Electronic book text
May 26, 2008
9780801896415
9780801888519
English
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v2.1 Reference

The Long Baby Boom

An Optimistic Vision for a Graying Generation

In 2006, the first baby boomers turned 60, unleashing a veritable tidal wave of gloomy punditry, advertising for financial services, and forecasts of impending national bankruptcy. In The Long Baby Boom, Jeff Goldsmith counters the predictions of such "catastropharians" with a far more optimistic scenario.

Drawing on evidence that most baby boomers plan on working long past age 65, Goldsmith argues that they will have a constructive impact on society over the next twenty years. By assuming a much larger portion of the financial burden of their own retirement and health costs, they will help preserve Social Security and Medicare for the less fortunate and for successive generations.

The Long Baby Boom is the first comprehensive forecast of baby boomers’ career plans, health trends, and cultural and political values. Goldsmith's pro-work, pro-savings, pro-health social policy emphasizes personal responsibility without ripping the social safety net. Optimistic and innovative, The Long Baby Boom doesn't promise a cloud-free future, but it does reassure us that the sky isn't falling.

About the Author

Jeff Goldsmith is the President of Health Futures, Inc. and Associate Professor of Public Health Sciences at the University of Virginia. He is a University of Chicago–trained social scientist who has lectured at leading business schools in the United States, including the University of Chicago and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He has worked for both the governor of Illinois and the dean of medicine at the University of Chicago’s Pritzker School of Medicine as a public policy analyst. For the past twenty-five years, he has served as a strategy consultant both to business and nonprofit enterprises.

Reviews

"Goldsmith's proposals are worth exploring... He paints a persuasive picture of a more positive outcome for both baby boomers and our economy."

- Health Affairs

"A 'must' for any college-level collection on social issues and contemporary American social history."

- Midwest Book Review

Endorsements

"Too often experts look at the aging of the baby boom and see only insoluble fiscal, health, and social problems. Jeff Goldsmith takes this demographic challenge as an opportunity to adopt innovative policies that would create a more equitable and productive economy and a healthier society."

- Robert D. Reischauer, President, The Urban Institute

"This is an important, timely, and constructive book—a must-read for those concerned about the demographic and political challenges facing U.S. social policy as the boomer generation reaches their 60s. Goldsmith proposes many ideas—some bold and controversial—for how this huge generation can thrive while continuing to contribute to the broader social good. His pro-growth, pro-savings, and pro-health improvement agenda offers a strong rebuttal to the 'sky is falling' conventional wisdom that he terms 'catastrophanarian.' His thoughtful proposals should be the basis for a national debate about how we each want to grow older and what kind of society we want to do it in."

- John Rother, Group Executive Officer of Policy and Strategy, AARP

"I share Jeff Goldsmith’s optimism. Boomers are a deep pool of resources, knowledge, and energy which, if we make the right social choices, could help power American society for at least another two decades. Anyone who is thinking seriously about the next twenty years should read The Long Baby Boom."

- Ken Dychtwald, President, Age Wave, and author of The Power Years: A User's Guide to the Rest of Your Life
Johns Hopkins University Press
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