Sunday, May 22, 2005

Brit Social Security

Blair is thinking of raising the age from which folks get paid Social Security (Pensions) to 70. But only if they have a college degree. Should be a vote-winner.

This is from a more than usually duplicitous story in Rupert Murdock's London Sunday Times. Here's a quick Fisking.

UNIVERSITY graduates may be barred from receiving a state pension until they are 70 under proposals from Tony Blair’s pensions supremo to solve the looming crisis.

Wonder what caused the crisis? Brits have a higher retirement savings rate than Europe & the US.

Adair Turner, head of the government’s Pensions Commission, says lower-paid workers could, however, still retire on a full pension at 65 to reflect their lower life expectancy.

I guess low life expectancy of poor people might be something to do with Blair.

In the interview, Turner said that all workers might have to be forced to save for a pension with the money invested on their behalf by the government. It would ensure that everybody would have an annual income of about £12,000 a year, including the basic state pension.

Actually, the Brits do pay Social Security contributions. It's called National Insurance and has payments by employer and employee and runs at between 3% and 9% of salary - about double the US rate. Seems that El Supremo just forgot this one.

The unpopular changes are being considered by Turner because of the multi-billion-pound shortfall in the amount that people have saved for their retirement. Estimates have put the shortfall at between £30 billion and £60 billion.

Let's see, when Blair was elected in 1997, his buddy/rival Brown's first move was to slap an annual tax of £5 billion on pension funds. Let's see, that's 8 years at £5 billion, which is £40 billion. Which is right between £30 billion and £60 billion. Fancy that!

If the Brits let these creeps get away with this, they deserve their impecunious retirements. Mind you, Blair's "National Health Service" will finish them off early, so the suffering won't last too long...