by the folly of fools?

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 11 years ago

Once upon a time people had money that came out of their check that went towards pensions. The financial sector couldn't get their little hands on it. Then there was this brilliant idea. So, they sent in Financial advisers to give little classes on how wonderfully superb they were. Now, the people or students in those classes were/are highly trained in their fields. They are not stockbrokers. Day to day they do their jobs and someone else handles that money. Even now, there are places where the money is automatically taken out and you cannot say anything like, just save it I don't want to buy stocks. It isn't an option.

[-] -2 points by PretendHitGirI (13) 11 years ago

Sure you can, nobody has to play their game, most choose to do so, foolishly I might add since everyone knows the money doesn't exist.

All you are describing is the true nature of the average sheeples, unable to think and handle their own affairs.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (23729) 4 weeks ago

Millions protest raising retirement age in France.




So. Question is. Why do Americans, who see themselves as such free-spirited individualists lay down like doormats when things like their pension age are taken away from them? I'd love an answer to this, though it is a rhetorical question of course.

The French have never forgotten the sacred human contract laid out by Jean-Jacques Rousseau.


The Social Contract, with its famous opening sentence 'Man is born free, and he is everywhere in chains', stated instead that people could only experience true freedom if they lived in a civil society that ensured the rights and well-being of its citizens. Being part of such a society involved submitting to the general will – a force that transcended individuals and aimed to uphold the common good.

[-] 1 points by ImNotMe (1488) 2 weeks ago

Massive respect to the French who never forget THEY HAD A REVOLUTION 200+ years ago!

But they do not rest on its laurels, thinking that it was perfect the first time & so renew their societal priorities, if and when they think it is collectively needed & so are now on their 5th Republic!!

In the USA and also in the UK, people subject to 'Anglophone Neoliberalism' allow their rights to be removed with hardly a grunt and so the retirement age in both countries is 67 ffs!!!

acta non verba!

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (23729) 2 weeks ago

French unions have much to teach the rest of Europe and America too.


Even if they don't fully succeed, they are victorious in speaking for the majority of French who still fully believe in the Social Contract, something the French government, the wealthy and elite will not forget.

[-] 1 points by ImNotMe (1488) 2 weeks ago

Again consider "The Social Contract, with its famous opening sentence 'Man is born free, and he is everywhere in chains' -- stated instead that people could only experience true freedom if they lived in a civil society that ensured the rights and well-being of its citizens. Being part of such a society involved submitting to the general will – a force that transcended individuals and aimed to uphold the common good." - Because it needs repeating! And from your link:

"If French democracy were in a healthier state, Emmanuel Macron’s pension reform legislation -- would have already been scrapped by now. Broadly unpopular from the outset, his plans to raise the country’s retirement eligibility age from 62 to 64 have now triggered a protest movement historically large even by French standards – lasting nearly two months."

Ending "And no matter what happens in the coming days,they’ll have sent a strong message to the rest of Europe, as politicians across the continent start to mull over similar reforms; instead of debating cuts to retirement benefits, it would be much wiser to reflect about how to expand them." Finally please note:

per aspera - ad justitia!

[-] 1 points by JoeTheFarmer (2654) 11 years ago

I am working hard and saving my money so I can retire when I want. I don't think there should be a "retirement age". Why should the government take my money away most of my life and give it back to me when I am old?

[-] -1 points by JanitorInaDrum (134) 11 years ago

You can stop working any damned time you choose to do so. Oh wait, you sheeples cannot until your Corp US government says they will allow you your pittance of a social security check?

Too bad for you folks.