Are baby boomers stealing the country's future?

Legendary investor Stan Druckenmiller says the US is heading for a 'storm' as millions of boomers threaten to suck the system dry.

By Aimee Picchi Mar 1, 2013 3:16PM

Image: Senior on the beach © Angelo Cavalli, Cultura, Getty ImagesStan Druckenmiller, the former chief strategist for billionaire George Soros, is known for having one of the best long-term track records in the hedge fund industry. 


Now, the normally publicity-shy investor is hoping to create another legacy: helping to avoid a financial disaster for the country's younger generations. Druckenmiller says the mushrooming costs of providing benefits to aging baby boomers and older generations will bankrupt the country's youth.


"I am not against seniors. What I am against is current seniors stealing from future seniors," Druckenmiller, 59, told Bloomberg News. Forbes estimates that Druckenmiller, a boomer himself, has an estimated net worth of $2.7 billion. 


Unsustainable spending will create a financial crisis much worse than the 2008 meltdown, he said, calling it a "much, much bigger storm that's about to hit."


One of the worrying trends he cited is a surge in government spending on programs for the elderly, even as the first baby boomers are just hitting retirement age. 


But a tidal wave of retiring boomers is about to hit the U.S. Roughly 10,000 will reach the retirement age of 65 each day through the two decades, according to the Pew Research Center. By 2030, 18% of the country will be senior citizens. 


Demand for entitlements is already on the rise: Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare made up 44% of the government's $3.7 trillion in spending in 2011, a jump up from 34% in 1990, Bloomberg said, citing the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. 


Seniors "keep getting more and more transfer payments" from younger generations, helped by what Druckenmiller calls a "very, very powerful lobby."


So what can be done? Druckenmiller wants the government to change eligibility ages for Social Security, for one. Capital gains and dividends should also be fully taxed, he said, because retirees usually benefit more than other age groups from that income. 


He also supports a federal consumption tax because the elderly buy the same amount of stuff as younger people but end up paying less in income taxes. 


Druckenmiller told Bloomberg his next step is to take his message to younger generations. 


"With the proper education and with proper voices out there," he said, "we could have 40 million kids marching down to Washington."


More on moneyNOW


1579Comments
Mar 1, 2013 4:22PM
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Seniors have been paying in to Medicare and SS all their lives, now they're stealing?

The Government is who's doing the "stealing".  
Mar 1, 2013 5:07PM
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I really take issue with the term "entitlements" as it applies to Social Security and Medicare...I have been working since I was 14, and still am, paying into both systems for 53 years and counting. So how about calling Social Security and Medicare "earnings" for people like me?
Mar 1, 2013 3:55PM
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Let Mr. Druckenmiller live on 20,000.00 a year or less. Views would be totally different! Past Governments (and present) are to blame. Let's get rid of the lobbist and PORKBARREL spending first and then all people in Government collect Social Security and enjoy Medicare as their health insurer. Good enough for us is good enough for them!

           Gcoop54

Mar 1, 2013 3:34PM
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WOW, talk about the pot calling the kettle black.  a guy who made over $2 billion pushing paper and he oos accssing hard working Americans of stealing.     
Mar 1, 2013 4:37PM
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It's a benefit NOT AN ENTITLEMENT!!!!  If this idiot didn't know that, he shouldn't be speaking.

I paid in for 40 years and if they take it, there will be more problems than with our kids.

Mar 1, 2013 4:07PM
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The greedy political machine took the country's future.  Lobbist proposed coruption and congress disposed of our SS savings.
Mar 1, 2013 4:00PM
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Chief strategist for Soros, I wonder what his strategy is here, age warfare? It's amazing how liberal MSN is. Does MSN think they will be favored in the new world order by helping ruin America? Where did all the money go that baby boomers worked for and contributed to pay for their retirements? College loans? Health care? I think it mostly went in the pockets of politians who promise more and more spending to get elected, that's where it all went.
Mar 1, 2013 4:26PM
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I take exception to most of this article. For one the government hires actuaries that predict the cause and effects for the future based on the demographics. This is no surprise to these people. They just chose to spend the windfall contributions of the baby boomer generation on other things, not caring about the future demands on the system. Secondly, raising the retirement age, capital gains, and dividends on a generation that can no longer generate further income is not only unfair, but immoral.

As for the consumption tax , it is just another way of extorting more money from everyone. Its not replacing a tax its just an additional one. It's amazing that government would rather give our money to other countries then help it's own people.

Mar 1, 2013 4:41PM
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Hey, we've been paying into the system all our working lives.  So where is that money now?  We didn't eat it!!!
Mar 1, 2013 4:36PM
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What an arrogant SOB.

 We've all been setting this money aside to help fund part of our futures. But now, this guy and all of the other bloat gut cowards make it sound like I will be nothing more than a pan handler when I decide that it is time to withdraw the MY money that automatically, and without choice, taken from my wages. Entitlement...damn right, just like I'm entitled to everything else I've paid for!

Mar 1, 2013 3:48PM
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I hope this Nazi Druckenberger gets a heart attack before he manages to rile up 40 million kids against their grandparents.  I got news for Druckendingsbums, the social security recipient paid for their social security benefits for the last 70 years. 
Mar 1, 2013 4:00PM
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this fool druckenmiller is trying to turn our kids against there parents and he is a billionaire!!!!! what a scumbag!!!!!! he is set for life!!! us regular people who have played by the rules, he wants to ruin our lives!!!!!!!! the young people out there do not have the wisdom of there elders and are deceived very easy!!! the young people in our country do not realize how soon they themselves will be in our shoes! I hope and pray this phony evil guy looses in his evil plan!!!!!!!
Mar 1, 2013 5:14PM
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The point is that Social Security will be paying out more than it will take in for a long time to come. This should not be an issue as the system had a viable beginning plan. Overspending and "borrowing from Peter to pay Paul" by our elected officials has devastated these United States. These are the people who the American public entrusted the future of this country to. Instead of making the hard decisions and doing the right thing for decades they have opted to give their supporters everything they want while lining their own pockets and becoming carreer politicians. If the Congress and Senate truly had the public's best interests at heart, they would not have exempted themselves from the public plans(ie Obamacare, lucrative pensions etc) Term limits anyone??  Radical change is coming to the average Joe simply because our government has become the rich uncle to special interest groups and foriegn entities that we buy off with billions on the off chance we might need a favor. Think about this, it was Thomas Jefferson who said that a government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have....
Mar 1, 2013 4:36PM
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Easy to talk about it when you got 2.7 billion. And how did you acquire that much? Oh, you didn't have to pay taxes on it for how long?  So now you want the up and coming generations to blame their parents and grandparents for a failed system. Blow it out your azz!
Mar 1, 2013 5:23PM
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Stealing the future...are you kidding me?  We MADE the future and we contributed heavily for it.  Something isn't an entitlement if you PAID for it....it's yours to begin with.  How about putting an upper income limit on social security so the rich (and Mr. Druckenmiller) couldn't drain the system by getting benefits?  How about eliminating the social security wage assessment amount so those over $110,000 wouldn't stop contributing?  How about a consumption tax on the RICH...they seem to consume more, especially luxury items, than the rest of the populous. It seems rather stupid that we'd be reading advice from someone who is worth over 2.7 billion and exploits every avenue to keep it, I'm sure.  If social security hadn't been looted already by folks of his sort, there wouldn't be a problem, now would there?  If you ask me, he and those like him ARE the problem,....not the baby boomers.  He thinks they're all like him...wealthy and entitled.  I've got news for him.  Most of us are just regular working Joe's that give a damn and are trying to do our best to carry our part and have a decent retirement.  Nothing like his yacht retirement, I'm sure.

Mar 1, 2013 3:45PM
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Had they not tampered with ss and now have to pay that debt and take off the cap there would be no problem. Remember who the cap benefits'...... the well to do. Don't over complicate a simple solution. 
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Forbes that Druckenmiller, a boomer himself, has an estimated net worth of $2.7 billion. 

 

seems like Druckenmiller has done a great job of stealing the younger and older people's future from them by stealing $2.7 billion dollars.

 

That money would be better off giving jobs to people instead of in his bank account.

 

We would have enough money for seniors to retire if we drained the money from people like Druckenmiller who stole it from us in the first place.

 

 

Mar 1, 2013 5:15PM
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I get about $1000/year from Social Security, out of which comes $200+/month for health insurance, leaving less than $800/month.  It costs me about $22,000 per year to live on--in a Senior mobile home park.  If I hadn't saved money over the years, and invested it, I would be living on dog food.  I'm better off than many, many seniors.

Let's get real about Social Security.  If we allowed the 12 million illegals here to become citizens (after reasonable and appropriate fines), there would be more in the Social Security pot for post-Boomers .  If we raised the retirement age a little, and really got serious about health care reform, we could solve the problem--with real inflation protection.  As it is, the SS system can hold out for a number of years yet, but the time for a real discussion is NOW.
Mar 1, 2013 3:35PM
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Aimee you should rent the movie Soylent Green for a glimpse of your future.
Mar 1, 2013 5:44PM
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Here we go again. Every **** zillionaire who has lied, cheated, stolen and murdered his way to his big bucks wants to shoot off his mouth about how retirees will destroy the economy. Simple math tells you there is a problem but the problem is unregulated healthcare, insurance and drug industries, not the seniors who paid into the system for their entire working lives.

 

Healthcare providers and drug companies have consistently increased their prices every year for three decades at 4 times the rate of inflation. So the **** zillionaire probably is a big shareholder in healthcare, drug and health insurance companies.

 

WHAT A CREEP

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