The Coming Generational Storm: What You Need to Know about America's Economic Future

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This paperback edition of The Coming Generational Storm has been revised and updated and includes a new foreword by the authors. In 2030, as 77 million baby boomers hobble into old age, walkers will outnumber strollers; there will be twice as many retirees as there are today but only 18 percent more workers. How will Social Security and Medicare function with fewer working taxpayers to support these programs? According to Laurence Kotlikoff and Scott Burns, if our government continues on the course it has set, we'll see skyrocketing tax rates, drastically lower retirement and health benefits, high inflation, a rapidly depreciating dollar,unemployment, and political instability. The government has lost its compass, say Kotlikoff and Burns, and the Bush administration's spending and tax policies have charted a course straight into the coming generational storm.Kotlikoff and Burns take us on a guided tour of our generational imbalance: There's the "fiscal child abuse" that will double the taxes paid by the next generation. There's also the "deficit delusion" of the under-reported national debt. And none of this, they say,will be solved by any of the popularly touted remedies: cutting taxes, technological progress, immigration, foreign investment, or the elimination of wasteful government spending. Kotlikoff and Burns propose bold new policies, including meaningful reforms of Social Security and Medicare, that are simple, straightforward, and geared to attract support from both political parties.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...Filled with advice on protecting what you've got and making it grow before and during retirement." Chris Tucker Dallas Morning News

" The Coming Generational Storm...lays out in easy-to-understand prose why Social Security and Medicare need a comprehensive overhaul." Gregory D. Hess Los Angeles Times

"...Kotlikoff proffer plenty of evidence to back up their claims." Anne Wagner National Journal

"The policy solutions of Kotlikoff and Burns are specific and ingenious...." Michael Mandel Business Week

"...[A] serious attempt to look at a problem that most people are trying to ignore." Alan Beattie Financial Times

"excellent and scary" Nicholas Kristof New York Times

"... Filled with advice on protecting what you've got and making it grow before and during retirement." Chris Tucker Dallas Morning News

"Having painted a fiscal picture as awful as 'Guernica,' the authors unveil two bold plans....[An] engaging book." Todd G. Buchholz The Wall Street Journal

" The Coming Generational Storm lays out the problems in understandable language and compelling detail." The Washington Post

"...Kotlikoff and Burns proffer plenty of evidence to back up their claims." Anne Wagner National Journal

"The policy solutions of Kotlikoff and Burns are specific and ingenious..." Michael Mandel Business Week

"This is a book any serious investor should absorb and act upon." Jonathan Chevreau National Post

"This is a sobering look at an impending crisis with implications for all of us. Recommended for all collections." Stacey Marien Library Journal

"This may be the year's most important book. Essential." R. M.

Whaples CHOICE

Library Journal
Kotlikoff (economics, Boston Univ.) and personal finance writer Burns paint a bleak picture of the future U.S. economy. They claim that a "generational storm" will occur when baby boomers start to retire, leaving fewer people in the workforce to support the massive programs on which the boomers will be depending. Focusing on three programs that they feel are ailing-Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid-the authors argue that administrations past and present have misled the public on the health of the economy and that our children will be left with a huge financial burden if the government continues on its course of fiscal irresponsibility. The first chapter details the aging population, and the entire text is heavy on statistics and calculated financial scenarios. The authors end by outlining their own solutions to the troubled economy. This is a sobering look at an impending crisis with implications for all of us. Recommended for all collections.-Stacey Marien, American Univ. Lib., Washington, DC Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780262612081
  • Publisher: MIT Press
  • Publication date: 1/19/2005
  • Pages: 302
  • Sales rank: 685,640
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Laurence J. Kotlikoff, one of the nation's leading experts on fiscal policy,national saving, and personal finance and a columnist for Bloomberg, is Professor of Economics at Boston University. His writings and views appear in Forbes, the Economist, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and other leading media outlets.

Scott Burns's personal finance column has been nationally syndicated since 1981.

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Table of Contents

1 From Stollers to Walkers 1
2 Truth Is Worse Than Fiction 41
3 Driving in LA with a Map of New York 73
4 Popular Tonics, Snake Oils, and Other Easy Fixes 87
5 Going Critical 121
6 Changing Course 143
7 Grab Your Life Jacket 173
8 Securing Your Future 193
Epilogue 243
Notes 249
Index 261
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2007

    A Baby-Boomer wake up call message

    One of the author's, Scott Burns, was the financial columnist for the Dallas Morning News. I had read his column for many years so his book is an expansion of many of his column themes. The book's message is that there are some very serious shortfalls that will be happening with the current political leadership. There is every possibility of medicare, part B and social security going kaput. My advice is take matters in your own hands as the author's suggest and create your own wealth.

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