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Off the Editor’s Desk 5-10-2023

Are you prepared for a long retirement?

As we grow older, did we save enough money to see us through our declining years? Did we squirrel away funds into some retirement account to supplement our Social Security check?

Some time ago I was watching a television talk show, I don’t remember which one, but the discussion was around the aging population of this country. It was brought up that some person already alive in this country would live to be 150 years old.

In an obituary published in the Colfax Messenger last week for Mildred E. Packer, who passed away on April 26 at the Colfax Health and Rehabilitation Center at the age of 109, brought to mind that as our population is aging, can our retirement system provide the needed funds for those old people to live on. I am especially concerned about the Social Security. Because Social Security, taxes today’s working people to fund those who are collecting Social Security now.

An American Community Survey estimated there are 55,892,014 people over the age of 65 in the United States out of a total population of 331,893,745 or 16.8 percent of the population are over 65. According to information that I found on the Internet, it stated that some 158 million Americans are in some form of employment.

So that means that less than half of the population is supporting the other half and funding all of us that are receiving a monthly deposit from Social Security.

So how solvent is this country’s Social Security system. If it is like the finances of our government, we are all in trouble. According to the 2023 annual report of the Social Security Board of Trustees, the surplus in the trust funds that disburse retirement and other Social Security benefits will be depleted by 2034 that is one year earlier than was projected in their 2022 report.

So, what is the maximum amount that you can receive a month from Social Security? If you wait until you are 70 or more, the max is $3,895 monthly, and I do not know what your income level needs to be to get to that figure.

So, if you are planning on how to live on our retirement income, you should contact Social Security and then plan on another income source or two for your declining years, or do like me, keep on working and that has kept me out of jail and the poor house.

I looked up how the American populist is doing for saving for retirement and I am going to quote what I found. 

“Proper planning is essential to creating financial retirement security. But, according to a September 2019 ‘’ survey, 64 percent of Americans risk reaching retirement age with less than $10,000 saved. The same survey found that nearly half of Americans polled had no money set aside for their later years right now.

So, my lame advice is that if you are in this group, march right to your local bank and set up some sort of retirement account. It will make your future look brighter and you might save some money on your income tax.

Thanks for reading!     ~Carlton

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