I began the following post on March 1 of this year. I set it aside because I wasn’t so sure how to end it. But the recent squabbling about how to ensure the US will be able to pay its bills has me feeling pretty sure that the next generation is going to have a tough go at it.
I’m no economist. I stink at math. But, I’m pretty sure that my children’s generation is going to be worse off than my own. What makes me think this? Consider some facts
- Our consumption oriented world cannot keep the economy afloat…debt is ballooning out of control
- Educational costs are skyrocketing and do not necessarily bring greater income potential
- We make few things in this country so jobs in industries are shrinking. At some point, don’t we need to do something other than service jobs?
- Aging baby boomers (and those of us just a bit too young to be considered boomers) are going to need a lot of help given that many live hand to mouth and with a ton of debt.
- military cuts will mean fewer 18 year olds will be able to make a living in the service.
So, if my prediction is correct…what does it mean? I suspect it means families are going to continue to live together. I should probably expect my children to live with me a lot longer than I did with my parents (I went to college and never really moved back in except for 2 summer jobs). Families will need to pool their monies more. In some ways, this may not be all bad. Family members will grow in their sense of needing each other to accomplish daily life. This is how most of the rest of the world operates. Financial security, as much as I really do like it, may give us a false sense of independence that is neither healthy to our social or spiritual lives.
Okay, back to July 2011. Our lawmakers are playing chicken with the debt ceiling and hoping the other side will budge. No matter how this turns out, someone is going to get hurt. Probably our children’s generation.