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..There's a little Samuel Pepys in all of us..

Thursday, May 25, 2006

ZPG has finally caught up with us..
Tony's had to announce today that State Pensions, that which literally millions of Britons depend upon for their total income, are to be radically changed.
For hence forward, pensions will be tied to earnings and contributions. Henceforth, one will be 68 before they can claim a pension. And, perhaps most telling, workers will be forced to deposit 4% of their gross income towards their pension.
Now really, they can't even call this a 'hidden tax', without breaking into a small smile, behind their hands.. it's just too obvious..
It had to be seen coming though. With fewer and fewer workers, and more and more infirm old gits hanging on to life through medical breakthroughs, there had to be a calling of accounts. It's obvious that tony's, or in fact anyones government could simply print out cheques and expect them to be honoured when that particular account is well overdrawn.
Now, it's time to start paying the piper, and one expects these recent ammendments to be only the tip of the iceberg.
State Homes for those without a private pension may well be in the future. Even those who own their house, thinking it would be a place to finally breathe their last, may be forced in the future to sell their assets and move into an institutional environment, to defray the cost of longevity.
We have been working towards a nanny state, in the true sense, since the end of the Second World War. We have sat back, and allowed those who govern us to make daft laws, idiotic decisions both domestically and abroad, and ridiculous policies which make life easier in the short run.
We are reaping that which we so blythly sown, and it's going to be a bitter harvest.
An Addendum.
Now that ZPG has been abandonned, and populations are growing at a near to normal rate, the question arises for employers, as whether to hire a 22 year old, or a 57 year old, who're applying for the same job. Ageism is rife in the workplace, and the question was effectively rhetorical.
Secondly, supposing one has spent their working life in a trade, such as construction. Are we to believe that construction workers will be able to continue, without major injuries, after their sell-by-date?
This is a conundrum for all governments, at least all in charge of industrialised nations. While it has become an issue in Britain, it will undoubtably become one for all eventually.
Perhaps it's time to recall golden ages gone by, where the family took care of their own, and where age was revered, rather than reviled.
But while we live in a society which pumps up the values of youth, the appearance of youth, the necessity of youth, we will be as those depicted in that old chestnut 'Logans Run'.
We'll all be playing Peter Ustinov's role in the not too distant future.

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