It looks like Congress might have a deal today that I suspect will help stanch the bleeding for a week…a month? No one seems to know for sure. One thing you can count on, Wall Street will benefit and the rest of us, the taxpayers, will not. The number one cause of home foreclosures in this country is not sub-prime loans. No, it is catastrophic medical bills. Using that money to fix our health care system, something that would benefit all Americans, would be a much wiser use of what is left of our Treasury (actually, we have no Treasury, this is all borrowed money). As soon as the hammer came down on Wall Street they started looking for an angle. To quote from the New York Times “Even as policy makers worked on details of a $700 billion bailout of the financial industry, Wall Street began looking for ways to profit from it”. Herbert Hoover did the same thing in 1931 trying to bail out the banks. It didn’t work and The Great Depression ensued.
But, what do I know? That’s debatable, except that for many Americans Mexico is looking like a very good option as a place to buy property and spend their remaining years. This economic shake-out, the culmination of 30 years of failed Reaganomics policies (when Reagan took office we were the world’s number one creditor nation, four years later we were the world’s largest debtor nation), is going to take years to correct for a country that now manufactures very little and where the middle-class is in sharp decline. Retirement benefits, 401k’s, and home equities are shrinking like Rush Limbaugh’s gym shorts, and a life once envisioned is now but a Kafka-esque dream.
So it comes as no surprise that the top retirement publiction International Living has named Mexico the top country in the world for the second straight year in their annual Global Retirement Index. Each country is graded on Real Estate, Special Benefits, Cost of Living, Culture, Health, Infrastructure, Safety/Stability, and Climate to end at at Total number for ranking. The next nine countries were Ecuador, Panama, Uruguay, Italy, Brazil, France. Argentina, Costa Rica and Australia. The U.S. came in at 21, wedged between Thailand and Colombia. Not surprisingly, The Cost of Living, Special Benefits and Real Estate were the areas that lowered the U.S. rating.
For those of you who would like to live in dignity as you age, Mexico just might be the answer. Right now you can live well, either on or near the beach or in a 400-year-old colonial town for 30 – 50% of what it would cost in the U.S. Medical care can be purhased for about $300 per year, and local doctors still do house calls for about $30. I’m not suggesting that you give up your citizenship or discontinue to vote. We all need to try to improve on the current situation as active participants in our democracy. But in the shrinking-world age of the internet you can do those things from Mexico as easy as Des Moines.
Lydia Gregory (aka Lola on this blog page) and I will soon have an ebook available to answer many of the questions on how to make the move to Mexico. Check out my site here from time to time see when it is ready to view www.movetomexico.com