Changes Needed in Retirement Systems –

Posted by Trish Riley, June 4, 2009

What a great Green Drinks meeting we had last night! Thanks to all for coming….I look forward to the neat things we can help make happen as we find ways to work together in greening our community – and our nation.

I arrived at the meeting straight from the airport – I spent the past few days in D.C. at a fellowship on “Retirement in the 21st Century,” produced by the National Press Foundation. I and 19 other journalists had the benefit of meeting with an array of government leaders, financial specialists and policy wonks who shared their perspectives and the latest statistics on options available for retiring boomers. I’m still processing the wealth of information presented, and I look forward to shaping it into a story that reflects the wise advice of our Green Drinkers Ed Brown, founder of, and Ted LaCombe,  Sustainable Investment Advisor.

Meanwhile, here’s a post from a colleague who also attended the fellowship, Tom Murphy, Editor in Chief of

…Winograd, whose company sells annuities, readily admitted many people trying to make complex decisions about retirement savings get poor support from the retail sales representatives of the financial services industry. “The retail system … is deeply flawed, and I think anyone working n the system knows this,” he said, noting it’s in the industry’s “collective self interest” to get people so deposit money so that the financial firms can manage it for a fee.

However, he said it is critical for people to save more to assure a better retirement rather than relying on elected officials to take politically risky actions to correct the problems that lie ahead. “The market will recover over a long enough period of time,” he said. “I take that as a matter of faith.”

Not everyone shares Winograd’s religious zeal, however…

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