July 17, 2014

July 17, 2014

You're Not Getting Any Younger

(When searching Google for an image to use with this post, most of the results were old people walking on beaches. So, no.)

Every morning, our local news/talk/sports station has a brief segment about federal government issues presented by a guy named Mike Causey. He actually works on Federal News Radio full time (this is an actual DC thing), but spares five-ish minutes a day to broadcast his opinions on government stuff to the DC radio market at large.

More often than not, these opinions are on the subject of retirement. I don’t know about your country and industry, but in American government, we’re told regularly that ALMOST EVERYONE YOU KNOW COULD RETIRE AT ANY MOMENT.

Me myself personally? I’ll believe it when I see it. The first Baby Boomers came of age years ago, and we seem to be no closer to the anticipated retirement tsunami than ever we were. A Baby Boomer’s job is like Charlton Heston’s gun: You get it when you pry it from his cold, dead fingers.

(Am I coming across as a bitter young person whose career advancement is blocked by Baby Boomers at the top, refusing to step down? Good.)

Anyhoo, this got me thinking about retirement in general, and how people in private industry get watches and laudatory dinners and all sorts of celebratory whatnot when they retire. I think in government you get a piece of paper signed by someone important (not President important but, like, Secretary important, which is still pretty phenomenal). Though these things are an after-the-fact reward rather than an enticement, what if we could offer people quid pro quo?

National Institutes of Health: All the smallpox vials you can carry.

Department of Defense: You may fire one small missile into the Nevada desert.

Department of the Interior: You get a national park named after you for one day.

Social Security Administration: You can pick your own new SSN. If someone already has it, they have to trade with you.

Tennessee Valley Authority: You can shut that thing down. Why do we still have an agency whose mission was accomplished by the end of World War 2?

Think of the possibilities.

0 Fish in a Sea of Diet Coke: