The Rich Are Living Longer and Taking More From Taxpayers

Proteus's picture
Rank: Gorilla | 699

As I was frantically refreshing my schools portal to find out my final marks, I stumbled upon an interesting article on Bloomberg. The article introduces the fact that living up to age 100 is possible now, but for those who are wealthy enough to afford it. It also goes onto say that many Americans are dying younger and younger, particularly middle-aged non Hispanic white Americans.

The article suggests that the potential reasoning for why Americans are dying younger, is the widening gap between the wealthy and poor. According to a recent study that's used throughout the article;

The results are stark. In 1980, a 50-year-old man in the wealthiest fifth of the income distribution could expect to live five years longer than a 50-year-old man in the lowest-income group. By 2010, the gap between them had jumped to 12.7 years.

The researcher in charge of the report that's cited throughout the article, claims that;

In 1980, a wealthier 50-year-old could expect to collect $103,000 more than a poor American. Thirty years later, the gap was $173,000. "These results suggest that Social Security is becoming significantly less progressive over time due to the widening gap in life expectancy," the researchers write.

Lastly, the author presents possible alternatives as to why this trend is being observed. The author writes that;

Some cite rising levels of substance abuse, obesity, and suicide. Others point to the ways economic inequality drive health inequality. The cost of good health care has skyrocketed, even for people who are technically covered by insurance.

What does everyone think?
Could it be rising obesity levels, or maybe because the cost of healthcare is too steep?

Source:
Bloomberg Article

Comments (25)

Best Response
Apr 24, 2017

Wealth gap isn't the difference. Lower income people eat worse and have bad habits. Largely inner city poor people.

And of course, money allows for better treatment. Those with education and money are probably more proactive with their health, breed with others who are educated, etc.

And the rich aren't taking anything. They pay all ththe taxes. Wealthy people living and earning longer fuels this country.

Apr 24, 2017

I agree with you on the eating habits of lower income people being a potential reason. It could be that they are forced to do this, because of their financial situations. Good healthy food costs money, and these individuals don't have much so they're forced to eat the cheapest things. I'm not 100% sure about the last statement, I just read that they're collecting more from social security programs.

Just an Undergrad trying to get a job. Something you disagree or dislike about my posts? Let me know by PM'ing me or commenting constructive criticism.

Apr 24, 2017

I hear you, but I think you're mixing Whole Foods with what's actually healthy. Chicken, Rice, beans, water, etc. all cheap and healthy. What's cheap and unhealthy is what they eat (arguably more tasty, but at the expense of your health).

Apr 24, 2017

Could this be because the rich are putting more into these programs then the poor? Therefore, they withdraw more. Or am I completely missing the idea here haha...... interesting read though.

    • 1
Apr 24, 2017

Wealth is health. Or vice versa. This shouldn't be too surprising. The wealthy lead healthier lifestyles, can afford the best medical care, and don't cut corners on their diets or eating habits.

What is surprising is the editorial agenda on display here-rich "taking" from taxpayers? Have you seen the tax distribution in this country? The top 20% pay 80% of all taxes. Sure they "benefit" from medicare and social security by getting back more than they've paid in but so does damn near everyone else on these programs (which is why their budgets are a mess).

Just a pet peeve to see an agenda get blatantly tacked onto what should be a straightforward article.

Apr 29, 2017

+1. Also you mut be constantly peeved.

Apr 26, 2017

I read a similar article in the past, and the wealthiest people I know in the community live quite long to their late 80's and 90's. We see in the news of actors/actresses OD'd at various ages (20-50/60).

Diet does play a role, and eating healthy does not come to an expensive cost. What is unhealthy are the snacks, junk foods, sugar filled items that people generally purchase. I feel a lot better after cutting down caffeine and sugary items in my diet, cook less greasy food and added more soup-based foods to my menu.

Apr 27, 2017

Also don't forget the elective surgeries at 60-70 to catch pre-cancer in the colon. And things like this.

Apr 26, 2017

Diet, gym subscriptions and access to quality healthcare - the golden trifecta.

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."

Apr 26, 2017

I saw a tweet today from the actual Frank Quattrone, and I had the strangest moment of coming to terms with him actually existing outside WSO. I think I had convinced myself that he and Dick Fuld are on a mission to give career advice to 20-year-old monkeys. Good on ya.

    • 1
Apr 26, 2017

Wait, you're telling me the DickFuld on WSO isn't real?

I've been more active on Twitter, ever since I retired nominally from Qatalyst. And facebook - no better place to stalk 20-year-old chicks who might be attracted to my bushy mustache.

Also Keith (Rabois) is on WSO. I'll leave it to you guys to guess what his username is.

GoldenCinderblock: "I keep spending all my money on exotic fish so my armor sucks. Is it possible to romance multiple females? I got with the blue chick so far but I am also interested in the electronic chick and the face mask chick."

Apr 26, 2017
<span itemprop=name>JTH</span>:

I saw a tweet today from the actual Frank Quattrone, and I had the strangest moment of coming to terms with him actually existing outside WSO. I think I had convinced myself that he and Dick Fuld are on a mission to give career advice to 20-year-old monkeys. Good on ya.

Dick Fuld does exist to help the next generation. I thought I might have mentioned that a few times.

Apr 26, 2017

The wealth difference between rich and poor is a point of concern for whole world not just United States. The main factor behind this is that some people don't want to work and spend money what they earn recklessly which creates a large gap.

Apr 26, 2017

I noticed growing up a lot of the poorer people do not have a good sense of financial responsibility. If you have ever shopped Black Friday, you will understand the point I am making. I met a lot of people on those nights year after year where they claim they "need" to upgrade their 32 inch TV they got last year to a new one.

Apr 27, 2017
  1. There are a common set of attributes that are highly correlated to both earnings and health outcomes. I list a few below:
    i. Self-discipline / capacity to defer gratification
    ii. Intellectual curiosity / intelligence
    iii. Internal (as opposed to external) locus of control

This shouldn't surprise anyone. In fact, it would be very weird for it to be any other way, since these are attributes that increase your ability to achieve a greater degree of success in the long-term and wealth/health are two of the most universally recognized metrics which are used to measure success.

  1. The point above is worth noting since life expectancy (in the U.S.) has become much more determined by your personal choices than ever before. For example, the biological process of associated with being obese hasn't changed --> what has changed is that eating till the point of feeling physically uncomfortable or going to a bar EVERY night has become much more affordable and that people have more leisure time that 50 years ago (which they overwhelming choose to fill with sedentary activities). Or, more succinctly, the restrictions that use to prevent people from making shitty health choices have been removed, which dis-proportionally impacts those with worse impulse control (who wind-up less wealthy on average).
    1. For those of you saying about how eating healthy is 'too expensive' to expect poor people to manage it, GTFO. The median income in this country has increased by 6.7% since 1980 after adjusting for inflation which, last time I checked, includes the cost of basic food items. Not saying there aren't low-income individuals who don't have the means to transport groceries easily etc., but this has been the case since at least the 1980's.
  2. Much more importantly - even if getting access to healthy food was more waaaaaaay more expensive, that wouldn't explain the skyrocketing rates of obesity among low-income populations. In case I'm not being clear here: you don't become medically obese (35%+ BMI) because of a cost constraint. It's easier to become obese if you're eating a shitload of low-quality food vs high-quality food, BUT IT STILL REQUIRES EATING A SHIT LOAD OF IT.
    • 3
Apr 27, 2017

Haha, hell yeah bro.

    • 1
May 14, 2017

I have no problem with wealth disparity. It's actually a great motivator for innovation, competition, etc.

The issue is merit - more and more people today get paid far too much for their "insight".

May 14, 2017

They get paid that much because people value their "insight" at that salary level. It's not necessarily their fault.

Just an Undergrad trying to get a job. Something you disagree or dislike about my posts? Let me know by PM'ing me or commenting constructive criticism.

May 14, 2017
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