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Lifetrends: The Future of Baby Boomers and Other Aging Americans.

Lifetrends: The Future of Baby Boomers and Other Aging Americans. Jerry Gerber, Janet Wolff, Walter Klores, Gene Brown. Macmillan, $18.95. This is a nonserious book about a serious subject. Here we are told to expect, for example, that as the retrenchment of Social Security and Medicare causes the baby boomers to delay retirement well into their seventies, office coffee breaks will be replaced by meditation breaks. Another far-reaching prediction: "Conference calls on video telephones will also be a frequent occurrence, especially on Family Day,' which aging baby boomers will probably make a national holiday by the year 2010." The authors describe themselves as former creative directors at "some of the country's top advertising firms," who today are partners in "a consulting firm specializing in marketing to the 50-plus audience." This provides a clue to their intentions in writing their book, which seems to have been to establish their credentials as experts on how to sell to the next, very large generation of elderly consumers. It also explains why they equivocate about the truly controversial implications of an aging society, such as the pressures it creates for age-based health care rationing or the likelihood it brings of a more general "war between the generations" in the next century. There's plenty here to chill your aging bones, but the authors seem more interested in how some people might make a buck out of the baby boomers' dismal prospects for old age.
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Author:Longman, Phillip
Publication:Washington Monthly
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Feb 1, 1990
Words:240
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