Well, I bet you didn’t know it, but I’ll pass on a message from Mr Duncan-Smith.
Most people want to work past 65!
There! Just like 30 years ago when Mrs Thatcher told people that they wanted to pay for their eye tests. No one but the government actually knows what we are thinking, least of all us.
Anyway, Duncan-Smith is launching a major overhaul of the pensions system, which is aimed at encouraging people to save for their old age. Yep, you read that right: some of the lowest incomes, the highest priced housing, ditto transport, petrol, cars, supermarkets, etc. Mortgages that break us till we are 60, and for the English student, fees that rival mortgages in size....and Mr Duncan-Smith thinks we should be saving more.
What a plonker this bloke is.
The biggest joke is that inflation is, in reality at around 10-12% (at least for the poorer people), interest rates are around 1-3%, so every pound you save loses about 10p in value every year, meaning that if you save hard enough for long enough you will be left with enough for a cup of tea.
And don’t think for a second that the answer is to put the money in a pension fund. Ask the investors in Equitable Life about that! There's new government scheme designed to force employers to enroll people in saving schemes (by any other name, a tax increase).
So first National Insurance goes up, and now forced saving for a pension! How many ways can you put up income tax without saying you are putting up income tax?
How does Mr Duncan-Smith know that we want to go on working longer than we have to? Is it because he asked us? Bwa ha ha!
It’s because his friends at the top of government and business in England don’t have any desire to stop work. And why would they? Excellent pay, great conditions, people fawning all over you, chauffeur driven cars (forget all that nonsense that Cameron spouted about ministers using public transport. Like most of the rest of his pronouncements it was garbage). But go ask someone who has done a manual job and is worn out by the time they are 55; ask someone who stacks shelves in Tesco, or teaches in a badly disciplined, underfunded, inner city school, whose nerves are frayed by the time they are 40; ask a postman who gets up at 4 every morning, or a nurse who works shifts; ask a care worker in a retirement home who’s been making beds and lifting patients for 30 years.
In fact, ask most people who have to cope with rat race unreachable targets for greedy bosses with the management style of Pol Pot.
Go on Mr Duncan-Smith. Ask them.
Yes people are living longer, and yes people of your class are living active lives for much longer. You’ve been pampered all your days: the best of everything. But not everyone has been so fortunate. Some sleep in damp rooms, with no central heating or no double glazing; some have been injured at work and never got better; some lived on substandard food...yes and smoked and drank... so what?
By 55 some are finished. They may live to 90, but it’s no life.
Go away and think again. I don’t know one single person from my circle of acquaintances and friends: teachers, doctors, civil servants, shop workers, taxi drivers, lecturers, chefs, painters, joiners... and so on, that wants to work a day past the current retirement.
And I don’t know one single retired person who wishes themselves back in the rat race.
Oh, and stop blaming the EU for the fact that men and women will have to retire at the same age. It’s nothing to do with them; it’s to do with equality laws which we have had since 1975. And since you brought it up, why does the UK have the lowest pensions by comparison to wages in the EU? What do you people do with the money?