Chris Martenson has published an excellent piece on Safehaven.com on why Americans can't afford the future.
And the truth is: The three adult generations in the U.S. are suffering, and their burdens are likely to increase with time. Each is experiencing a squeeze that is making it harder to create value, save capital, and pursue happiness than at any point since WWII. At that point, we were a creditor nation with an economy exploding into dominance on the world stage. Now, however, the U.S. is the largest debtor nation and our economic hegemony is increasingly at siege across a number of fronts.
From retirement to medical care to taxes to inflation (I repeat myself on the last points), Americans are woefully underprepared to live in the future in a prosperous manner if defined by monetary means. Martenson argues that prosperity should thus be redefined to include human relationships, physical and emotional health, self-sufficiency, and general happiness. To reach that new prosperity he recommends simplification, living below your means, cultivating resiliency, getting physically fit, bartering, and one of my favorite recommendations: considering multi-generational living.
As an interesting sidebar, scroll down to the very bottom where the author has posted his 'before' and 'after' biographies.