Thursday, February 28, 2013

Ten Things I Learned At The Retirement Seminar













#1 - It's good to have income

#2 - It's good to be healthy

#3 - After 20 or so years in, your pension will have a cash-equivalent present value of around $1 million. Seriously.

#4 - The Thrift Savings Plan is the best thing to come out of Congress since Joe 'Double Barrel' Biden

#5 - There are all sorts of ways to minimize post-retirement taxation

#6 - There are also all sorts of ways to maximize inheritances to children

#7 - For example, financial gifts are not income and therefore not taxable to the recipient
  
#8 - I will postpone retirement for a few years longer than I'd been thinking (see #1)   

#9 - When I finally go, I think I'll use my lifetime federal fellowship to pursue a Ph.D

and,

#10 - Judging by the hundreds of people in the seminar, State will need a lot of new hires in a few years.


I'm not kidding about the hundreds of people. The sheer size of the crowd came as a shock. What's more, I think that over the years I may have worked for, or worked with, traveled with, or just met in passing, about half of them.

It was exactly the way I imagine a 30th High School reunion would be. There were some people I wanted to see and catch up with, a few I knew better than to start a conversation with, and many that I dodged because, while I sort of remembered them, I could not recall their names and wanted to avoid an awkward "oh, hi, how are you ... whoever you are ... and how have you been since we met in ... wherever it was?" moment.

One last retirement thing. After a few days of absorbing financial planning advice, I think that "Revocable Trust" would make an excellent title for my memoirs.


17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great Post TSB! gwb

James said...

"I think that over the years I may have worked for" it's a little strange in that possible sob you worked for is after all these years here with you and equal without authority.

TSB said...

James - Smething I really like about my workplace is that we've had a long run of very good bosses. There haven't been any SOBs. I hope that keeps up.

James said...

Good

Anonymous said...

TSB: Regarding #3 and #4, what do you think is the most serious threat to these that has been news- prominent in the past 2 weeks? I'm talking about the chi-com cyber attacks shown to be coming from a red army facility. This escalation was 'called out' by Hillary (2009) she demanded an apology, cease and desist etc. Now they can control all kinds of our infrastructure. (gas=30% of electricity, grid=old technology)
See clinton 1994 deal with red army: http://www.wnd.com/1998/06/6998/ Looks like war to me TSB and we have a bad hand! gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Dark Rumblings Of A Coup D’État In Spain
Spain bought the theory that Iraq would be a cake walk and funded it with a debt fueled construction boom/bust. Now the scandal plagued government is trying to forestall an Army coup by stopping Texas..I mean Catalonia from seceding. I guess the Army guys want to make sure they get their pensions. gwb
http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/2013-03-02/dark-rumblings-coup-d%E2%80%99%C3%A9tat-spain

Anonymous said...

TSB: I love this egyptian woman-artist's rendition of Kerry. Looks like a lot of Egyptians are a little sour on the IMF and view Morsi and MBros as just like that other guy the US loved so much. At least now you can express yourself.
gwb
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2013/03/201332222911715292.html

Anonymous said...

I didn't get to take the Retirement Seminar when I left a year ago. Have heard from everyone it is very valuable. Retirement Office, on the other hand, lives up to its reputation as the WORST office at State. Many of my friends & colleagues are leaving, and your description makes me think the smart rats are fleeing the sinking ship. Kerry will be a disaster and the budget situation will NEVER improve. No matter how willing FSOs are to do the work of 2-3 people 60-80 hours/week for years on end, because they know the work is important, it is impossible to do the job without adequate staffing and funding.
I am sooooo glad I left. I am happier than I have been in years and my future is bright.

Anonymous said...

TSB: It's the 10 yr anniversary of Iraq. No reporting in the USA but not everyone has forgotten. Patrick Coburn of the Independent starts a 10 part series on how the war has left Iraq. It is excellent. The last paragraph: Ordinary Iraqis are pessimistic or ambivalent about the future. Professor Yahya Abbas says: “If you ask my students ‘What do you want?’ About 95 per cent will answer ‘I want to leave Iraq.’” gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: According to my soures Kerry was astounded that Morsi only wanted to talk about the MB winning 100% of parliament in April elections. Adopting any 'reforms' would get in the way of that. Foreign currency reserves will be down to $4 billion by then. So, after 3 hrs Kerry gave him $250 million and headed out with his hair kind of on fire. gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Without reading the UN demand on marijuana I fail to understand the 'why'of what they want. That CNN trotted out 3 former drug zars holding a letter signed by every 'drug war chief' since Nixon told me these guys are protecting their turf. So far there has been exactly 1 conviction in Washington for driving while having an elevated TCB level since last summer which amazes everyone.
The legal Rx side of the drug problem is totally out of control x 10 yrs but everybody's makin $$.
gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: Of course our President can kill anyone he wants. Dick Cheney was our first 'President' to claim these 'war powers' according to this chilling interview which will be aired soon on Showtime. This from M Dowd today: “I got on the telephone with the president, who was in Florida, and told him not to be at one location where we could both be taken out.” Cheney kept W. flying aimlessly in the air on 9/11 while he and Lynn left on a helicopter for a secure undisclosed location, leaving Washington in a bleak, scared silence, with no one reassuring the nation in those first terrifying hours. gwb

Anonymous said...

TweettweetImaJeep: Rand Paul is doing a cool filibuster on martial law and the post constitutional nature of drone strikes in USA, posse comitatus etc. gwb

TSB said...

GWB: Why does the UN want the Feds to crack down on states that legalize weed? Because they (meaning, supranational politicians and bureaucrats) dislike any sign of popularism or federalism. It makes them nervous. Anyway, judging by news reports this week, they appear to prefer booze to weed.

I'm glad to see Paul going off the script on the Brennan nomination. That helped pressure the Administration into making some uncomfortable admissions on the unlimited nature of drone strikes. BTW, AG Holder promised today that Obama will explain all about that drone policy, someday.

Anonymous said...

TSB: That is a gas that the UN guys get all tanked up to attend budget meetings. Thanks for the explanation about the UN weed thing. gwb

Anonymous said...

Texas proposes one of nation’s “most sweeping” mobile privacy laws
If signed into law, cops would finally need a warrant to get location data. http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2013/03/texas-proposes-one-of-nations-most-sweeping-mobile-privacy-laws/?comments=1
TSB: 1 guy stood up and today the WH decides they can't kill at will in the US! A few are deciding that this tactic can defeat the establishment security wusses. gwb

Anonymous said...

TSB: That is an interesting FP article. I was perusing the bank accounts and credit cards of NJ gov. Christie last night and thinking about a recent report (60 minutes) showing the credit agencies do absolutely ZIP to help their customers because pretending is so much cheaper. Maybe this will prompt some of those pols to actually do something? gwb