Brian Fuller's blog on the media, marketing and content creation

Bills or blog? Bills or blog? Bills…

Posted on | February 6, 2008 | No Comments

…or blog? Tough choice and a surprising one given that I’ve been sitting at my laptop for nine hours just writing. I’m putting together a new-media guidebook for a client on a short deadline, so I cranked on it today. There’s few things I enjoy more than writing, even client stuff. Someday, somehow I will start building out those books I have in my head, for now I write and it pays the bills.
Speaking of bills, I’m no prognosticator, but I’ve been concerned for at least seven years that the bill’s coming due in this country with Baby Boomers headed toward retirement. In the past 18 months, the noise on this topic has ratcheted up. Yesterday’s New York Times turned it up to 11: Economy Fitful, Americans Start to Pay as They Go.
It’s simple math: when the biggest demographic starts to retire and die and the numbers behind them aren’t sufficient to keep up, something’s going to give. If there’s not enough people to buy their assets as they move into retirement, prices collapse (supply v. demand) and people get hurt. Horrifying thought, but our kids may yet have to support us. But at the same time, an influx of population might ease the economics. Oh, wait. We don’t like immigrants. So that idea’s out.
Loring Wirbel poked a few eyes yesterday in a great post at Icono-Curmedgeon-Clast: There ain’t no free lunches.

We have gotten very used to the idea of free lunches in our lives, particularly since the advent of the Internet…If you wave a magic wand, you don’t have to pay anyone, right?

A lot these problems solve themselves if (when) we experience another burst of innovation, like semiconductors brought us in the 1980s and 1990s. Maybe this time it’s biomed.
But for now, 10 percent of Cleveland’s housing stock lies vacant and 3 percent of the country’s. Repossession is the word of the day.
But for Boomers, living simply and within their means might be the new lifestyle–if they can only make it hip and trendy. Oh, wait, their parents already did that, having lived through the Depression.
Never mind.
My dad’s side of the family didn’t have a problem during the Depression. My mother’s side, second-generation Irish living in Oakland, muddled through because they had boarders and an extra flat they could rent in a so-so neighborhood. But my mother’s best friend, my godmother, was in an Irish family of seven. She remembers toast and water for months on end and the thrill of having soup at my mom’s house.
It won’t be that bad (I hope), but somewhere between that extreme and conspicuous consumption lies a decent life.

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No Responses to “Bills or blog? Bills or blog? Bills…”

  1. Anonymous
    February 11th, 2008 @ 10:15 am

    The US isn’t the only place where this is a huge looming problem. The problem is so huge in Japan that they’re turning to robotics to fill positions such as receptionists, home health care and to fill slots in nursing home staff.

    There’s really so much that can be said about what lies ahead of us and how weathering it conflicts with current Federal Government focus.

    Excellent post!

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