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Retirement Planning > Social Security

Mirror, mirror on the wall ...

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How do boomers view themselves? And how do others view the generation, as selfish or selfless? The answer might clue advisors into their plans for leaving a legacy, financial or otherwise.

U.S. News and World Report reports on a Zogby poll that gave respondents two choices about the legacy of those born between 1946 and 1964 (or baby boomers, in case you were wondering): self-indulgence or lasting social change. The most popular answer was “self-indulgence.” Some 42 percent of those surveyed said the baby boomers ushered in an era of consumerism and self-indulgence, while just 27 percent agreed that boomers would be remembered for helping to bring about lasting change in social and cultural values and ending a war.

“A significant percentage of the population also appears indifferent to the baby boomers, saying they will leave behind nothing really special (11 percent), they’re not sure (13 percent), or that boomers will be remembered primarily for some other reason (13 percent).”

Of course, boomers have a much better view of themselves.

“[Those] currently between the ages of 50 and 64, and their children aged 18 to 29 had the most favorable view of the baby boomer legacy, while those between the ages of 30 and 49 and especially those age 65 and older found the baby boomers to be especially self-indulgent. African Americans were the racial group most likely to credit boomers with social change, while whites were the most likely to call out their excesses.”


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