July 6, 2012
When Alan Shackelford's ankles would swell up, he brushed it off as another sign of getting older — only to find out it was a symptom of something much worse. The 59-year-old Windsor Mill man was shocked when his doctor recently diagnosed him with hepatitis C. Even more disturbing to the IT specialist at Johns Hopkins University was that he had probably been living with the disease for years. "I was completely freaked out that this had happened to me and I probably had this for 35 to 40 years," Shackelford said.
October 3, 2011
My husband and I have been stashing money in our 401(k)s since they were introduced in the 1980s, but, despite the miracle of compounding interest, he is still convinced we will be working at McDonald's - and eating our only meal of the day off of the steam table there - when we retire. Like most "pre-retirees," we have been paying more attention to our health (weight, diet and exercise), but my husband is still planning to go swimming in shark-infested waters wearing a steak around his neck as soon as he begins to feel knee or hip pain, because there is nothing he dreads more than a long, slow slide into decrepitude.
July 9, 2012
I know we have become a nation of such short attention spans and long-term addiction to instant gratification that asking viewers to spend even an hour with a documentary that could change the way they see the world is probably a fool's errand. But this fool is asking -- no begging -- you to see "Hard Times: Lost on Long Island," an HBO documentary premiering at 9 Monday night and repeating throughout the month on HBO and HBO2. I have not seen anything on-air, online or in print that so deftly nails one of the most important and least reported stories of our economic and political lives in this presidential election year.
August 30, 1991
The road to 40 has been a dizzying ride for baby boomers.George McGovern to George Bush. Free love to monogamy. Non-materialism to yuppiedom. Drug taking to drug testing.Why such radical shifts? Growing up, mostly. As people age, they simply become more conservative. And since the baby-boom generation makes up a third of the population, the slightest shift in its collective values attracts an enormous amount of attention: When a huge number of people experiment with pot or buy BMWs, the nation takes notice.
June 18, 2007
It's no secret that Americans are in denial when it comes to aging. Sales of Botox are booming, tummy tucks and eyelid lifts are common, and anti-aging creams and gels are multibillion-dollar businesses. So it should come as no surprise that Americans find it difficult to grasp that our population as a whole is maturing, that the median age is slowly climbing upward. This has serious consequences for our economy and our culture, and it also bears on the immigration issue now being debated.
May 24, 1999
MOST BABY boomers, no matter what their politics, once identified strongly with John F. Kennedy's dictate to "ask not what your country can do for you."Now that they have come into full power in the labor force, business, Congress and the presidency, it is ironic that their legacy could well be a federal government almost solely devoted to meeting their retirement needs, at the expense of other national priorities.This legacy is as firmly rooted in the Republican Congress' budget proposals as it is in the president's or current law.Under all, Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid expenditures would rise from about 40 percent of federal revenues today to almost 80 percent in 50 years.