Monday, November 21, 2011
Money - Can't Take It With You
My grandmother just became a complete ward of the State of Massachusetts.
Grandpa died 20 years ago. She lived on her own; then at a subsidized home; then at an assisted-living facility until recently when her money ran out.
She had - I believe - 300k after selling her house not long ago. But the monthlies on her care ultimately devoured all that cash.
So now taxpayers are footing the bill, er bills, but at a lesser place than she had been at.
When my father told me how this all worked (you have whittle your accounts down to zero to gain eligibility) I was a little surprised - but only because I was completely ignorant about typical end-of-life living.
It's all really sad. My grandmother doesn't recognize anyone and has all the usual maladies of a nonagenarian. She's not just dying alone, she'll have been living alone for many, many years before leaving this world.
I mean, is this what we all have to look forward too?
She is/was a very difficult woman and there was *no chance* that she was going to live with my father or his brother. Old folk, even if moderately healthy, do need around-the-clock care - even just for incontinence and whatnot. My father said he could have conceivably taken care of (butt wipe) his father but not his mother.
But still, theoretically my grandmother could have moved-in with my parents (or uncle)....they could have hired nurses to stop by here and there....much of that money would not have gone to waste....AND taxpayers could have been spared.
Obviously if they didn't have this *welfare* state those people that can afford their own end-of-life care would pay for it themselves - and the money would be spent a whole lot more efficiently. People would simply figure it out, as they did for thousands of years before the tyranny of Big Government entitlements.
And dotage might not be so lonely...