HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Let me explain to you wha...

Sat Feb 23, 2013, 05:53 PM

Let me explain to you what happened to pensions [View all]

A couple of days ago I was chatting with an old friend who's husband has just retired and we got around to pensions and IRAs and 401Ks. Things have changed, I told her, and she certainly understood that, but we are both of an age that saw the last of decent retirement systems. She simply did not understand just what had happened to us all but she clearly understood that younger folks than ourselves do not have nearly the retirement security that she and her's and me and mine share.

So I explained to her what happened and it a near miracle to see her eyes just open up. She got it, she finally understood what happened to us and how we got shafted again. My explanation was really very basic, very simple. I thought I'd repeat it here just for general discussion.

Here goes. The first thing that has to be understood is that no business on earth earns money simply because it has a name and it exists. Nope, the earnings of businesses comes directly from the labor of their employees. It is the people, every single individual who works there, who, in the name of the company, by producing goods or providing services or accomplishing the myriad of administrative tasks required to support the endeavor who earn the money. Back when pensions were the norm a part of the money that each employee earned was put into a pension account for that employee, which accumulated over the years and would eventually be converted into an annuity or possibly a formula was applied to the employee's employment history and a monthly check resulted. So a small amount of each employee's earnings was retained and were invested in the employee's name and returned to him or her later in the form of the monthly check.

But then we got the 401k, a fund into which the employee paid directly. And how is that different? Well, the employee is still doing the same work as before but now instead of that part of his or her compensation that used to to into is pension fund being his money we find it is being retained by the employer as profit. This means the employee is left to go out and buy his or her own retirement with the pay they do manage to get. So basically the employee's earnings have been directly transferred to the stockholder's of the company. And the 401k itself? You might just as well play roulette for as well as most of them perform, with many of them not even beating inflation.

And that is basically it. Another transfer of wealth from the working person to the master's of the universe. What this nation needs is not a consumer protection Agency, it needs a worker protection Agency, and DOL or DOJ certainly do not fill the bill.

79 replies, 8275 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 79 replies Author Time Post
Reply Let me explain to you what happened to pensions [View all]
1-Old-Man Feb 2013 OP
Hassin Bin Sober Feb 2013 #1
hedgehog Feb 2013 #2
rgbecker Feb 2013 #5
OKNancy Feb 2013 #13
doc03 Feb 2013 #29
brush Feb 2013 #48
doc03 Feb 2013 #56
dixiegrrrrl Feb 2013 #11
hedgehog Feb 2013 #37
dixiegrrrrl Feb 2013 #49
Sekhmets Daughter Feb 2013 #3
southernyankeebelle Feb 2013 #4
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #19
southernyankeebelle Feb 2013 #26
mountain grammy Feb 2013 #30
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #57
jumptheshadow Feb 2013 #6
tblue Feb 2013 #8
xtraxritical Feb 2013 #18
HiPointDem Feb 2013 #35
jeff47 Feb 2013 #53
tblue Feb 2013 #7
FarCenter Feb 2013 #9
1-Old-Man Feb 2013 #10
SheilaT Feb 2013 #20
upaloopa Feb 2013 #12
secondvariety Feb 2013 #36
trekbiker Feb 2013 #64
lonestarnot Feb 2013 #14
pansypoo53219 Feb 2013 #15
socialindependocrat Feb 2013 #16
gadjitfreek Feb 2013 #17
OutNow Feb 2013 #21
jtuck004 Feb 2013 #38
love_katz Feb 2013 #68
CarmanK Feb 2013 #22
Curmudgeoness Feb 2013 #23
adieu Feb 2013 #24
annabanana Feb 2013 #25
patrice Feb 2013 #27
snappyturtle Feb 2013 #28
reformist2 Feb 2013 #31
antigop Feb 2013 #71
reformist2 Feb 2013 #77
antigop Feb 2013 #78
maggiesfarmer Feb 2013 #32
jtuck004 Feb 2013 #40
laundry_queen Feb 2013 #46
uponit7771 Feb 2013 #33
midnight Feb 2013 #34
jtuck004 Feb 2013 #39
Nye Bevan Feb 2013 #41
obxhead Feb 2013 #42
leveymg Feb 2013 #43
JeffHead Feb 2013 #44
grantcart Feb 2013 #45
antigop Feb 2013 #50
grantcart Feb 2013 #61
antigop Feb 2013 #69
jeff47 Feb 2013 #54
grantcart Feb 2013 #58
antigop Feb 2013 #70
jeff47 Feb 2013 #79
Gidney N Cloyd Feb 2013 #60
grantcart Feb 2013 #62
Purplehazed Feb 2013 #47
antigop Feb 2013 #51
antigop Feb 2013 #52
on point Feb 2013 #55
1-Old-Man Feb 2013 #75
CrispyQ Feb 2013 #59
Cary Feb 2013 #63
alfredo Feb 2013 #65
Sherman A1 Feb 2013 #66
Hiski Feb 2013 #67
SmileyRose Feb 2013 #72
Mickey Disme Feb 2013 #73
WillyT Feb 2013 #74
Mickey Disme Feb 2013 #76