Commenting on social, political, economic and general topics

Lord Bichard: Retired people could work for pensions.

with 2 comments

We have seen the unemployed attacked and demonised by this government, supported by cherry-picked inflammatory stories in the media; we have seen, once the popular myth of the idle unemployed become ingrained in the public psyche, an attack on the disabled, with similar inflammatory and misleading stories about disability cheats; the working man has long been demonised for being greedy and expecting a fair days pay for a fair days work- and even those hard working folk demonised with Tory jibes of being the laziest workers in Europe and the plan to have us sell our employment rights for a few worthless shares.

Now, the Tories finally show their true intent of an all out attack on the working class- or shall I use the dirty word ‘proletariat’ with an idea by Lord Bichard (an apt and descriptive title) to have pensioners work for their pensions-

“Are there ways in which we could use incentives to encourage older people, if not to be in full time work, to be making a contribution?” he asked. We have already made a contribution; we have paid into our pensions all our lives, and those of us who have been unfortunate enough to be disabled or unemployed cannot be penalised further on reaching retirement age because some wealthy lord, who probably has no need of a pension will get a gold plated, guaranteed final salary pension, worth more than any working man could possibly dream of- the sort of money we see as a lottery win. How bloody well dare he!

“…and older people who are not very old could be making a useful contribution to civil society in that respect…” what is the man talking about? Older people who are not very old? The man needs to see a doctor- blimey, if I went around making comments like that, they’d likely put me away, never mind sit in the Lord’s.

“…the government should use the pensions system to “incentivise” retired people.” What on earth does that comment mean? I’ll tell you what it means- it means force the buggers to work for their pensions so I don’t have to contribute towards them from my massive pelf; that’s what it means.

“We are now prepared to say to people who are not looking for work, if you don’t look for work you don’t get benefits, so if you are old and you are not contributing in some way or another maybe there is some penalty attached to that.” That is completely misleading- I’ll go so far as to say a downright, calculated lie. We have always said if you don’t actively seek work, you aren’t entitled to benefits; it isn’t a new idea by this government- or its think-tank cronies. But to use it to suggest if you are drawing your entitlement, to which you have already contributed you should be penalised for not contributing further is a statement that beggars belief.

“Professor James Sefton, of Imperial College, London, a former adviser to the Treasury, told the committee young people were effectively subsidising the older generation – and he could not understand why they were not protesting about it.” That is the way the pension system has always worked; the young are not protesting because they understand that, and they understand too that someday, another generation will subsidise their pensions; this is nothing more than a divided and conquer strategy, to get younger people on board and saying yes, why should we pay, make the old buggers work for their pensions.

I cannot believe and never thought I would see such provocative attacks on the very people who create the wealth people like Bichard enjoy; but to begin demonising pensioners is a step too far. If this becomes anything more than the ramblings of an out of touch peer, if it ever sees any likelihood of fruition, I foresee a rising of the common people, the like of which this country has not seen since 1642.

If we do not hear Cameron, Clegg and Miliband condemn this thinking as untenable, then this will become policy; we will see an attempt to force pensioners back into work for the benefits they have struggled to contribute to for most of their working lives.

There will be no rest, no golden years, no autumn of our lives as we are made to toil until we drop.

This final thrust by a ruling, unelected, un-mandated elite can be the beginning of the end, or the end of the beginning; only we can decide which.

We can dust off our cloth caps, ready to doff them in deference to our self-appointed rulers, or take our ploughshares and beat them into swords. The time is coming where we will be forced to choose.


2 Responses

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  1. And what work does he expect pensioners to do? Paid work which will take income from someone who needs it? Hardly. This is a clever way to get rid of pensions entirely. Introduce idea you must work for a pension and the state decides what work you should do. People won’t want to give up paid work in these circumstances so the next thing they will be forced to- to work for peanuts. Back to a two- tier society – lords and serfs. Serfs work till they drop.

  2. Those of us who are retired and wish to volunteer, have umpteen opportunities to do so. My noble Lord is “incentivised” by £300 a day for sitting on red leather and spouting BS like this – I’ll volunteer to do that for him!


    24/03/2014 at 7:08 AM

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