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An End To Pensions

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jake-the-peg | 10:30 Mon 15th Apr 2013 | News
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As benefits are being hit hard isn't it time to question the pension?

Here I am paying large amounts of money to provide for my retirement whilst others are not making provision and intending to throw themselves on the mercy of state provision and the public purse.

Indeed it's been suggested retired people should be made to work for their pension.

Is it time the pension became a safety net and not a right - any more than Housing Benefit or the dole?


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I fully agreewith you. Me and OH have worked all our lives and paid into a pension to hopefully make sure we are ok when we retire. We wont be well off but hope we will be able to manage when we cut our cloth accordingly.
What do you mean that retired people should be made to work for their pension, when we have already worked all our life for ours and should be able to retire gracefully.
Isn't that what's happening under government proposals?

After all pensions are unaffordable for a high proportion (maybe most?) of the population and unaffordable for many employers to provide.

They either have no income in retirement or the rest of us have to pay for them.

Or are you really hinting there shouldn't be a safety net at all? That those who can't afford it should be denied care, services, etc?
I thought the principle of it was that retired people had worked - all their lives - for their pension.

They've become a mathematical puzzle, though. It used to be you had six kids who contributed money that in effect paid for your pension betwen your retirement at 65 and your death at 70. Now you've got no kids (and it seems to be mostly immigrants who keep the population growing), and you're living to 95. So who pays?

I expect Osborne or some other landed Old Etonian will see the merit in your suggestion.
I don't agree with pensioners working for their pension, if they've worked and contributed then they've earned it.

Those people on benefits should be made to do community work for their money if physically able to. There's plenty of things they could do to benefit the community.
A fairer system would be that the state pension would be based on what you contributed over your life time. If you paid in for 50 years then you would get a bigger pension that someone who had paid in nothing.

The problem is now, everyone gets a the same, a low pension. I cannot really be cut because that really would put a lot of people in severe poverty. And it cannot be raised for long contributors because we cannot afford it.

Old people should not be forced to work for an old age benefit while new graduates and young people cannot get jobs.

I know of some wealthy pensioners who do not need the Government pension but draw it because (rightly) they paid for it all their lives. To move the goalposts at this late stage of their lives would be grossly unfair.
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Well I've worked all my life and it seems now that should I lose my job - I'm a workshy scrounger who's benefit entitlement should be strictly limited, I'll have to move house so my kids can share a room

Sounds as if should I have a Plasma screen TV I'll need to hand it in and heaven help me should I want a can of beer!

This is a question of safety net vs entitlement

that's a fundamental idea about benefits - whether it's pensions or unemployment benefit

Are we entitled based on what we've put in (I thing Ed Milliband is pushing this idea) or is it strictly a safety net with the bareset minimum to prevent people starving

And why should the pension be different?
Just for once jake (and I promise I won’t make a habit of it!) I think we’re in almost total agreement.

The problem with State pensions is that there are two types of recipient: those who have made sufficient contributions to be entitled to the amount they receive and those who have not. With “Pension Credits” everybody is entitled to receive a minimum of around £143 per week if they have no other income. This applies whether they have made full NI contributions or none at all. The introduction of the new flat rate pension will not alter this. Those who do have other income (such as those like yourself who have made provisions) will have their State pension tested against the contributions they have made and it will be scaled back if those contributions are insufficient. This usually means that those who have paid most in get the least out.

As I have said before, for the State pension scheme to be worthy of its name, there needs to be separation of those who have contributed fully to the State Pension (and who will indeed be in receipt of a “pension”) and those who have not (who will be in receipt of benefits). Then, when the axe falls on benefits those who have effectively bought their State pension will not be disadvantaged.

Of course none of this is helped by the fact that the State pension system is run like a giant Ponzi scheme, with current contributions funding current recipients. But that’s another story for another day.
Well, apart from the last left wing rant I am in agreement with you. The problem is, as Gromit points out, how can you remove something when many have paid into and contributed to all their life. You can't it would not be fair.

Not quite sure how we deal with this. The governments (over many years) have created a Ponzi scheme that is now coming home to roost.

There certainly needs to be some element of getting more if you pay in more. It has to be made fairer for those that work their nuts off.
pensioners work for their pensions? where are these imaginary jobs?
I would echo the sentiments that the State Pension is effectively, and rather ironically, given that such schemes are illegal - a Ponzi scheme.

And it does seem both fair and proportionate to examine whether benefits, pensionable or otherwise, could be linked to contributions...
When were the Workhouses abolished? If someone doesn't make provision for the decrepitude when they're able why should they expect to spend their twilight years in luxury at others expense?
Successive governments have slyly shifted the proposition of the State Pension from; an entitlement that is due to people who have paid in; to a social security benefit that is means tested

/some element of getting more if you pay in more/


to add injury to insult, don't successive governments have a tendency to offer 'enhanced' schemes and then close them after people have paid extra for years

I seem to recall my father paying into 'superannuated' or something and then being let down
I am 63 and had to pay contributions for 39 years to claim a full pension. The new recommendation is that in future you will only have to work or claim benefits for 30 years and get a flat rate pensionof £140 per week which is a lot more than I get now. How fair is that? I agree that your pension should reflect what you have paid in.
Pensions are a right because we are all supposed to be paying into the pot anyway: it is simply a government run savings scheme. The difference between it and say housing is that it isn't to do with sorting out present issues but providing for the future.

If you want to change it to be a safety net for some only, then you create disadvantages.

Firstly you get those that are presently contributing to the government pension pot paying into a commercial pension pot instead (or at least those who make the effort to do so and who see it as a good thing to do when the safety net is there for tomorrow anyway) thus making some private individuals rich instead of ploughing all the collected money back into the system.

And also, as I imply, there will be a group that could save but who don't bother, preferring a spend now rather than invest for tomorrow philosophy, so the welfare spend may well will be greater. Not a desirable event.

In addition society will degrade into a less caring, more "sort yourself out I don't care much" one, which can't be a good thing.

As things stand those who can contribute do and those who can not are provided for anyway. Those who could and don't are always impossible to identify with 100% certainty so it's not worthwhile worrying about it.
Should there never be anymore housewifes/stay at home mums?
Should both parents work fulltime?
Should all kids be latch key kids?
Should childminders raise every child ever born in the U.K?
Does a husband pay in enough for his and his wife's pension?
"It's been suggested retired people should be made to work for their pension."

They already did, before retirement. If they have to do so afterwards that's not a pension, that's employment of the elderly (in a deliberate effort to keep the younger folk unemployed and on the dole one has to assume). This is what your elected elite thinks worth debating/considering.
I agree that pensions should be part-earned, in that you get what you pay for. But the basic state pension shouldn't just be a bare minimum "safety net". Perhaps in the past that was OK, but not that we are all living longer and the retirement age is not just a few years but often decades away from death, a "safety net" for so long will lead to a miserable old age. State pensions should be able to provide more than just the bare necessities but also allow people to live out their lives in reasonable comfort.
"Indeed it's been suggested that retired people should be made to work for their pension". Who has suggested this???? I'm sure my 84 year old Dad who worked well into his 70's will welcome this news (NOT!!).

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