Oldies of the world unite

Which is the greater threat, ageism or grey power as we boomers slide into retirement? It depends on what age you are I suppose. “The age police are facing a policy crisis” says Mike White in the Guardian in terms which tell you which side he’s on. Taking sides seems to be the name of the demographic game, as the recession appears to set the young and old at each other’s throats in a competition for scarce resources. Good then to see sobersides John Appelby of the Kings’ Fund, (incidentally a reformer of NI’s NHS) A and not yet an oldie himself, offering words of comfort for the ageing who fear the shortening horizons of the future.

“By 2041, the over-80s will make up 8.8% of the total UK population – compared with 4.5% now. While those of (more or less) working age left to support these people (20-65 year olds) will shrink as a proportion – from 60% to 55% – this reduction is not huge and it will not happen overnight.
Overall, the NHS needs around 1.5% extra real-terms funding every year to cope with the additional healthcare needs arising from all demographic change. Social care costs will also increase. But the point is that while policy and planning decisions will be required, the “burden” of the elderly will be spread over decades and is almost certainly not as huge as implied by the way population change figures are presented.”

  • Rory Carr

    Clearly the ideal solution would be for retirement age to be extended by a year and again year on year, providing always of course that it falls at least one year short of my own age in any given year.

    The pensions and benefits of those who (like me) are legitimately retired could be increased greatly year on year as the pool of pensioners declined so that, by the age of 90 say, I will be well able to galivant about in toney night clubs while all the young bucks will too tired from overwork and too broke from overtaxation to be able to compete. I’m looking forward to it.

  • Glensman

    Going on a lot of the research I have read, IT will help ease the burden through intelligent homes and online health resources…

  • John K Lund / Lllamedos / Suchard

    Anyone who has engaged in hard manual labour from the late1950’s fifties knows what horsework it was and is buggered at 65. Nowadays it is different they have lifting tackle, machine tools, bulk handling, 25kg bags, 5 litre drums, lower working hours -we worked 5x9hour days and 4+1/2 hrs on a Saturday as a minimum working week and got 1 weeks holiday + less statutary days than today.In farming Railway Bags with winter wheat weighed 2+1/2 Cwt. i.e.127 kgs and you took them off a Lister paddle farm elevator onto your back singlehanded from the age of sixteen. The birks who are trying to increase the retirement age have never done a day’s manual labour in their lives let alone National Service hence they are also warmongers with other poor peoples children. They were’nt fattened up in the manse at Kircaldy and sent to the ultra priviledged and posh Edinburgh University with all the other champange socialists; who after graduating preceeded to inflict their lunatic Old/New Labour ideas on the rest of us and totally wreck the entire economy. This is just another half baked election gimmick from the Brown Mandelson stable to try and recover the under 50’s vote that is now lost to them.