Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyLongman here analyzes the American economy in terms of entitlement programs for the old (Social Security, Medicare, etc.), which are paid for by the young. As the baby-boom generation marches toward retirement, and as human longevity increases every year, it will be impossible to sustain current benefits, the author warns. He poses related dilemmas: Will a higher rate of personal savings fight inflation or bring on recession? Is a ``Buy Now'' (on credit) outlook better than old-time thrift morality? Does immigration add capital or drain income? Regardless of the answers, he notes, the pension tab awaits payment. Although Longman seems to touch all bases, his assumptive certitudes about the future are potentially flawed, like Jefferson's agricultural millennium (to every man a farm) or the prophecies heard since World War II of another Great Depression. Longman is a consultant to AGE, a Washington, D.C., lobby group. (August 28)
Library Journal - Library JournalThe aging of the population, increasing poverty, declining educational standards, and massive budget deficits have contributed to a looming social crisis in which the support of the elderly is becoming too costly for today's younger workers to bear. The large number of baby boomers who'll retire early in the next century may find themselves destitute. Longman offers sensible alternatives to intergenerational inequality, including a national health care system, an educational system aimed at increased productivity, and restructuring tax and entitlement programs to promote long-term savings. He presents a reasonable, dispassionate analysis of the highly charged issue of group responsibility and the care of the aged. Highly recommended for public policy collections. Karl Helicher, Wolfsohn Memorial Lib., King of Prussia, Pa.
- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
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