Anorak News | The Bad Old Days

The Bad Old Days

by | 18th, November 2005

‘OH-OH! Though there is no legal age for when a politician has to retire from public office, there is a feeling that it should not differ too much from when the rest of us are pensioned off.

‘When I grow younger…’

As it stands, you qualify for your state pension book at 65. But, as the Telegraph’s front page reports, Tony Blair and his Government plan to raise the age to 67.

Might it be that this hike is to make Tony Blair appear younger? Increase the retirement age a couple of years and – hey presto! – Tony’s political life is extended.

And while we ponder that, we should all of us think of our own futures. As the Telegraph’s headline says (thoughtfully produced in easy-to-read big print): “One in 5 men won’t reach retirement if age rises to 67.”

The paper contacts the Government’s actuary department and learns that, all things being equal, “around 590,000 males and 380,000 females are estimated to die between the ages to 65 and 67” each year.

This does not, however, adversely affect the current crop of public servants who are still able to retire at 60 on inflation-proof pensions. Which is only fair.

Although staff joining the massed ranks of public service workers next year will have to work until they’re 65 for the same perks.

Pensioners are by nature extremely complicated financial instruments. And anyone not au fait with the system may jump to the conclusion that it stinks.

Of course, it is entirely fair. As Alison O’Connell, director of the Pensions Policy Institute, says in the Times, since we are living longer, why not work longer?

“The question is when and how much the age limit should be raised by… I believe there is no other way to pay for better state pensions, except by increasing taxes.”

And if Tony can hang around long enough, he might just raise taxes as well..?’

Posted: 18th, November 2005 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink