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Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?

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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#41

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:00 AM Post
Posts: 4814
Location: Madison, WI
100% agree with OSS on the college being overprescribed. Kind of what I meant with my line about how society kind of looks down on or shames people if they don't go to college. I've been saying that for years now, way too many kids go to normal college. And I witness people (cousins, friends etc) who are or were given a hard time if they don't want to go to college, would rather work in the trades or construction instead. That needs to change, there is nothing wrong with not going to college.

If you have any connections to industries needing to hire the trades, cement, construction and thing of that nature there is a massive shortage and they're way backed up on work. And, those people can now charge a heck of a price for that work. There is a niche/demand in the market big time in that space if any of ya'll have kids approaching these types of decisions of what to do with their lives after HS


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Online  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#42

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:00 AM Post
Posts: 1368
My then girlfriend (now wife) started with ~$80,000 in student loans in 2010. We’ll make the last $800 monthly payment next November (2020). If everyone’s outstanding federal student loans balances get wiped clean, I’m going to be pretty upset. [angry]


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#43

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:04 AM Post
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nodakfan17 said:
My then girlfriend (now wife) started with ~$80,000 in student loans in 2010. We’ll make the last $800 monthly payment next November (2020). If everyone’s outstanding federal student loans balances get wiped clean, I’m going to be pretty upset. [angry]


I won't lie, I have similar thoughts to this. I think at the end of the day you have to just be happy that it worked out and you are where you are. Wiping out loans won't solve problems for a lot of people are still largely unemployable in today's world. Harboring resentment about things like this just doesn't help you in any way whatsoever, but like I said, my mind goes there sometimes when that idea floats around. I don't think any solution will be that cut and dry.

Like I alluded to earlier though, more young people with less debt will is overall a good thing for everyone. They are then doing more of the things we need them to do to keep our economy strong. The back end of how things currently are is even worse. When the student loans are paid off at 48 and these people have $15 saved for retirement it is going to be 100x worse than this.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#44

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:12 AM Post
Posts: 4814
Location: Madison, WI
Think of this way your last monthly payment after 10 years is more money than what a 'boomer' had to pay for a whole semester of tuition in the 60s/70s. Plus, your rent now vs then is also 10X or more higher.

Totally agree with Nodak's issue there, there has to be a more creative solution than wiping away.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#45

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:22 AM Post
Posts: 12183
Considering 50% of baby boomers have zero saved for retirement I really wonder what they have blown their money all these years. College was cheap for them back in the day and many parts of cost of living were much less than today when taking into account what inflation said it should have been.

While I think these days people understand the importance of saving for retirement I still don't think it is really being hit on enough. People coming out of college don't understand the incredible importance of early saving for retirement. They have that "I got time" mindset and are willing to wait 5-10 years. Another concern that I am afraid will come to fruition is millennials not starting savings for their eventual children to go to college. I doubt many are running to save money for college 20 years from now while they are trying to pay off their own college every month as is.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#46

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:29 AM Post
Posts: 4814
Location: Madison, WI
Good point. Yes, I don't know how people are affording it. I look at young families with 2-4 kids and say the parents are a teacher and a nurse. Good solids jobs, they've done everything right their whole life. But combined income probably in the 100K neighborhood. Daycare is also crazy expensive now. I see these folks and I have no idea how they're doing it. How are they paying off their loans, their mortgage, daycare, cars, all the other kids costs, saving for retirement, saving for the kids college? I can only assume they're massively in debt, living basically month to month, and saving nothing. And have no money left for vacations or actual life enjoyment. Granted, they probably don't go on 10 vacations a year like I do so don't have that cost, but still. I can't imagine their balance sheets look good at all, unless they have help from their parents.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#47

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:30 AM Post
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Well, for one, there is no way the higher ed. system is unchanged in 20 years. It's just impossible. It's unsustainable and the enrollments would dip to such a level that these places will collapse. The Ivys will be fine but the others will not be able to survive. Something drastic will happen, but who knows what that will be.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#48

Posted: November 08, 2019, 9:41 AM Post
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OldSchoolSnapper said:
Well, for one, there is no way the higher ed. system is unchanged in 20 years. It's just impossible. It's unsustainable and the enrollments would dip to such a level that these places will collapse. The Ivys will be fine but the others will not be able to survive. Something drastic will happen, but who knows what that will be.


That may be true, but I don't think it will magically get cheap. Room and Board is expensive and from personal knowledge I know the typical college is in the red when it comes to residence life. They definitely aren't making money off people living on campus. ~$10k yearly tuition isn't that crazy in my opinion, but the $25k+ tuitions probably are not sustainable. Even at a cheap college you are talking $20k a year ($80k total) to go if you have to live on campus. If you only get basic federal loans that leaves $55k to find in the couch cushions. Just roughly speaking.

I am not even sure it can get cheaper. Is LSU going to demolish their water park? Are schools going to tear down the luxury living quarters? If people continue to fill these universities where is the motivation to change?


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#49

Posted: November 08, 2019, 10:24 AM Post
Posts: 803
Location: Washburn, WI
nodakfan17 said:
My then girlfriend (now wife) started with ~$80,000 in student loans in 2010. We’ll make the last $800 monthly payment next November (2020). If everyone’s outstanding federal student loans balances get wiped clean, I’m going to be pretty upset. [angry]


$800 monthly payment for her college loan, $1,000 on a mortgage, electric, heat, water, wifi, cable or other service, car payment, car insurance, house insurance, health insurance, food and gas. Probably up to around $3,000 per month at least. So entitled. We haven’t even talked about finding daycare for your kids, buying presents at birthdays and Christmas, or POSSIBLY trying to save up for maybe one family vacation per year.

The buying power of money has decreased, while minimum wage and wages in general haven’t increased. That’s why it’s so difficult to get by these days. Way too many low paying jobs, including ones that require additional education. Hard for a single millennial to get ahead to purchase their own place when rent itself takes 50-60% of what you make right away for most young people out of high school and college.

A person making minimum wage in 1991 of $4.25 per hour had the buying power of $7.84 today. Fast forward to today where $7.25 is the minimum, which (should) have the buying power of $13.37, but obviously doesn’t. Rent of a place for $250 back in the day for a person making $5 an hour in 1991 would take 50 hours of work pre-tax to pay. Rent of a place for $800 for a person today getting $8.50 an hour would take 94 hours PRE-TAX. Tack on another 20 hours and now you’re just paying rent. So it would take a person something around 115 hours to pay rent this month. Just rent. That’s 3 weeks of a full time job. Good luck affording a car or even paying for food to eat this month. These dang entitled kids... Trying to eat this month. It’s all handed to them so easily!


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#50

Posted: November 08, 2019, 10:32 AM Post
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People are bad at saving for retirement because humans in general are bad at long term thinking. Another example is diet. People don't think about long term effects of eating poorly. This isn't a flaw as much as it's just that we haven't evolved as quickly as society has changed. Back when we were cavemen you lived day to day and maybe thought about how you'd survive the next winter...that's as far ahead as you had to plan.

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#51

Posted: November 08, 2019, 10:33 AM Post
Posts: 4814
Location: Madison, WI
MrTPlush said:
OldSchoolSnapper said:
Well, for one, there is no way the higher ed. system is unchanged in 20 years. It's just impossible. It's unsustainable and the enrollments would dip to such a level that these places will collapse. The Ivys will be fine but the others will not be able to survive. Something drastic will happen, but who knows what that will be.


That may be true, but I don't think it will magically get cheap. Room and Board is expensive and from personal knowledge I know the typical college is in the red when it comes to residence life. They definitely aren't making money off people living on campus. ~$10k yearly tuition isn't that crazy in my opinion, but the $25k+ tuitions probably are not sustainable. Even at a cheap college you are talking $20k a year ($80k total) to go if you have to live on campus. If you only get basic federal loans that leaves $55k to find in the couch cushions. Just roughly speaking.

I am not even sure it can get cheaper. Is LSU going to demolish their water park? Are schools going to tear down the luxury living quarters? If people continue to fill these universities where is the motivation to change?


Spitballing here, not arguing, just throwing out ideas. If the loan systems weren't in place putting a glut of money into this industry to attend schools and all that, then people wouldn't be filling the universities and costs would have to go down? But, the problem with that is then the already wealthy people might have an even greater advantage that they're the only ones who can afford college and thus creating an even bigger wealth gap. Or, maybe it works well enough that the costs come down enough that normal people can afford in the bootstrap the 'boomer' in this thread was saying by just working hard while in college and maybe coming out with a bit of debt, not a mountain. Perhaps more people choose trade or tech type schools and that gap in the workforce is fixed. IDK


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Online  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#52

Posted: November 08, 2019, 10:49 AM Post
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While college may be more expensive than it once was, I’d argue that the internet has made it easier than ever to make informed decisions about career preparation. 20 years ago, most high school students were limited to what their parents knew about college (or the work force) and the pamphlets their guidance counselor had in their office.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#53

Posted: November 08, 2019, 11:01 AM Post
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nodakfan17 said:
While college may be more expensive than it once was, I’d argue that the internet has made it easier than ever to make informed decisions about career preparation. 20 years ago, most high school students were limited to what their parents knew about college (or the work force) and the pamphlets their guidance counselor had in their office.


I'd say it was more like 30 years ago.

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#54

Posted: November 08, 2019, 11:02 AM Post
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Two things the last few comments made me want to address. Part of the over-saturation problem with college degrees is that the post-high school alternatives are nowhere near what they were in the boomer world. Do people really understand that it used to be possible to own a home, raise kids, and have a stay-at-home wife on one guy's manufacturing salary? That was common. That's insane today. Those jobs either don't exist in some areas altogether or there are just not enough of them. Even then they do, the salary hasn't kept up with inflation. So then what happens? More people get degrees and there is increased competition for those jobs. At the middle and lower level fields, the salaries stagnate because there is no incentive to pay a high wage. There is a line of people that need the job. That is how you end up with college-educated waitresses.

The Internet and the knowledge economy has definitely helped some, but even that is really overstated IMO. My company is not hiring you without college. They're just not. They don't care if you've spent 500 hours on Coursera and are better than the guys they have. You won't get a chance to prove that because your resume is going right into the blackhole without college.

My point there is really that most people truly are still better off college and the debt, provided it is manageable. Graduating with a CPA and $40k to pay back sucks, but honestly you'll be fine.


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Online  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#55

Posted: November 08, 2019, 11:18 AM Post
Posts: 1368
homer said:
nodakfan17 said:
While college may be more expensive than it once was, I’d argue that the internet has made it easier than ever to make informed decisions about career preparation. 20 years ago, most high school students were limited to what their parents knew about college (or the work force) and the pamphlets their guidance counselor had in their office.


I'd say it was more like 30 years ago.

To be fair, most people in the 90s just used the internet to check eBay for Beanie Babies.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#56

Posted: November 08, 2019, 2:07 PM Post
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homer said:
nodakfan17 said:
While college may be more expensive than it once was, I’d argue that the internet has made it easier than ever to make informed decisions about career preparation. 20 years ago, most high school students were limited to what their parents knew about college (or the work force) and the pamphlets their guidance counselor had in their office.


I'd say it was more like 30 years ago.


No I would say 20 years ago is accurate. Most of the communication and information was still in print as late as 2000. I remember studying up on degrees, schools and career during that time and the majority of the information was of the print variety.

Maybe I am remembering wrong but I don't remember much being online then at least not as much as there is now.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#57

Posted: November 08, 2019, 2:18 PM Post
Posts: 4814
Location: Madison, WI
I'd generally agree. I was just under 20 years ago and it was basically pamphlets. Websites of course existed for each school but the breadth of information out there compared to now isn't even close. Still, I think the main point is still the same.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#58

Posted: November 08, 2019, 2:34 PM Post
Posts: 8614
OldSchoolSnapper said:
FVBrewerFan said:
tmwiese55 said:
Get degrees for nothing, with those degrees get into power. Then demand degrees for most jobs (and kind of look down on people if they don't get degree). You're also in charge of the schools and then jack up the cost of said degrees (while also gouging us in taxes for education spending to pay for your own huge salaries and pensions). Set up a basically predatory loan system and rates for people to attend the school. Tell young people only way to make it in America is with the degree so just take the loan, it'll be fine. Then, when they get the degrees don't hire them for jobs because they don't have enough experience. All while running the country on a multi trillion dollar deficit every year that someone is going to have to pay for eventually. Stealing the money from our SS funds to pay for right now more than likely leaving the young people with no SS. Then bash millenials for thinking they got a raw deal.


Correct, they didn't get a raw deal with student loans. Degree for nothing? Ok. My parents couldn't afford tuition. Student lians weren't really a thing then. I worked part time 9 montns a year, full time during summer starting at 15. Then worked full time for two years after HS, and worked all through college. Sorry, no sympathy here.


You could do all that today and you would not have 1/4 of the balance paid. Sorry bud, you're just out of touch, and the reason this thread exists. They weren't a "thing" because you didn't need them.

My wife's hairdresser has an economics degree. You're so off on this one, it's just laughable. The premise of your argument, and calling it that is generous, is that 90% of the country took out student loans to study philosophy.

The government screwed the people, it's that simple. When the federal government guarantees the loans there is no incentive for the universities to manage costs of make it affordable. They can make it as expensive as a house, which it is, and it won't matter because people can get the loans. Fast forward a few years and you have a secretary of toilet paper making $160k. It's predatory, as someone else said.


Not true. It's impossible for me to be out of touch because I recently went through this whole process with my millennials. Friend of my daughter went to UW-Whitewater and recently graduated with a degree in accounting. He paid for it 100% on his own. I don't know if he had any $1,000 scholarships here and there, maybe he Stafford loan everyone gets. So it's just factually wrong to say it can't be done.

I know of others who went to a two year UW school to take are of general studies classes and lived at home. Much cheaper classes, and 0 for room and board. To be fair, I'm only familiar with WI schools, but in WI it's absolutely possible to get a degree without running up student loans.

Also, I don't know where I ever said 90% of loans taken out are for philosophy degrees. But these liberal arts degrees aren't an insignificant number. Look at Lawrence, you have thousands of students at that one liberal arts college alone. And if that's what you want to do, great, just don't complain how you have $80,000 in loans.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#59

Posted: November 08, 2019, 2:35 PM Post
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Graduated high school in '05 and there was really nothing even close to what is out there now at the time. The push in my neighborhood/school was 100% go to college or you're a bum. There was one kid that did a plumbing apprenticeship and a two or three who joined the military and the consensus among everyone was that they were peasant class idiots.


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Offline  Re: Is ‘Boomer’ now a pejorative term?
#60

Posted: November 08, 2019, 2:41 PM Post
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FVBrewerFan said:
Not true. It's impossible for me to be out of touch because I recently went through this whole process with my millennials. Friend of my daughter went to UW-Whitewater and recently graduated with a degree in accounting. He paid for it 100% on his own. I don't know if he had any $1,000 scholarships here and there, maybe he Stafford loan everyone gets. So it's just factually wrong to say it can't be done.

I know of others who went to a two year UW school to take are of general studies classes and lived at home. Much cheaper classes, and 0 for room and board. To be fair, I'm only familiar with WI schools, but in WI it's absolutely possible to get a degree without running up student loans.

Also, I don't know where I ever said 90% of loans taken out are for philosophy degrees. But these liberal arts degrees aren't an insignificant number. Look at Lawrence, you have thousands of students at that one liberal arts college alone. And if that's what you want to do, great, just don't complain how you have $80,000 in loans.


I usually still call BS when I hear stories like this. There are details being left out of the story in 99% of cases. They are usually things so normal to these classes of people that they don't even think of them as advantages. Do the parents drive in every other week and take them grocery shopping? Did they gift them an old Honda Civic with 180k miles on it, and pay the insurance so they could commute to a waitressing job in Janesville and make 2x what a campus job pays? Do they still cover their cell phone bill? When the dorm closes, do they go home for a month and work while living rent-free with mom and dad?

You may think that these are 95% of the situations and I took advantage of several of the things I just listed. But there are people, lots and lots of people, who don't have these things offered to them. Often not having one available snowballs into another. You just listed living at home like that is something everyone can do. There isn't a quality college within commuting distance of everybody's house and in some cases that means living 2-4 more years with drug addicts or people who actually kick you out when you turn 18.

I'm not going to argue that some people can do more to help themselves out, but this idea that people are taking on large loans because they are lazy or stupid is just overly simplifying a complicated thing and not an accurate depiction of reality.


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