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      NEWSLETTER  # 27        FALL 2002

Main Topics

COMMUNITY DAY

GLORIOUS CAN OF WORMS

GO ON THE ATTACK?

ANNUAL MEETING

NONE OF THE ABOVE

SAFE OFFICERS

PERSONAL ACCOUNTS

GOVERNMENT GIVEAWAYS

WHERE TO CUT GOVERNMENT SPENDING

HAVE YOU EVER?

TID BITS


MEMBERSHIP

          Many of our members have prepaid their membership for 2003 and some have prepaid as far ahead as 2006.  We thank profusely all who have prepaid, and are indicating the last year prepaid by a red number here from 3 to 6.

     If there is no red number here, please send your dues now - $5.00 per year.  Thank you.

     Remember, we are the good guys.  We believe we are the only senior’s organization concentrating on the future well-being of the next generations.

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COMMUNITY DAY 2002

      Again, our table was at the Newark, DE Community Day, September  29th.   Our big yellow banner, “Seniors Against Federal Extravagance” was there, along with a 2 ft. x 3 ft. blow-up of our advertisement with 9 year old Jason’s picture.  We also exhibited large posters, “Fix Social Security For The Kids” with pictures of kids.

      Jason, himself, was on the scene.  He walked the grounds wearing a “sandwich board.”  Director Jerry Martin, accompanied Jason on his tour and Jason’s grandfather reports that there was a lot of interest.  Both were photographed by a University of Delaware Publication.  Community Day was held on “The Green” at the University of Delaware.

      Many thanks to Director Dick Reese who suggested the use of a sandwich board which was carried by Jason.  Dick also made the sandwich board.  Dick has been very helpful with his time and talent.  He is an artist and co-founded a leading advertising agency.

      We had membership sign-ups on the spot.  Many took our flyers to read later – some of those said they will join.

      Our banner, signs, sandwich board and props for a skit based on the cartoon on this newsletter could be made available for use elsewhere.  Call if you want to consider doing this.

 

Jason with sandwich board

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A GLORIOUS CAN OF WORMS

 Bill Morris

     Would you like to live to 120?  I think I would if I could remain reasonably healthy.  How about 150?  Not likely for a few generations, but life expectancy (average age at death) has not approached a maximum yet.  An article in Science 10 May 2002, “Broken Limits To Life Expectancy” states: “Experts have repeatedly asserted that life expectancy is approaching a ceiling:  these experts have repeatedly been proven wrong”.

      The authors of the Science article forecast that female life expectancy in the U.S. in 2070 will be between 92.5 and 101.5 years.  This range is considerably higher than the Social Security Administrations forecast of 83.9 published in 1999.

      A substantial increase in life expectancy can be glorious for older Americans, but a can of worms for younger Americans who will be paying taxes to support Social Security and other benefits.

      Intergenerational conflict is already a risk with the estimate of two workers per retiree in the future.  Based on the Science article, the ratio may be below two workers per retiree, and if there is a big breakthrough in biomedical research, it could be closer to one worker per retiree.

      Fairness to the next generations demands that we act now to minimize the impact of this problem.  Actions include reforming Social Security, cutting government spending and paying off the debt.

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GO ON THE ATTACK?

     Here are two ideas for SAFE to become more effective.  Both have the potential to get us noticed and talked about.

      One idea is to attack Bill Novelli, Executive Director of AARP for minimizing the seriousness of the Social Security problem.  We have done this before, but we could certainly escalate it.  We could go from a slap on the hand to a kick in the rear.

      The other idea is to call for parity between future retirees and present retirees.  Real incomes increase gradually each year, so that future retirees get larger real benefits (corrected for inflation) than do present retirees.  This doesn’t seem to make sense when, down the road, we can expect benefits to be cut, taxes to be increased and/or government borrowing to be increased.

      If you have strong feelings for or against either of these ideas, please let us know.

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ANNUAL MEETING,

NOVEMBER 21ST

     In accordance with our Constitution we hold annual meetings to elect officers, and to consider any items the members wish us to consider.

   The meeting will be held Thursday, November 21st at the Golden Castle restaurant on Route 202, Wilmington, Delaware.  The meeting will be at 1:00 p.m., and members are not obligated to order to food.  If you wish to order food you can arrive as early as 11:30 a.m.  If you need directions, call Bill at (302) 475-7060.

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NONE OF THE ABOVE”

SUGGESTED

     There is a possibility that, at some time, we may not have a qualified member willing to run for one of our offices.

     If this happens, someone completely unqualified or unsuitable for the office could step forward and be nominated for the position.  This is unlikely, but it has happened in other organizations.

      In such case, a nomination for “none of the above” could offer protection.

      Our Constitution does not provide for this, so the following motion may be put forward at our Annual Meeting.

      Motion:  Add the following sentence to the end of the paragraph under “Elections.”  “None of the above is automatically nominated for each office.  If ‘none of the above’ wins, that office shall be vacant until the Executive Board chooses to fill the vacancy”.

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SAFE OFFICERS

 

President

   Bill Morris, Wilmington, DE

     (302) 475-7060

       

President-Elect

   Barry Dorsch, Wilmington, DE

     (302) 478-0676

      

Treasurer

   Ed Fasig, Wilmington, DE

     (302) 999-0611

       

Director, 2002-2004

   John Boughton, Wilmington, DE

     (302) 475-6718

         

     Ed Fasig, Wilmington, DE

     (302) 999-0611

       

Director 2002-2003

Orville Wetmore,

Wilmington, DE

(302) 652-0107

 

Director 2002

    Jerry Martin,

      Wilmington, DE

      (302) 478-5064

         

     Dick Reese

       (302) 478-4970

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PERSONAL ACCOUNTS

     In spite of a falling market, Personal Retirement Accounts are still much better than Social Security.  Cato Institute Briefing Paper No. 74, shows that a long term investment in stocks returns four times as much as the same money invested in social Security.  This is after the stock market drop.

      The public believes in Personal Retirement Accounts.  In spite of the stock market drop, 68% support the addition of voluntary Personal Retirement Accounts to Social Security.

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GOVERNMENT GIVEAWAYS

     Received in the mail-advertisement headed “Free From Uncle Sam”.  For $23.90, you can get a report, “America’s Secret Cash Giveaways”.  Over 20 examples are listed, including “How students 18-22 years old can get Social Security Benefits” and “$5,000 free for immigrants to start a business”.

      According to the enclosures, $340 billion is given away each year.  Without these giveaways, the 2002 deficit would have been a surplus.

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WHERE TO CUT GOVERNMENT SPENDING

      Usually, this is a full page on suggestions for cutting spending.  Because of a shortage of space we list only the heading as follows:

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Have You Ever?

Made ice cream in the backyard?

Wrung a chicken’s neck?

Milked a goat?

Caught a fish with your hands?

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     We’re not making this up.  Care instructions on a “Bike” athletic supporter:  “Machine wash warm.  No bleach.  Tumble dry warm.  Remove promptly.  For best results touch up with cool iron.”  You read it here first.

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TID BITS

By board member Dick Reese

(a bit of humor and seriousness)

 

Healthwise … it’s the legs that go first.

 

How to make a lasting friend…greet them with “Say, you look great.  You’ve lost weight.”

 

What happened…to all the “Stars and Stripes?”

 

True romance…the senior couple walking holding hands.

 

There is nothing, absolutely nothing…as frightening as the sound of a fire engine in the middle of the night in your neighborhood.

 

Nostalgia…when you as a child were given a spoonful of cod liver oil every day or the day you graduated to long pants.

 

I’ll wager…that the driver in the car ahead, behind or passing along side of you is either eating, drinking or smoking.

 

(this space open to all SAFE members)

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      Citizens Against Government waste has suggested budget cuts in over 500 individual items, totaling over $250 billion per year for the next five years.  Wow! Let’s hope Congress adopts many of the suggestions.

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