Sunday, January 23, 2011

Longevity Lower Layoffs Low Socioeconomic Position, Job Control, High Demand

Tags: Longevity Lower Layoffs Low Socioeconomic Position Low Job Control High Job Demand Reagan Greenspan Social Security Campbell Soup Greed Investors Wall Street

Some of the draconian measures supported by the Republicans in raising the age at which working people can get Social Security do not take into account that the affluent and wealthy Americans live about 15-20 or more years than working Americans.

The main problem with Social Security is not that the current model will lead to bankruptcy, but because of the basic unfairness it has become since the Reagan and Greenspan made changes in Social Security by doubling our payments to the fund so Reagan could cut taxes for the rich and borrow the Social Security at half the prevailing market bond rates or they are now borrowing our money for very low percent interest.

Some of the ideas that have surfaced is to get rid of payroll deductions and Federal Taxes for those making family incomes $75,000 or something in that range adjusted for inflation.

They already tax us by paying much lower wages than the benefit they provide for the job. Campbell Soup has improved efficiency by over 100 percent in the last several years as I have reported earlier by asking their workers to improve the manufacturing process. Their likely benefit will be a loss of jobs when they want to make even more profits because of the greed of we investors, corporate executives, and Wall Street demand profit increases every quarter or else we sell their stocks.

Half of working Americans making less than $50,000 per year have increased their longevity by only two years over many decades! As income goes up, the time of death occurs much later, but these affluent and rich folks who live much longer get many more years of Social Security Payments so they should pay much more for more years than they do now. For those currently on or are going to receive Social Security, tax them heavily to make up for the unfairness in the law since Reagan and Greenspan doubled the payments for working Americans. The top rate should be adjusted for inflation.

So the average increase in longevity is likely to be mostly the top 20 percent, and perhaps top 10 percent now. Just read the local obituary page every now and then and you will find that rich people seem to live much longer on average. I forgot the exact number of the recent analysis of longevity, but the affluent and wealthy lived a much longer life than the average working Joe including White Collar Workers.

Note the use of the word average is used to hide the distribution of income, salaries, and other topics of interest to all of us. Median income is more revealing. The average of $10,000 poor workers and and affluent workers salary of $150,000 is $80,000.

When the top one percent make as much as the bottom 90 percent (2006) gives us a good idea about how much society has changed since Reagan with the Middleclass being the biggest loser and the top 2 percent being the big winners by at least a factor of ten.

Jim Kawakami, Jan 23, 2011,

Is Your Job Killing You? How Work Influences Longevity, Katherine Hobson, USNews Health, Feb 20, 2009,

Excerpts: … After a major downsizing among municipal workers in Finland, the risk of death from a heart attack went up fivefold for those who lost their jobs. … people who lost a job in their 50s were more than twice as likely to have a heart attack or stroke in the next decade. …

Underlying all of this is the fact that a person's socioeconomic position—of which employment is a key part—is associated with differences in longevity, regardless of the economic climate …

The pecking order. It's pretty clear that something about the workplace pecking order affects health. One factor seems to be how much control employees have over the demands associated with their respective jobs. "Pressure by itself wasn't a key factor," says Marmot. "It's a combination of high demands and low control."

That combination—often found in lower-ranking, lower-paying jobs—is associated with an earlier death, and also with cardiovascular disease, mental health problems, sleep issues, and among other maladies, says Benjamin Amick III, a professor of behavioral sciences and epidemiology at the University of Texas Health Science Center's School of Public Health. … (Keith Olbermann who has resigned from Countdown on Friday gave the longevity numbers. )

Beyond individual behavior, society needs to take as hard a look at helping people pursue nurturing, gainful employment as it has at new drugs and the latest diet trend, says Hadler. "It's important to be comfortable in your own skin," he says. "People need to feel valuable."


  1. Keith Olbermann Look at goodbye comment and the one with a picture of Obama and Pelosi which talks about Social Security. Olbermann did not mention the death age gap being the bottom 50 percent except that it has grown by only $2 in the last 50 years. Keith said just a lot. Last year the age of dying has actually gone down instead of up. Layoffs cause heart attacks. Jim

  2. The age of death average went down for the first time in decades so those above $50,000 are now being affected. Stress, loss of jobs, Obesity and Diabetes are the most likely contributing factors. When people are depressed, they tend to eat sweet things to boost their happy brain chemicals and also eat a lot more. Fructose in ample amounts in prepared foods cause us to be hungry all the time. Even rats eat more when fed high fructose corn syrup than an equal calorie of cane sugar or the natural stuff. I easily lost ten pounds even though I was not overweight when I stop drinking high fructose fruit juices. Apple juice, all made in China, is almost pure fructose. Jim