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Aging Nation

The Economics and Politics of Growing Older in America

James H. Schulz and Robert H. Binstock

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With the impending retirement of some 76 million baby boomers in a period of huge government deficits, public anxiety about the social and economic health of an aging nation is widespread. The policy debates are contentious—from deciding who should receive limited subsidized housing and medical services to the ongoing battle over "saving" Social Security and other entitlement programs. Some policy makers and pundits forecast disaster: elderly people will be put out to pasture with inadequate health care and financial resources, and a crumbling social welfare infrastructure will implode under…

With the impending retirement of some 76 million baby boomers in a period of huge government deficits, public anxiety about the social and economic health of an aging nation is widespread. The policy debates are contentious—from deciding who should receive limited subsidized housing and medical services to the ongoing battle over "saving" Social Security and other entitlement programs. Some policy makers and pundits forecast disaster: elderly people will be put out to pasture with inadequate health care and financial resources, and a crumbling social welfare infrastructure will implode under the strain of intergenerational conflict.

In Aging Nation, renowned experts James H. Schulz and Robert H. Binstock agree that there is considerable cause for concern but insist that a demographic tsunami is not inevitable. Drawing from the most current data, the authors provide an in-depth analysis of the nation's evolving private and public policies on retirement, faltering employer pensions, health care, workplace conditions, and entitlement programs. They consider such timely issues as poverty among older people, rejoining the workforce after retirement, Social Security and health care reform, as well as the rise of elderly people as a powerful political force.

Dispelling popular myths and misconceptions perpetrated by politicians and pundits, Schulz and Binstock consider the economic, political, and social challenges arising from the aging U.S. population, and present a balanced—and reassuring—assessment of the future.

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Aging Nation

James H. Schulz and Robert H. Binstock

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Reviews

Reviews

James Schulz and Robert Binstock unquestionably take places of honor among the elders of the gerontological tribe. Decades of study, teaching, civic engagement, writing, and speaking to peers, lawmakers, and informed citizens have secured their reputations as knowledgeable, judicious, respected experts on the economics and politics of aging, respectively.

This is a useful primer for any person who wants a sneak preview of the difficult days ahead.

This timely book offers a worthwhile read for anyone interested in learning about the history of pension plans in the United States, their administration, and their economic impact on retirees.

Highly recommended.

A very important and equally timely book. It provides an extremely insightful treatment of the economics and politics of growing older in America.

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About

Book Details

Publication Date
Status
Available
Trim Size
6
x
9
Pages
304
ISBN
9780801888649
Illustration Description
1 b&w photo, 8 line drawings
Table of Contents

Preface to the Paperback Edition
1. Baby Boomers and the Merchants of Doom
2. The Phony Threat of Population Aging
3. The Search for Security with Dignity
4. Dealing with Risk
5. The Company Pension

Preface to the Paperback Edition
1. Baby Boomers and the Merchants of Doom
2. The Phony Threat of Population Aging
3. The Search for Security with Dignity
4. Dealing with Risk
5. The Company Pension: Altruism or Self-Interest?
6. The Pension Lottery: Personal Pension Accounts
7. To Work or Not to Work: That Is the Question
8. Health and Longevity: What Lies Ahead?
9. A Gerontocracy? The Politics of Aging
10. Framing the Issues for an Aging Nation
Notes
Index

Author Bios
James H. Schulz
Featured Contributor

James H. Schulz, Ph.D.

James H. Schulz is a professor emeritus of economics at Brandeis University and the former president of the Gerontological Society of America. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Kleemier Award for outstanding research in the field of aging.
Robert H. Binstock
Featured Contributor

Robert H. Binstock, Ph.D.

Robert H. Binstock (1935–2011) was, at the time of his death, a professor of aging, health, and society at Case Western Reserve University, where he taught in the public health program and also in the departments of medicine, epidemiology and biostatistics, bioethics, and in the School of Nursing and the College of Arts and Sciences.
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