to hope the government has the guts to tax WEALTHY pensioners more

(954 Posts)
ReallyTired Mon 22-Apr-13 09:12:30

The Fabian society has suggested that wealthy pensioners pay more tax.

Some how I can't see a conservative wanting to tax wealthy pensioners more when they all vote Tory.

I find it unfair that pensioners with an income more the average family's income get free bus buses, winter fuel allowance, TV licence as well as paying less tax and national insurance. It is about time that the the wealthy pensioners took their share of the pain of the cuts.

I am in favour of well off pensioners having free bus passes, winter fuel allowance as these things encourage independence and improve health. I would like to see the money for these things clawed back by WEALTHY pensioners paying more income tax.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 09:22:42

WFA doesn't improve health if you use it for bar bills on your latest cruise which is exactly what wealthy pensioners I know spend it on.Also not keen on my tax paying to heat huuuuuge houses far too big for a couple without dependants to live in.

Anyhow yanbu

Lets not forget even on a modest salary many pensioners are better off than the rest of us as many are mortgage free.

ssd Mon 22-Apr-13 09:37:29

but it wont happen

CrispyHedgeHog Mon 22-Apr-13 09:39:06

It won't happen. The grey vote is the one that counts.

I'm sort of in two minds about pensioners, on the one hand they've done their stint, worked to build up what they have etc.. on the other hand times were different then, and while it was still hard, it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now.

I dunno, I've got splinters on my arse from this fence I'm perched on.

YoothaJoist Mon 22-Apr-13 09:39:38

YANBU. But as you say, there's not a cat in hell's chance of this happening under a tory government.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 09:40:28

While i understand and sympathise with your view there are very few changes that could be made which would be cost effective or legal. Things like wfa and free bus passes are not means tested because the cost is higher than would be saved. The discrepancies in tax payments are in real terms due to ni payments not tax levels (age related allowances are being phased out) so the only way would be to increase tax rates for pensioners and that would be illegal under discrimination laws.

The comments re lack of mortgage are also wrong, why should people pay more tax because they have no mortgage. Some pensioners have mortgages some non pensioners own houses outright so how would that be worked. Can you imagine the outcry people being taxed for home owning without debt!

I don't know the answer maybe scrap the wfa and increase pension credit to compensate so its targeted but not everyone claims who is entitled so some will miss out.

Callisto Mon 22-Apr-13 09:43:15

My father is a 'wealthy' pensioner. He has never claimed anything, he owned his own business that not only paid vast amounts of money in business taxes, he personally paid vast amounts of taxes, and his entire workforce paid tax. He also cared single-handedly for my very disabled mother for several years, thus saving the NHS a large amount of money. Why the hell should he be penalised now that he has retired? YABU.

ScarlettInSpace Mon 22-Apr-13 09:44:50

Personally I think YABU - pensioners have already paid tax on their money when they earned it and no doubt tax on their savings interest for years, why should they pay tax on it again just because they have worked hard to plan their retirement, paid off their mortgage & saved hard to ensure they have a good standard or life when they retire?

dozily Mon 22-Apr-13 09:56:30

it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now

I really don't think it's true that people now have it harder than any time in the last 60, 70, 80 years.

magimedi Mon 22-Apr-13 09:58:33

Yes, ScarlettInSpace I agree.

And don't forget that there is a very good chance that all the savings will be taken to pay for care in old age. £27,000 a year for care with out nursing, rising to £38,000pa with nursing care is the average at the moment. Not many peoples savings are going to cope with that for very long.

scaevola Mon 22-Apr-13 10:03:25

I think this is soundbites, not properly thought through policy.

Pensioners already pay tax, at the same rates and with same allowances as the rest of the population.

I do not think they should be asked to pay more.

Making the state pension taxable is about the only thing you could do.

landofsoapandglory Mon 22-Apr-13 10:10:40

YANBU, but it won't happen.

My parents and PILs are both quite wealthy. PILs have had 2 houses left to them (both only DC), my father had a house left to him. My parents have a business that is still running, my father has a fireman's pension, my PILs closed a business, MIL has a NHS pension. As couples they both have a nice lifestyle, one that many people can be quite envious of. They take many holidays abroad each year, have nice houses, new cars etc.

On the other hand DH is in the RAF, he has taken a real terms pay cut, as has most people in society, I am disabled and live in fear of my DLA being scrapped. DS1 is in two minds about going to Uni because if the debt aspect, despite the fact he is on course for at least 3 As at A level.

We, and most of us of our generation, will work as hard, if not harder, and longer than today's pensioners and will still not get the benefits they do. When disabled people, including disabled children, and people in poverty are having to help pay towards bring the benefit down it becomes right and proper that wealthy pensioners should do too!

landofsoapandglory Mon 22-Apr-13 10:11:44

*deficit down not benefit

msrisotto Mon 22-Apr-13 10:13:34

Agree with ScarlettInSpace - These pensioners have been paying tax their whole lives not only on their earnings but also on savings and after their dead they'll pay it again on inheritance tax. No wonder they're all retiring abroad.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 10:13:36

The state pension is already taxable but below personal allowance levels so you do pay tax if you have a private or works pension or do part time work which takes you above the level.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 10:19:24

Having seen my DM spend 40 yrs working in teaching I think she deserves to now be entitled to WFU and all. She finds the travel allowances extremely useful as she doesnt drive.

I heard on another thread a SAHM stating that the 'wealthy' pensioners should fund for her to stay at home and pay her minimum wage.....

scaevola Mon 22-Apr-13 10:24:59

My bad, apologies.

So pensioners are already paying tax at the same rate and with the same allowances as the rest of the population.

I don't think your tax rate should go up when you retire (whether old age, medical or other).

ConferencePear Mon 22-Apr-13 10:35:10

scaevola wrote "So pensioners are already paying tax at the same rate and with the same allowances as the rest of the population. "

It's worth saying that they are also taxed on their (ever decreasing in value) savings.
It will put people off investing in a pension or saving if the government is going to change the rules after they have retired.

Torrorosso Mon 22-Apr-13 10:48:44

'It wasn't hard in the same way as now'

What, you mean a world war and bombings, food shortages, having to go down the mines (like my 'wealthy pensioner' dad did).

He remembers being hungry, studied at night school to become an engineer and is now retired and relatively well off, but disabled.

I don't begrudge him a penny - he has paid his dues.

DorisIsWaiting Mon 22-Apr-13 11:10:57

Those who are saying wealthy pensioners should not be penalised are not really looking at the bigger picture. They are pretty much the only group really not affceted by any of the changes so far. Certainly M and FIL seem to be having the same number of holiday's (2x America and least 1 uk so far this year) and jaunts away this year without too much trouble.

OTOH my grandma is at the other end of the spectrum and struggling to heat her home. It is not all pensioners but we are most definitely NOT all in it together.

DorisIsWaiting Mon 22-Apr-13 11:14:19

And those saying pensioners have paid their dues, the money the government owes has been built up over the course of their lifetime, as I understand it the dues weren't always paid (at least at a level that didn't add to the debt), that is another reason we are in this situation.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 11:15:28

Around here there are a lot of 'poor' pensioners living in big houses often stuffed full of things which makes it almost impossible for them to think about moving and releasing some equity. I am talking about £1 m houses where they live in a couple of rooms.

The other thing to bear in mind is that a lot of women didnt actually work or worked just part time. Now it is far more common to have women working full time

DorisIsWaiting Mon 22-Apr-13 11:17:42

Maybe those who can afford it shouldn't be claiming the WFA and bus pass.

It could be added on to one of the other pension benifits i.e. if you claim x or y (pension credit top up for example) then you automatically recieve WFA and buss pass, those in the middle band (not ealthy but out of the really poor range) could apply on a means tested basis.

HoneyDragon Mon 22-Apr-13 11:30:39

Agree with others about times being worse. My mother was abandoned, fobbed off onto which ever relative could afford to feed her and my Aunty eventually found her in an orphanage with nothing. There was no welfare. My Aunty and Uncle.

My mother and father had a one room flat with cold water and no indoor plumbing.

They have done tremendously well for themselves have both worked and paid into the system. They pay tax on their savings now. Why should they specifically pay a tax purely based on the fact they are over 60 and have savings?

Equally, dhs earliest memories of being homeless on the street with his mother and sister. Eventually they had a dump with a cobblestone kitchen.

They saved and worked and saved. Now they are retired and budget incredibly hard to live if their savings.

Dh and I have worked incredibly hard together to get what we have now. And are hoping things are going to improve massively soon. What incentive to we have to work, save and invest if we are already paying 40% tax rate only to be taxed extra again on it on retirement? confused

Oddly enough, both my IL and Ps donate from their WFA to charities for the elderly. Reasoning being if they claim it and donate it, it is serving its purpose rather than sitting in the pot.

ReallyTired Mon 22-Apr-13 11:41:19

"Pensioners already pay tax, at the same rates and with same allowances as the rest of the population."

Pensioners pay less tax as they don't pay national insurance. Pensioners also have a higher personal allowance than working people. This is done to insure that pensioners on a modest income do not lose out.

I feel that in times of austerity that we should pay our share.

I would like the winter fuel allowance to be in a form of a voucher so that the money has to be spent on heating. Using the fuel allowance to go on holiday should not be funded by the tax payer.

Its surprising that there is an extra tax allowance for being registered blind but no other disablity. I think its reasonable to have an extra tax allowance for blind people, but surely deaf people, or other people with physical impairments should be given an allowance as well.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 11:48:25

Perhaps ALL benefits should be in the form of vouchers to stop the money being spent on other things.

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 11:53:47

Agree, but they vote in disproportionately large numbers so wd take a v brave government to address this properly and equitably.

Just to add to the mix, pensioners living abroad are entitled to the WFA, even if the climate where they live means the temperature never gets to the level of the UK, where the WFA would kick in. I guess it must be nice to live in warm, sunny Spain but get money when the UK is shivering. I also guess it must be more expensive to remove such pensioners from the system as I expect their home address on the system would remain a UK based one, so excluding on the basis of address wouldn't work.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 11:54:29

If the wfa was a voucher what difference would it make? For most households it will be £200 i don't know anyone who spends less than that a year on electric/gas/oil or whatever they use so if they got a voucher it would just mean that those on pre payment meters would have an additional process to go through actually increasing costs but for those you mentioned would just free up money from their budget to spend instead so changes nothing.

With regards to NI payments they are only payable on earnings so you don't pay ni on savings etc, pensions are not earnings so wouldn't be liable for ni even if pensioners paid

kilmuir Mon 22-Apr-13 11:56:58

A lot of people are in trouble financially now as they have spent more than they have. Greed and unwarranted expectations.
My parents never got in debt, Dad had 2 jobs. and yes one was not well paid or in his usual line of work. Did it rather than expecting government to dish out handouts

LondonMan Mon 22-Apr-13 12:11:44

I agree that any two people on the same income should usually be taxed at the same rate. Pension income falling in the basic rate band is taxed at half the rate of employment income, because no National Insurance is due.

What needs to happen is
1. National Insurance abolished.
2. What was employers NI replaced by "employer income tax contribution" at the same rate. It would be an employer part-payment of the employee tax bill, and as such would be a taxable benefit, meaning your taxable salary would increase by 13.8%.
3. The income tax rate increased so the government still gets the same amount of money overall, this means the basic rate of income tax would be in the region of 40% instead of 20%.
4. Over a period of time, say 14 years, the employer contribution gets phased out, so that eventually contractual salary and taxable salary are the same thing. (This is to make the system simpler and more understandable, the tax raised can stay the same by adjust the employee income tax rate.)
5. Initially pensioners should stay at the current low rate, but the rate should be raised by 1% a year for 20 years until they are taxed at the same rate as people of working age.

It would be unfair to suddenly double the taxes on pensioners.

NomenOmen Mon 22-Apr-13 12:12:43

The trouble is that younger people (say up to about the age of 45) are beginning to realise that, although they are likely to work much longer than today's pensioners (I anticipate that within my lifetime [I'm 34] the retirement age will be raised to somewhere in the 70s), they will receive considerably less in retirement, and possibly nothing at all. It seems likely to me that I will not receive a state pension (since I have a private one: I anticipate future governments being forced to remove entitlement to a state pension from those who have made their own arrangements [they will only achieve this by making the state pension an unattractive option). It is basically unaffordable for countries to provide for the retirement of growing, and long-lived, retired populations at the levels at which they currently do, unless we pay much, much, much more in tax/NI during our lifetimes. The maths just don't work.

This sense of generational crisis and struggle will only end when all are in the same sad boat. This will take about 20 years (as it will be electoral suicide for any government to rescind benefits to current pensioners; future pensioners are fair game, though, I imagine).

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:17:35

Agree, but they vote in disproportionately large numbers so wd take a v brave government to address this properly and equitably.

Exactly. And a large proportion of them vote Tory too! Plus they are also one of the few groups of voters who have lots of time to protest directly to their MP and make their voices heard.

But in general I do agree that benefits for pensioners need review. How can you justify introducing the cap on Child benefit for higher rate tax payers yet still have free WFA for all regardless of income. How can you justify the housing benefit cap whilst exempting pensioners where probably the biggest under occupancy occurs.

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Mon 22-Apr-13 12:20:09

They don't pay national insurance because NI isn't charged on investment income, and assuming they're pensioners, they don't have any earned income, so you'd have to say that NI was payable on all investment income.

The property tax might work, as it would force a lot of older people out of their homes if they are asset rich/ (relatively) cash poor, so it would free up the larger houses for families.

NomenOmen Mon 22-Apr-13 12:22:25

blush Sorry: I didn't answer your AIBU...

Effectively, yes, YABU to expect any government dramatically to contradict the expectations of those who make up the bulk of their vote.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 12:23:50

I'm not sure tax rates for pensioners should increase as I think that might harm those on lower incomes but I definitely think that only those on lower incomes should receive winter fuel allowance, free bus passes and TV licence and all the other non means tested benefits. I think the arguments for keeping WFA as non means tested (ie if you means test it, the most vulnerable will in all likelihood lose it) also applied to child benefit, but apparently that wasn't what the government felt.

My parents are both retired, both have huge pensions (my mum has been retired for about 4 years and has so much money still she hasn't actually had to touch her pension yet). They have three (mortgage free) homes, one in Surrey, one in the south of France and one in Spain. They also have a time share in the Caribbean and five cars. That they get all the same benefits as someone living in a tiny cold house beggars belief.

Of course, my real belief is that none of these cuts would be necessary if the goverment went after the very wealthy first. Clamp down on people buy property though offshore companies to avoid Stamp Duty, close every tax loop hole possible. Clamp down massively on Corporation Tax avoidance.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:24:47

Of course, my real belief is that none of these cuts would be necessary if the goverment went after the very wealthy first.

You are entitled to believe that. But you are wrong.

NomenOmen Mon 22-Apr-13 12:25:27

niceguy - I think successive governments will phase in the measures you suggest, that is, it will become a condition for anyone in receipt of housing benefit that they cannot 'under-occupy' without penalty. As I said, it will apply first to the non-retired population, and will be carried over into their retirements. No one will therefore have the expectations that current pensioners have.

The WFA will probably be absorbed into some other benefit, and then phased out.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 12:27:10

why am I wrong Niceguy ?

BTW I never think any opinion is wrong, they are opinions not facts.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:34:25

Niceguy 2 its cheaper to give the wfa to everyone than to bring in means testing. Wealthy pensioners do not qualify for housing benefit so only poor ones would be affected by changing that. Basically it sounds like someone thought hey these people have disposable income how can we get it?

I'm making sacrifices now so i can enjoy my retirement later but if the government is just going to take it off me why should i?

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 12:36:37

* its cheaper to give the wfa to everyone than to bring in means testing*

Does the same not apply to child benefit?

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 12:37:59

I agree niceguy with regards to the child benefit and housing benefit caps. Not sure how they justify that and still exempt pensioners from all cuts. It has to be due to votes. Although I think they may have mis-judged the views of many pensioners in any case, as my father has voted conservative all his life and says he won't again. He is 80. I think that while many wealthier pensioners are not feeling the hit themselves, they are noticing the effects it's having on their children / grand children.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 12:39:22

Yes, that's the argument I don't understand either headfairy. They say it's fair to remove child benefit from higher rate tax payers, but too costly to do the same for pensioner benefits hmm

undercoversahm Mon 22-Apr-13 12:40:16

YANBU least stop giving pensioners tax breaks that the working population do not enjoy (eg a higher personal allowance). Yes, most have paid tax and NI all their lives but actually nowhere near the amount needed to pay for their retirement at state expense -nobody foresaw the increase in life expectancy...the amount they paid supported the (many fewer) pensioners alive when they (the current pensioners) were working and those pensioners (the old ones, now dead) did not live anywhere near as long and so were much cheaper to support.

Public sector pensions should also be cut for the same reason - nobody anticipated they would be worth so much and they could easily bankrupt the country at current levels. They have not been paid for (no matter how much it is true that the workers paid in perhaps all their lives - it was not enough to pay for the pension they now expect).

Also, why are pensioners not subject to the benefits cap or the bedroom tax? What possible reason is there for pensioners to be subsidised to live in family sized homes when there are families in bed and breakfast accommodation? Many people in the private sector have to downsize when they retire, why should those being subsidised by the state be exempt from the realities of life? (BTW I would love for the country to be rich enough for everyone to stay in their family home for life, but it's not).

Lastly: yes, lots of their money might ultimately be spent on care homes - but isn't that why we all save up - in case we need it one day? Does anyone really believe they can have large savings that they will never spend (eg a house they will never again live in) and then think it fair to ask the taxpayer to fund their retirement home in order to preserve the inheritance for their children to inherit (who have not worked for it themselves). Support yourself first with your own money and only then ask for pay outs from the state as a safety net.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:41:17

Which is why they had to scrap the original policy and rethink it so instead child benefit can be claimed by everyone but its clawed back via the tax system which is not quite the same, they could operate the same system for wfa.

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 12:45:09

We're all in violent agreement! Should we start one of those online petition thingies? Or waste of time- as we've said, pensioners votes too powerful for gov to take action to their detriment.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 12:48:30

Exactly headfairy. If the argument holds water for CB then surely it holds water for HB cap. In fact it'd be cheaper I'd think to test for the cap since the test is much easier to establish than income which can be vary for many reasons.

As for why your opinion about no cuts being needed is wrong, the answer is long and quite boring. Firstly any massive attempts to force the very group whom are already paying most of the taxes would backfire. It would force many to emigrate, increase tax avoidance and discourage spending & investment. Secondly and quite crucially the rich don't have enough money. That's right. They don't. I could go on about it but would rather draw your attention to this article which I think does a good summary (Link)

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 12:54:52

It depends what you class as rich though niceguy. I don't think that a single income family on 50k is rich, but this government clearly does as they are no longer receiving CB and the rate at which they pay higher rate tax now kicks in earlier. I do however think that the same family on 150k a year are rich. The government has, however, seen fit to give them a nice fat tax break. I don't get it confused

flatpackhamster Mon 22-Apr-13 12:58:25


It depends what you class as rich though niceguy. I don't think that a single income family on 50k is rich, but this government clearly does as they are no longer receiving CB and the rate at which they pay higher rate tax now kicks in earlier.^

A single income of £50k puts that earner in the top 10% by income in the UK. By any metric that makes them 'rich'.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:00:03

Not when you take into account the number of dependants that that money has to look after. It actually puts you in about the 5th decile income group according to the IFS.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:00:25

Sorry, that was to flatpack

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 13:02:27

Today's pensioners benefited from the biggest, longest boom in human history. It's over now though, everyone else's lifestyle and benefits are being reduced, but theirs are still running on pre Great Recession expectations.

It's not sustainable as the working population isn't rich enough or numerous enough to pay for it, even before 2008, but the Grey vote is formidable so I think the re- structuring will come later than it should and so be more painfully than it should.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:07:59

Niceguy I've heard the arguments about the rich leaving the country. Yes I suppose that's a possibility. Quite a few have left already. I'm not entirely sure society would be worse off without them to be honest. I don't really see them as some kind of magical wealth creators. They're quite a financial burden actually. Property speculators have driven housing prices up massively in London. The ripples of that are felt by everyone, but trickle down doesn't seem to have the same effect remembering of course that on the internet a quick Google can produce an article to back up just about every viewpoint you care to think of

flatpackhamster Mon 22-Apr-13 13:10:00


Not when you take into account the number of dependants that that money has to look after. It actually puts you in about the 5th decile income group according to the IFS.

When the median salary is £26k, a single-incomer on £50k is rich. Doesn't matter how many dependents.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:10:08

flatpack A single income of £50k puts that earner in the top 10% by income in the UK. By any metric that makes them 'rich'

Actually I think the real problem is the opposite... a £50k income is in the top 10% by income in the UK because we have a ludicrously low level of pay in this country. Most of our salaries are being cut to give greater pay to senior executives.

nokidshere Mon 22-Apr-13 13:10:40

I dont think pensioners should be charged more than anyone else. My MIL worked full time for 40+ years and paid tax on her money. She saved some so she wouldn't need assistance in her old age and that money was taxed again. She now gets state pension and a private pension and is taxed again. And if she is unlucky enough to need any care she will have to sell her home and pay for it herself.

So not only did she work tirelessly through a war, bring up a family with no money, no goods and no services for a considerable amount of time, but she has also paid tax 3 times on the same money.

And it really makes me laugh when people say they have it harder now - what utter tosh!

In 30 years time when you are all drawing your pensions you will be posting on here moaning about how unfair it all is blah blah.......

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 13:12:00

I did wonder why they were allowing pensioners to keep their large houses even though their familes are long gone..

However, what about pensioners who have little in the way of pension provision and have a house worth say £400K. Will they be expected to sell their house?

As harsh as it sounds I think if you are now single and over 60 living in say a 3-4 bedroom house you SHOULD have to move. if I lost my job I would have to move.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:12:18
ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:12:43

flatpack, if you think a single income earner on 50k with dependents is rich, what does that make the same family on 150k? Why are they getting a tax cut?

scaevola Mon 22-Apr-13 13:12:48

"Pensioners pay less tax as they don't pay national insurance."

NI isn't a tax. It's the payment in lieu of payment into an actual pension fund, but in return for which the government pays the state pension. Once you start drawing the pension, you stop paying the contribution. It's exactly the same as any workplace pension in that respect. That it isn't an actual fund, but a promise of a share of general government revenue, was the choice of those who set up this aspect of the welfare state.

And NI is payable only on earnings. Even the working population do not pay it on any non-earnings income, so it's possible everyone could take quite a big hit (eg tax liability of your pension fund - not your personal pot, the actual fund itself).

reallyyummymummy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:13:37

And after you have worked your arse of for 40 years paying tax I am wondering if you will still feel the same on this subject.

sweetkitty Mon 22-Apr-13 13:16:22

Agree that WFA should be means tested like CB now is.

Also agree the HB cap should also apply to pensioners as well.

My aunt and uncle receive WFA but they spend winter in Spain in their second home.

Do you think we will be getting WFA when we all retire, no

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:19:16

Handcream so are you suggesting that my parents should be forced to sell their house? A house they have bought and paid for themselves? The only "benefits" they have had in their life are child benefit, free bus passes and wfa. They paid tax all their lives and still pay now on pensions that they also paid for, they are not old enough to qualify for the free tv licence.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:19:22

The thing is, none of these benefits will still be available for the current 30 and 40 year olds when we retire. I'm not sure how many of the young to day will survive to be honest when they're pensioners. Many can't afford to buy their own home, so that is another time bomb waiting to happen in 20 or so years time. Politicians are all in it for the short term. They want to win the next election. None of them seem to think about the consequences further down the line. This should not be allowed. They should be made to be accountable for their actions.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:27:08

I don't think that a single income family on 50k is rich

Completely agree and that is another good reason why we need to tread carefully with the whole 'tax the rich' argument.

Rich by whose standards? To me Simon Cowell is rich. To Roman Abramovich he's a pauper. Same principle here. Many on MN seem to think if you earn above minimum wage then you should shut up and count yourself lucky.

@Headfairy. I can't read the full article in your first link and your last two are generally how the successful are being paid more. I don't think anyone is disputing that. Neither go back to the earlier post you made about cuts are not necessary, nor related to the topic in question which is about wealthy pensioners.

The fact is that we spend just under £160 billion a year on welfare. Out of which £81.3billion are paid in pensions & pension credits. That's over half. So how can any government seriously say they are trying to tackle the welfare bill when ignoring the largest expenditure?

If I am earning £2000 a month, spending £3000 a month and trying to convince you that I am seriously cutting back because I cancelled my Sky subscription would you take me seriously? Surely you'd be expecting me to be looking at my mortgage deal, my utility bills, my food bills?

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:33:26

Sorry if my links didn't work Niceguy not sure what happened there... yes, the rich are getting richer. But I think that's to the detriment of the lower paid. I for example have been denied a pay rise of even one penny for the past 6 years, however a chief exec left recently left with a huge golden goodbye. Apparently there was enough money for her, but not for me (it wasn't a contractually necessary payment either, just a one off random huge lump of money)

However, a little aside. All this austerity is really bad for the economy. So even if you aren't a touchy feely softy feeling sorry for the poor old folk/disabled people/ickle children, and you're a hard nosed capitalist it's really stopping our chances of economic growth. even the IMF think so

ivykaty44 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:36:24

it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now

Who are you kidding, most of the pensioners I know lived through the second world war and then the harsh times afterwards - all last year there were comparisons to the 1948 games and the 2012 - no way when you compare the two games are we suffering more now than back in 1948 otherwise we would not have had the show that we did last year for the olympics.

The 1970's were not pretty and the 1980s where harsh

Tax the pensioners and watch them leave in boats and on planes and they will not return and spend money here - they spend, not a lot at the moment as interest rates are low but tax them more and they will move abroad and not spend at all.

If you want MP's to think in the long term then vote in MP's that do think and act for the long term

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:38:14

It will be interesting to see if we go into a triple dip on Thursday. I can't see how we can't tbh. Everyone I know is having to watch what they spend and the cost of everything has sky rocketed. I really think we need a new chancellor grin

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:38:23

If you want MP's to think in the long term then vote in MP's that do think and act for the long term

That's the problem though, I don't think anyone ever does. They just think about getting through the next general election, so at best their policies extend to 5 years.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 13:40:38

The problem is ivykaty, most MPs agree with you when they're in opposition, but the minute they get a sniff of power, doing the right thing seems to go out the window for them and winning the next election seems to take precedence over anything else.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:46:30

Well you can be vocal in opposition can't you because you've got nothing to lose. I'm fact that's what you're meant to do. Once in govt though they've got to do everything they can to remain in govt, and that's often very short termist.

flatpackhamster Mon 22-Apr-13 13:46:31


Actually I think the real problem is the opposite... a £50k income is in the top 10% by income in the UK because we have a ludicrously low level of pay in this country. Most of our salaries are being cut to give greater pay to senior executives.

No they aren't.

The rate of pay of senior executives has risen faster than the rate of pay of everyone else. Salaries haven't been cut, except in a few areas of the private sector. The cost of living has risen, particularly house prices.

Don't imagine for a minute that I'm defending the pay of the top earners. But let's see this for what it really is. It is not 'Evil Rich Bosses Cut Your Pay To Buy Themselves A Yacht'. That sort of boring left-whingery is what makes it so hard to make a rational case for altering the corporate reward scheme.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 13:48:03

Flatpack it may not be an actual cut, but in real terms it is. Of course that's just semantics grin

ivykaty44 Mon 22-Apr-13 13:49:09

i don't think the MP's ever agree with long term policies unless it is cuts and this government seem to want cuts for the next 4 terms.

Go north and look at scandanavian countries and they seem to have a much better way of governing long term and consequently there countries fair better -so it can be done and it can be done well

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 13:49:23

No, I am not suggesting that you have to sell your house because of the equity in it.

However, where will it stop, you have savings having been careful, as a couple you have both worked (and brought employment to childminders etc) and to the ecomony due to the taxes you pay and what you spend.

I am thinking of my DM. Has worked for 40 years as a teacher. Has the state pension and a private pension but has a small house worth about £350k in London She has little in the way of savings. Will someone come along and say because of the equity she will HAVE to move.

Its her only house btw!

We seem to be constantly going after people we consider rich. Who are we to judge, what about the couples who carefully chose their partner and who are still together 40 years later. Perhaps they both worked and are now comfortable. Are they more or less deserving than a single woman who has never worked and has chosen to have 3 children with fathers that are no where to be seen.

Rosa Mon 22-Apr-13 13:49:26

What would you say is weathly ? Somebody who owns a house, who has worked since the age of 16 paid tax for all of their life ? Somebody who decided to keep some money in the bank just incase it is needed for a care home or something.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 13:50:40

Flatpack is correct. its global competition keeping salaries low, particularly low skilled salaries.

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 14:02:52

"The thing is, none of these benefits will still be available for the current 30 and 40 year olds when we retire"

Probably many low 50s as well. But this is the main evidence that the current deal is not sustainable.

I think many arguing the old days were tough are missing the big picture benefits people had then - full employment, affordable and available housing, most social spending on children and the working generation. The current generation doesn't get these.

Arguablty there has been a major transfer of wealth from workers to retired people over the last 15 years or so (size of baby boomer wave), the problem is it tends to be stuck in assets so the money isn't being spent as it would be if families had it.

It will only change politically when working people come out to vote as much as the retired do, I suspect it will be seen more in protests at specific policies.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 14:06:59

All this austerity is really bad for the economy.

It depends on what you mean. It's not doing the economy any favours right now. But in my opinion getting our national finances in order now is better for the economy in the long run. Debt is very much like a cancer. If you don't tackle it early enough it can grow to the point where it's too late to do anything about it. Despite the sideeffects we treat cancer with drugs because we understand doing nothing is far worse. So we accept the pain of chemo and the hair loss for the long term good. It's the same here. There is no sensible pain free solution as tempting as it may be to wish there is one. Beware of those selling miracle cures.

Look at Greece for example. They just borrowed and borrowed, spent & spent until the inevitable happened. Now they're in deep shit and their economy and standard of living is in dire straits. Thankfully we're not at that point yet but we are/were heading in the same direction.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 14:12:03

If we arent careful the message will be 'spend, spend, spend to ensure that you have little assets apart from your house'.

And then you will expect others to fund you, problem is they are all doing the same as you!

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 14:14:18

older peoples assets will be recycled back into the economy when they live to a great age and need to pay for care.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 14:16:07

Sorry handcream i misunderstood your post. I do think though that the fabian society has said right these people have spare money so how do we get our hands on it.

The reason cb is worth means testing and not wfa is the amount that each is so at least £1000 compared to £200, if it cost say £300 average for each one saved then cb saves money and wfa costs.

Can anyone honestly say they would vote for a party who stated they were going to make everyone's life worse?

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:21:48

jacks, it depends on what they said. I would vote for a party that said that if we were generally all in it together, as opposed to some of us being in it more than others. I don't think this government has been honest at all and I think they are continuing to be very dishonest about who is paying the most, etc.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:23:32

Disclaimer: I'm not saying labour would be any better. They all suck.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 14:24:04

so 'who is paying the most' ihategeorge. who is ' in it more than others'?

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:29:57

Well for a start, single income families on just over 50k are losing (in our case 2.5k per annum) child benefit. That's a huge amount of money for a family to lose, especially when you consider that families on a joint income of nearly twice that can keep the lot. I think the bedroom tax is a vicious policy, hitting families who have no where else to go disproportionately harder than many, particularly pensioners who are not being hit by this at all. Earners on 150k a year are having a tax cut and regardless of whether or not they will spend more money, I think it is very unfair at a time when everyone else is feeling the pinch. Why can't we all have a tax cut? I certainly feel as if I am 'in it' more than many others.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 14:35:30

Niceguy, I'm not sure we can compare ourselves to the Greeks. They have (had?) a massive level of corruption and non tax payment and a system that allowed 12 months pay for 10 months work plus retirement at 50 for most on full final salary (I think, I'm wandering around at the mo and can't check). Co incidentally it was a similar picture in Italy (where most of my day's family live) and look what happened there...

bassetfeet Mon 22-Apr-13 14:35:42

I wonder why the govt dont link the fuel allowance to pension credit .
This is already linked to council tax help I think . The data base is there and so should not need too much admin to deal with .
Those who need it will use it for intended purpose believe me .

jennywren45 Mon 22-Apr-13 14:38:32

YANBU. But as you say, there's not a cat in hell's chance of this happening under a tory government.

Labour had thirteen years to do something and didn't. Don't be so daft blaming the coalition.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 14:39:09
handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 14:41:00

Jacks, I fear the careful will be penalised. FWIW - I think pensioners blocking council houses and living in houses that they dont own but claiming they wont/dont want to move should be seriously looked at.

How can it be right that someone is in a 3 bed house and its just them! I have mentioned before that my DB lives in Central London and next door to a 62 year old women who has never worked, children have left and is now residing in a 3 bed flat on taxpayers expenses. How can that be right. If I live in a house and for one reason or another I cannot afford it I HAVE to move regardless of how long I have been living here or how old I am.

The WFA and free travel is not such an issue for me. My DM uses the tubes and buses extensively because she doesnt drive. When I retire I am likely to not have a use for public transport so wont use it.

I also fear that as I have a private pension I will be looked at with regard to state pension. There is a ton of people who have paid next to nothing into system and they will have to be catered for.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 14:45:19

Its laugable how Greece allowed retirement at 50 and apparantley (someone please correct me if wrong!) you could pass your final salary pension onto any unmarried daughters!

And they had the cheek to demo in the streets!

CogitoErgoSometimes Mon 22-Apr-13 14:49:21

"Pensioners also have a higher personal allowance than working people"

Not much and it's been frozen to allow the working-age personal allowance to catch up. There will soon be no difference at all.

GrowSomeCress Mon 22-Apr-13 14:49:52

Ah yes, tax the careful ones who have worked their arses off for years to save up to enjoy their retirement.


mum2jakie Mon 22-Apr-13 14:50:00

OP YANBU. Surely when you consider that pensioners form by far the biggest proportion of the Welfare bill, something has to give? Free TV licences sounds the easiest one to cut. How can we argue that is essential spending when we are all 'in it together?'

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 14:50:10

ihate but the 150k earner will still be paying over 58k tax and NI per year. that is over 1/3 of their time at work just to pay tax.

the 50k family will only be paying 14k per year. as they are a high income family the country cannot afford to give them any child related benefits.

Cerisier Mon 22-Apr-13 14:50:47

Back in the 1960s when people retired at 65 life expectancy was under 70 years, so the pension didn't usually have to be paid for long and people didn't live in their last, biggest, house for long.

I look at my retired parents in their big house and all the pensioners in the big houses round them. Those houses should be housing families, not just one or two people for forty years.

I would like to see singles or couples taxed hugely in big houses to encourage them to sell and release the houses for families. Nobody needs a huge house to themselves and if they do, then they should pay for the privilege.

I think the housing issue is as important as the tax one.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:55:14

Agreed Cerisier

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 14:57:41

I would like to see singles or couples taxed hugely in big houses to encourage them to sell and release the houses for families. Nobody needs a huge house to themselves and if they do, then they should pay for the privilege.

how much tax? based on value?

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:57:53

I would agree with you Fasterstronger, if the cuts to CB were fair. They are not. A family on 50k is not as wealthy as a family on 90k, therefore neither should receive CB, regardless of how the income is split between partners. The family on 90k between two earners is far wealthier than the family on 50k with one earner.

jennywren45 Mon 22-Apr-13 14:58:06

My MIL has never done a day's work in her life and gives her WFA to her ( equally lazy) daughter.

My parents both worked all their lives and you propose to remove it form them but allow my skiving, wasting MIL to keep hers?

Stuff that.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 14:58:41

Granted Headfairy that thankfully our corruption is lower and tax evasion nowhere near as prevalent.

But. And it's a big but. Our budget deficits are strikingly similar. Source: C4 factcheck I use that site because it's non-partisan.

OK, it's not larger than Greece's as Cameron suggests but in 2009 it was only 0.1% different. Personally I'm very uncomfortable about that. It's better nowadays but only because of the austerity measures.

So I do standby the Greece comparison because whilst we may have different reasons, our excess spending was incredibly similar. Our only saving grace is we kept the pound so we can raise interest rates to suit us and print money. Unlike the Eurozone countries who are stuffed unless the German's agree.

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 14:59:22

We need to move from income tax to a land value tax. Housing is a huge issue now. Many on high incomes cannot afford a basic family home. Many are stuck in rented paying half their income to a landlord. The time has come for a shift in taxation.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 15:01:35

ihate, the family on 2*45 pay a total of 24k per year in tax. so 10k more than the single income 50k family.

so unless they get more that 10kpa in CB, still contribute more.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:01:41

fasterstronger That's one of my concerns about the Mansion tax the Lib Dems are calling for. What do you base the tax on? The current value? Isn't value a transient thing. Something is only worth what someone else will pay it. It's not black and white. And do they pay that every year? Persumably then it'll have to be reassessed each year as values change? That sounds expensive to run.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 15:02:12

what percentage should the land value tax be?

ivykaty44 Mon 22-Apr-13 15:07:42

headfairy the Spanish have the same types of ideas as the Greeks and Italians

ihategeorgeosborne Mon 22-Apr-13 15:10:24

I don't know Fasterstronger, haven't thought through the finer details yet. Just think in principal it would be fairer and stop developers hoarding land. Have to go and pick up the dc. Will come back later smile

HintofBream Mon 22-Apr-13 15:22:47

Get your facts right Mum2Jakie, TV licences are only free to the over 75s . I can't imagine removing that pathetic little perk will raise a huge amount of money.

GrowSomeCress Mon 22-Apr-13 15:24:19

I agree jennywren45.

Take a pensioner who has spent most of their money throughout their life, hasn't really saved anything - take another pensioner who's had the same income, but worked really hard and carefully to save up for a good retirement.

Which one would the tax hit? The latter. So who's the fool then? The one who saves carefully.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:31:20

Ivykaty There is definitely some correlation between the countries needing bail outs and the level of tax evasion and early retirement. Us dry old law abiding northern Europeans just wouldn't do that. But I remember going to see my Italian folks and them all feeling utterly entitled to their retirement at 50 with full salary. They're all about 150* now and I don't remember one of them ever working and yet they have huge houses**

*slight exaggeration

**not a slight exaggeration. None of them worked in particularly well paid jobs, just bog standard, and yet their standard of living was fantastically high.

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:33:38

HintofBream I agree... and to be honest I'm sure that's at the nub of this governments reluctance to act on this sort of thing. It would raise a relatively small amount in revenue and yet the negative publicity would be dire.

Mind you, I'm not sure how they figured the negative publicity when it came to taking benefits from disabled people. I guess there's few of them and maybe in their clouded thinking they assumed they wouldn't vote and actually wouldn't present that much of a problem at the polls.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 15:46:58

So, if you are a pensioner, have your house worth say £400k in SE. You brought it for £50K many many years ago. You have retired on a state pension and a small private pension.

Are some of you honestly saying that you now need to pay tax on today's worth?? Thinking of my DM again. She has a small 2 bed terraced house in London.

I am getting slightly fed up with everyone looking at the people with 'money' be that the people working or perhaps the pensioners and then to justify their own lifestyles wanting to get them to pay for it.

Sorry, I cant work, there are no jobs
Sorry, I dont want to leave my friends
Sorry, I have 4 children and the fathers dont pay anything to me
Sorry, I want a job that fits in with my lifestyle
Sorry, I want to be a SAHM (but still get my pension) etc etc etc

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 15:50:35

I am getting slightly fed up with everyone looking at the people with 'money' be that the people working or perhaps the pensioners and then to justify their own lifestyles wanting to get them to pay for it.

Isn't that called socialism?

HeadFairy Mon 22-Apr-13 15:54:55

I am getting slightly fed up with everyone looking at the people with 'money' be that the people working or perhaps the pensioners and then to justify their own lifestyles wanting to get them to pay for it.

Isn't that called socialism?

No I think that's called the politics of envy (some might say that socialism is the politics of envy)

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:00:38

Whatever it is IMHO its wrong! People are talking on this thread about taxing the rich (whatever rich is!). There will be come a point where if the taxes are too large people will leave the country! If I was paying for example 70% on my earnings - I would leave -full stop!

And then who will pay for pensions, lifestyle choices, people house blocking because they are over 60, etc. There wont be anyone left!

Fast Mon 22-Apr-13 16:08:11

I'm sort of in two minds about pensioners, on the one hand they've done their stint, worked to build up what they have etc.. on the other hand times were different then, and while it was still hard, it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now

You are kidding right?

My father was evacuated when he was six years old and didn't know if or when he would see the rest of his family again.

My mother was in the front room of her house when it was bombed, she had eight siblings at the time, all homeless. An aunt took them in but did not have enough crockery or cutlery for them all to use at the same time; they had to take it in shifts. Their evening meal was bread and jam, every night.

My aunt's husband lived in a slum. His family shared an outside loo and tap with six other families, no bathroom or proper kitchen facilities.

Also there are pensioners alive now who can remember what it was like to not have the NHS or any real kind of welfare system. But apparently it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now...hmm

ivykaty44 Mon 22-Apr-13 16:10:27

Lets tax everything and everyone that doesn't stand still as long as it isn't me - seems to be the moto.

I do think if tax was made far more simple and transparent and you got rid of NI and PAYE and made it the same for self employed and employed things would be fairer and easier. NI is just a farce as it is a tax but it gets cheaper the more you earn - scrap it and add it onto income instead
I would rather pay more income tax and not have to pay council tax

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:12:52

Fast, I agree with you. There dont seem to consequences that were in place many years ago. Have a baby without any visible means of support even though brith control is readily available - fine, apply for benefits, someone will support you, choose to be at home during the early years and still get your pension - fine - someone else will pay and it goes on.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 16:16:45

from wiki The Great Depression in the UK
"The effects on the northern industrial areas of Britain were immediate and devastating, as demand for traditional industrial products collapsed. By the end of 1930 unemployment had more than doubled from 1 million to 2.5 million (20% of the insured workforce), and exports had fallen in value by 50%. In 1933, 30% of Glaswegians were unemployed due to the severe decline in heavy industry. In some towns and cities in the north east, unemployment reached as high as 70% as shipbuilding fell 90%.[74] The National Hunger March of September–October 1932 was the largest[75] of a series of hunger marches in Britain in the 1920s and 1930s. About 200,000 unemployed men were sent to the work camps, which continued in operation until 1939.[76]"

My grandma was born 1918 so was 12 in 1930 and remembers this time.

'it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now' Read a history book before repeating such rubbish.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 16:18:07

The top 1% of earners, pay nearly a quarter of all income tax. The next 9% of earners already pay another quarter, just over. In short the top 10% pay over half the income tax we receive. Income tax is our biggest source of tax revenue. (source)

In that context I find it hard to believe that the answer is to tax the rich even more.

I notice that it's also very rare for the actual 'rich' people to be moaning about paying for all these public services & benefits which they rarely use. It always seems to be those who are not paying who are the most vocal. 53.4% of families receive more in benefits than they pay in taxes. Up from 43% in 1979 (source) In other words most people don't even pay enough towards the system. Less than half of the households in the UK are net contributors.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 16:19:44

Sorry wealthy pensioners should be taxed the same as everybody else and should receive zero benefits.We haven't the money to simply chuck money on people who don't need it particularly we're all working hard,*we*will work harder for longer with less back. Also many far worse off have already taken a hit.

It's time to treat everybody the same instead if sheltering one section of society simply because of who they vote for.

flatpackhamster Mon 22-Apr-13 16:20:35


Lets tax everything and everyone that doesn't stand still as long as it isn't me - seems to be the moto.

That's the Fabian Way. It's the Fabians who came up with this delightful wheeze of taking away wealth from pensioners. They have the sort of urgent grasp of reality that you'd expect from people living in £1m+ houses in Camden or Islington.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 22-Apr-13 16:24:53

Wealthy pensioners have already contributed. I think we need to stop looking to the people who have contributed, and concentrate on the ones that haven't when they could have done.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 16:26:24

"Sorry wealthy pensioners should be taxed the same as everybody else"

They are. What do you not understand about this?confused

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 16:28:58

Oh and spare us the my parents worked hard bilge.

Many were simply lucky as to when they were born ie they took advantage of the housing boom which is the reason our dc won't be able to buy,they have pensions that we can only dream of,living was so cheap most families got by on one income,they got CB,they didn't have to help dc with uni,etc,etc

Sorry we're going to have waaaay less pension,no benefits,no NHS,will have dc living with us for years etc so can we stop paying so much NI and tax please.Fairs fair. We're paying what they did but getting a fraction back.If pensioners are going to keep everything and pay less tax I'd like what they had thanks until I'm their age and then I'd like to retire at the same age.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:29:24

I'll give myself as an example. Two parent family. Two salaries both at 40%. Lost child benefit. Didnt have more than 2 children because it would have affected what we were planning to do with our lives. Live in the SE where the jobs are and work long hours to ensure that we keep them. One set of parents live in SE, others live 300 miles away.

Have paid large amounts of taxes over the years and taken no career break (my choice of course). When I have finished working after 40 years I will be comfortably off - it would be shocking if I wasnt tbh!

Niceguy is correct. The more you tax the people who are paying for benefits, pensions etc the less chance you have of them staying in the UK.

If you want a Communist country where everyone is 'equal' - well China beckons..... No - I didnt think so!

HintofBream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:30:43

Cloudsandtrees and Thingsetc, quite right.

mouldyironingboard Mon 22-Apr-13 16:33:17

Wealthy pensioners are getting almost no interest on their savings so they are effectively being taxed.

YABVU if you begrudge the wfa to people who survived the war and the aftermath. Rationing continued into the 1950's and most homes didn't have heating or indoor bathrooms. We have it easy in comparison.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 16:33:40

Also most less wealthy pensioners worked hard but in less lucrative jobs without gold plated pensions oh yes like many workers today.

You don't need to be wealthy to work hard.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:34:31

I agree Square to a certain extent. The housing boom was good for some but really benefitted people in the South East. If you live in some parts of the North or the middle of Wales it passed you by.

My DM retired at 60 as did my PIL's. Of course when that age was set you were only going to live for 10 years at most. Now of course medical treatments are so advanced you could live until you are 90! My PIL's are going strong at late 70's and my DM is in her 80's. All healthy.

Rosa Mon 22-Apr-13 16:34:32

We need to move from income tax to a land value tax. Housing is a huge issue now. Many on high incomes cannot afford a basic family home. Many are stuck in rented paying half their income to a landlord. The time has come for a shift in taxation.

So a pensioner bought the house for £15,000 in what was a pretty cheap area at the time. They saved, renovated ( whilst both of them working, and paying tax) so they would have a house to enjoy when they retired.
Now they have to sell the house which is not in an area that is easy to commute to work.
There is not a huge amount of work in the area but it has actually turned out to be quite a high value area....

But tough they have to pay more tax despite the fact they have done exactly as each government have told them to do tory / labour whatever ... They will not be able to afford to pay a higher tax as they basically are now living off a pension .They lived by the rules.... thats no good now !

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 16:34:51

I have calculated my household taxes this year and so far am at £76,600 and still counting. I haven't included my dividend tax yet.

no I don't want to pay an more tax than I am already am.

I think people, who aren't disabled or carers need to be more independent from the state.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 16:35:14

oh I am excluding VAT as everyone pays that

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 16:35:20

Mouldy most people who lived as adults in the war are dead,their children are the baby boomers who have had it easy.Think you've got your history wrong.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 16:35:50

Really enjoying this, a rapidly developing trend. The left are turning on the pensioners! Resisting benefit cuts to the feckless,the workshy and the unemployable at every turn, they are actually turning on...........the pensioners ! Please remember this stunning hypocrisy when they start hand wringing about cuts. I'll tell you what, though, I would rather pay to keep the retired couple living opposite me than my next door neighbour (not worked in 35 , yes 35 years - bad back you know,hmm often seen cycling, laden down with paint, dustsheets etc to his latest cash in hand decorating job. ATOS? Bring it on.

Cerisier Mon 22-Apr-13 16:38:00

I would like personal allowances much higher then tax the rest at, say, 50%. Also I think each member of the family should have their own transferable personal allowance. This would reduce the tax burdens on families.

I think everyone should have a personal allowance of space then tax bigger emptier homes more through extending the council charge bands up. This would encourage older couples and single pensioners to downsize.

The current retirement generation are living ten years more than their parents' generation and this is having a big effect on the availability of housing stock.

I am working abroad at the moment. The top tax rate is 20% and VAT is 7%. UK tax rates do need to be competitive to stop a brain drain. Raising tax rates hugely will just send the big earners abroad and reduce the treasury income.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:38:26

I know lots of pensioners who complain about spending their savings and say it is for the grandchildren or for a rainy day. Well the rainy day is here. The sun will come out one day but you cannot expect to keep your savings intact just because you are older.

We have had to dip into savings. That's what they are there for....

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:43:54

Someone please correct me if I am wrong but didnt nearly 1 million people take themselves out of DLA when the checks were starting to be made?

Please tell me I have got that all wrong...

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 16:45:52

I would like personal allowances much higher then tax the rest at, say, 50%. Also I think each member of the family should have their own transferable personal allowance. This would reduce the tax burdens on families.

so families pay less, so who pays more?

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:47:38

Faster, single people and the pensioners of course!

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 16:50:21

what about people saving so they can start their own family? do they pay more tax so people who already have children pay less?

isn't that a disincentive to plan your family responsibly?

why should single people pay for someone else's DCs? isn't that their parents responsibility?

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 16:55:03

I was joking faster! If I was in charge I would stop child benefit at 2 children and no more than 2 bed houses for people who are having their housing benefits completely paid (or perhaps over 50%).

Building houses for feckless people who have child after child with men who dont support them has got to stop. If you want to have loads of children with no visible means of supporting them 2 bed is the maximum size house you will get.

Cerisier Mon 22-Apr-13 17:00:49

People only have children at home for a short time really. Then their tax bill would go up. A lot of the money seems to be paid in tax then claimed back in tax credits- doesn't that waste a lot of money?

Yes to limiting the money that can be claimed by those on benefits. It is not fair that the tax payer who can't afford three children is paying for others to have more.

Cerisier Mon 22-Apr-13 17:05:00

Single people do need others to have children, who will be the future doctors and policemen. I think there is a collective responsibility to nurture the next generation.

If the birth rate goes down the UK will become like Japan where there are very few children to support the aging population.

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 17:05:49

This argument will be largely academic in a few years time, the state can't afford to pay and the people being taxed the most will eventually refuse to pay.

And our kid will most certainly not stay in a country which taxes them for everything and they still can't afford to live in it.

Time for tough choices.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 17:07:33

I think limiting the number of children when you are on benefits payment wise will be next. They have already started on the pensioners. Next will be the irresponsible (cannot think why they didnt start with them tbh!).

It really sends out a terrible message that when you are working you have to limit your children and when you arent you can do what you like.

If as some say there are very few of the feckless with 4 plus children. Well, it wont take very long then to sort this out.

niceguy2 Mon 22-Apr-13 17:11:36

If you want a Communist country where everyone is 'equal' - well China beckons..... No - I didnt think so!

Erm China is communist in politics but in practice it is anything but. The gap between rich & poor in China is far far higher than in the UK.

If you want a country where everyone is equal then I think the only places left is North Korea. And like all communist countries past & present, some are more equal than others.

pigletmania Mon 22-Apr-13 17:15:41

Yabvu so people are being taxed for saving for their future an making provisions. Pensioners also payed tax when they were working

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 17:16:02

I think limiting the number of children when you are on benefits payment wise will be next.

the 26k cap is a version of this. particularly if you don't increase it.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 17:17:16

Oh blimey - anyone for North Korea then....

Yes, I agree, it didnt work for the Russians (although it clearly 'worked' for some of them!) as they are some of the richest in the world. How did that happen...

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 17:20:21

Perhaps but what does the £26k cap include? For me its the 'well if you have 4 children all of different ages and sexes you will be 'entitled' to x number of bedrooms.' Where has that come from?

I never understood that, nice to have, of course it is, privacy, space, options etc but surely we cannot continue to offer this?

AnnoyingOrange Mon 22-Apr-13 17:27:35

So how many wealthy pensioners are there?

Not that many according to This is Money:-

The changes will come into force in 2014/15 and are expected to bring thousands more well-off savers into tax on their pension contributions, generating an extra £1 billion in tax by 2016/17.

The Treasury has said 160,000 people a year would be caught by the decision to cap annual tax relief at £40,000, while some 340,000 workers will be affected by the lifetime allowance changing to £1.25 million.
Mr Osborne said: 'Ninety-nine per cent of the population make annual contributions of less than £40,000, with the average contribution just £6,000 a year.

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

AnnoyingOrange Mon 22-Apr-13 17:28:20

Forgot the heading

Wealthy savers hit as Osborne cuts annual limit for tax relief on pensions to £40k while lifetime limit reduced to £1.25m

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

TumbleWeeds Mon 22-Apr-13 17:28:38

I thought that the reason why there isn't capped according to income is because it would actually cost more to check all income for all pensioners than it would bring money to have everything capped.

Also, all the things the Op is talking about aren't taxes. They are allowances given to people with particular profiles and it happens to be being retired that is the common link. Little to do with taxing as such.

Re taxes... it's simple they don't pay the NI because none of what they receive is taxable with NI. A lot of the pension (apart from state pension which isn't a lot anyway) is done through investments and shares which are not taxable. But then they aren't taxable to NI for everyone not just pensioners.

I do agree though that the reason why you save money should be for 'rainy days' and your retirement. Which means that when you are retired, you should use that money if you want more than what the state pension can give you. There is no reason why pensioners should have their savings 'rpotected'.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 17:34:36

Piglet but you don't pay tax on pension contributions hence wealthy people favouring stuffing money away into pensions.Not all workers could afford to do that.

If we all lived in times that enabled us to live off one income with a low mortgage,CB,no uni fees or living expenses to think of and had a generous non frozen salary etc I'm sure we'd all do the same.

If they're going to get rid of perks pensioners had like CB and keep benefits wealthy pensioners don't need perhaps they'd like to cut tax so we could stuff money into pensions and private health cover seeing as we won't get a state pension or have an NHS which we're paying for today (the biggest bill being the elderly).

Really fed up with this we're all right Jack attitude you get from wealthy pensioners who couldn't give a stuff re the dreadful pensionable years their descendants are going to have.They don't even want to let us prepare for it no it's you keep paying shed loads of tax so we keep perks we don't need and an NHS you won't have whilst we continuously shaft the youngsters of the country.

Personally I think as the biggest bill to the NHS is the elderly and because as a country we can no longer support it and because we won't have it when we're old wealthy pensioners should dip into their pockets more.

It's ridiculous to keep one section of society in pound seats whilst clobbering the rest.Madness.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 17:39:25

^Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 17:34:36

Piglet but you don't pay tax on pension contributions hence wealthy people favouring stuffing money away into pensions.Not all workers could afford to do that.^

you pay tax when you draw your pension not when you contribute to your pension. otherwise you would pay tax twice.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 17:46:50

Pebbles, sort of agree with you, in a way. HOWEVER This will just not happen. Not particularly because "all pensioners vote Tory". Clearly, they don't. To even say it is unbelievably patronising and ageist. What you can say, I think, is that pensioners are much more likely to vote -for whichever party. And this will get much,much more sharply defined, as things get worse and worse. Young people will see that there is no incentive to vote - nothing in it for them. The grey vote,as the population ages,will become more and more powerful. Any government, of whatever political persuasion,will not be willing to offend them. I genuinely see trouble ahead,with such a sharp divide between the older "haves" and younger "have nots" sad

tallulah Mon 22-Apr-13 17:53:08

squarepebbles I think it's you who has your history wrong

most people who lived as adults in the war are dead,their children are the baby boomers who have had it easy

Pensioners who were children during the war are not baby boomers. BB's were born between 1947 and 1964.

they took advantage of the housing boom which is the reason our dc won't be able to buy

they didn't cause it, and it's only really rocketed in the last 19 years

living was so cheap most families got by on one income

Um, living wasn't cheap. Food was horribly expensive and there wasn't much of it. No supermarket deals like we have now. Clothes also really expensive, so people didn't have many, and no supermarket cheapies either. There were no "things" to waste your money on. Most people didn't have a car, or a phone. There was no internet, no videos. Holidays - if you were lucky - were camping or a Guest House, and most families couldn't afford that. You didn't replace your furniture. There was no CH or double glazing. You could only spend what you had because a loan had to be authorised by the bank manager - after an interview. Most people didn't have credit cards. People didn't eat out, or go to Alton Towers or any of the things we think are essential.

they got CB

Not for the first child

they didn't have to help dc with uni

In our grammar school with a 360 pupil cohort, only 4 went to University, and another 16 went to polytechnic. It wasn't an option for most of us who left school at 16 and went out to work.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 17:54:45

Things -it is interesting in that pensioners do vote - much more than any other group of people. And I also understand that on a rainy day the Tories do better vote wise. Are people just not that bothered?

Surely we should ALL be using our vote, some on this forum say they dont vote - well stop complaining then! I always always vote - otherwise what is the point. And older people dont necessarily vote Tory, look at all the ex miners, and my DM wouldnt dream of voting Tory!

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 17:57:41

I do agree - our expectations are far higher now than when I was growing up. We didnt have a car living in London, there were no mobile phones or the latest trainers. Sky TV wasnt around. And there were also less single parents or kids having kids.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:02:33

Absolutely, Handcream, my very comfotably off pensioner parents would sooner chew their own arms off than vote Tory. What they do have, after seeing very many different governments, is a very finely tuned bullshit detector. They realise that in the grand scheme of things,free bus travel and a winter fuel payment,if taken away, would save the square root of feck all. They, and I, are watching the increasing scapegoating of the elderly with unease.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:06:17

Give or take a few years it doesn't make much odds.Those that struggled were the adults who lived through the war not those born after.

The lifestyle you describe errr is reality for most families today. Think many people are clueless as to modern day reality for families.

My parents ate waaaay more meat as children than we do and had better holidays(my grandad was in service so not rich). My dp has an equivalent job to that my dad had in the 70s and 80s,my mother never needed to work,never had to watch heating,foreign holidays(we camp), expensive house in Home Counties(an area we old never live in on one salary),fantastic food(meat every day,we have 1 chicken a week) ,full CB worth 50k on 3 kids(we'll have zilch eventually)both kids in uni fully paid for including grant,new car(we have an old banger) etc,etc,etc.

When I go back to work really my entire salary should go on extra pension contributions,private health cover and uni savings for the dc,can't see that happening somehow.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:07:31

Oh and the only people I know who can afford Sky are my bloody parents,kids get very excited when they stay.grin

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 18:07:37

Im looking at the guardian chart, the Govt will spend c £720 bn in 2013 and receive c £612 bn, so has to borrow the c £108bn rest.

It spends about 1/3rd on Welfare overall, about 20% on Health, about 15% on Education, and about 7% on paying interest. That is about 75%. Defence is about 5% pa, so even if Britain had no military it would save a drop in the ocean. So obviously welfare will have to be reduced.

Next step is to look at who gets the Welfare, well the bulk is pensions for the elderly (ditto Health spend). So we are where we are today.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:12:48

"Oh and the only people I know who can afford Sky are my bloody parents"

You clearly don't live on my council estate,matey. Serried ranks of dishes...... grin

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:13:29


Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 18:17:39

See - only the pensioners and slivers can afford Sky. the Daily Mail is right :D

andubelievedthat Mon 22-Apr-13 18:21:39

Along with and his mates, and cancels that sub they chipped into build which cost in excess of 1 billion pounds and asks the Thatcher family to pay to bury their mother and and and ....fucking pensioners , no good to anyone ,taking up vital resources that young people could be doing with .......esp. rich ?pensioners .resisting urge to add a couple ,at least of these marks >>>!!!!!< those ones

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 18:22:03


LineRunner Mon 22-Apr-13 18:23:39

My exFIL's public sector pension is £37k a year, since the age of 58.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:24:21

Sky is rife everywhere....

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 18:24:35

My parents ate waaaay more meat as children than we do and had better holidays

- however air travel has increase massively in the last few decades, so clearly your experience is not universal

- []] this table also show average meat consumption has increased in the UK since the 1960s

so while I don't doubt what you say personally, the UK as a whole have experienced the opposite.

both trends relate to increasing affluence.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:26:48

Blardy hell,if you'd paid off your pension you'd be loaded.

jacks365 Mon 22-Apr-13 18:28:07

Squarepebbles i'm surprised at the lifestyle you describe and say not rich as its a contrast to mine and my parents. Most clothes were hand made to save money. My father worked two jobs to make ends meet till my mum went back to work. We didn't get foreign holidays but we did have a caravan. Half our garden was fruit and veg to save money too. I hear someone i know grumble about money and i silently laugh, they don't need 3 foreign holidays a year or the excessively big house or private school and healthcare, they choose it then complain they have nothing left to live on. Life is about priorities, i choose not to spend now so i have some tomorrow but if its going to be taken off me why should i

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:28:45

Lazyjaney - you associate council estates with skivers.....?? confused

Do you work for the DM ? grin

all i can say is after 25 years of working im living on jsa as a single mum of 2, thank god my parents who ae in thier 70's have enough extra money to pay for our extras , es they dont need thier wfa but they used it to pay my gas bill and pay for kids xmas..yes the penson costs a fprtune compared to jsa but many of those pensiners are propping up thier family that cant live on thier inome..

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:29:16

I can afford Sky and I am neither a pensioner nor a skiver! What does surprise me is people who believe it is an entitlement.

I had a friend who used to work for the local council helping people on benefits or low wages get out of debt. Some people really didnt have a clue how to budget. She would get them to list out all their outgoings and when things were clearly missing she would ask pointed questions - really just to ensure that everything was taken account of.

When Sky appeared she suggested that it wasnt a necessity and could be cancelled. Two people formally complained about her saying that. She didnt last very long in the role. Gave up in the end!

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:30:09

Faster who is eating the meat though- it sure as hell isn't most families I know.We're all sharing our veggie meal recipes.

My parents eat waaaay more meat than we do as a family of 5,not 1 medium chicken or 500g of mince < sigh>a week but expensive M&S cuts of meat- daily.Ditto the inlaws.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:31:56

Hand ditto mobile contracts- get a payg £10 Tesco cheapy.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:35:06

"When Sky appeared she suggested that it wasnt a necessity and could be cancelled. Two people formally complained about her saying that."

In my job, I come across this on a nearly daily basis.

People are literally speechless with rage when you suggest,as they are struggling to pay debts,they may not need the full, £80 pm,sports and movies package.... hmm

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:38:14

A £10 PAYG isnt good enough!

My DS who is at boarding school wanted a Blackberry - all his friends had one(that old one!). We give him an allowance every month, he had to pay it out of that. Its a contract and he doesnt take it abroad. Any extra's he pays me for. He once went over his allowance and I made him give me the extra £10. he never did it again!

I see kids around the shopping centres - trousers around their knees so that they walk in a funny way. Maybe its my age but how stupid does that look! They have the latest iPhones - wouldnt be seen dead with a PAYG

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:41:58

My kids would as it'll be that or nothing.Simply couldn't afford it.We have a £10 payg cheapy for us so no way could I afford or justify 3x blackberries for the dc,just not possible(unless they get a Sat job).

Lazyjaney Mon 22-Apr-13 18:43:21

"Lazyjaney - you associate council estates with skivers.....??"

In DMWorld of course I do....

(There needs to be a facetious tongue in cheek smiley on here, I think)

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:43:41

Things - its that sense of entitlement, something there really wasnt 30 years ago IMHO. You have it, I should have it too. I can do what I like, someone will help me out if I mess up, if I get pregant by mistake people give me money too. Not much but more than I am getting now.

As I messed around at school I have no real qualifications and now I have a baby, well, its not worth working. I do want my pension though and I want no one judging me or saying I am not contributing. I am raising the tax payer of the future (stats show they are likely to have children very young too) and it goes on....

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:43:48

" Maybe its my age"

Yep. It is.wink

SinisterBuggyMonth Mon 22-Apr-13 18:44:53

DP negotiated with Sky after we cancelled, were now get it for £10 a month. Dont ask me how he did it, he's a wizard probably.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 18:45:08

I have PAYG. you can end phone calls by saying 'oh I am getting low in credits must go' & I am known for being eccentric so get away with having PAYG.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:45:45


I know, I was only joshinggrin

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:47:01

A Saturday job - now that is the next thing I want my DS to get... Issue is that he is at school on a number of Saturdays. Not impossible though, bar work, putting his name down at Pizza Express for shifts so that they call him and see if he is available.

So, as I have told him - not impossible!

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:48:24

Things - do you like that look! It makes them waddle.... Most attractive...

Chottie Mon 22-Apr-13 18:50:11

Lots of today's pensioners went out to work full time from the age of 15 or 16. So they have often worked 50 years when they get to retirement. Many people did not have the opportunity to go to university.

In reply to the comment about women not working or only working part time, not that long ago when you had a baby you left work, very little was available for maternity benefits. Family allowance was not paid for the first child.

Lots of friends in their 50s or 60s are still helping out their adult children with down payments for homes or providing childcare or paying towards nursery costs.

p.s. a friend works in the debt dept of CAB and she comes across the SKY comment as well.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 18:50:50

But hand I think pensioners have a sense of entitlement even though logic and fairness says no.

Sorry where I live this sense of entitlement amongst young people and families isn't there just hard working families getting hacked off with constantly being clobbered.

It's so wrong to discard the younger generation as entitled shirkers and pensioners as all being hard working.

I've worked since I was 13,paid a shed load if tax in my 44 years(which I'll see very little of in my dotage),never ever received any benefits,raising kids who ask for nothing etc.Many,many people are the same.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:51:05

I have a phone with work and it is a BB but if I wasnt working - well what's wrong with a PAYG. At least you know where you are with it.

handcream Mon 22-Apr-13 18:53:54

I sort of agree with you Square. My PIL's worked in the medical profession - both of them which was unusual. They have lovely pensions but they do argue that they have paid for those pensions by both working. They did retire at 60 (lucky things!) and have a great life but I cannot argue that they didnt work for it. My MIL in particular went to uni when it was unusual for women to go. Good for her...

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:54:44


Surely, logically, pensioners are entitled ?

They have played by the rules,no ?

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 18:58:59


re. ultra low trousers.......... grubby boxers/arse crack....

Noooooooooo.....almost guaranteed to induce apoplectic rage in me.

But aware that's cos I'm an old gimmer (50)....gringrin

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:03:47

They stuffed up and got lucky.

Over the years they didn't pay enough in to the NHS or public pensions(we're picking up the tab),they spent money on free education,CB etc,etc.

Also,sorry last time I looked at our payslips we've paid by the rules sooooo can I have my CB,free education,decent retirement age,NHS until I die and descent pension please too?

CloudsAndTrees Mon 22-Apr-13 19:15:47

They paid what they were expected to pay Square.

No one phones up HMRC and offers to send them an extra £100 this month instead of spending it on something else do they? The difference is that they did what was expected of them and were told what they would get in return. So now they want the other side of the deal to be kept to, that's not being entitled. That's just wanting to play fair.

XBenedict Mon 22-Apr-13 19:24:46

My dad would blow if I suggested the OPs ideas to him. He's a fairly wealthy pensioner, has recently retired at 65 but I don't know anyone who has worked harder than him. He's a lorry driver and has been all his life, was away all week when we were kids living in a lorry. Has just finished a job where he got up at 4am and home around 3pm. He's only just getting used to sleeping in.

My parents were very careful with their money. We lived in a council house until they had saved a deposit for there first house. We didn't go on foreign holidays in fact there were weekends we could only afford the fuel to go to the nearest town to get our shopping and not further afield. The car would be on the road because my dad would tinker with it and mend it at the weekend. But despite all this they planned very carefully for the future, they've always planned for this retirement that they are both now beginning to enjoy. Why should he have to pay more tax? Makes me really sad to think he may have to.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 19:31:12


CB-check. Free education-check. NHS - check. Pension, ALLEDGEDLY, will be going UP in a few years time. Retirement age, well, hmmmmm. Been no women of a certain age complaining that they will have to retire at or near the same age as men have for the last 50 years, has there ? wink

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:38:58

Sorry no excuse,their generation calculated wrong so their generation should help to put right.Not seeing why the youngsters should put their mess right oh and have buggar all to prepare for their own retirement.confused

GrowSomeCress Mon 22-Apr-13 19:42:21

squarepebbles what, every single pensioner specifically "calculated wrong"? hmm

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:44:52

Things CB is going, further education is not now free and there are no grants to help with living expenses(the loan threshold of which is very low),NHS is being dismantled(we can't afford to maintain the ever increasing elderly in the way we have done), our pension(state let alone private) will be non existent unless we start paying a shed load more,we've got to work waaaay longer,we'll never have WFA,free bus passes or TV licenses......

It really is going to be shit when we retire.The type of retirement todays pensioners expect is la,la land.We can't afford it.

Debs75 Mon 22-Apr-13 19:47:02

Personally I can't see pensioners being taxed more for about 30-40 years and that is barring a huge world war.
The pensioners we have now and had since 20 years or so ago had made a huge sacrifice from fighting in the wars and times were incredibly tough.

Quite rightly you hear pensioners say 'we fought a war for you' when cuts are mentioned. Even if they didn't physically fight they went through a horrendous time.
When I retire I will have lived through some poverty and through recessions but hopefully I won't of had to see my loved ones made to go off to war and our lives turned upside down.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:48:57

Collectively they didn't pay enough,why should we fund that whilst having what they had and we have paid for removed?

If we're not having universal CB,free uni etc which many of us have paid for why should they keep their unaffordable perks.

If we have to smell the coffee so should they.Why should one section of society live in a bubble whilst everybody else has to face the music?

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 19:50:17

Rubbish! (Or only if there were lots of 3 yr old soldiers!)

Uk pensioners today must be just about the most privileged generation ever born, they are the baby-boomers not war veterans (it was over by '45 btw!)

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 19:51:01

Sorry- that was to Debs
Square, agree!

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:53:33

Errr Debs my 80 year old fil didn't fight any wars (he was 12 when war ended)and neither did my 70 year old dad who was 2.

Plenty of youngsters today are having their legs blown off though in wars we're fighting.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 22-Apr-13 19:58:42

By that logic Squares, each and every one of us that is of working age today is to blame for the cuts to today's social services, and today's disability benefits? We are also to blame for whatever happens thirty, forty, fifty years from now, despite not having a crystal ball that guarantees it can predict the future. So, you're happy to take that personal responsibility are you? confused

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 19:59:27


fundamentally, we agree. I see a bleak future for my children,and grandchildren. I genuinely cannot see how, with an increasingly aged population,and fewer workers/taxpayers , the sums will add up. But we are where we are etc. If you accept that stopping WFA,bus travel and free tv licences will not address the problem, what,given that pensioners are subject to exactly the same tax regime as the rest of us, do you propose doing. Because if you do accept that the removal of these perks will not address the problem,any such removal would just be done out of spite.....

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 19:59:58

Oh and I hate to say it but a lot of the terrorism worries we have today are caused by shite post war decisions which we are now having to pay for(even though we weren't even born) on top of everything else.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 22-Apr-13 20:00:26

Plenty of youngsters today are having their legs blown off though in wars we're fighting.

But clearly, that's our fault if we are able to vote, even if we were vehemently opposed to the war.

Viviennemary Mon 22-Apr-13 20:05:42

Wealthy pensioners pay tax at the same rate as everyone else. Except for a tiny bit extra tax free allowance for I think the over 75's. Which is being phased out anyway. Are people suggesting pensioners should be taxed at a higher rate. Pensioners don't pay national insurance. A lot of people don't pay NI.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 20:09:52

I think over a threshold they should pay NI seeing as they're the main cost to the NHS oh and benefits should go and only be given to the poor(it wouldn't sort out the entire mess but it would help). We're in no position to chuck any sums of money away.

grimbletart Mon 22-Apr-13 20:10:31

Each generation has it hard in a different way.

My father and mother's generation hardness was the years of the depression, no work, no benefits, real starvation and then war and death for millions, fairly high childhood mortality and pretty much zero opportunities for women to earn and lift families out of poverty as married women were usually forced to give up their jobs on marriage our etc.

My generation - pre baby boom (born during the war) had other hardships - spending childhood nights in bomb shelters with parents wondering if we would all be alive come the morning, no NHS - everything had to be paid for over and above taxes, rationing, rudimentary antibiotics and vaccines only in the 40s/50s (my primary class alone at school had one pupil die from polio, one in leg irons from polio and another blinded by measles), bomb sites for playgrounds, only 10 per cent of population could get a place at university, no maternity leave, flexible working or child care, only a one-off small maternity grant, little disabilities help, no equal opportunities so huge pay gaps etc., no rights for women to rent, have mortgages loans without male guarantor (until the late 70s).Now, any savings we have made for care in our old age so we are not a burden on the state are rapidly being eroded by rubbish interest rates.

For younger people the hardships are poor job prospects, expensive education leading to debt, ultra high house prices and general cost of living, prospect of having to work into their 70s etc.

Each generation suffers or gains in its own way I think.

For myself as a well-off (though not wealthy) pensioner I am glad that the inbuilt 'save for the future attitude' that prevailed in my generation is enabling me to help my adult children and even though I have just retired after a working life of nearly 50 years I don't think pensioners should be exempt from cuts as we all have to make sacrifices. However, cuts will mean less available to help my family and less available for my dotage - thus inevitably I will probably cost the taxpayer more than I would have done were I to be allowed to keep more of what I spent 50 years earning.

But I dislike this "we had it harder than you" attitude. It's not a competition.

Debs75 Mon 22-Apr-13 20:12:04

Ok so my maths may be wrong but 20 years ago we had a huge amount of war pensioners and pensioners are 65up till death so if you are in your 90's you were around in the war. I do think that has contributed to this feeling in govt and to some of the public that pensioners can't be touched. And remember there was a national conscription then, now going in the armed forces is a choice as such.

And I do agree that the govt should tax wealthy pensioner but seen as it has just lowered tax for the wealthy workers I can't see it taxing pensioners

poppyknot Mon 22-Apr-13 20:13:59

Not read the whole thread yet (will do as the topic fascinates) but what gets me is that these large demographic groups are bestowed with some sort of moral rectitude of hard work either in the past or now.The pensioners! The striving families!Or turpitude in the case of others. Sorry, major bug bear. Will go and read the thing now....

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 20:14:09

the govt should tax wealthy pensioners well it does already so what is the problem?

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 20:20:51

" they should pay NI seeing as they're the main cost to the NHS oh and benefits should go and only be given to the poor"

So, spite (on the perks), and a system where the heaviest users of the NHS pay more......

I'm sure parents of sick and disabled children would be delighted with that, Squares....

Oh, you mean you just meant elderly NHS users.......... wink

Sparrowp Mon 22-Apr-13 20:24:17

Pension age people dont pay any NI, even if they are earning loadsa muny.
Thats 12% less tax than the average working age person.

Younger working age people may be paying back tuition fees.
Thats 9% more tax.

Thats a 21% difference so far!

If people have paid off their mortgage, its an even bigger difference in disposable income.

Pensioner's pensions are not means tested. Support for working age people is means tested down to nothing.
The pension is double the value of working age benefits such as the jobseekers allowance.

etc, etc.


ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 20:26:15

Poppyknot, but pensioners who have maybe worked,saved and striven for maybe 50 years genuinely do have some some sort of moral rectitude, surely? Not saying "hard working families" (God I hate that trite crappy phrase) don't, but pensioners definitely do IYSWIM?

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 20:29:32

Grimble - i hear what you're saying about different kinds of difficult (tho many of us now, me for instance, also went to uni when only 10% got in! Expansion is relatively recent)

Problem is successive govs have protected pensioners while targeting other groups for cuts. This does breed resentment/competition.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 20:30:40

"Younger working age people may be paying back tuition fees.
Thats 9% more tax.

Thats a 21% difference so far!"

Erm, lots of different groups in society may be paying lots of things. Perhaps you would like to factor in care costs the elderly may be paying into your notional tax computation.....hmm

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 20:33:06

" Support for working age people is means tested down to nothing"

That's because,in theory, unlike most pensioners,they could uhh, get a job?

NiceTabard Mon 22-Apr-13 20:34:50

Not read thread

Wanted to point out not all wealthy pensioners are tories though.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 20:38:03

Erm many could get a job,plenty of us will be working in our 70s.

Sparrowp Mon 22-Apr-13 20:39:46

Hey Things, I am not saying pensions should be cut, only that they should pay the same tax as everyone else.

Also they did have the opportunity of a free education, whereas young people these days face a big penalty for daring to go to university.

Even the full JSA doesn't meet the minimum required to live on. People are really struggling. No bus passes or TV licences either.

I am pleased we look after our pensioners, but we really need more intergenerational fairness.

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 20:49:17

few people went to uni 40+ years ago.

pensioners have paid NI at the same rate as the rest of us....earlier in their lives.

the 21% comment does not stand up to analysis at all.

manicinsomniac Mon 22-Apr-13 20:52:40

So how long before the govt decides that the country can only afford for people to live to 70 and stops treating the elderly on the NHS or giving them any income? So most of them die off, free up their big houses for families, stop needing their pensions and save the NHS billions in geriatric care!

I'm only half joking, I could see it happening ...

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 20:52:43

Faster they haven't paid enough for their care. We'll have to pay more in our retirement (assuming we still have an NHS) soooooo.....

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 20:53:04

Sparrowp - they do pay the same tax as the rest of us........


Agree with you about the free uni, tho' I suspect that the vast majority of the over 65's today did not benefit from this.....I bet that most of the people who did are now in their early fifties onwards....The very same aged people who pulled up the drawbridge on their own kids.....

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 20:54:06

Social inequality worse now than a generation ago - many bright, wc 1950s school kids got a huge leg-up in life by getting into a grammar school. No such option now.

thegreylady Mon 22-Apr-13 20:56:13

We were not well off at your age though.We worked hard, struggled to bring up our families,pay our bills and acquire a decent standard of living.We paid our taxes and our national Insurance.We paid into pension funds which have now been massively eroded and scriped and saved what we could.Many of us have provided free childcare,interest free loans and a bolt hole in time of trouble for our adult childre. We already pay tax on our pensions and you want us to pay out even more?I have never been on a cruise and have a one week holiday a year.
My dh and I were teacher/lecturer and including state pensions we now have about £25,000 a year between us.
Do you want blood??

FasterStronger Mon 22-Apr-13 20:57:22

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 20:52:43
Faster they haven't paid enough for their care

what do you mean? my gma's house paid for her care

ShellyBoobs Mon 22-Apr-13 20:58:53

I'm still gobsmacked at the number of MNers who are convinced their chosen number of DCs should be subsidised (at anyone's but their own expense) because, "We need the children to pay for people's pensions in the future".

As if it's all some sort of bizarre pyramid/Ponzi scheme.

Unbelievably (to some of you) some people very much do earn and save enough to be net contributors throughout their entire lives.

Conversely, a lot of people create families who will never be net contributors at any time in their lives.

So no, pensioners shouldn't be hammered with taxes in order to fund your choice of family size.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 21:01:19

It's reality Grey.

We're all being squeezed and it hurts.

Sorry but I don't see why one section of society should be protected more than everybody else.

Oh and your pension is massively bigger than what most of our generation will enjoy.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Mon 22-Apr-13 21:01:41


"many bright, wc 1950s school kids got a huge leg-up in life by getting into a grammar school. No such option now."

Perhaps you should lobby the Fabian society and assorted other lefties for the universal implementation of grammars schools....... grin

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 21:02:14

Faster it didn't pay for her NHS bills.

racmun Mon 22-Apr-13 21:04:43

Utterly ridiculous idea to tax them more- in what basis - you're old????
My grandmother would be considered wealthy but my grandad worked until he was 81 yes 81. He grafted really hard his whole life and knew what real poverty was his life certainly wasn't easier.

He would literally turn in his grave if he thought she was being unfairly taxed - surely 40% inheritance tax is enough for the state to take.

Means test some of the benefits maybe, my grandma doesn't need the wfa but I'm sure another pensioner somewhere could do with double the amount.

poppyknot Mon 22-Apr-13 21:07:15

Yes Things on the whole I agree (starting out married life in digs and only dreaming of having a fridge) but it's the 'maybe'. Some will, some won't, it's the tendency to ascribe the virtue to the whole group. Some may have had the old-fashioned 'job for life'and had a relatively easy time. In fact it is the phrase hard working families' that really gets me. How on earth do they know? And where does that put the single childless adult? Who's blowing their trumpet?

Salbertina Mon 22-Apr-13 21:07:40

Things, maybe I should smile (especially as half of them would have benefited directly themselves!)

thegreylady Mon 22-Apr-13 21:38:16

Just to explain:
Our pensions are made up of 5 separate ones.We have 2 state pensions and we each have a teachers pension [earned after 30/40 years teaching] and in addition dh has a small extra pension paid by the LEA when he took voluntary early retirement.
maybe we do get more than many of you will but many of you could satart paying into a pension fund now.If you are in your 30's you can build up a decent pot by the time you are 60.We were taxed on our earnings out of which we paid into pension funds and are now taxed again on the pensions.
We both went to Grammar School, I was the first of my family to have eduacation past 15.
My point is-we worked damned hard for what we have-we aren't being given handouts

Sparrowp Mon 22-Apr-13 21:38:52

We worked from the age of 15 too by the way, in part time jobs, and school didn't pay a wage. And university didn't pay a wage either. But lets not make this a race to the bottom.

poppyknot thats a good point - young people today are delaying having families by 10 years on average iirc, because they can't afford it/ cant settle down.

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 21:46:55

What with Grey?

Oh and early retirement shock do you know how long we'll have to work?

Portofino Mon 22-Apr-13 22:21:39

Jesus. In 1972, the year before my mum died, my Gps had 5 adults, a teenager and 3 children living in their 3 bed council house. No central heating, no phone, the windows used to freeze on the inside, a twin tub, a pantry, the tv was rented. Life was fucking hard for them. I remember taking the milk tokens to the coop. They lived through the war, suffered all the rationing afterwards, worked all their lives, and saved hard for their retirement. No way should they have to pay extra because other people think they deserve more now (that they did not earn)

ReallyTired Mon 22-Apr-13 22:36:56

We are all paying extra because of the incompentence of the banks. Surely as a country we should all be shouldering the cost.

CloudsAndTrees Mon 22-Apr-13 22:47:58

We are all shouldering the cost through interest rates and VAT.

OttilieKnackered Mon 22-Apr-13 23:14:38

TheGreyLady that's so much more of a pension than many of us will ever see. I'm a teacher, and I'm already paying in more than you would have done and will get less out at the end, and at 68 (currently, it's sure to rise) rather than 60.

And that's on the teachers' pension, which is better than most. I also had to pay for my degree. Is THAT fair?

OttilieKnackered Mon 22-Apr-13 23:15:53

I mean, do you not agree that, objectively, I will have to work longer (therefore arguably harder) than you, for less money. Do you think that;s fair?

Rosa Tue 23-Apr-13 06:40:42

Yes it is fair IMO , Grey and many others worked bloody hard to get what / where they are now. Her husband took early retirement as it was offered ..why ? To make way for a younger generation .
They lived by the rules that were imposed by the government , they worked hard, paid taxes and they should not be taxed anymore . It is not as if the income they have can increase as nobdy will employ them now.
Have a look at what growing up after the war involved - I don't think that was fair either.
IMO hit the lazy buggers that want everything handed to them on a plate as they are 'entitled'....Not the people who have grafted and paid what was asked of them,

Salbertina Tue 23-Apr-13 06:55:26

The whole concept of "early" retirement seat b misguided now.Demographics have changed hugely and someone retiring at 50/55 (dream on, my 40-something generation!) may live for a further 30 years. Pensions we originally intended to see out our 5 years

Salbertina Tue 23-Apr-13 07:00:59

Glitchy phone!
Meant pensions originally intended to see out our 5 yrs or so prior to death, not our final 35!

Early retirement IS very unfair on succeeding generations- it is unaffordable and based on the above outdated concept. I fully expect to be working into my 70s!

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 07:08:13

No Rosa people took early retirement because the country miscalculated and I fail to see why successful generations should pick up the tab and flog themselves to death into their 80s.

Oh and don't get me started on teachers of the 70s and 80s,quality wasn't great and they spent half the time striking. Teachers today are working waaaay harder or longer,paying more and getting less.

We're all going to be working far longer and we all work hard.Baby boomers don't have the monopoly on hard work.

exoticfruits Tue 23-Apr-13 07:21:31

Do people want 70yr olds teaching their 5yr olds?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 07:33:20

"Early retirement" pah,just why oh why should our generations work extra,longer for less,in order to fund one section of society to opt out of work early/ earlier on more,just why?

The bills don't stack up so dip into your pockets like everybody else.Yes it's a bummer but it's a bummer for all of us.I was told during my 44 years that I would retire at 60, have CB when I had children,have an NHS and my kids could go to generation has to face reality so should previous generations.

You never know if pensioners were targeted as much as children have been by this gov their children and grandchildren could actually be able to put more away for their paltry retirement at 80 but hey who cares as long as John Lewis shopping trips and Saga holidays are funded.


exoticfruits Tue 23-Apr-13 07:41:23

Everyone that I know who has retired is busy looking after grandchildren, especially in the school holidays or when they are ill. If they were all still at work they wouldn't be able to do it. (And there would be less jobs anyway).

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 07:47:40

Hmmm not all pensioners have that helpful attitude.

Not saying they need to work but wealthy and comfortable pensioners should be coughing up a lot more ie paying NI as errr the bulk of it goes on them anyway,giving up benefits they don't need and any other creative idea that could at least be thought about.

This complete hands off approach to one section of society because of their voting potential is utterly,utterly wrong.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 07:50:06

Squarepebbles Mon 22-Apr-13 21:02:14
Faster it didn't pay for her NHS bills.

but she did not go to hospital at the end of her life, which is expensive when it happens. she worked until she was in her 80s in the family shop, then was cared for by relatives, then went to a care home which was paid for by her house.

you are talking about all pensioners like they are the same when they are not.

The pensioners who are really expensive are those who could retire early on an indexed link pension - but this is not their fault as their life expectancy was miscalculated by statisticians.

Lazyjaney Tue 23-Apr-13 07:50:23

The problem with the current system is it's unaffordable, it was based on not living that long and havin large numbers of working people to pay for it. Now it is the other way round.

Pensioners rule the vote so are in essence voting to divert resources from working families and children to shore themselves up. There are going to be more pensioners over the next 10 years. There are going to be less people to pay for them over the next 10 years. No government dares to solve it, so they leave it to the next one.

But ultimately, no nation can afford to suck up all it's resource to keep it's old people rather than youth and workers alive, it's just that the longer this blindingly obvious need is avoided the worse it will be when wheels eventually do come off

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 07:51:10

This complete hands off approach to one section of society because of their voting potential is utterly,utterly wrong.

Square so what change do you suggest?

Salbertina Tue 23-Apr-13 07:51:42

Many people are healthy and/or young retired and could work.. I personally don't know any of this vast army of unpaid childcarers- most i know might look after gkids for a w/e every year or so!

msrisotto Tue 23-Apr-13 07:55:17

This makes no sense. It isn't hands off for one section of society - these pensioners have all been adults, they have already paid their dues, you just want to hit them again for your own selfishness.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 08:00:38

Who are all these wealthy pensioners swanning off on cruises? hmm most pensioners I know are struggling with high prices and utilities, same as the rest of us. If they are on a decent pension it will be because they damn well worked for it... You don't get a full pension without putting the 40 or so years in. And they did it without the subsidised childcare and tax credits around now. Like many others have said, life hasn't been some bed of roses for the last 50 years. My parents lived most of their adult life with no central heating, no foreign holidays (in fact holidays were usually a week at the grandparents) and a meal out would be an annual treat to a wimpy bar!

People's expectations have changed beyond belief. Reading many of the threads on MN there is generally a real
Culture of entitlement: 'I want to have as many children as I choose, oh and I'd like the tax system to change specially for little ole me so I can stay home as long as I want and still have all the financial advantages of working, oh and I'd like a nice healthy pension at the end even though I'm not paying in!!'

It's the politics of envy and it aint pretty. My parents are probably in the last decade of their life, they are typical of many pensioners, they certainly aren't rolling in it, and no doubt if one of them gets really infirm they'll have to sell their house to cover care costs. And if they don't, the govt will still take a shed load of money from their property through taxes. If we're going to talk about 'fairness' and 'equity' id bet good money that the vast majority in their 30s / 40s nowadays have a standard of living far in excess of that which pensioners had at their age.
Stop being so envious of what you imagine other people have!

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:04:16

Stop being so envious of what you imagine other people have!


Rosa Tue 23-Apr-13 08:06:27

They opted out why ? As they were asked by the government ....good on them I would as well if it was offered to me. It was not their fault they were given the option is it?

Don't get me started on NI contributions. I paid 25 year plus FULL contributions - i now live abroad in Europe ( ok my choice) however I will get a part if it back by a pension but when I am in the Uk the 25 years I paid doesn't matter I am only entitled to emergency medical care etc .
The rest of "my"money has gone on other people... But that is the rules imposed by the government - labour I think when I stopped working...tough I have to live by what they decided.

Lazyjaney Tue 23-Apr-13 08:06:31

"It's the politics of envy and it aint pretty"

It's the politics of unworkable economics. If you think this isn't pretty just you wait.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:07:32

It's the politics of unworkable economics

which bit is unworkable?

Lazyjaney Tue 23-Apr-13 08:09:38

"which bit is unworkable?"

I think this is the problem. do you actually understand how the UK pension funding system works?

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 08:09:39

Pensioners have been hit though. The personal allowances are being brought into line with working people so they will be paying more tax or those who have enough income will. The ni issue is different and even if it was extended to pensioners they still wouldn't be liable and for the same reason i am not because its not earned income. You don't pay ni on savings and investments.

About all you could do to make a real difference is cut the basic pension but its the poorer pensioner who that would hit most not the wealthy. Yes something needs to be done, no we can't afford to continue at this rate but you can't increase tax rates just for pensioners as that would be discriminatory so you'd have to increase for everyone. Anyone want to volunteer to pay more tax.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:11:37

lazy - lets pretend I don't and you explain to me which bit is unworkable at the moment.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 08:12:44

undercoversahm - from way back up thread:

"Yes, most have paid tax and NI all their lives but actually nowhere near the amount needed to pay for their retirement at state expense.."

Yes THIS is the big issue that no one will address. The pension system of the last 50 years was a giant Ponzi pyramid scheme. The maths are simple.

If a pensioner earned the average wage and worked for 45 years non stop and paid 25% of their after tax income into a fund that grew at inflation plus 2% they would have paid enough in to have 22 years of retirement at 50% of average current wage levels.

No pensioner did that. They paid a fraction of that amount in and put the surplus into buying houses - another Ponzi pyramid scheme we call the housing ladder.

No Tory or Labour Govt will ever tackle this issue.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 08:19:18

Well said faster stronger! grin

Tbh it becomes absurd to try to make comparisons across the generations because it's swings and roundabouts. Yes, my parents could afford to buy a house on one income. Yippee . On the downside, they had no central heating , no meals and drinks out, oh and when my mum was eventually able to do a bit of work again (when I was about 13 because there were no nurseries and precious few childminders back then) she had a very menial part time job which was well below her capabilities because that's all that was available to women. So let's not go down the road of competitive hardship, because what some people on here seem to envy, came at a great price. I think pensioners are an easy target for criticism because some people just assume they know exactly what their life has been like.

Salbertina Tue 23-Apr-13 08:23:55

MoreBeta, exactly- its not envy (or selfishness? Not sure where that came from!) sparking this debate, its the demographic time-bomb of how to support a hugely ageing society which is the problem.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:25:19

yes Janey, my Gma lived in a 2 bed flat above the family shop almost all of her life, despite both her and my GFather working fulltime.

and for most the time she lived there, there was no heating. she grew up in the same flat & they kept pigs in the back garden to sell as meat in the shop.

so 2 bed flat, 3DCs (2 girls, one boy), no heating & the smell of pigs. oh & my uncle died aged 5 from an infection that now could easily be cured by antibiotics.

some pensioners have had it easy, but them some people do now. the sweeping generalisations are unfounded

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:27:25

^ the demographic time-bomb of how to support a hugely ageing society which is the problem.^

I completely agree but this thread is about the Fabian society commenting that wealthy pensions should pay more toward deficit reduction.

notsoyoniface Tue 23-Apr-13 08:28:40

IMVHO for my generation and the next generations it boils down to savings and pensions, we can't expect anything from the state when we retire, and I think we should realise that now and do something now. And prepare for this. I also think in my lifetime the NHS will cease to exist so medical bills will need to be taken into account.

Owning and having equity in a house to use in retirement is a pipe dream for many so we can't on the whole rely on that (unless there is a massive housing crash). So end of life care going into a retirement home will need to be taken into account.

I earn just over 16k I have a pension at 5% I am 27, this should, if my maths is correct be a comfortable retirement. This is based on me retiring at 70 (By the time I am 70 it will probably be more like 80) and me staying with the company I work for now.

Now savings, because rents are ridiculous where I live (and before anyone tells me to move, who will do my job?) think £700 per month for a 1 bed flat (this is away from the drug dealers/crack heads/prostitution) how can I save for a future (except my pension) when I have to save for a deposit for a rental. Taking on an extra job is impossible as I do not work set shifts.

Yes under this government I will pay less tax, but that is taken by VAT going up to 20%.

I do not think pensioners should be taxed heavily as they have paid tax already. I do not know what the solution is, but I think everyone needs to stop relying on the state.

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 08:29:27

Ironically dh aged 77 and I still do some work and pay taxes. Dh does invigilation as do I. I also do some exam marking and private tuition. We use the extra to treat the grandchildren at Christmas and birthdays. I look after my youngest grandchildren two afternoons a week and babysit whenever I am asked.
I do feel fortunate but like so many things I feel the government needs to explore the huge corporate pots before picking pensioners pockets.
I wouldn't mind doing without the Winter fuel allowance and the TV licence but I would really resent extra tax on the pensions which are already taxed at standard rates.

notsoyoniface Tue 23-Apr-13 08:30:54

I realise that I contradicted myself there, I mean my generation and future generations. And I mean pensions not anything else.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 08:37:23

I really do grind my teeth at 'I fought in the War' and 'I paid my NI'.

No you really really didnt fight in the war unless you are 90 years old and even then you really really didnt pay enough NI because you have lived far too long to have paid enough in.

At the very least pensioners should sell their house to pay for care - as the houses most pensioners live in have huge untaxed capital gains stored up in them and they now need to use those gains to pay for care. Of course the Coalition is dodging that issue too.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 08:41:07

yes the politics of envy from people who prefer to blame others than take responsibility for their own lives.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 08:44:06

By the way, I am 49 now and I have used every possible (legal) means to avoid paying into a pension all my life as I know perfectly well I will not get out what I put in.

I advise everyone else to do the same - put as little in as possible and take out far more. Its what the baby boomers did.

Please do NOT stay in the new automatic enrolement workplace pension scheme. That is just a tax by another name. Opt out ASAP.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 08:48:10

Is this the same unworkable economy as the one where we've recently had a dozen threads from SAHM who want changes to the taxation system the minute they decide to stop work, so that they get the double whammy of taxation to suit them when they work, and then taxation to suit them when they stop?! And the same unworkable economy where those SAHM also want other peoples taxes to pay for them to have childcare? That would be because they need a break from the grind of switching on the automatic washing machine and enabling more internetting time would it? grin

Honestly... I wonder whether today's pensioners have an equivalent to MN where they can all sound off about the incredulous entitlement of the younger generation... They sure need it by the sounds of it!

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 08:56:56

I am speechless! Let's put the elderly in workhouses, grab their assets and then make them sew sacks till they die. Thank God none of my dc feel that.
It is hard on future generations that they have to suffer for government incompetence and misjudging but fleecing pensioners isn't the answer. I would never have introduced tuition fees but in my day ( born 1944) very few people stayed at school post 15/16. There were apprenticeships and vocational courses and those who were able to work could usually get a job. My mum worked in a clothing factory all week and on a market stall at weekends. My dad was disabled (MS) from the age of 38 till he died aged 70.
What today's workers have to face is not our fault we are receiving back what we paid in. Most of us have never received benefits before pension age. Saying "It's not fair" isn't helpful. Don't you want your parents to have a comfortable old age? As for early retirement it was pushed on teachers in the 80's and 90's. The packages offered were generous. It was so that there would be jobs for the newly qualified who would, of course, cost less than those at the top of the scale. I have every sympathy for those struggling now. The world is in recession but it won't be solved by taxing the vulnerable.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 09:00:27

I entirely agree, grey. And I'm damn sure those people who want to see the elderly shafted at the moment, will be singing a different tune when it comes to their own retirement!

bobbywash Tue 23-Apr-13 09:10:46

morebeta really?

Before I jump to an unsubstantiated judgement. Do you have any savings or own your own home? Or are you just planning on living off the state and complaining that they don't give you enough?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 09:19:41

The grey!

Somebody has to pick up the tab and families are already having to shove babies into full time childcare in order to afford a shoebox and will have no pension,their dc will find it very difficult to go to uni etc,etc.

Exactly who do you want to fund the NHS bills that as a country we can't afford?Young families are already doing their bit even though they aren't the demographic that runs up the bills and it won't even be there when they retire.

echt Tue 23-Apr-13 09:19:52

I'm also wondering about morebeta's confidence here.

49? Plenty of time for the government of the day to take you up the clacker in your retirement.
Aghast at the reference to 90 year-olds living past their payments into the NI.

Lazyjaney Tue 23-Apr-13 09:20:03

"lets pretend I don't and you explain to me which bit is unworkable at the moment"

It's been explained again and again on this thread tbh.

But in a nutshell today's retired people did not pay enough money to support themselves, and they are now being funded by today's working people. But as the retired population grows and stays retired for longer and the working population shrinks, the concept of taxing the working people more and more to pay off the retired is increasingly unsustainable.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 09:20:37

More beta interesting post re pensions,what do you do to plan for retirement?

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 09:26:19


are you talking about state pension or other types of pension, if so which ones?

echt Tue 23-Apr-13 09:27:24

The cries about pensioners not paying enough into funds would be better addressed by just googling " How pension holidays by businesses has affected the UK economy" and you'll see that it was government who kissed the ring piece of Big Business by allowing pension holidays amounting to years.

The same attitude has quite recently had the present government calling for tax breaks for private firms bidding to take on the more juicy bits of the NHS. That would be private enterprise. Our saviour. Not dependent on the state, oh no.

FFS. angry

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 09:29:40

bobbywash/echt - I dont trust anything that any Govt promises. I have lived long enough to have gone through umpteen changes to private and state pension schemes already so what I get out at the end as a pension is anyones guess. What I pay in now will make no difference to what I get in the end. Any 'voluntary' state pension contribution I make now is just a tax to pay current pensioners.

I bought my first (and last ever) house a few weeks ago and have some savings. Everything I have I have earned. I have inherited nothing and probably won't. I do work and that is it.

Squarepebbles - totally agree. Pensioners just havent paid enough in and those that retired early on final salary public sector pensions most definitely did not.

Funny how those at the top of the public sector just about to retire have pulled up the ladder behind them and stopped final salary schemes for new members as well as increasing future contributions - but not for themselves.

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 09:32:17

Sorry but the amount we paid into TPS was enough if it had been invested wisely. As for the NHS apart from my cancer treatment which was paid for with a health insurance, I doubt we have used it as much as the average young family. I just don't understand what exactly you want from us, why you are envious,what do you want for your own old age? Tell me exactly what you want to take from us and what you will give in return. So far I gather you want me to sell my bungalow and use the money to fund a care home (which I don't need). You want to tax my pension above the standard rate. You want my bus pass,my TV licence, my fuel allowance...anything else? A few pints of blood my cancer treatment means you can't use it,although it makes good fertiliser I believe.

echt Tue 23-Apr-13 09:36:30

Many of those who retired early on public sector pensions were persuaded to do so to suit the short-term book of the government, e.g. expensive lags out and cheap grads in.

The same happened in the coal mining areas when laid-off miners were "encouraged" to go for disability rather than unemployment benefits to make the figures look good. Now those same people are being hounded for not really being disabled because the government wants someone else to kick.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 09:36:48

Squarepebbles - my retirement plans are to use up my savings and sell my home and move into a smaller one. I expect the state will give me some sort of pension - and it will probably be means tested so the less wealth and income I have to 'means test' the more they will give me.

I fully expect Govts of all kinds to introduce some kind of wealth tax and that will happen regardless of who is in power. It is being widely talked about in the EU and LibDems are increasingly pushing the idea of a 'mansion tax' so I expect it to be part of the ongoing mainstream debate about tax. Fact is that Govts go where the money is and property, pension pots and inherited wealth are really lightly taxed at the moment.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 09:38:58

thegreylady - what percentage of your salary did you pay in to the TPS? Are you on a final salary pension now? When did you retire and at what age?

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 09:45:54

thegreylady - what percentage of your salary did you pay in to the TPS? Are you on a final salary pension now? When did you retire and at what age?

it doesn't matter how much she paid in, as she paid in what she was asked to pay in. its not her fault the amount was too low.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 09:47:17

morebeta, can I ask the value of your equity? you have said you plan living off it.

I an interested to see the maths.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 09:52:02

After again so who should pick up the shortfall or should we all just stick our fingers in our ears sing la,la,la and pretend it's not there ?

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 09:53:19

Of course it matters. It is the crux of the entire debate - which is about intergenerational equity.

If a typical teacher paid in 15% of their gross salary to TPS for 30 years and retIred at 55 and then lives another 30 years. The pension they should expect is only 15% of their gross final salary assuming the pension pot and final salary pension continues to grow at the same rate as the overall economy plus inflation.

Most teachers who retired at 55 are on far far better pensions than that but that is how pension maths really works and the excess is being paid by current workers.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 09:53:52


Interesting More so really paying less into pensions and overpaying mortgages would perhaps be better???

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 09:58:14

Faster - I dont intend to have anything left to give to my children by the time I die. That is something today's pensioners just refuse to acccept. They still expect a huge pension and to have care fees paid for and to pass on their wealth (ie mainly their house) to their children and it is totally unrealistic. I do not have that expectation and the current pensioner baby boomers need to get to grips with that reality.

I entered life with nothing and I intend to leave with nothing.

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 09:59:17

Teachers are not as fantastically paid as some people think considering their qualifications this was always accepted because it was compensated for with the pensions. My dd will more than likely walk out of uni with a degree and earn straight away about 5k more than a teacher would start on and if she wanted to teach she'd have to go back to uni for another year to do get a teaching qualification.

I'm 44 and started a private pension at 18, i paid out of my wages to improve my lifestyle in old age but now because i planned and provided for myself you think i should pay more so i wasted my time. I should have lived the high life and blown everything instead of thinking ahead, let everyone else pick up the pieces. The wealthy pensioners i know didn't work in the public sector and paid for what they now get but take what they do have and you will collapse the whole system because people will stop making any effort to provide for themselves and that will be a real timebomb for the future.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 10:04:39

morebeta ^ I dont intend to have anything left to give to my children by the time I die^

but how do you know how long you will live?

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 10:08:30

I completely agree with thegreylady

What exactly is it these moaners want? As far as I can see it appears to be people who don't want to work and who want the elderly to be taxed more to enable them not to... The mind boggles really . Im damn sure they'll want a change of rules when they get older. As for all this 'they are taking out more than they put in- since when did the sums exactly balance up so that people only take out what they put in? By that argument, anyone on benefits should have all their money taken away (unless they worked for about 30 years before receiving any!) Anyone using the NHS to have a baby should probably be denied a bed, epidural,'csection etc because they won't have paid in enough to meet the costs. Oh and forget about sending your child to school, unless you wait until you're 50 to have them, because you won't have paid in the cost of a state education ...

FFS any pensioner on a decent pension will only be on it because they've worked for 40 years. I honestly don't think some people on here have a clue about pensions- they talk as if it's some golden gift that's bestowed upon lucky people. You have a pension because you WORK and pay the amount you're told to, on the understanding it will be wisely invested by people who's JOB it is to do so! It's not pensioners fault if their funds have been mismanaged

Yes the economy is a mess. I speak as someone whos pension payments have increased - a lot- this very Month of April (as no doubt have many other workers) I won't get more back for my extra payments- I just have to pay more in and work longer. Boo hoo hoo. It's not fair. Stamp feet. Why can't the govt take the money off some other poor bastards so I get to keep more? That's the kind of sense of entitlement that seems rife on MN at the moment

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 10:09:03

Square - most pensions are a essentailly a ponzi scheme as pension investment returns have been poor due to bad investment mangement and high fees. In truth, no one should expect pension investment returns to exceed inflation plus economic growth (ie about 2%) in the long run. The promises made by state, corporate and private pension providers have been far in excess of what was ever realistic.

I manage my own investments and the reason I just bought a house is because I want to, in efffect, have an investment that protects me against future inflation in rents. I have rented up to now and as my wage earning potential declines I want more protection against inflation. The rest of my investments are in tax free self select equity/bond PEPS and a very small SIPP (private pension fund) that I will liquidate at age 55 as a lump sum if I am allowed to.

Yes for most people, buying a house they live in tax free and paying off the mortgage is better than a private pension. Some of the old state sector final salary schemes were very good because they paid out so much compared to the contributions. However, those schemes are coming to an end now and younger people will never see the like of those massively generous schemes in their lifetimes.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 10:09:36

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 09:53:52

Interesting More so really paying less into pensions and overpaying mortgages would perhaps be better???

mortgages are paid from your post tax income. pensions are paid from your pretax income (as you will be taxed when you withdraw the money)

so why would you pay off your mortgage instead of paying into a pension?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 10:13:07

Hmmm given that the maj of pensioner couples didn't have to put babies into full one nursery and often only had one parent work your argument doesn't quite stack up.

Each generation has a moral obligation to support those that can't work.

And again - who should pick up the shortfall?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 10:14:07


jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 10:15:17

To add to what faster said not only are mortgages paid post tax if when you sell up and invest the money to provide income you then pay tax on interest payments.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 10:18:50

more beta your investment advice is wrong.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 10:20:01

Square pebbles- swings and roundabouts isn't it? My parents bought a house on one income, but the price of that was an extremely fugal lifestyle which many people these days aren't prepared to accept AND most importantly, my mum never had access to the sort of decent fulfilling work of which she was capable.
You clearly have an issue with not wanting to use childcare and work, but it doesn't mean everyone else does, and you are certainly being very entitled if you expect other people to pay more tax to fund your wish not to work. Now thats an argument which doesn't stack up!

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 10:26:39

1. This is not just about what people "deserve" but also about what the country can afford. BTW I agree that there are vanishingly few pensioners around who fought in the war so that argument is pretty much a dead duck.

2. Almost nobody who has a final salary pension (including public sector workers) has paid in anything like as much as they are now taking out. In no real way have they "earned" their full pension - it was an accounting error now being paid for by the next generation.

3. It is not just the rich pensioners we should be looking at (the rich pay lots of tax) but pensioners that are state subsidised. The state subsidies have to be weighed up agains the impact on those paying the state subsidies (mainly the working young). This means HB, WFA, higher tax allowances, NI (yes, technically it is not a tax but the reality is that it is identical in all but name and the fact that only workers have to pay it).

4. All home owning pensioners have benefitted extraordinarily by rampant house inflation and now own assets worth much more than they ever paid for them. If it is suggested that some of that might be used to fund THEIR OWN CARE, then what is the problem? It would also bring family houses back into use for families.

niceguy2 Tue 23-Apr-13 10:26:59

To me this whole discussion is no different to the debates around govt cuts and benefits cuts.

There's a lot of hoohah about what we should be doing.

Then there's the matter of what we can afford to do.

The left usually concentrate on the first. The right, usually the latter.

No doubt morally we should support our pensioners when they retire. I accept many of them have benefited from pensions they haven't contributed enough into. And as a result many of them are living a lifestyle few of us can expect to see.


This generation and the next have the headache of actually paying for the pensions, healthcare and general care. I suspect as the next generation get into power, they will start to reign in on spending on pensioners since:

a) They can't afford it
b) They never agreed to the ludicrously overgenerous final salary pensions.

Back when the teachers wanted to go on strike because of changes to their final salary pension, my daughter was told by her teacher that it was because the government wanted to reduce their pension. She felt it was unfair. I pointed out to my daughter that it would be her who would be paying the taxes to pay for that very pension. A pension scheme she had no chance of getting. Her position changed quickly. All of a sudden she didn't feel it was fair at all to be paying for her teacher's pension when she wouldn't be able to get the same.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 10:27:05

Errrr you're expecting younger generations to fund their choice of mothers not working ever whilst claiming years of CB/ uni fees/ grants, WFA,benefits and not paying enough NI as a family etc,etc

Plenty of families today are prepared to live frugally and do.Many mothers simply want a short 5 year break to be with their babies not a big ask considering they pay tax and NI before and after......and are picking up the tab older generations have created.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 10:28:39

undercover your item 4 happens already.

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 10:28:48

niceguy2 I agree with everything you have contributed to this debate. Are you my DH?

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 10:29:53

Faster - it is true that you pay into your pension and get a tax rebate but you pay tax on the pension when you take it.

If you buy a house, you dont pay any tax on the rent you avoid by owning a house and you also dont pay tax on the capital gains when you sell a house.

A house you buy out of after tax income but pay no tax on the investment return after that. A pension is the other way round, you pay no tax up front but pay tax on the way out.

For most people buying a fairly priced house, that is just big enough for their needs (and no bigger) so they can manage it themselves rather than pay pension management fees is a better investement.

People have tended to overpay for houses in recent years so but if they fall in price they will turn out to be a better investment for many young people than a pension.

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 10:33:50

FasterStronger ...only in very limited circumstances where neither the pensioner owner nor their spouse will ever need the home again. Nobody is expected to downsize to fund care.....

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 10:38:24

Morebeta a house doesn't provide income though so what would you live on? If i understand correctly and you plan to downsize you will then have capital to invest but you then pay interest on the returns so in effect pay tax twice.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 10:43:24

jacks - a house does provide an income.

It comes in the form of the rent you would otherwise have to pay but avoid by owning. I have rented up until now since I was 20 years old. I have paid every single penny of rent out of after tax income. People who bought houses did not pay rent while I had to for 29 years.

Now by buying a house I will also no longer have that rent going out each month.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 10:54:04

First of all what is the definition of "wealthy"?

I can't speak for every pensioner, but my own parents worked hard all their lives. They payed tax and never took anything much. Now they are old and infirm. They are in their mid 70s. My Dad ran his own small business until last year. Now, he has cancer and has just had a major stroke. Despite paying tax all his life, other than the hospital care, there is no support form him, because they have squirrelled away over £23k worth of savings - with which to enjoy their retirement!!!!!

Their savings are going on private carers to come in and help my mum take my dad to the loo and put him to bed. Eventually, dad will be too poorly to stay at home anymore and then his savings will pay for a private nursing home & if there is any left after he dies, after death duties have been paid, Mum will live off the rest & then when she gets ill, the same process will start all over again. Eventually, they'll both be dead & the Govt coffers will be well-lined with the money that they spent their whole lives saving, after they had already paid tax on it!!!!

So, can we define the wealth we are taxing? Pensions are already taxed, savings have already been taxed - what extra wealth are we suggesting be taxed here?

Fast Tue 23-Apr-13 10:58:08

Logan's Run anyone?

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 11:03:00

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 10:33:50

FasterStronger ...only in very limited circumstances where neither the pensioner owner nor their spouse will ever need the home again. Nobody is expected to downsize to fund care.....

The debt is paid after you die, you don't need to sell the house when you are alive but the council have a charge on your property so you cannot sell it without paying them. after you die the debt is settled by your estate.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 11:04:23

I often get people saying to me 'you are so lucky to both have private pensions when you retire'. Err - its because I will have WORKED for 40 years as will my DH. It will make us comfortable in our retirement - that's why we are doing it.

What next - lets look at who is paying what in and then deciding what you can take out? If you want to go that way - well bring it on!

I agree with Janey. I saw the thread about SAHM's asking for childcare vouchers and some even asked for the pensioners to pay them NMW! Where do this people get this sense of entitlement!

Wealthy pensioners havent just woken up one day and found all this money pouring in supporting them in retirement.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 11:12:11

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 10:43:24

jacks - a house does provide an income.

It comes in the form of the rent you would otherwise have to pay but avoid by owning.

=====>>>> your analysis is comparing having a pension and renting against house to live in and as an investment.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 11:18:38

A house can provide income to the owner - for most people who have a mortgage the owner of their house is a bank or building society. So, yes the house is providing income by means of interest on the loan to the bank or building society!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 11:19:20

Squarepebbles- it wasnt a choice for many of the older generation to be at home- that's the whole point! Day nurseries didn't exist when my mum was raising kids, and childminders were few and far between and frankly many careers were denied to mums anyway. It seems you want to blame the older generation for things which were out of their control.

I also find it a tad ironic that those of us who are accepting that it's tough times, and we have to pay more out are those of us who are actually working, while those bleating about that older generation seem to be those who don't want to work, and expect other people to pay for that through higher taxation.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 11:33:30

Yes, it is funny isnt it that the ones moaning and complaining are the ones who are not working. Some are claiming that their partners are paying 'their share of their tax'! Of course they arent, EVERYONE is paying for your choices - not just one person.

And as I said before - lets get some number crunching done, lets see who has paid what in...

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 11:33:38

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 10:27:05

Errrr you're expecting younger generations to fund their choice of mothers not working ever whilst claiming years of CB/ uni fees/ grants, WFA,benefits and not paying enough NI as a family etc,etc

and what about all the pensioners who didn't benefit from your list above?

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 11:39:22

Morebeta i fully understand what you are saying about saving money by not paying rent but the question is what will you live on? If you downsize and put the money into savings you then pay tax on your savings but i get the impression that you want to spend every penny so the government will have to fund you instead but if everyone thinks that way then we go into an even worse downward spiral.

We all know the government will pick up the pieces if we don't provide for ourselves but some people want better than the basic and work hard to achieve it. If those are no better off due to excessive tax etc than those solely funded by the government then people will stop saving for their future and the bill to the government will increase even more. Its similar to the argument about making work pay more than benefits. You need to give people an incentive to do things for themselves and putting even more of a burden on today's wealthy pensioners will have a long term negative effect.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 11:43:31

Faster that would only be childless pensioners now relying on the children of others to fund and care for them.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 11:44:46

Jacks - and that is exactly why we are both working and getting our retirement funded!

If we are penalised and classed as 'wealthy pensioners' and viewed by others as being 'lucky' then what is the point. The other thing we might consider doing is move to another country and if more and more do this who will fund these crackpot ideas about paying people to not work (ie SAHP's) or giving endless benefits to the feckless who dont work but will be expecting others to look after them...

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 11:52:03

What about all the pensioners providing for themselves Squarepebbles? In a society with a social welfare safety net - there will always be people who will be paid for to some extent or even completely by the State, be they pensioners, the unemployed, the disabled, care home kids etc.
The idea has to be that you don't take the piss and live the life of riley, while everyone else picks up the bill. I'm not saying that anyone does lead the life of riley on benefits - just saying that has to be some kind of basic principle - otherwise who the hell would bother working?

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 11:52:46

square so there are only 2 groups of pensioners:

(1) their choice of mothers not working ever whilst claiming years of CB/ uni fees/ grants, WFA,benefits and not paying enough NI as a family etc,etc

(2) childless pensioners now relying on the children of others to fund and care for them.

really??? these are the only 2 groups of pensioners?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 11:53:47

Janey there are very few women who don't want to work.Many want a few years off when their dc are tiny in the interest of their children and family.

Out of my 43 years I have had only 5 years out of work and now my dc are all in school I am currently job hunting.I started working at 13, worked all through uni,funded my dp's Masters and year off to do it.My dp is 46 and has also worked since he was 13, he has never not worked and moved where ever he needed to to further his career which he works hard at.

I simply am in favour of help being given to families who feel a short career break would be beneficial to their children.Other families are not as fortunate as us and more than pay their way in a lifetime to warrant a little help for a very short period of time in the interests of their children.

When you consider what pensioners have paid in and expect back it's far from unreasonable.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 11:58:41

Square - working from 13 - really!! I had a paper round at 13 and paid £3. Its not going to fund me taking years off to be a SAHM!

And I strongly disagree, there are plenty of women around here (South Bucks) who dont work because they have had children very early and the mothers who have husbands working in the city...

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:03:08

They will be the minority.

On another thread I read a third of women are sahm,a third work part time and a third full time.

I made a lot more than £3and saved ££££££ for uni( not sure it would be poss now)I'm just saying I've had 5 years not working woopy doo.

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 12:05:44

The rent that we are avoiding by owning errrr that would be owning after paying a mortgage for [in my case] 30 years,often at a punitive interest rate-over 20% at its highest.
My dd has said that if I become too infirm to manage alone we will adapt her house so I can live with then.Dss will do the same for dh. We have 5 dc aged between 38 and 44 [comparable to many of the moaners I guess].Every one of them is married,has a career and is a mortgage paying home owner.They all got where they are by hard work and determination. Between them they have 9 dc. The two SAHMs are now working part time as their dc are older.None of our dc thinks we should pay more.
I told dd about this debate and her advice was "Back out of it mum-they werent there when dad was dying and you worked your socks off or when we had grandparents living with us.They didn't see the times you helped us out and enabled us to move forward.Just leave it before you get upset!"
I'm may be tougher than she thinks; I wont be upset but I think there are some very 'entitled' people on this thread.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 12:06:59

Square, what do these pensioners expect back? My parents get their state pensions, a few winter fuel allowance payments and a free bus pass and they've just qualified for their free TV licence. These are the only state payments they've ever had, other than child benefit. They live just outside a small village & it is a one mile walk to the bus stop, so I don't think they're ever going to get to use that free bus pass!

My parents would really love to get some help from the state they've paid into all their lives now that my Dad is severely ill - but do you know what, they don't expect it. After the initial help from the hospital, they get nothing. They're not whinging, on the contrary, they are just carrying on, digging deep & coughing up for the help they have to have - because they've been careful all their lives.

Career breaks are a luxury. If people can afford that, then great but if you can't then it should be a "must have".

What is it that you expect my parents to pay so that you or I can stay at home for a few years with our children?

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 12:08:16

So, what can you do at 13 that will bring in all these big bucks, and your partner doing the same! I didnt think you could even employ 13 year olds. Where you paying tax on all these earnings and how did you fit school in... Sorry, it just doesnt make sense. Its like this women who stay at home saying their partners are paying their tax!

And 33% of women not working is a large part of the population and another 33% working part time makes it worse in terms of tax revenues.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:11:57

Handcream- entirely agree with your posts.
I've also had people say to me: you're so lucky, your pension deal seems good. No- its not luck. I pay a LOT of money each month into my pension. I took short maternity leaves. I did drop down to 3 days a week when my children were Nursery age (which of course has knocked quite a bit off my pension!) but returned full time when the youngest was 4. Not everyone wants to do that. Some women want to stop working completely for 5, 8, whatever years. Some stay on part time earnings for many years after that. That's fine. It's their decision. But it does grind a bit when those self same people expect others to pay higher taxes to subsidise that choice.

There seem to he huge dollops of entitlement these days. And envy. Honestly, what on earth is there to be envious of pensioners about? Ok, some of them may have perceived 'advantages' but there are just as many disadvantages to counter that. Every generation has things better in some ways, worse in others. I think some people just live in a parallel universe where they honestly believe they can cherry pick the nicest bit from every generation... Access to a high flying career when they want it, but at the same time taxation to suit them if they wish to stop working; a nice fat pension at the end even though they haven't contributed, a nice centrally heated house with all the modern conveniences which our mums and grandmas didn't have, free childcare even though they don't work... All funded by that famous SOMEONE ELSE!!

2old2beamum Tue 23-Apr-13 12:15:40

Well said thegreylady
I am about your age and like you we worked our backsides off to keep our heads aove water.

Whilst agreeing that bus passes, winter fuel allowance should be income related.However what I can't understand why as OAP's we are unable to claim carer's allowance we are saving this country £millions

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:17:19

<Sigh> no I didn't pay tax but made shed loads(waitressing,annoying,babysitting,shop work) just making a point that because I've had 5 years off I'm hardly work shy.

All women should be working full time hmm really,how does that fit in to quality of family life and the needs of all children?All so pensioners don't have to dip more into their pockets and book less Saga holidays.

My dp couldn't do his job and pay 40% tax with me working full time.If he made less to accommodate me working more the nation is no better off.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:18:55

5 children grey,many couples can't afford a second these days.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:21:36

And Janey pensioners want an NHS paid for by somebody else,they didn't pay enough in and are the reason the figures don't work.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:26:34

Frankly square pebbles, if you have had 5 years off work, and a husband who earns as a HR tax payer, I don't think you'll get oodles of sympathy in your desire to get the elderly paying for your lifestyle. You're hardly on the breadline. That's what we mean by sense of entitlement.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 12:27:18

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:21:36

they paid in what they are asked to pay in.................................................................................................................................................... it is not their fault.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 12:28:36

unless your DH earns over around 52k pa you don't even pay enough taxes for the services you both use in any year.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:31:15

Faster he does.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:33:41

Getting the elderly to pay for my lifestyle hardly.

Getting the elderly to pay for the services they need.

They didn't pay in enough,the figures don't match up(and this won't go away)somebody has to make up the shortfall and the younger generations are already doing their bit.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:34:35

Square pebbles- I wonder how you're going to feel if in 25 years time someone is posting berating your husband because he didn't pay enough in to find whatever your families needs are.... You are moaning already about him paying the tax he's instructed to. Yet you seem to blame pensioners for not having dipped into their own pockets and paid over and above the tax, NI, pension contributions which they were TOLD to pay!! You sound like the sort of person who blows whichever way the wind blows.... No doubt you think the rules should all be changed when you're elderly

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:35:07

fund your family's needs

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 12:38:28

square - then what is your problem?

I can count 76k in household taxes this year (excluding VAT) and I have not even paid myself for 2012-2013, yet.

we pay taxes because the country needs us to.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:40:52

Squarepebbles- your husband earns in excess of £52,000 and you've been at home for 5 years. I too am struggling to see what your problem is, and why you seem so resentful of pensioners.

flatpackhamster Tue 23-Apr-13 12:41:48


we pay taxes because the country needs us to.

No, we pay taxes because otherwise we go to jail. And our taxes are so immense because of the inability of any government to stop spending Other People's Money.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 12:44:19

Square - whatever you chose to do with your family is of course fine. However dont expect others to fund it.

One day maybe we will look at individuals and see exactly what they contributed in terms of tax revenues and think we will all get a big shock.

The fact that some SAHM's think that their choice is funded by their partner are in cloud cuckoo land. The children to educate, the NHS services being accessed. All being funded personally by their partner to enable them to jusitfy their lifestyle choice, and of course the pension contributions that are being paid despite not working....

Be careful what you wish for. What about people who use private insurance, can they get their money back? Same with education?

ihategeorgeosborne Tue 23-Apr-13 12:45:59

The bottom line is, it doesn't matter how much we argue among ourselves, all of us are seeing and will continue to see a very reduced standard of living over the next decade or so. Life will get much worse for most of us before it gets better. Big cuts still need to be made. No one likes it, but that is the bottom line. As Liam Byrne said when he left the treasury, "there's no money left". No one wants to pay more tax. No one wants to see anything they receive cut. The government are in a tricky situation and they know it. I wouldn't want to be in government at the moment. I guess they will continue to kick the can down the road and leave it for the next government to deal with, the same as the previous government. I don't know what the answers are, but it's very scary.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:47:23

The higher tax band is continuously being reduced,all perks pensioners had we won't have because they're too expensive.We'll be paying more tax,getting less.It's inevitable so there will be no shocks at the end.We'll be getting buggar all for them to take away.

Sorry but current pensioners are one demographic in history we'll never see again and never saw before.There is simply no argument to treating one section of society in history in preference to all others.

The country is in the shit,all must pay their way.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 12:50:29

Janey because it's been far from easy or us so heaven help what it must be like for others and every section of society bar pensioners and the rich are contributing towards getting the country out if the shit.

It isn't fair.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 12:55:25

Oh right so all this righteous indignation is on others behalf square pebbles? Not because you're just pissed off that your husband earns 52k and you're a SAHM and you somehow think the rest of society owes you something?!

Viviennemary Tue 23-Apr-13 13:00:45

Most pensioners didn't get tax credit handouts. Or housing benefit. And a lot of them lived quite hard lives. And really a lot of elderly people have only very small private pensions and some don't have any. SAHM's expecting a wage for being at home.

A wage for looking after your own children and your own husband and cleaning your own house. I am in favour of tax breaks for SAHM's but not a wage. Such as their taxable allowance being transferred to their partner. But then you would get single parents saying this is unfair. People have to make choices according to their means and circumstances.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:03:25

What are you on Janey?

No my indignation is for us too and my dc.

When I go back to work( assuming I find something)everything I earn will need to go on helping the dc with uni(the living expense loans they'll be eligible for won't be enough) and putting into some kind of retirement provision. When I had 3 dc I was under the assumption they'd always get CB and free uni education,an NHS etc and have always paid accordingly.

So we'll still be diving a banger,keeping hearing bills own etc.

I've had to face reality so sorry why exactly shouldn't pensioners?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:05:45

Big yes I think that would be fairer,oh and basing CB cuts on household income.

Not going to happen though as they need the cash and won't touch pensioners.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:06:00

Sorry Viv

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 13:09:01

What perks for pensioners Square? Where is this alternative universe where pensioners get perks? Is it the perk of living through WW2 and no national health service, lving off food rations and doing conscription? What perks - please explain?

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 13:09:32


"Their savings are going on private carers to come in and help my mum take my dad to the loo and put him to bed. Eventually, dad will be too poorly to stay at home anymore and then his savings will pay for a private nursing home & if there is any left after he dies, after death duties have been paid, Mum will live off the rest & then when she gets ill, the same process will start all over again. Eventually, they'll both be dead & the Govt coffers will be well-lined with the money that they spent their whole lives saving, after they had already paid tax on it"

So your parents saved up money for their old age and now have to spend it on themselves in old age. Doesn't that seem fair? The alternative is that the state pays for their old age care, and others like them, placing a huge burden on young working taxpayers with their student loans, and then you get to inherit their money that you have not worked for. That seems a less good option for society.

BTW, the tax your parents paid in the past has already been spent (on roads, police, defence, education, welfare, past pensioners) - it's not sitting in a pot ready to be reclaimed. Well done them for remaining financially independent - they can truly be proud of themselves. And IF they do ever run out of the savings then the state WILL step in, which is also how it should be - an emergency safety net for the poorest.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 13:12:51

undercover - I'm not saying it isn't fair, they are not saying it isn't fair - I'm asking what extra taxes they should pay? That was the title of the thread & I'm making the point, they've paid tax all their lives & taken precious little, they are still financially independent - but what more tax is it that they should pay?

ihategeorgeosborne Tue 23-Apr-13 13:13:12

I think they should have just abolished child benefit and lumped it in with the universal credit. That way, there would be none of the current single vs. double income discrepancies. The households that really need it would still receive it and the cost of running the child benefit office would be gone. They could do exactly the same with the WFA payments and lump them in with the state pension. It was after all, just a bung from the last labour government. They could have just increased the state pension. All of these add ons and bolt ons need to be cut and lumped into one, easy to understand payment and should be only available for the really needy. I can't understand why governments go through the hassle of taxing families/pensioners and then giving them a little bit back from the money they earned in the first place. The cost of administering all of this must be huge.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 13:22:40

jacks - I agree with you on this:

"If those are no better off due to excessive tax etc than those solely funded by the government then people will stop saving for their future and the bill to the government will increase even more".

I am making exactly that calculation. I dont expect politicians to deal with the problem of old age inanything other than a purely self interested way. I expect them to keep pandering to the grey vote. One day I will be in the grey vote. The incentive is there to vote myself benefits and a big pension. I dont like it but I cant stop it happening.

In political theory it is called Tyranny of the majority.

We are already past the point of more than 50% of the population relying on the state for their income (ie as pensioner, recipient of benefits, or who work for the state) then guess what happens?

The majority always vote themselves bigger pensions, bigger civil service pay and bigger benefits and they tax the minority to pay for it - until the state goes bankrupt. See Greece for details.

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 13:26:07

Quick history lesson cb was brought in as a bit of a jiggery pockery to disguise a tax cut ie loss of tax breaks for children. It replaced family allowance which was brought in to transfer some money from dads wage packet to mum's purse. Anyone earning over 100k doesn't get a personal allowance so even under the old system wouldn't have got anything.

How did you expect free uni education for your children? My nearly 40 yo sister had to take out student loans over 20 years ago.

Pensioners have been hit or rather are being hit by the equalising of the personal allowances but the fact is that we as a country made promises and we need to abide by them regarding things like the nhs and pensions. Imagine you go on holiday after agreeing what you'll get for the money and half way through the holiday firm says sorry we miscalculated so hand over more money would you think that was fair? No you would demand what you'd paid for so the holiday firm recoup from other holidaymakers by putting up prices and that is what is happening here.

We need to encourage everyone to provide for themselves and for their future but you don't do that by hammering those who have already done that.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 13:26:23

Oh and in the meantime pay as little tax and NI as possible and vote for policies that allow and encourage me to do that.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:27:30

Post NHS started in 1948,my father at 70 was 2 when war ended in 1945 so he hardly lived through it and will have enjoyed the NHS every year of his life bar he first 5.

Rationing ended on a sliding scale (things taken off gradually)in 1954 with I think sweets being the final thing.To be honest going by what many families live on these days I'm not sure it was that tough in the 50s.So pensioners hardly lived through rationing either.

Think people need to brush up on their history before banging the pensioners fought the war drum.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 13:31:05

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:27:30

Post NHS started in 1948,my father at 70 was 2 when war ended in 1945 so he hardly lived through it and will have enjoyed the NHS every year of his life bar he first 5.

it was a very different NHS: my uncle (similar age to your DF) died aged 5 from a simple infection because there was not treatment.

you cannot pretend the old style cheap NHS is the same as todays high tech but expensive NHS.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:33:25

Oh and fruit and veg were never rationed so given that we're told to eat less meat(most families can't afford vast amounts these days) they probably ate healthier.

Interestingly we once visited a house that had the sugar rations allocated to kids each week in jars- omg 'twas waaaay more than my dc eat in a week.

ihategeorgeosborne Tue 23-Apr-13 13:33:29

At what point though jacks do you tell future generations that they won't get the same? When we had children, we factored in child benefit because we received it, it was a universal benefit. Why would we think we wouldn't receive it. The same goes for pensions. My dh and I are in our early 40s. We so far have not been told we will not get a state pension or access to the NHS. If this is to be removed for us (which it will), when will the powers that be inform us of this change? We should be told that from a certain year, we will not be entitled to anything. We do need to be told, as we will have to make even bigger provisions for our future. To be mis-informed and yet continuing to pay NI is theft if they will reneg on the terms and conditions we have also been led to believe will be there for us.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 13:34:47

After the maj of which is spent on keeping the older generation healthy and alive.

If we want that to continue we all need to contribute more,some of us already are.

MoreBeta Tue 23-Apr-13 13:37:39

My personal view is that voluntary euthenasia will become much more common place in future. It will become accepted and people will plan for it.

In ancient hunter gatherer societies it was common for old people in times of famine to deliberately starve themselves to death in order to allow the younger generations to eat. In times of plenty they lived on and contributed as a repository of wisdom and knowledge and revered as 'elders' whilst caring for children and the home so the younger people could work and hunt. For them there was no such thing as retirement.

I can see that system returning and I believe it already has to some extent in Japan and in places like Greece where the state has effectively imploded.

I know we dont want to think about it and politicians do not want to debate it but at the individual level I strongly believe that many more people will make that personal choice once their health and wealth has been depleted and the state cannot be relied upon to care for them.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 13:41:05

I think people will just toughen up and be less whingey.

nonameslefttouse Tue 23-Apr-13 13:42:52

I find it hard to comprehend this oap bashing on a couple of points; in the main this group of people cannot increase their income, a sahp can return to work, you can choose how many children you can afford etc.

They were told what they needed to pay in and what the returns would be, I am pretty damned sure that if someone told you to pay a pound a week and at the end of the year we'll give £1000, no sums don’t add up but hey would you refuse, no me either!

In the main this generation have a very strong work ethic and where health has allowed have supported themselves and their families, the benefit system hasn’t always paid for peoples choices, my Nan god rest her soul married what today would have been a feckless -pillock- he left her in the 50's with two young children, there was no benefits for her she worked her backside off in any job she could get to support her children, she received free school meals when they were old enough to go to school, so in some respects you could say they are receiving benefits now in lieu of what they didn’t when they were struggling to raise families.

Having children, buying houses etc are life choices, growing old isn’t!

ihategeorgeosborne Tue 23-Apr-13 13:44:11

I'm happy to toughen up Faster, I've already had to. I just want to be clear that we're all singing from the same hymn sheet.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 13:45:05

Square my parents are in their late 70s - although I can't believe we are quibbling about a few years here. My Dad gave a talk about living through WW2 at the DCs school 3 years ago, so he definitely lived through it and remembered it.

He was sent to the countryside, didn't see his mother for the best part of a year, dug potatoes, turnips and swedes after school, along with all the other kids at his school. My parents remember their first banana and talk with genuine affection about getting an orange for Christmas!!!!! The thing was back then, everyone had it tough - didn't matter if you had money, there was virtually no imported goods. Food was rationed for 14 years. It was so significant when it finally ended that people held ceremonies & celebrations to mark the occasion & it was actually butter that was the last thing to be unrationed.

Most people of their generation aren't moaners though & don't have the sense of entitlement that so many people seem to have nowadays.

When my parents were first married, they had a bed, 3 chairs & table. It took them years to put a proper house full of furniture together. My Mum wore hand knitted swimsuits as a kid, because you couldn't buy real swimsuits. They think it is quite funny that kids nowadays think they should have TVs, DrDre headsets & ipods.

I really don't think taxing pensioners is the answer to anything.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 13:51:34

Square - more often that not, you couldn't get your full ration allocation, because the food wasn't available in the shops. Also don't forget everything had to be cooked from scratch, so you needed sugar to make jam, add to pureed fruit, make a cake, make sweet pastry, make chutney or any kind of pudding etc. It isn't as though they were troughing down bags of M&Ms.

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 14:07:43

I hate George. I do not believe that the nhs or state pensions will go in our lifetime. I do think the state pension will reduce in real terms and that the nhs needs a serious overhaul but they will still be there if really needed but maybe they do need to pull back to core health issues i know there are a few things funded on the nhs that i don't agree with.

fallon8 Tue 23-Apr-13 14:50:31

I always buy a new coat with my heating allowance,on the basis,if it gets too cold,I can put my coat on.your turn will come one day..meantime,make good use of all those child benefits,tax breaks,etc etc,you all get ...I have earned this.

Rosa Tue 23-Apr-13 14:57:45

Can somebody please lend square a history book.

ThingsThatMakeYouGoHmmmmmmmmm Tue 23-Apr-13 15:13:34

Square -arguing for the return of rationing ? Or saying pensioners who went through it had it better than you?

Getting a bit weird now.


Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 15:15:31

Err why exactly Rosa.

Fruit an veg were never rationed,bananas and oranges scarce but there were other options.

People grew their own.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 15:18:52

Nope simply saying that these supposed years of austerity were a brief period of rationing which improved on a sliding scale and was but a very small fraction of a pensioners life.They were children and very,very few fought in the war.They were followed by the 50s and 60s.

Certainly no reason for them not to pay their way today and help to make up their shortfall.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 15:20:39

do you know anyone old Square?

how you talk about old people is just really different than any of the ones I know.

JustinBsMum Tue 23-Apr-13 15:22:02

Sorry haven't read all of this.
I thought pensioners paid tax the same as everyone else - do they get a bigger personal allowance?
Oh, looks like it is 26,000 for those over 65.
If that is the case then it seems a bit generous to me.

Does anyone know if I am reading this correctly?

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 15:26:45

You are reading it wrong. The £26 000 is a cap so if your income is over that you don't get any age related allowances at all.

Rosa Tue 23-Apr-13 15:52:20

Err ...cos you are talking the biggest load of hogwash .....and quite frankly I am begining to question your actual contribution to this thread other than trying to wind people up by your silly non factual posts

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 15:53:29

so pensioners actually get a whopping great extra £1k per year in their personal allowances.

They are as rich as Croesus.
Everyone one of them.
And really its our money.
and the war and rationing was easy.
....their entire lives were just so easy.
we have it really hard.

Or not.

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 15:54:23

OMG Square, they are paying their way today! Their savings are taxed, they pay council tax, they pay VAT on all items they purchase and they have paid tax all their lives. Quite alot of them are still members of the workforce - we have pensioners in the office I work in, the supermarket I shop in and my own parents only sold their small business last year - when they were 76 and 78. For all of those who have squirrelled away savings, then those will be used to pay for personal care when they are ill and too infirm to look after themselves

What extra tax would you have them pay?

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 16:05:06

When Square is a pensioner she will do a complete u -turn and claim she has been paying in all her working life so therefore she will be entitled to her pension.

I am not having a go at her. Everyone looks at things from the own point of view. Pensioners are a prime target for people who feel they are entitled to more from society.

bubbles11 Tue 23-Apr-13 16:14:00

is it unreasonable to say to pensioners - you keep all you have irrespective of wealth - i.e even if you are extremely wealthy by today's standards you still get winter fuel allowance bus pass etc - but by the same token the younger generation don't need to have anything to do with you. Hypothetically - if your own parents were extremely wealthy and you were struggling on the breadline - is it reasonable to say - the older generation keeps all they have but they don't get visits / involvement with the younger generation (mainly because the younger generation are working all hours that god sends) and they should not moan about not receiving visits etc from their younger family.
I think this is reasonable. Am I being unreasonable in thinking a level of informal generational apartheid is understandable and acceptable

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 16:21:34

Bubbles, not quite sure I understand your argument. The familial relationship is usually about more than money.

The way I see it, my parents, housed me, fed me, nursed me, wiped my bum, cared for me and ensured my safe arrival into the adult world. Regardless of how much money they may or may not have, I still think that is worthy of some reciprocal care on my behalf.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 16:24:05

We're talking about wealthy pensioners(see op ).

Yet again so who should stump up the shortfall?

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 16:30:20

Perhaps Mr Paxman can explain it better.


FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 16:31:15

square - you mentioned two types of pensioners:

(1) their choice of mothers not working ever whilst claiming years of CB/ uni fees/ grants, WFA,benefits and not paying enough NI as a family etc,etc

(2) childless pensioners now relying on the children of others to fund and care for them.

I cannot see you mentioning wealthy pensioners.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 16:34:49

Not sure what you mean.

Squarepebbles Tue 23-Apr-13 16:39:59

My stance is wealthy pensioners/those that can afford it should not get benefits,pay NI and contribute to any other plan the gov could come up with.

Again who should pay the shortfall ?

PostBellumBugsy Tue 23-Apr-13 16:44:37

What is the definition of a wealthy pensioner? I expect Jeremy Paxman is genuinely very wealthy - but what is the definition?

I'm thinking that most pensioners aren't really wealthy, they are probably comfortable & I doubt that most of them have lived lives quite like Jeremy Paxman either.

I still don't get what extra tax you are expecting them to pay, given that their savings are taxed as are any extra earnings they might still be getting?

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 16:50:44

Ok, so if we are looking at making up the short fall this is what I would do:

1. child benefit for only 2 children

2. 2 bed house only for people obtaining more than 50% in housing allowance

3. Any EU immigrants to be sent back to the county of orgin if they committ ANY crime regardless and vice versa for Uk people. It stops the rot setting in and this country (or any other country having to house them in jails)

4. grants not available if you 'accidentently' become pregnant yet again on benefits. Hostels for girls under 18.

5. Tax relief for people who have private insurance (tin hat at the ready for this one!)

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 16:56:40

What about pensioners who are cash poor but who are in houses they often struggle to maintain and heat yet are worth £500k plus. Do we force these people to move because they wont make the decision themselves?

This is one area where I think we could do something tbh. The houses wouldnt then be freed up for other families because the prices are probably well out of their remit. I am thinking of the old person themselves. Often they struggle to think about moving. Around here there are tons of them in musty old houses crammed with stuff and perhaps the house is worth £700k.

I ocassionally watch the hoarding documentaries on TV. I have a close relative who I am often expecting to see on there! Big house but just full of rubbish, someone told me it is a illness. I cannot see it myself tbh, how people can live like that is beyond me

jacks365 Tue 23-Apr-13 16:56:56

Square. Wealthy pensioners get wfa because giving it to everyone is cost effective as its such a low (relative) amount. Bus passes are issued to all in recognition of failing health as one gets older so may need to surrender licence. Again free tv licence only kicks in when older and is low cost. Those are the only benefits a wealthy pensioner would receive. They do pay tax so are hit if that is increased but they don't pay ni even if the age was increased for ni very few would pay because pensions are classed as investment income not earned income.

Changes like cb still apply to them and it may surprise you to know that some pensioners get it. Bedroom tax doesn't affect them because the wealthy don't get hb. They also pay the increase in vat etc. They are in it with us.

2old2beamum Tue 23-Apr-13 17:06:01

Thankyou jacks most of my friends are pensioners and we are still in receipt of CB and CTC. We are comfortable but not well off

grimbletart Tue 23-Apr-13 17:13:14

It might be worth noting - apropos Paxman - that not all pensioners are baby-boomers. As I understand it the baby-boom generation is that born from 1946 on. Thus, only people under 67 are baby boomers.

Pages back I tried to bring a note of balance in by saying that all generations have it hard/easy in different ways and we should all share the burdens.

But Square has been so dogmatic that I feel obliged to point out that I too earned money from 13 on, worked full-time from 18 until a year ago (doing my degree part-time in my own time) and at 70 I am still doing part-time (and voluntary) work.

Oh, and despite two children I never had the luxury of taking five years off.

Perhaps I should also mention that the tax rates for higher earners was as hell of a lot higher in the 1970s than he is paying now, while benefits were considerably lower. So higher earners of my generation will have been paying a bucket more income tax that 40-50 year olds do now.

I can see both sides of the argument - but I am not sure that Square can.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 17:16:11

I would certainly restrict CB to two children (with the exception being naturally conceived multiple pregnancy) as a help towards paying off the deficit. That's a perfectly equitable policy

JustinBsMum Tue 23-Apr-13 17:20:10

Jeesh Jeremy Paxman went to Cambridge. It might be an idea to say that all those v privileged people who attended Oxbridge should pay extra tax.

Have looked up stats and in 1970 50,000 students got uni degrees. In 2009 350,000. So those complaining about the baby boomers having it so good should remember that they had it good without a degree, which many younger people will have, the opportunities having opened up vastly.

So Paxman was an elite member of an elite group (ie those going to uni)

He also 'He attended Malvern College, a public school whose fees are almost as astronomic as Eton's' according to the DM. Perhaps all former public school pupils should pay extra. I mean there is a reason parents pay so much for the privilege and it is often so that they can have a high earning career.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:23:15

Grimble makes a good point - 80% tax rates anyone....

I could see a gov bringing in no more benefits for more than 2 children, guess they would have to make an exception for the ones already here.

I agree as well that all generations have it good and bad. I am personally quite tired of people's entitlement to things that were unheard of many years ago and the view that if you have them so should they.

Having a baby without a partner and no visible means of support is acceptable now. Having a baby very young is also Ok, yet birth control has never been so freely available.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:27:17

I went to a talk at my DS's private school about A level options a few months ago. In 1970's 5% of people went to univ, now due to Labour's view that as many as possible should go it is now 50%. With all the mickey mouse degrees and poly's now turning into universities.

I would bring back proper techincal colleges where people can learn a trade. I pay nearly £100 to get my hair cut in London and you cannot get a plumber around here easily. Those trades are in short supply.

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 17:27:31

What more tax would I have pensioners' pay?

-equalise their personal tax allowance with the rest of us (currently it is £2,500 greater - currently this represents a gift of about £500 per annum for almost every older pensioner. That adds up.

- means test WFA and TV licences (again this adds up as we have a lot of pensioners and TV licences are expensive these days)

-subject pensioners to the same housing benefit cap as the rest of us

- amalgamate income tax and NI and charge the same rate (say 35%) on all income, instead of levying especially high taxes for those who are in work (income tax PLUS National Insurance). The pension contributions were not taxed on the way in and so should be fully taxed on the way out, including NI. It is nonsense to try to pretend that NI is anything other than tax by another name.

- ask for a proper contribution to end of life health care rather than providing it mostly paid for by the young.

- pay for prescriptions and tv licenses unless on pension credit.

- back charge all graduates for their university education if they did not pay for it at the time (at a reasonable rate of say 9% of income per annum)

I wish none of the above needed to be done but we must tackle the deficit and cannot ringfence such a large portion of the country's spend.

GrowSomeCress Tue 23-Apr-13 17:31:01

undercoversahm you can't possibly suggest backcharging for university. That is ludicrously unfair and surely must be some contractual issue too.

amothersplaceisinthewrong Tue 23-Apr-13 17:31:10

If we are scrapping universal benefits (child benefits) and all having to tighten our belts , then I don't see why this shouldn't apply to pensioners. I have a relative who has almost I MILLION pounds in the bank and still gets her winter fuel allowance, tv licence and bus pas. Ridiculous.

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 17:31:29

justinBsmum JP is a high earner so is paying an awful lot of tax (probably 50% or so of his income). We already have a progressive tax system: you earn more, you pay more (both absolutely and as a percentage of your income).

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:32:13

I think trying to means test TV and WFA would cost more than it would save. I do agree however than older people on HA should not be allowed to stay in large houses just because they are old and dont want to move. Its not like that for the rest of us!

I pay for my prescriptions but apparently 90% dont. and I believe there are no charges in Wales and Scotland. Change that...

I dont agree with back charging graduates from what 40 years ago and also what is a proper contribution to end of life health care? What if you dont need care and are fit and healthy and just quickly go with a heart attack?

If you leave too much the government takes that too....

undercoversahm Tue 23-Apr-13 17:33:46

growsomecress no, I am not really advocating back charging for university but think it is equally unfair to be charging current students. If you have to do the one, then you should also do the other. We are crushing the next generation with debt and the pensioners are not taking their share of that. Personally, I think education is one of the few areas that should be government subsidised (ie free) as it is investment in our human capital.

I went to Oxbridge years ago for free. I feel so sad that my DC (and yours) cannot do the same. There is no way I could have paid.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:35:00

Your £1 million relative will leave lot of it to the goverment anyway or use it to provide long time care in a home without needing the government to pay. My PIL's have bus passes but drive everywhere so although they might have one they never use it!

echt Tue 23-Apr-13 17:36:04

If you think back charging for uni fees is OK, then so is removing child benefit for existing families of more than two children.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:37:51

But 30-40 years ago only 5% went to uni. Now under Labours rule we are all entitled to go which waters down in my view graduates. There are just so many more now.

I also think by charging (and I believe you dont need to pay back until you earn xxx). It makes you think - do I really want to do this degree, am I going to take this seriously. Will I put the work in. After all I am paying for it...

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 17:38:09

If you think back charging for uni fees is OK, then so is removing child benefit for existing families of more than two children.

what about clawing back CB already paid to people?

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 17:38:50

The idea of back charging university fees is ridiculous. Today's pensioners went to university at a time when very very few people went, and those who did, needed degrees to enter certain professions . Nowadays half the population go. Hell- I'm not a pensioner yet, and when I went to university only 8% of people went . Why hammer people for doing what society wanted them to do? We needed those graduates to be doctors, teachers etc. If they are on a good pension it will
Be because they worked for 40 years. FFS anyone would think these people weren't just handed fabulous pensions as some sort of brucey bonus !

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:39:56

I dont think anyone can start to backdate things from 40 years ago. What nonsense. As Echt says we could go even further and remove child benefit for more than 2 kids and even further - backdate it so that you end up owning the government £1000's

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:45:21

I do think that the child benefit for 2 children from say 2015 (excluding multiple births) could be a bit of a vote winner.

If you have no means of supporting yourself, have married yourself to the state and have no partner then why on earth would you want to have more than 2. Most working families decide their lifestyle and how many children they want.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 17:46:34

actually I would not mind paying an extra inheritance tax for my free degree.

schobe Tue 23-Apr-13 17:48:55

it wasn't hard in the same way that people are struggling now

Omg people have short memories when it suits them. What a bizarre statement to make when we're talking about a generation who were brought up in post-war austerity.

I think some might be shocked to know what tax is paid by a comfortably off pensioner who has worked and paid taxes all their lives. I'm sure that there are many who would rather be young, fit and strong enough to work still.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 17:55:25

I do get jealous I admit seeing what ages my PIL's and parents retired at.

They are living long and healthy lives, they werent expected to hence the pensions they have now but with all the medical advances people ARE living longer than we ever thought.

But to say they arent contributing, well of course they are, they are spending in shops, paying VAT, paying tax on their savings etc, even spending on holidays (they are allowed to go on them too!)

These people who are wanting them to fund their choice to stay at home. What are they contributing tax wise. And please dont say I have been working full time since 13.....

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 17:56:03

Schobe - I think you've hit the nail on the head. Some people just can't get their head around the fact that every generation has advantages and disadvantages. Yes, I'm quite happy to hold my hands up and admit that me and dh found it easier to buy a house than my children will. On the other hand, my children will get the advantages of a year off in maternity leave or split parental leave between them and their spouse- which seems unbelievable to me with my 3 months off (and dh with his one day)
My parents lived on one income- but it was frugal and my mum would no doubt have been a lot more fulfilled if she'd had a decent career rather than a menial little part time job when we got to secondary school.

The problem seems to be with people who want to cherry pick all the best bits from every generation without any of the downsides which went with it. Yeap, life would be great if we could all rewrite the rules to suit our own particular circumstances at any particular point in life. Entitlement much?!

JustinBsMum Tue 23-Apr-13 17:56:11

That's an interesting suggestion FasterStronger.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 18:01:31

I have a relative who cherry picks everyone else's lives and is definitely a glass half empty person. Some people just dont see it. They take their 1 year maternity leave for granted and then take it a step further and moan about not being paid to stay a home (funded by the pensioners!)

My DF when I was growing up had to fill in the family tax return on behalf of my DM. She never did know what he earned.... They are divorced now. We would laugh at this sort of set up now....

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 18:10:08

I had two cildren [squarepebbles 12:18:55] and my dh had three.I was widowed at 42 and dh's ex left the 3 dc with him when she left him for a younger man in 1985.
We put together a family of 5 young teenagers who we regard as 'ours'. Dh and I will have been married for 25 years in December.
You say many people nowadays can' afford a second child...maybe.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 18:22:44

JustinB - the idea of getting a bill for my degree now seems unfair but also I don't actually mind paying for it. I benefited from a great education at school and uni and I will always be thankful for it.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 18:26:33

Having a degree and putting off work for a few years would I presume allow you access to the more well paid jobs (you know those ones that paid more in tax....!)

And taxes as others have said were not always as low as they are now.

handcream Tue 23-Apr-13 18:35:39

I would have loved to go to uni but the school I attended didnt inspire, in fact if you got 5 o'levels you did very well. There were no expectations, however I did ok but I didnt want that sort of school for my sons so we stopped at two children and went private.

I never thought of being a SAHM really because we just couldnt afford what we wanted without me working full time.

I have no regrets and am now trying to plan for retirement but the buggers keeping changing the dates!

I remember the golden years of employment 10 years ago. Now, someone leaves the company and you just end up covering their work. Someone else goes on maternity leave and again - there is no cover. The existing team just manage - FOR ONE YEAR! Notice lots of roles in the local paper for local authority cover for maternity leave though....

Hugglepuff Tue 23-Apr-13 18:47:38

YABU they have already paid tax and national insurance throughout their working lives. They have also put money aside for their pensions - why should they be penalised for saving for their old age ?

Viviennemary Tue 23-Apr-13 19:42:43

I really can't see this pensioners have it great scenario. Example

Person on pension - App £5,500 a year state plus say private pension of £10,000 pays tax.

Person on benefit can collect £26,000 tax free. I think they should tax benefit before they tax older people.

LittleBearPad Tue 23-Apr-13 19:44:31

Please can people stop saying pensioners fought in the war. The vast majority of them didn't. You'd need to be 86 to have briefly served in 1945.

Let pensioners have the same tax regime as the rest of us, their personal allowance is moving in line with working people's, scrap the WFA and similar benefits and means test them.

There is no means for wealthy pensioners to disclaim their WFA - there was a campaign (think Helen Mirren was involved) whereby certain famous celebs gave their WFA to charity because they couldn't return it to the treasury.

National Insurance is a busted flush - it doesn't raise enough for the Nhs or pensions. It should be scrapped and rolled into income tax.

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 19:57:47

Please can people stop saying pensioners fought in the war.

No, I wont thanks.

my DF did not fight in the war - he was born near its end. however my GF did and he was damaged by it so he DF felt the full impact of his war trauma.

which obv was not even recognised then.

lots of other people were evacuated as children. and...

what do you think being a child is like in a country at war?

FasterStronger Tue 23-Apr-13 19:58:40

so will people please stop pretending it was easier in the past? you just look silly grin

LineRunner Tue 23-Apr-13 20:06:43

My DF is in his 80s and even he was just too young to fight in WW2.

Anyway the issue surely is with 'pensioners' of 60 on decent incomes who still get their Brucie Bonuses of free bus passes etc.

Lazyjaney Tue 23-Apr-13 20:11:35

The Baby Boomers are the main group enjoying an unsustainable pension largesse. By definition they did not fight in WW2. They lived through the largest boom and rise in living standards in human history. They are now, as a cohort group, enjoying a lifestyle that the current working population largely has to fund and will never enjoy themselves.

That won't fly for much longer.

As someone said earlier, this thread is full of what should happen, in an ethically ideal and fair world, but it wills these ends without taking into account there are no means - that it's not affordable and at some point those paying for it will refuse to.

LittleBearPad Tue 23-Apr-13 20:30:20

I'm sorry but pensioners don't deserve a free bus pass because they grew up in WW2. I doubt the one will make up for the other.

I didn't suggest additional taxes on pensioners, just equal treatment with those of working age.

LittleBearPad Tue 23-Apr-13 20:34:09

Also Faster Stronger what do you think being a child growing up in temporary accommodation because there are no council flats/houses suitable for your family is like. This is one of the consequences of council accommodation being under occupied. The bedroom tax doesn't apply to pensioners.

yetanotherworry Tue 23-Apr-13 20:35:07

There are other benefits to the free bus pass - it also encourages pensioners not to drive which is good for society as a whole. I agree that the WFA should be scrapped and just added to pension credit though.

janey68 Tue 23-Apr-13 20:36:40

I think the fighting in the war thing is a red herring because there aren't many surviving people who fought in the war and before long there won't be any. It's not about being 'owed' something because of the war. It's about treating people in a fair and reasonable way. Personally I don't have a huge issue with means testing for bus passes and fuel allowance, but as others have said, if that will cost the tax payer more than making blanket payments then whats the point? As for taxes, well, pensioners are taxed. If they receive a decent pension it's because they ^worked* for it. There is just so much pensioner envy on this thread from a minority- it beggars belief

Portofino Tue 23-Apr-13 20:44:46

There was still evacuation and National Service if you were too young to fight in the war.

LineRunner Tue 23-Apr-13 20:50:22

My local paper ran an article once about 60 year olds complaining that their free bus passes were 'useless' to them because they couldn't use them before 9.30am and so couldn't get to work for free.

bassetfeet Tue 23-Apr-13 20:51:55

This is an awful thread . Do you think all us baby boomers are rolling in money? Seriously ?
We live on Dhs State pension with small private extra. About £14,000 pa.
Most of our savings went on tuition fees and uni help for two sons .....and all that loving parents do for their children to help set out re work and homes . Happily because we know how hard it is for young today .
We live very very frugally and the heating allowance is a godsend .

Some of you are very shortsighted re how you will feel in the future and seem almost spiteful towards those of us older who help your generation as best as we can .

Portofino Tue 23-Apr-13 20:51:56

I really don't agree with the policy that pensioners should not move. Like everyone else, they might have to, to move to sheltered accommodation or a care home. If not with Hb to move somewhere cheaper. Sad but has to happen. I don't really want to see pensioners deprived of their life savings but yes, they should give up the family houses when living in council/HA accommodation.

thegreylady Tue 23-Apr-13 21:57:03

I didn't fight in the war smile I was born in 1944.My dad did but he is dead. I grew up with rationing but didn't notice it.I was vaccinated against tb.diptheria and tetanus.I had whooping cough,measles, chicken pox and chronic bronchitis,I grew up in a council house in a declining pit village.My gran had a house with an earth closet in the yard and gas lamps in the living room.I played hopscotch on the pavement and sledged down the middle of the road as no one had cars.I remember the Coronation.I went to Grammar School.My grandad's instruction for life was;"You bow your knee to no man and you shake the hand of any."
If you want equality it has to mean equality-no very rich,no poor,no handouts,no private schools,no mansions,no slums.You cannot decide to want to take twice from the elderly because you see them as an easy target for greed and entitlement.
Parts of this thread are making me feel ill.You [some of you] don't only want to take our savings and our homes you also want to take away our self respect at arriving in old age at a point where we can finally look back at our lives and say,"We achieved that-we earned it."

Portofino Tue 23-Apr-13 22:44:26

Thegreylady, I agree with you. I grew up with no central heating, tin bath in kitchen thing. That is what is was like 40 years ago. The previous generation had it hard if they were working class especially. Houses and capital assets are the thing of envy now. So either the money will cascade or go to care home people. It's them I would be watching.

Rosa Wed 24-Apr-13 06:29:41

Grey lady - ignore the ignorant ( there are a few on here). I might not be a pensioner yet but I have listened to some those that are and what they lived through after the war . However the ignorant can't believe it was true .
You enjoy what you have worked hard for - you and others deserve it.

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 06:58:26

Did you not listen to the news yesterday,did you not see the trillions of debt figures?

So what else should be taken away from the younger generations and how much exactly?

How can you justify wealthy pensioners contributing nothing to getting rid of a debt they helped to create and are contributing more to than younger generations?confused and if that isn't ignorance what is?

undercoversahm Wed 24-Apr-13 07:08:04

Ok, I have just read the Fabian report (belatedly) and I do not agree with its conclusions. If we have to be in it, we should be in it together. But randomly taking people's savings off them for no reason other than that they have them and are old is not the way to go (we may as well emulate Cyprus and grab 10% out of all bank accounts).

Reducing subsidies to pensioners should be done first as that is what we are doing all round. Moreover this is a numbers game - you can't just pick on a small section ( eg the wealthy, the young, the old whatever) - everybody has to contribute for this to work. Pensioners are not yet sufficiently contributing to this crisis, especially given how little they have paid in vs how much they expect to receive back (I am thinking final salary schemes that have been a windfall for them). Perhaps the viability of pension schemes should be revisited and the amounts of pensions being paid out should be trimmed to what the actual funds paid into the scheme dictate can be afforded. Yes, that would be retrospective but only to the extent that it is correcting a big accounting error that has resulted in a windfall for this group.

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 07:13:56

Once again, what do you mean by 'wealthy?' Someone on a good pension which they accrued by working for 40 or more years and paying in the amount they were instructed? Or someone who owns a house worth a few hundred thousand? Don't worry, when they die the govt will be taking shed loads in inheritance tax, so that should satisfy your desire to take money off pensioners. And once again, these pensioners didn't 'help ' create debt. They have paid their dues, it isn't their fault if their pensions were miscalculated or mismanaged

I still find it the supreme irony that you admit your husband earns at least £52k and you haven't worked for 5 years, which many many people would consider extremely comfortable, yet you obviously feel hard done by.

As for the sufferings of the younger generation, like we keep saying, swings and roundabouts. They may find it harder to buy a house, but those on low incomes have tax credits, subsidised childcare (up to about 70% in some cases) and a year off work in maternity leave- things our parents and grandparents (and indeed many of us ourselves) never benefited from.

You just come across as very resentful and envious and it's still hard to see why... Obviously you find life such a struggle on £52k but its a joke to whinge that pensioners should be subbing your life style

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 07:15:38

That was to square pebbles.

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:24:27

Errrrm somebody on here had years of CB on 2 salaries for 5 children!!! Given that CB for 3 children alone over 18 years will be a staggering amount- 50k -really that alone should be taken into consideration given many are losing it now.

Oh and plenty of families earn the same joint as my dp but pay less in tax so do quit with your single woman crusade against women taking a short break in a lifetime. I worked and saved for it.

skaen Wed 24-Apr-13 07:33:02

She didn't - read the post again. Unless blended families should also be taxed more??

Rosa Wed 24-Apr-13 07:36:38

Oh I missed that bit about your dh earning 52k whilst you stay at home... lucky you those pensioners you go on about had no option but to WORK in order to survive.

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:38:56

And younger generations are and have been subbing the lifestyle of plenty of wealthy pensioners who don't need it.

Same hymn sheet as others have said is what I expect.

Also last time I looked we'll all be paying exactly the same when we die,so we'll be paying exactly the same however we'll have less given that we have to bring the debt down and won't have 10s of 1000s of CB in the value if our houses and will have worked a lot longer for less whilst supporting children at uni etc,etc - oh and ensured wealthy pensioners keep their Saga holidays.

Tis not about poor pensioners but wealthy pensioners and to defend the rich helping out when a lot of others on a lot less are losing a lot more and are intriguing is wrong.

Can't believe they're not even kept to the same bedroom rule!shock

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:39:49

Rosa wealthy pensioners- the clue is in the title!

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 07:46:28

Undercoversahm- you need to remember though that many of these 'lucky' people on great final salary scheme pensions, took that route as a 'trade off' against other advantages.

To give a simple example: mr A is a pensioner who doesn't have a great final salary pension or any savings. But he earned really good wages during his working life, had lots of foreign holidays and an affluent lifestyle. Mr B is has a final salary pension and some savings, but he worked 40 years in a lower paid profession, didn't have the holidays or expensive lifestyle and lived frugally.

By your reckoning, Mr B is 'wealthy' and it's 'fair' to Take away from him, and mr A is a poor pensioner. That's a far too simplistic way to look at it.
It's non workable to take things off people retrospectively anyway. Where do you draw the line? You may as well say, let's make people pay back the CB they received for 20 years because they seem to be doing ok now. Or how about making SAHM pay their own NI retrospectively?!

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:46:57

<Whispers> The vast maj of pensioner women had time off to raise children or didn't work and have paid nothing like the tax I've paid and will pay in a lifetime.

Oh and I regard anybody who retired from work whilst earning £50k as wealthy given that that is the cut off for CB cuts(even though those on double get to keep it) and clearly going by opinions on here is a fortune!

Anyhoo kids to get to school and jobs to apply for,mustn't keep the rich,feckless work shy from being busy.hmm

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 07:50:46

That's bollocks- those on double don't get to keep CB. Unless of course you mean families where TWO parents work which is not the same situation!

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:53:30

Oh and some of us thankfully have wealthier family members who appreciate that they have been lucky as a generation,need to contribute more financially to the nation and are willing to help out practically with childcare however that impinges on their lifestyle.

Shame all wealthier pensioners aren't like my parents.I know they are in the minority.


Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:55:32

Hmmmm yes 2 on 50k which is 100k a year do keep CB- utterly ridiculous.

1 on 20k and 1 on 30k joint also keep it which is also unfair as collectively they pay less tax than somebody on 50k.

Squarepebbles Wed 24-Apr-13 07:56:07

Anyhow time to boot kids out of bed.

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 08:00:06

So you're jealous of pensioner women who never worked square pebbles? hmm Not sure how you think they're wealthy- they won't be getting a gold plated pension if they didn't work!! They'll be on the frugal state pension!! Honestly, you do make it sound like these wonderful pensions just fall into people's laps randomly. They don't. You have to work, usually for 40 years or so without breaks to have got a full pension. Today's pensioner women who didn't work, or only ever worked in part time low grade jobs are living on the basic state pension!!

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 08:03:14

A couple on 20k and 30k will have a shed load of childcare costs which the SAHM with a husband on 50k doesn't. Unless of course they are in the very privileged position you are where you get to use elderly retired relatives as free childminders. Oh hang on- you don't work so you don't need a childminder anyway!!

<wonders why on earth square pebbles is so frustrated with her life>

MoreBeta Wed 24-Apr-13 08:25:06

undercoversahm - "we may as well emulate Cyprus and grab 10% out of all bank accounts"

That is exactly what will happen if we dont cut Govt debt.

There is no easy way out of this. Cuts have to be made and taxes have to be raised. It is just a question of how to do it fairly and frankly there is a woman who is often on TV quite often who represents pensioner interests (I cant remember her name) and she epitomises everything I dislike about this debate. She is entirely blind to the issues and speaks about pensioners as a rightfully entitled group who should not share any of the economic pain.

My MIL is on a state pension. Has her own home (not large) and she gets FILs superannuated public sector pension as well. She has income of about £1200 a month and hence pays a little bit of tax. She cannot spend the money she gets and pays nothing for travel in her local area, free TV licence, pensioner discounts on many pensioner services and WFA. There are many many pensioners on much bigger state funded pensions than her and as a country we just cant afford them any more.

MIL is not a wealthy pensioner but she is not facing any hardship either and never will. She did work for some parts of her life but really has not paid anything like enough to cover her state pension and FIL paid virtually nothing to his superannuated pension compared to the payout. MIL could easily live another 20 years.

They did not fight in the war.

FasterStronger Wed 24-Apr-13 08:29:47

<wonders why on earth square pebbles is so frustrated with her life>

yes. your household is in the top 10%.

FasterStronger Wed 24-Apr-13 08:32:18

I don't want 70, 80, 90 year old widows to face hardship.

MoreBeta Wed 24-Apr-13 08:48:43

Faster - neither do I but continuing to pay out huge publicly funded state and public sector pensions based on an 'actuarial mistake' we have known about for at least the last 25 years is no longer acceptable. The mistake has to be rectified and that means cuts in pensions, removal of unneeded benefits and higher taxes at the top end.

The acid test is this.

A pensioner should not have a state funded standard of living that is better than a younger person working in the same job that they used to do before they retired. With wages frozen at the bottom end of the wage scale (or even falling in some cases) but state and public sector pensions continuing to be inflation protected there are many pensioners who now enjoy a better standard of living than the people who followed them into their job when they retired.

bobbywash Wed 24-Apr-13 08:50:04

Only 1 question really that no one has answered (that I can see) despite the question being asked several times.

What is the definition of a wealthy pensioner?

If you mean that it's someone who has more than those on state benefits then that is hardly objective. Do you mean someone who owns their own home having paid of the mortgage, who gets a private pension as well as the state pension, then where do you draw the line in terms of value of the private pension.

It seems to me that the definition being applied is someone who is better off than me.

All of those who want to tax wealthy pensioners define them, then lets do a comparison with the general population and make the tax burden equivalent. Otherwise you just sound bitter and envious.

Actually one way to do something about it is to increase the rate of inheritance tax, but how many would want to see their own inheritance taken away by the state.

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 08:55:23

See my post above re final salary public sector pensions. Many people entered professions which were lower paid, but the good pension was a trade off. They may well have lived their working life far more frugally than other people on higher incomes but who don't have the benefit of a high pension now. How is it equitable to take away from one but not the other? Tbh this kind of thinking wont help anyway because it will lead to people spending their money while it's in their hand, NOT saving, NOT making pension provision etc just in case the govt moves the goal posts and takes away from them later on for having been prudent!

FasterStronger Wed 24-Apr-13 09:00:36


1) the state pension is what, £100 per week? do you think this should be cut?

2) higher taxes at the top end - please expand

3) you assertion that some one receives a higher pension than the person now doing a the job. please can you include a link. the only person is know on a 'gold plated' pension is an ex policeman on about £12,000 per year, plus his state pension. so much less than the same level police officer now.

FasterStronger Wed 24-Apr-13 09:03:18

the ceiling for someone doing the same job now is £36,500.

MoreBeta Wed 24-Apr-13 09:20:28

Faster - this is what I think should happen.

State pension should be at the level of National Minimum Wage and taxed like everyone else with the same allowances but with no other special pensioner benefits or top ups and should only go up when NMW goes up - not automatically as the higher of the rise in average earnings or CPI or 2.5% as happens now.

Public sector pensions that are currently being paid out to pensioners on the basis of the final salary before someone retired should be scrapped. They should be rebased to the avergae earnings of that person over their career - in other words the same basis as the current pension schemes that younger public sector workers are being forced into. There is no way the current pensioners should continue in final salary schemes that younger workers can no longer access.

What is good for current workers is surely good for current pensioners?

yetanotherworry Wed 24-Apr-13 09:30:27

But you can't change the pension that people are earning now - they have based their retirement on this. Yes, it may mean that we don't get the same pensions but we have the opportunity to plan and make additional savings (or use up our savings and live off the state). Retired people don't have this opportunity - some of them may have chosen to work longer or save more but they didn't because it wasn't expected of them.

jacks365 Wed 24-Apr-13 09:42:18

Bobbywash. If you take the fabian societies definition it was anyone with disposable income of more than the working average. They defind those who had paid mortgages off and so didn't have housing costs as being wealthy. They went about things the wrong way, they thought who has spare cash and how can we get it.

I did some calculations last night. We bought are first house many years ago it cost £350 a month for the mortgage the same house although its gone up in value would now be £330 a month mortgage as the interest rate has more than halved. Tax rates have fallen so even without pay increases my take home would have risen. In so many ways i am better off now than i was when my first was born nearly 20 years ago. Yes i've lost cb or will do when i do my tax return. I couldn't get a year off on maternity, i didn't have the right to a career break or to ask for part time work. These are all changes between my first and last child. I know how much harder i have found it in the past. So to pay for all the perks we have had the government is in debt but one question who to? Most of it is us, most of that debt is our savings and investments. Punish people who saved for the future and you will destroy the future. Pensioners are being brought in line on tax payments and the difference it will make is minuscule but what you can't do is say they are over 65 so need to pay a higher rate if tax. Most pension pots would be sufficient if either the money had be properly invested or where it was if brown hadn't robbed them calling it a windfall tax.

bobbywash Wed 24-Apr-13 09:46:51

So on a 6.41 per hour for a 40 hour week, you'd put the state pension up to 252.40 per week (more than double what a pensioner gets now) or £13k p/a of which they would pay approx £1K tax. (presuming you scrap the tax relief for older people)

That way they are all better off from the state (I accept I may have the math wrong) and private pensions then boost that even more. Yet in the same breath you argue that we can afford the pensions we pay to public sector workers now.

What school of economics is that?

bobbywash Wed 24-Apr-13 09:49:21

Oh and that should be can't not can and also in response to morebeta post

jacks365 Wed 24-Apr-13 09:51:09

Morebeta have you any idea how much your idea would cost? It would more than double the state pension for starters as they get nowhere near nmw

undercoversahm Wed 24-Apr-13 09:58:07

janey68 It is not about Mr B being 'Wealthy" but about Mr B getting back much more out than he ever put in through no fault of his own, or anyone else, just changing demographics. Yes, it's what he expected but, no, it has turned out not to be fair as someone else has to pay for it and it will be a whole generation of the young.

morebeta I couldn't agree more that drastic action is needed. I just think that one should address unwarranted benefits paid for by taxpayers (and sadly that does include public sector pensions which are out of all kilter with private sector pensions) before one takes away money that has been individually earned.

undercoversahm Wed 24-Apr-13 09:58:43

morebeta just read your latest post. I couldn't agree more.

handcream Wed 24-Apr-13 10:43:39

I will I suspect be classed as a 'wealthy pensioner' when the time comes. I have been married once, no children from previous relationships which often cause a lot of financial issues. My DH and I work full time. We both will have pensions having worked 40 years each.

Square - you are not even working and all this bleating about paying your taxes, looking for another role etc etc. You sound very entitled. You want to take some time off (years!) at someone else's cost. Who do you think is paying your pension contributions whilst you live your lifestyle choice....Who is paying your children's eduction costs whilst you are not earning? Its us!!

These wealthy pensioners have worked and worked, if you dont work you wont get a private pension. We all make our choices in life but I am certainly not happy to pay for people like Square to stay at home.

Lets take it further, what about lottery winners, they dont pay tax on the payouts, what about people who buy shares and pick wisely, what about people who inheirt money from their parents... Where will it stop.

If you want a comfortable retirement - sorry YOU will need to work for it.

Lazyjaney Wed 24-Apr-13 10:47:13

The best argument IMO not to touch existing pensioners' assets is that it means working people now will think "what's the point" and refuse to save at all, there has to be a real incentive to be responsible.

The Fabian view of "wealthy" seems to be roughly "anything above needing benefits" which is just dumb (or politically convenient, more benefit dependents = more Pro benefit voters?). IMO "wealthy" is probably the top decile, maybe quintile.

But the issue remains that the current system is unaffordable, seems to me that it is already being whittled away with taxes, reductions, low interest and inflation, question then becomes " is that enough"?

I also think ignoring the very real and increasing resentment from working people (typically those looking at their kids' futures) is dangerous, it needs to be talked about openly, no matter how " awful", "vile" etc some feel it is.

thegreylady Wed 24-Apr-13 10:52:49

Just to clear up once and for all the sources of my 'wealth'. My teacher's pension is about £7000 pa and dh's is about £9000. In addition he has an enhancement of about £3500 pa and the rest is our state pensions. After helping five dc through united etc we have savings of less than £5000.

thegreylady Wed 24-Apr-13 10:53:38

University not united!

FasterStronger Wed 24-Apr-13 10:54:51

rich pensions fall into different categories:

1) Asset rich - bought house cheaply, benefitted from house price rises.

2) Cash rich - like my parents they believed in cash so squirrelled it away for years and years

3) Pension rich - benefitting from final salary (index linked) pensions.

which ones would you 'tax' and why?

personally I would change how index linking worked for final salary schemes, so their pensions still went up but a slightly lower rate than at the moment.

ReallyTired Wed 24-Apr-13 11:07:07

1) Asset rich - bought house cheaply, benefitted from house price rises.

That group is already taxed as they are forced to pay for nursing home care or they eventually pay 40% inheritance tax. They are also forced to pay a high rate of council tax.

2) Cash rich - like my parents they believed in cash so squirrelled it away for years and years

I don't agree with taxing them, but like category 1 they will be forced to pay for nursing care and inheritance tax.

3) Pension rich - benefitting from final salary (index linked) pensions.

I feel that they should pay a similar propotion of their income to working working people. It is not about who has worked the hardest or who is most deserving. Its how to get the country out of an unholy mess.

Pensioners are far more of a burden than they were in the past. They take up far more NHS resources and often live for decades. State help like WFA needs to be targetted better.

Taxing families further hurts the ecomony as it reduces spending as many familes save very little.

ReallyTired Wed 24-Apr-13 11:09:35

thegreylady, you and your husband will pay very little (if any!) tax.

My FIL has a 30K pension and no mortgage. He really doesn't need a winter fuel allowance.

janey68 Wed 24-Apr-13 11:17:10

I agree with Yetanotherworry . Even where changes are happening now ( eg monthly pension contributions increasing which is happening righf now for many public sector workers) the pension accrued up to NOW remains untouched. Many people are finding that from now onwards, an average earning rather than final earning will be used to calculate their pension. But you can't possibly 'back date' these things so that people end up paying back things which they were rightfully given at the time.
Otherwise where do you draw the line? Do we demand payment back for child benefit given for the last 20 years? Or tell SAHM to pay back the NI contributions they've had state funded?!

handcream Wed 24-Apr-13 11:24:37

So Fabian looks as wealthy as anything above benefits! What nonsense!

I agree with Lazy. it will discourage people from having any savings.

Using my DM as an example. Its the only example I have tbh where I know the figures!

Worked 40 years in teaching - private pension £9k per year
State pension - as normal

Savings £2k

House value - brought for £90k 30 years ago approx worth £400k. Its a small two bed house in London

So, how would people like Square choose to tax her..

MoreBeta Wed 24-Apr-13 11:47:11

bobbywash/jacks - we pay for it by reducing all other entitlements to zero, eliminating the Additional State Pension, Pension Credit, Income Support, Housing Benefit, Attendance Allowance, free bus passes, WFA, free TV licence, free prescriptions. Finally tax everyone at the same rate with no special allowance for pensioners.

The range of benefits (as listed above) exclusively available to pensioners has grown over the years and frankly I do not see why they need that any more than people struggling to make ends meet in the working population.

I strongly beleive we should actually have a proper Universal Benefit that everyone gets at the same rate whether retired, unemployed, employed, self employed, or SAHP. This is our basic entitlement from the national wealth and no other entitlement than NHS and free basic education to 18.

Instead George Osborne went the other way at the last Budget and offer 'more help for pensioners' and removed benefits (eg CB) for other vulnerable groups.