Late Retirement Puts CBS in Tizzy

What do you get when you add a liberal think tank study, another liberal “expert, and CBS “Evening News?” You get a doom-and-gloom story about baby boomers remaining in the work force as “an economic necessity” that ignores relevant information.

“The 78 million baby boomers are starting to think about retirement, but for many of them, that’s all they’ll be able to do. Think about it. Two new reports out today show many will have to retire much later than they thought,” said anchor Katie Couric.

Couric also said, “While boomers may be better educated and better paid than their parent, they’re not necessarily better off.”Now don’t despair boomers. There is something Couric and correspondent Nancy Cordes didn’t tell you.According to a May 21 story in USA Today, baby boomers are actually much better off than younger generations. People aged 55-59 are $200,000 wealthier than their counterparts aged 35-39.“Younger generations now delay the start of wealth accumulation,” wrote USA Today reporter Dennis Cauchon. According to Cauchon’s article, the Fed lists age 57 as the year of peak income.As it turns out, CBS didn’t even make a very good case for the financial hardship of boomers, despite only telling one side with the Brookings Institution study and a comment from the AARP. At least one of her examples pointed out that he is making a choice not to retire yet.Cordes mentioned 61-year-old Georgia public relations executive Harry Hollingsworth, who doesn’t plan to retire until he’s 70. But Hollingsworth told CBS he is choosing not to retire yet because he “doesn’t think he would be happy just sitting around at home.”

Julia A. Seymour
Julia A. Seymour
Julia A. Seymour is the Assistant Managing Editor for the MRC's Business and Media Institute.