For decades we were warned that when the Baby Boomers started to retire that this country would be facing a retirement crisis of unprecedented magnitude. Well, that day has arrived ladies and gentlemen. Back on January 1st, the Baby Boomers began to retire and more than 10,000 of them will be retiring every single day for years to come. Most of them have not saved up nearly enough money for retirement. At the same time, private sector pension plans are failing all over the place, hundreds of state and local government pension plans from coast to coast are woefully underfunded, and the Social Security system is on the road to complete and total disaster. A massive wave of humanity is hitting retirement age at a moment in history when the U.S. economy is coming apart at the seams. We do not have the resources to keep the promises that we made to the Baby Boomers, and most of them have not made adequate preparations for retirement. What we have is a gigantic mess on our hands, and millions of Baby Boomers are going to find retirement to be very bitter and very painful.
A lot of younger Americans just assume that Social Security is enough to take care of the needs of elderly Americans. But that is just not the case.
Have you ever tried to live solely on a Social Security check?
It is not easy. The truth is that those checks are just not that large.
The following comes directly from the Social Security Administration....
The average monthly Social Security benefit for a retired worker was about $1,177 at the beginning of 2011.
Could you live on less than 300 dollars a week?
And keep in mind that the $1,177 monthly figure is just an average. Many receive a lot less than that.
In addition, Social Security benefits have been seriously squeezed by inflation in recent years. The cost of food and other basics has risen briskly and Social Security benefits have not.
Today, many elderly Americans have to make a choice between buying food, heating their homes or buying medicine that they need. They simply do not have enough money to do all of them.
It would have been nice if all of the Baby Boomers had been busy saving money for retirement all these years, but that just did not happen. In fact, the Baby Boomers as a group are trillions of dollars short of what they need for retirement.
So why doesn't the U.S. government step in to help them out?
Well, the reality of the situation is that the U.S. government is flat broke. The federal government is now over 15 trillion dollars in debt. During the Obama administration so far, the U.S. government has accumulated more new debt than it did from the time that George Washington took office to the time that Bill Clinton took office.
Lawmakers are already looking at ways to make the Social Security program less costly. No, the federal government is not going to be riding to the rescue.
In fact, it will be a minor miracle if the Social Security program is able to survive until the end of this decade, and it will be a major miracle if the Social Security program is able to survive until 2030.
As for myself, I do not believe that I will ever see a single penny from Social Security, and many other working age Americans feel the same way.
Retirement is supposed to be a fun time, but sadly most Americans that are approaching retirement age are not going to have any "golden years" to look forward to.
Rather, millions of elderly Americans are going to find the years ahead absolutely agonizing as they struggle just to survive.
The following are 25 bitter and painful facts about the coming Baby Boomer retirement crisis that will blow your mind....
#1 According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, 46 percent of all American workers have less than $10,000 saved for retirement, and 29 percent of all American workers have less than $1,000 saved for retirement.
#2 According to a recent poll conducted by Americans for Secure Retirement, 88 percent of all Americans are worried about "maintaining a comfortable standard of living in retirement". Last year, that figure was at 73 percent.
#3 A study conducted by Boston College's Center for Retirement Research has found that American workers are $6.6 trillion short of what they need to retire comfortably.
#4 Today, one out of every six elderly Americans lives below the federal poverty line.
#5 On January 1st, 2011 the very first Baby Boomers started to retire. For almost the next 20 years, more than 10,000 Baby Boomers will be retiring every single day.
#6 At the moment, only about 13 percent of all Americans are 65 years of age or older. By 2030, that number will soar to 18 percent.
#7 Right now, there are somewhere around 40 million senior citizens. By 2050 that number is projected to increase to 89 million.
#8 Back in 1991, half of all American workers planned to retire before they reached the age of 65. Today, that number has declined to 23 percent.