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Where are the one-nation Tories? They could save the future of the Conservative Party


November 25, 2022   5 mins

In Sybil, or The Two Nations, Benjamin Disraeli described an England where the rich and poor were “as ignorant of each other’s habits, thoughts, and feelings, as if they were dwellers in different zones, or inhabitants of different planets”. They were two nations, sharing the same country.

Sound familiar? It should do. It is now, and it is us.

On the one hand, we have a property-owning class with a particular interest in restricting housing supply at the expense of those who want to get on the property ladder. On the other, we prioritise pensioners at the expense of all other welfare recipients: between 2010 and 2020 the value of the state pension increased by around 8%, whereas unemployment benefits have fallen by 6%. Real disposable incomes are set to fall by 7.1% over the next two years – but not for pensioners, who are, as ever, protected by the triple lock. Economic pain for thee, but not for me.

These conflicts overlap heavily with what feels like the main divide in society: of the old vs the young (although the “young” increasingly stretches up to 50). We are engaged in intergenerational economic warfare. Younger people are forced into a worse quality of life than their parents’ generation. They are expected to live with less space, and spend more for the privilege. They are expected to work for less, and travel further to do so. They are expected to wait longer to buy a property, and rent in an increasingly unstable market while they save up. They are expected to pay ever-more tax, to fund a generation who are actively hostile to their interests.

This two nation country is the result of 12 wasted years of Conservative government. Instead of fixing the roof while the sun was shining, as George Osborne told us he would, the Conservative Party has built “a political economy that relies on the votes of the anti-growth coalition of home-owning pensioners”: a voter base that relies on increasingly tetchy boomers who are happy to pull the ladder up after them. Fundamentally, the Conservatives have presided over the intensification of a two-nation country.

It is a particularly baffling state of affairs given most of our most recent Conservative prime ministers have described themselves as one-nation Conservatives — Cameron, May and Johnson have all laid claim to that mantle. Sunak has been cagier, but he did win the support of the One Nation group of MPs.

Even Ed Miliband tried to appropriate the ideology! He saw one nation as “A vision of a Britain where patriotism, loyalty, dedication to the common cause courses through the veins of all and nobody feels left out. It was a vision of Britain coming together to overcome the challenges we faced.”

In his Autumn Statement, Jeremy Hunt (another self-described one-nation Conservative) told us that “You do not need to choose either a strong economy or good public services”. And in a sense he’s right – we do not need to choose either of them, because we have chosen to have neither.

This is not some abstract policy debate. Presiding over a two-nation Britain is dangerous for the Conservative Party and for society. As Disraeli also said: “The Tory party, unless it is a national party, is nothing. It is not a confederacy of nobles, it is not a democratic multitude; it is a party formed from all the numerous classes in the realm.”

CCHQ should be petrified of that fact that a Tory voter under 50 is almost as rare as an affordable property in London. A recent YouGov survey found that just 14% of 18-24s and 13% of 25-49s would vote Conservative, compared to 59% for Labour among both groups. Recent polling by Ben Ansell finds that just 15% of all private renters would vote Tory, and among under 50s just 14% of undergraduates and 10% of postgrads would go blue. Demography is not destiny for any political party, but these are worrying numbers.

A two-nation system is bad for society. It is not for nothing that Disraeli warned against it: a perpetuation of the unfair status quo would, he feared, lead to social instability. Improving the lot of the people was not only morally right, it was also a clever act of self-preservation on behalf of the Tory elite.

The real kicker is that it does not have to be like this. We do not have to worship at the altar of the NIMBYs. As far back as 2010, the Conservatives were level-pegging with Labour in terms of winning the support of 18-24-year-olds. Across Europe, young voters often back parties of the Right. There is no iron law that says the Conservatives cannot win the youth vote. It’s a demographic they need desperately to win over.

To do so does not mean they need to look to the past. As Stanley Baldwin noted in 1934, “The responsibility – and it is a great responsibility – that rests with a leader is to try and adapt the policy according to the deep-laid foundations of the Party principles to meet whatever may come in this world.” The Tories they need to recognise that the status quo is not working. And if they want, as they profess, to be the party of one-nation principles, they need to change, and fast.

The key thing is to address intergeneration unfairness. This would mean stronger protection for renters and higher standards demanded of landlords. It does not mean rent freezes, which have consistently been shown to crash supply and reduce quality, but it does mean that extortionate fees, demands for up to 12 months’ rent in advance, and onerous deposits should be ended. Of course, the housing market will not be fixed until the planning system is fixed. There is a plethora of ways to do this, but a move to zoning, alongside design codes and allowing councils to benefit more from changes in land value due to planning permission decisions all seem like good places to start. Areas with increased house building should be rewarded.

A one-nation platform would also mean re-evaluating some of the punitive elements of our current system. The sky-high interest rate on student loans, the five-week wait for your first universal credit payment, and the two-child limit on child benefit should all go. Nobody in receipt of welfare should be living in absolute poverty – as a country, we are better than that. We currently spend more on pensions than we do on education (which somewhat reflects this government’s priorities) and it is not unreasonable to look at means testing pensions, which come in at around 10% of total spending and 5% of GDP.

 

Levelling up would also be key, recognising how much pride people feel in the local. This would mean investing both in physical and cultural infrastructure. Ratcheting up council tax for funding is not the answer, given the inherent unfairness in the model. A proportional property tax, of around 0.5% of the current value of a property (double for empty second properties), would see 77% of households pay less tax, but increase the overall tax take. There should also be some element of redistribution between councils, in recognition of the fact that some places have a greater need than others. We should all be in this together.

One-nation Conservatism is often seen as being on the Left of the party – a home for bitter remainers, wets, or secret social democrats. That is not true. It is simply a recognition of the core principle of conservatism: a nation cannot survive if it is at war with itself. The Conservative Party has forgotten this important insight, and sadly Sunak and Hunt are unlikely to remember it anytime soon – this is boomer Britain, after all.


David Jeffery is a lecturer in British Politics at the University of Liverpool.

DrDavidJeffery

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Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago

I wash my hands of the entire rotten lot of them. The Conservative party needs to be obliterated – its become nothing more than a playground area for cynical, opportunitist medicroties who simply pretend to care about conservative values in order to win power.

How many more times will people fall for this demeaning scam?

I would strongly advise any former Tory voters to consider where it is possible voting for the SDP. Even if one is skeptical of their economic positioning (I’m not particularly) they at least put conservative values first and foremost, and have a genuinely intelligent and astute leader in William Clouston.

Obviously with our current system even a million votes won’t translate to any power, but from my perspective simply continuing to lend support to the Tory charlatans is to ensure no other possible option than Blairte rule for eternity and a continuing sinking of the country and certain transformation of Britain into a metropolitan hellscape unrecognisable from the nation I once loved.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Why on earth is he blathering away about the Tories and political parties for??? Who cares?? It is the embedded NMI Technocracy established by EU poodle Blair that was granted all the levers of power in his silent catastrophic revolution. What Rishi or Liz or Boris do or say is utterly irrelevant!! We control borders, thry squeak!! Our borders are open. We will build houses for the uncontrolled 8 million!! There are no houses. We support enterprise! The private sector has just been crushed by the Statists while the Banana Republic Blob and NHS carry on failing..with yet more loot extracted from the wealth creators. We love free speech! But there is no free speech and we cannot even say what a woman is. The unelected State – not the elected meek ignored Parliament – governs us. It matters not whether Keir or Rishi sits in Number Ten. If they piss off the ideologues at the head of the civil servive they will be toppled – bye bye bad Boris Liz Priti Suella and Raab now in their sights. Read up on how the Soviet Union was governed and fell. The UKSSR is a Potemkin Village. The Technocrats, the vast Blob, Leftists lawyers and the hate mob at BBC wield castly more real power than any saddo Minister of State. And after 20 years a nation torn into many parts by this greedy clerisy/propetocracy who even failed to supply cheap energy is set for its inevitable terrible fall.

Guy Aston
Guy Aston
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

So very well put, Walter, just about sums it up.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

Yes, nail on head with this one. Whenever this country suffers from “political concensus” it ends in disaster. Government failing to give up supply side control from the end of WW2 into the 1970’s, through the consensus to join the “common market” and the wrecking lunacy of our non contributary social security magnet. Oh and lets not forget the NHS and the planning system. None of these issues have ever been subject to proper political debate but are the result of political concensus and bgger what the voters think.

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

“The Technocrats, the vast Blob, Leftists lawyers and the hate mob at BBC wield castly (sic) more real power than any saddo Minister of State.”
Could you please explain to me exactly how this works as my understanding is that we live in a parliamentary democracy. As such power resides in the hands of whichever Party has the majority in Parliament. That Party can enact whatever legislation they wish and compel civil servants to carry out whatever decisions they take.
This idea that far too many commenters on Unherd keep using to explain why their chosen Party doesn’t do what they would like is just nonsense. The fact is the Conservatives either don’t want to tackle any of these issues or simply are not brave enough because of either newspaper headlines or worries about party donors.
Leftist lawyers have to work within the laws enacted by Parliament. The BBC has no more power than any other media outlet e.g right wing newspapers such as the Mail, Telegraph and Express, which is none. As for the Technocrats and the Blob, whoever they might be, where does their power come from? Are they really not subject to the law of the land as enacted by our Parliament? If so, why not?

Last edited 1 year ago by Philip Burrell
Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Philip Burrell

Gladly Philip. Like most of us, we were sleepwalking in the 90s when a quiet but radical revolution was launched by the Blairite State. Forget the Lords & that constitutional faff. At the direct behest of the EU which wanted and needed to dilute and negate the power of national parliaments, we created a vast army of what are called non majoritarian insitutions – NMIs. They include the Quangos regulating most of public affairs. But their power is way deeper. Who controls interest rates and inflation? The independent Bank of England who today overruled Number 11 on deregulating the City (a no to Brexit reform that is). Remember the SUPREME Court he created. Did you still think Parliament was supreme?. In the Covid panic, do you not recall the squeals from Number 10? We are pulling a the levers but NOTHING is happening!! Course not – they did not run the NHS!!!! This is the Technocracy. And THEY RULE. They are staffed by unelected technocrats and are all given the lever of power over not just you sand me byt the hapless Parliament. This revolution was planned- it is what all parts of the EU were subjected too. See Italy now – all the democratically elected leaders can make a noise about is NGO ships. All the true levers of power sit in Brussels. You cannot go on thinking – why does nothing happen when politicians say – we are controlling borders or building houses. The Blob rules. Wake up

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

No I don’t buy that analysis, that’s just an excuse for weak government. They can legislate and they control the revenue they receive and how it is spent. The problem with the Tories is that like the Republicans in America they are a party that wants to be in power but doesn’t actually want to run the country. So they pretend it is everyone else’s fault when frankly they are just incompetent and/or lazy or both in Boris Johnson’s case.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Philip Burrell

They are weak and cowardly. But you are totally ignoring the new political regime. They cannot ‘legislate’ to control inflation or change regulation of the energy market or downgrade the Supreme Court. They are enmeshed like a fly in a vast sticky NMI web. And even if they did try harder on say border control their opponents will use the 30 year human rights legislation or the 80 plus Lib Dem cretins in the Lords to slow and paralyse them. It is cowardice born of exhausation at the non stop war of attrition from the hostile Remainiac State.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Philip Burrell

They are weak and cowardly. But you are totally ignoring the new political regime. They cannot ‘legislate’ to control inflation or change regulation of the energy market or downgrade the Supreme Court. They are enmeshed like a fly in a vast sticky NMI web. And even if they did try harder on say border control their opponents will use the 30 year human rights legislation or the 80 plus Lib Dem cretins in the Lords to slow and paralyse them. It is cowardice born of exhausation at the non stop war of attrition from the hostile Remainiac State.

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

No I don’t buy that analysis, that’s just an excuse for weak government. They can legislate and they control the revenue they receive and how it is spent. The problem with the Tories is that like the Republicans in America they are a party that wants to be in power but doesn’t actually want to run the country. So they pretend it is everyone else’s fault when frankly they are just incompetent and/or lazy or both in Boris Johnson’s case.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Philip Burrell

Gladly Philip. Like most of us, we were sleepwalking in the 90s when a quiet but radical revolution was launched by the Blairite State. Forget the Lords & that constitutional faff. At the direct behest of the EU which wanted and needed to dilute and negate the power of national parliaments, we created a vast army of what are called non majoritarian insitutions – NMIs. They include the Quangos regulating most of public affairs. But their power is way deeper. Who controls interest rates and inflation? The independent Bank of England who today overruled Number 11 on deregulating the City (a no to Brexit reform that is). Remember the SUPREME Court he created. Did you still think Parliament was supreme?. In the Covid panic, do you not recall the squeals from Number 10? We are pulling a the levers but NOTHING is happening!! Course not – they did not run the NHS!!!! This is the Technocracy. And THEY RULE. They are staffed by unelected technocrats and are all given the lever of power over not just you sand me byt the hapless Parliament. This revolution was planned- it is what all parts of the EU were subjected too. See Italy now – all the democratically elected leaders can make a noise about is NGO ships. All the true levers of power sit in Brussels. You cannot go on thinking – why does nothing happen when politicians say – we are controlling borders or building houses. The Blob rules. Wake up

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

I agree with all you say, but it begs the question WHY?

As I understand our constitutional arrangements, Parliament is supreme. If Parliament votes to sack a judge, or Chief Constable, or civil servant, then that is it: they are sacked.

Given that Boris, Truss and Sunak have enjoyed a majority of 75+, why haven’t they used it? That’s not a rhetorical question – I’m genuinely puzzled.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

It is a v good question. The answer – I think – is quite scary. We must forget the twee notion of a neutral Civil Service and State administration. The modern Sir Humphreys are unelected permanent and are also post 2015 acid hardcore deeply committed Remainiacs. Not only have they refused to enact any Brex reforms, they are hounding the meek here today gone tomorrow politicisns who cross them. Do you think it is a coincidence that senior civil servants were the ones wielding the knives on the Ides, slaying Johnson? Priti was attacked as a bully by – guess who? Suella was denounced by – I wonder who? Raab making who cry with his ‘bullying’? The Brex Tory Executive consists of maybe 40 odd MPs. They are surrounded by enemies in the civil service and in the mainstream media – the BBC pummelled it daily for 6 months with its repulsive mendacious partygate. The human rights system imposed by Blair/EU further emasculated them. So there you have it. There is no ‘government’ anymore. There is an unelected Blob and State. There is a separate Technocracy. And squashed under their fat arses are the timid hapless tiny elected Executive who bow to their overlords, the NHS and the Net Zero fanatics. They pull the levers – and nothing happens. Remember that quote when the next ‘promise’ is utterly betrayed.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

Sorry Walter, but I don’t agree with your reply.

The “modern Sir Humphreys” you refer to could be sacked by the stroke of a Prime Minister’s pen – especially if that PM has a big enough majority to be sure of seeing off any opposition in the Commons. Why aren’t they?

Same goes for those groups of “senior civil servants” to whom you refer.

A Chief Constable who allowed his subordinates to ponce about in high -heel shoes and wear nail polish should be in the dole queue before the sun set that evening.

I’m sure you will remember a recent case in which a 92-year-old one-legged man in a wheelchair was tasered by two brave policemen. Because they were in fear for their lives – well, that’s what they said.

The policemen concerned are being dealt with by the complaints mechanism – which is as it should be.

But what has happened to the ancient doctrine that the captain of a ship is *responsible* for whatever happens aboard it? Their Chief Constable and all his subordinates right down the chain of command should be sacked.

And the PM (whoever it was that week) had a duty to ensure that it was done – by means of a one-line Act of Parliament if that’s what it took.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

The old ways have just gone. I do think you underestimate the ugliness of the power battle between the vast permanent Remainer State and the tiny impermanent Brexit Executive. The new most senior Sir H’s have openly asassinated and toppled one Prime Minister ( look who wielded the knife in Pincher case); taken legal action for ‘bullying’ (blubbing like a baby) against that nasty scary Priti Patel; more junior zealots are now seeking to remove Raab (bully!) whilst another set of these woke metro 30 year olds are hard at work leaking to the press in an effort to destroy meany Cruella Suella. Do you perhaps see a pattern?? And look at the thermo nuclear reaction to – and fallout from – the Truss/KK counter coup to topple Remainer High Priest Tom Scolar!!!! The score is 4-1 to the highly political Blob who yelp wildly whenever their inadequacy and near criminal failures (net zero/no energy/lockdown panic/QE binging/open border paralysis) are mentioned. It is a dirty war of attrition both sides do not like to acknowledge. And it is the unelected ones who are winning hands down.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

You say “the two most senior Sir H’s have openly assassinated and toppled one Prime Minister” . I I assume you refer to Boris.

That begs the question:
When they started their nonsense, why didn’t Boris immediately use his 80-seat majority to sack them?

To imply that Boris COULDN’T overpower them is a bit like implying that Mike Tyson COULDN’T win a fight against Julian Cleary!

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

I wish the political leadership had courage. But remember – established convention is that the Sir Hs are non political and therefore untouchable. It is only since the Blairite revolution and Brexit civil war that the Blob has overturned tradition – but they deny it and wont ever confess. Both sides prefer to pretend the war is not happening as with so many of our social ills. When a Tory finally lost their rag and went for Scholar look at the result.

David Fawcett
David Fawcett
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

Boris Johnson is emotionally insecure and wants to be loved by everyone. Also he has a backbone of boiled spaghetti. Maggie would not have shied away from a direct confrontation. He could have swept aside the covid and lockdown commissars. If Boris had had the courage of Maggie we would all be much better off now.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

I wish the political leadership had courage. But remember – established convention is that the Sir Hs are non political and therefore untouchable. It is only since the Blairite revolution and Brexit civil war that the Blob has overturned tradition – but they deny it and wont ever confess. Both sides prefer to pretend the war is not happening as with so many of our social ills. When a Tory finally lost their rag and went for Scholar look at the result.

David Fawcett
David Fawcett
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

Boris Johnson is emotionally insecure and wants to be loved by everyone. Also he has a backbone of boiled spaghetti. Maggie would not have shied away from a direct confrontation. He could have swept aside the covid and lockdown commissars. If Boris had had the courage of Maggie we would all be much better off now.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

You say “the two most senior Sir H’s have openly assassinated and toppled one Prime Minister” . I I assume you refer to Boris.

That begs the question:
When they started their nonsense, why didn’t Boris immediately use his 80-seat majority to sack them?

To imply that Boris COULDN’T overpower them is a bit like implying that Mike Tyson COULDN’T win a fight against Julian Cleary!

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

The old ways have just gone. I do think you underestimate the ugliness of the power battle between the vast permanent Remainer State and the tiny impermanent Brexit Executive. The new most senior Sir H’s have openly asassinated and toppled one Prime Minister ( look who wielded the knife in Pincher case); taken legal action for ‘bullying’ (blubbing like a baby) against that nasty scary Priti Patel; more junior zealots are now seeking to remove Raab (bully!) whilst another set of these woke metro 30 year olds are hard at work leaking to the press in an effort to destroy meany Cruella Suella. Do you perhaps see a pattern?? And look at the thermo nuclear reaction to – and fallout from – the Truss/KK counter coup to topple Remainer High Priest Tom Scolar!!!! The score is 4-1 to the highly political Blob who yelp wildly whenever their inadequacy and near criminal failures (net zero/no energy/lockdown panic/QE binging/open border paralysis) are mentioned. It is a dirty war of attrition both sides do not like to acknowledge. And it is the unelected ones who are winning hands down.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

Sorry Walter, but I don’t agree with your reply.

The “modern Sir Humphreys” you refer to could be sacked by the stroke of a Prime Minister’s pen – especially if that PM has a big enough majority to be sure of seeing off any opposition in the Commons. Why aren’t they?

Same goes for those groups of “senior civil servants” to whom you refer.

A Chief Constable who allowed his subordinates to ponce about in high -heel shoes and wear nail polish should be in the dole queue before the sun set that evening.

I’m sure you will remember a recent case in which a 92-year-old one-legged man in a wheelchair was tasered by two brave policemen. Because they were in fear for their lives – well, that’s what they said.

The policemen concerned are being dealt with by the complaints mechanism – which is as it should be.

But what has happened to the ancient doctrine that the captain of a ship is *responsible* for whatever happens aboard it? Their Chief Constable and all his subordinates right down the chain of command should be sacked.

And the PM (whoever it was that week) had a duty to ensure that it was done – by means of a one-line Act of Parliament if that’s what it took.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

It is a v good question. The answer – I think – is quite scary. We must forget the twee notion of a neutral Civil Service and State administration. The modern Sir Humphreys are unelected permanent and are also post 2015 acid hardcore deeply committed Remainiacs. Not only have they refused to enact any Brex reforms, they are hounding the meek here today gone tomorrow politicisns who cross them. Do you think it is a coincidence that senior civil servants were the ones wielding the knives on the Ides, slaying Johnson? Priti was attacked as a bully by – guess who? Suella was denounced by – I wonder who? Raab making who cry with his ‘bullying’? The Brex Tory Executive consists of maybe 40 odd MPs. They are surrounded by enemies in the civil service and in the mainstream media – the BBC pummelled it daily for 6 months with its repulsive mendacious partygate. The human rights system imposed by Blair/EU further emasculated them. So there you have it. There is no ‘government’ anymore. There is an unelected Blob and State. There is a separate Technocracy. And squashed under their fat arses are the timid hapless tiny elected Executive who bow to their overlords, the NHS and the Net Zero fanatics. They pull the levers – and nothing happens. Remember that quote when the next ‘promise’ is utterly betrayed.

Guy Aston
Guy Aston
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

So very well put, Walter, just about sums it up.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

Yes, nail on head with this one. Whenever this country suffers from “political concensus” it ends in disaster. Government failing to give up supply side control from the end of WW2 into the 1970’s, through the consensus to join the “common market” and the wrecking lunacy of our non contributary social security magnet. Oh and lets not forget the NHS and the planning system. None of these issues have ever been subject to proper political debate but are the result of political concensus and bgger what the voters think.

Philip Burrell
Philip Burrell
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

“The Technocrats, the vast Blob, Leftists lawyers and the hate mob at BBC wield castly (sic) more real power than any saddo Minister of State.”
Could you please explain to me exactly how this works as my understanding is that we live in a parliamentary democracy. As such power resides in the hands of whichever Party has the majority in Parliament. That Party can enact whatever legislation they wish and compel civil servants to carry out whatever decisions they take.
This idea that far too many commenters on Unherd keep using to explain why their chosen Party doesn’t do what they would like is just nonsense. The fact is the Conservatives either don’t want to tackle any of these issues or simply are not brave enough because of either newspaper headlines or worries about party donors.
Leftist lawyers have to work within the laws enacted by Parliament. The BBC has no more power than any other media outlet e.g right wing newspapers such as the Mail, Telegraph and Express, which is none. As for the Technocrats and the Blob, whoever they might be, where does their power come from? Are they really not subject to the law of the land as enacted by our Parliament? If so, why not?

Last edited 1 year ago by Philip Burrell
Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Walter Marvell

I agree with all you say, but it begs the question WHY?

As I understand our constitutional arrangements, Parliament is supreme. If Parliament votes to sack a judge, or Chief Constable, or civil servant, then that is it: they are sacked.

Given that Boris, Truss and Sunak have enjoyed a majority of 75+, why haven’t they used it? That’s not a rhetorical question – I’m genuinely puzzled.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Wasn’t the SDP absorbed into the LibDems decades ago?

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

No.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

A little Googling, and I discover you are right – strictly speaking.

Not quite so strictly, the original Gang of Four did indeed merge with the Liberals (that’s what I was thinking of), but David Owen broke away immediately to form a new party, confusingly also called the SDP.

That new-SDP dissolved itself in 1990 in embarrassment at finishing behind the Monster Raving Loonies! You couldn’t make it up …

Then another new SDP was formed. There used to be a mechanism to prevent candidates standing under banners calculated to confuse voters. (From memory, that was triggered by some independent claiming to stand for the Conversative Party.)

They don’t seem to be doing their job any more. But what the hell: nothing else in this country works properly – so why should they?

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

A little Googling, and I discover you are right – strictly speaking.

Not quite so strictly, the original Gang of Four did indeed merge with the Liberals (that’s what I was thinking of), but David Owen broke away immediately to form a new party, confusingly also called the SDP.

That new-SDP dissolved itself in 1990 in embarrassment at finishing behind the Monster Raving Loonies! You couldn’t make it up …

Then another new SDP was formed. There used to be a mechanism to prevent candidates standing under banners calculated to confuse voters. (From memory, that was triggered by some independent claiming to stand for the Conversative Party.)

They don’t seem to be doing their job any more. But what the hell: nothing else in this country works properly – so why should they?

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

No.

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

The real scam is the myth perpetrated by all opposition parties, which is that there is free money. The complete deficit of reality and rule by soundbite is what is sinking our country.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Why on earth is he blathering away about the Tories and political parties for??? Who cares?? It is the embedded NMI Technocracy established by EU poodle Blair that was granted all the levers of power in his silent catastrophic revolution. What Rishi or Liz or Boris do or say is utterly irrelevant!! We control borders, thry squeak!! Our borders are open. We will build houses for the uncontrolled 8 million!! There are no houses. We support enterprise! The private sector has just been crushed by the Statists while the Banana Republic Blob and NHS carry on failing..with yet more loot extracted from the wealth creators. We love free speech! But there is no free speech and we cannot even say what a woman is. The unelected State – not the elected meek ignored Parliament – governs us. It matters not whether Keir or Rishi sits in Number Ten. If they piss off the ideologues at the head of the civil servive they will be toppled – bye bye bad Boris Liz Priti Suella and Raab now in their sights. Read up on how the Soviet Union was governed and fell. The UKSSR is a Potemkin Village. The Technocrats, the vast Blob, Leftists lawyers and the hate mob at BBC wield castly more real power than any saddo Minister of State. And after 20 years a nation torn into many parts by this greedy clerisy/propetocracy who even failed to supply cheap energy is set for its inevitable terrible fall.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

Wasn’t the SDP absorbed into the LibDems decades ago?

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Jam

The real scam is the myth perpetrated by all opposition parties, which is that there is free money. The complete deficit of reality and rule by soundbite is what is sinking our country.

Jim Jam
Jim Jam
1 year ago

I wash my hands of the entire rotten lot of them. The Conservative party needs to be obliterated – its become nothing more than a playground area for cynical, opportunitist medicroties who simply pretend to care about conservative values in order to win power.

How many more times will people fall for this demeaning scam?

I would strongly advise any former Tory voters to consider where it is possible voting for the SDP. Even if one is skeptical of their economic positioning (I’m not particularly) they at least put conservative values first and foremost, and have a genuinely intelligent and astute leader in William Clouston.

Obviously with our current system even a million votes won’t translate to any power, but from my perspective simply continuing to lend support to the Tory charlatans is to ensure no other possible option than Blairte rule for eternity and a continuing sinking of the country and certain transformation of Britain into a metropolitan hellscape unrecognisable from the nation I once loved.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

How can the writer not see that it is mass immigration, not British pensioners, that is his enemy?

Import 500k new people every year and you need 700k new houses to accommodate them and the normal British first time buyers. That is why houses cost so much.

The Tories should limit immigration – all immigration, not nett, not legal, all – to less than 100k a year.

Then they would be a One Nation party.

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Tom Watson
Tom Watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Give pensioners the triple lock for a decade (while also increasing spending on the NHS every single year as well) and you need more and more money to keep them in the style to which they’ve become accustomed.

You say the enemy is immigration not pensioners. I say why not both?

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Yes, two things can be true at once.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Expect much criticism from Unherd’s primarily over-50 userbase.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

Hey, Ageist, there’s wisdom in these years. And I don’t have a pension: at 64, I’m still self-employed.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

Hey, Ageist, there’s wisdom in these years. And I don’t have a pension: at 64, I’m still self-employed.

JR Stoker
JR Stoker
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

The reason underlying the triple lock is surely that for any person with only a state pension it is woefully inadequate to attempt to Iive on

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  JR Stoker

Precisely. It is either forgotten or ignored just how little the pension is, especially the old pension. No-one can live on it, you need extra benefits or a work’s pension, and if you are in rented accommodation it becomes miserable.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago
Reply to  JR Stoker

Precisely. It is either forgotten or ignored just how little the pension is, especially the old pension. No-one can live on it, you need extra benefits or a work’s pension, and if you are in rented accommodation it becomes miserable.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Yes, two things can be true at once.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Expect much criticism from Unherd’s primarily over-50 userbase.

JR Stoker
JR Stoker
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

The reason underlying the triple lock is surely that for any person with only a state pension it is woefully inadequate to attempt to Iive on

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Oh, the hard ones first? It isn’t possible to support ANY British political party without closing your eyes to this gross, egregious betrayal of the nation and the electorate

Next question?

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

This stream verves into the equity of pension policy. Understandable given it is the largest contributor to public expenditure. However anyone living on the state pension knows it’s no bed of roses too.
Is not the issue the age of entitlement? We still have a pension age not much changed from 1909 yet we live so much longer. We then have a demographic that makes it v hard to promulgate at the ballot box a significant increase in when you qualify. National policy does have it creeping up – 68 come the mid 30s probably, but that’s still then c20yrs of pension. If we fund that we struggle with other things – err, making some linkages here, like an efficient Border Force and timely effective immigration/asylum management. Now just maybe if we all worked a bit longer we might need a little less immigration too? Albeit perhaps some of us would then have less time available to spend venting on Unherd.
It’s about tough choices and an adult conversation. You follow a populist strategy and eventually you run out of road and butt back into where you should have started.

Last edited 1 year ago by j watson
Tom Watson
Tom Watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Give pensioners the triple lock for a decade (while also increasing spending on the NHS every single year as well) and you need more and more money to keep them in the style to which they’ve become accustomed.

You say the enemy is immigration not pensioners. I say why not both?

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Oh, the hard ones first? It isn’t possible to support ANY British political party without closing your eyes to this gross, egregious betrayal of the nation and the electorate

Next question?

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

This stream verves into the equity of pension policy. Understandable given it is the largest contributor to public expenditure. However anyone living on the state pension knows it’s no bed of roses too.
Is not the issue the age of entitlement? We still have a pension age not much changed from 1909 yet we live so much longer. We then have a demographic that makes it v hard to promulgate at the ballot box a significant increase in when you qualify. National policy does have it creeping up – 68 come the mid 30s probably, but that’s still then c20yrs of pension. If we fund that we struggle with other things – err, making some linkages here, like an efficient Border Force and timely effective immigration/asylum management. Now just maybe if we all worked a bit longer we might need a little less immigration too? Albeit perhaps some of us would then have less time available to spend venting on Unherd.
It’s about tough choices and an adult conversation. You follow a populist strategy and eventually you run out of road and butt back into where you should have started.

Last edited 1 year ago by j watson
Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago

How can the writer not see that it is mass immigration, not British pensioners, that is his enemy?

Import 500k new people every year and you need 700k new houses to accommodate them and the normal British first time buyers. That is why houses cost so much.

The Tories should limit immigration – all immigration, not nett, not legal, all – to less than 100k a year.

Then they would be a One Nation party.

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
1 year ago

A very modest semi detached house in an outer borough of London, in which a pensioner may have lived most of their adult life, is unlikely to be worth less than ÂŁ600k. A tax 0.5% of the current value of the property is ÂŁ3k per annum. For most pensioners that is a great deal of money. If they sell the now unaffordable property to buy a cheaper one elsewhere, HMRC will collect another ÂŁ17,500 in stamp duty on the sale which that pensioner will never see. They then pay stamp duty and presumably property tax on their new property. If Mr. Jeffrey has his way, they are now also exposed to the risk that the residual cash pile they never asked for will result in them losing their now means tested pension. Rising property prices are not the fault of the current generation of pensioners. They are due mainly to negative real interest rates over the past decade and a half. Intergenerational conflict is better dealt with through policies to grow the real economy, and improve productivity, rather than by devising ways of taxing and terrifying the elderly. Perhaps the government could start by defunding the more useless university degrees, and promoting the training of young people in the skills actually required by the economy.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

Indeed. My widowed mother-in-law (raised in a pre-war workhouse for distressed mothers) bought a terraced house with her Polish refugee husband. They lived, and she continues to live, in a state of frugality that the author of this article would find unacceptable and, probably, unimaginable. Surplus income is handed out to the younger members of the family and to charities. It is not her fault that her modest house is now worth about ÂŁ600K. She “owes” nothing to anyone.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Pension costs are soaring, and it’s money that the older generations refused to put aside preferring to kick the can down the road to burden the future generations. Just because she lived frugally through choice doesn’t mean she should be able sit on her wealth and not contribute.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

What “wealth”? A widow’s pension and a terraced house?
She must be thrown out of her home because you feel that, somehow, you are entitled to it? I don’t think so.

Last edited 1 year ago by polidori redux
Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Why not an annual tax on the value of the house, deferred until death or the sale of the property? That way she’s paying her fair share and isn’t forced out of her home

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

No Billy. When she dies her estate will be subject to inheritance tax. Just like mine and just like yours.
In what sense is she not paying her fair share? She has no additional obligation to you.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Buy a farm
..no IHT

.wonderful!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Buy a farm
..no IHT

.wonderful!

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

You forget that she would have been taxed on the income used to pay the mortgauge and has paid to maintain it over the years. Also looking at property from a capital gains tax is wrong when no actual gain has been realised. as it makes no allowance for general inflation. She already paid her “fair share” when aquiring the capital in the first place. How would you react to paying an income tax on all the salary you have earned cumulatively from an arbitrary date, forever ? That is what your “wealth” tax actually ammounts to as the occupier makes no gain until they sell.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

No Billy. When she dies her estate will be subject to inheritance tax. Just like mine and just like yours.
In what sense is she not paying her fair share? She has no additional obligation to you.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

You forget that she would have been taxed on the income used to pay the mortgauge and has paid to maintain it over the years. Also looking at property from a capital gains tax is wrong when no actual gain has been realised. as it makes no allowance for general inflation. She already paid her “fair share” when aquiring the capital in the first place. How would you react to paying an income tax on all the salary you have earned cumulatively from an arbitrary date, forever ? That is what your “wealth” tax actually ammounts to as the occupier makes no gain until they sell.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Why not an annual tax on the value of the house, deferred until death or the sale of the property? That way she’s paying her fair share and isn’t forced out of her home

Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

The voting scores on this chain of comments gives an glimpse of the average age of the audience.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Oh dear Emmanuel! Teenage tantrum?
Bless!

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago

Oh dear Emmanuel! Teenage tantrum?
Bless!

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

What “wealth”? A widow’s pension and a terraced house?
She must be thrown out of her home because you feel that, somehow, you are entitled to it? I don’t think so.

Last edited 1 year ago by polidori redux
Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

The voting scores on this chain of comments gives an glimpse of the average age of the audience.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  polidori redux

Pension costs are soaring, and it’s money that the older generations refused to put aside preferring to kick the can down the road to burden the future generations. Just because she lived frugally through choice doesn’t mean she should be able sit on her wealth and not contribute.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

So those sitting on the bulk of the wealth shouldn’t contribute the bulk of the tax? The burden should rest entirely on the much poorer wage earners?

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

We need to stop blaming pensioners for the inflationary effects of unduly low interest rates pursued for many years by the BoE, initially on long term asset valuations and more recently on prices more widely in the economy. Power without apparent responsibility or accountability has been outsourced to the BoE by ministers, and home owning pensioners are a useful scapegoat. If a wealth tax is to be contemplated at all, the last thing to be included, rather than the first thing, should be modest residential properties.

Last edited 1 year ago by Stephen Walsh
Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

I’m not blaming pensioners for playing the game and becoming wealthy, however I will blame them for expecting their pensions to rise disproportionately to the economy thanks to the triple lock and for them refusing to either help the young get a foothold in life or contribute to their expensive end of life care, despite being on average the wealthiest cohort

Guy Aston
Guy Aston
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Have you considered public sector pensions with their guaranteed inflation rises? I believe these have a liability of trillions, yet we keep going on about state pension triple lock.
The problem is not pensioners, but the appalling politicians we are saddled with, on all sides, and a country run for the benefit of big capital, by big capital. Plain and simple. We are sliding back to Victorian Britain.

Last edited 1 year ago by Guy Aston
Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Home owners do not “become wealthy” in your words untill the property is sold. If you don’t like inflation in the property market take it up with the planners for restricting developmnent and the governments for mis management of the money supply, thats whats caused the asset bubble.

Guy Aston
Guy Aston
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Have you considered public sector pensions with their guaranteed inflation rises? I believe these have a liability of trillions, yet we keep going on about state pension triple lock.
The problem is not pensioners, but the appalling politicians we are saddled with, on all sides, and a country run for the benefit of big capital, by big capital. Plain and simple. We are sliding back to Victorian Britain.

Last edited 1 year ago by Guy Aston
Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Home owners do not “become wealthy” in your words untill the property is sold. If you don’t like inflation in the property market take it up with the planners for restricting developmnent and the governments for mis management of the money supply, thats whats caused the asset bubble.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

I’m not blaming pensioners for playing the game and becoming wealthy, however I will blame them for expecting their pensions to rise disproportionately to the economy thanks to the triple lock and for them refusing to either help the young get a foothold in life or contribute to their expensive end of life care, despite being on average the wealthiest cohort

odd taff
odd taff
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

You’re impatient. We will shuffle of this mortal coil fairly soon and won’t take anything with us. What we leave behind will be subject to IHT.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  odd taff

The wealthy barely pay any IHT due to succession planning.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  odd taff

The wealthy barely pay any IHT due to succession planning.

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

We need to stop blaming pensioners for the inflationary effects of unduly low interest rates pursued for many years by the BoE, initially on long term asset valuations and more recently on prices more widely in the economy. Power without apparent responsibility or accountability has been outsourced to the BoE by ministers, and home owning pensioners are a useful scapegoat. If a wealth tax is to be contemplated at all, the last thing to be included, rather than the first thing, should be modest residential properties.

Last edited 1 year ago by Stephen Walsh
odd taff
odd taff
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

You’re impatient. We will shuffle of this mortal coil fairly soon and won’t take anything with us. What we leave behind will be subject to IHT.

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

London is not an ideal example, as the council rates are already below the rest of the UK. I would actually see a reduction if 0.5% was used.

Grant Rafferty
Grant Rafferty
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

The problem with this is you are missing some pretty fundamental details. Yes, low intrest rates have boosted prices, but the fault is overwhelmingly the reduciton in house building. There is a serious lack of supply of homes for an affordable price.
The home your pensioner has lived in at lets say ÂŁ600k would require a deposit of ÂŁ60k and an income of ÂŁ100k. The problem, now is that is in the top 1/2% of earners, if we expand that out to a couple we are still in the top 5% of earners. This is just clearly madness, that the vast majority of the population is in capable of affording “a very modest” home in the outer edges of London and is a massive dampener on the economy.

Jonathan Munday
Jonathan Munday
1 year ago
Reply to  Grant Rafferty

The problem is demand. If we admit 500k net new immigrants as we did this year, we need 250k new houses to put them in. There aren’t those houses so the price of houses has gone up. Reduce demand and the price will go down again. The young keep voting for more immigration and then complain about property prices.

Jonathan Munday
Jonathan Munday
1 year ago
Reply to  Grant Rafferty

The problem is demand. If we admit 500k net new immigrants as we did this year, we need 250k new houses to put them in. There aren’t those houses so the price of houses has gone up. Reduce demand and the price will go down again. The young keep voting for more immigration and then complain about property prices.

polidori redux
polidori redux
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

Indeed. My widowed mother-in-law (raised in a pre-war workhouse for distressed mothers) bought a terraced house with her Polish refugee husband. They lived, and she continues to live, in a state of frugality that the author of this article would find unacceptable and, probably, unimaginable. Surplus income is handed out to the younger members of the family and to charities. It is not her fault that her modest house is now worth about ÂŁ600K. She “owes” nothing to anyone.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

So those sitting on the bulk of the wealth shouldn’t contribute the bulk of the tax? The burden should rest entirely on the much poorer wage earners?

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

London is not an ideal example, as the council rates are already below the rest of the UK. I would actually see a reduction if 0.5% was used.

Grant Rafferty
Grant Rafferty
1 year ago
Reply to  Stephen Walsh

The problem with this is you are missing some pretty fundamental details. Yes, low intrest rates have boosted prices, but the fault is overwhelmingly the reduciton in house building. There is a serious lack of supply of homes for an affordable price.
The home your pensioner has lived in at lets say ÂŁ600k would require a deposit of ÂŁ60k and an income of ÂŁ100k. The problem, now is that is in the top 1/2% of earners, if we expand that out to a couple we are still in the top 5% of earners. This is just clearly madness, that the vast majority of the population is in capable of affording “a very modest” home in the outer edges of London and is a massive dampener on the economy.

Stephen Walsh
Stephen Walsh
1 year ago

A very modest semi detached house in an outer borough of London, in which a pensioner may have lived most of their adult life, is unlikely to be worth less than ÂŁ600k. A tax 0.5% of the current value of the property is ÂŁ3k per annum. For most pensioners that is a great deal of money. If they sell the now unaffordable property to buy a cheaper one elsewhere, HMRC will collect another ÂŁ17,500 in stamp duty on the sale which that pensioner will never see. They then pay stamp duty and presumably property tax on their new property. If Mr. Jeffrey has his way, they are now also exposed to the risk that the residual cash pile they never asked for will result in them losing their now means tested pension. Rising property prices are not the fault of the current generation of pensioners. They are due mainly to negative real interest rates over the past decade and a half. Intergenerational conflict is better dealt with through policies to grow the real economy, and improve productivity, rather than by devising ways of taxing and terrifying the elderly. Perhaps the government could start by defunding the more useless university degrees, and promoting the training of young people in the skills actually required by the economy.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago

Wow my pension’s going up by 10%, a full £18.50 a week. Think I’ll go to Barbados.

David Simpson
David Simpson
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

In my little world (as in, financially circumscribed), that’s a useful increment!

Last edited 1 year ago by David Simpson
R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

It shouldn’t be going up at all.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

You’re possibly right. I am actually going to Barbados because I can afford to, which raises another “fairness” dilemma.

I have paid in a lot during my working life, really a lot. If I spend a lifetime “buying” something from the state, on what moral grounds can it refuse to deliver?

There are moral grounds for me refusing to take it but the state is manifestly inefficient so, in my view, better to support the kids or charities with it.

Which pops up another aspect of modern life. The bank of mum and dad is a thing. Certainly my kids have made much use of it. It didn’t exist for me, or anybody I knew in my youth. So should this alleged inter generational problem be one for the state or the family?

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Give me my money back!

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

This is the whole purpose of “fairness” and “social justice” in the political arena. They absolve the government from any obligation towards any contract, real or implied, made in good faith at the time on the basis that THEY, AND THEY ALONE have decided that you are morally inferior (because white and over 50) and therefore, no longer entitled to their consideration.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Give me my money back!

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

This is the whole purpose of “fairness” and “social justice” in the political arena. They absolve the government from any obligation towards any contract, real or implied, made in good faith at the time on the basis that THEY, AND THEY ALONE have decided that you are morally inferior (because white and over 50) and therefore, no longer entitled to their consideration.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

You’re possibly right. I am actually going to Barbados because I can afford to, which raises another “fairness” dilemma.

I have paid in a lot during my working life, really a lot. If I spend a lifetime “buying” something from the state, on what moral grounds can it refuse to deliver?

There are moral grounds for me refusing to take it but the state is manifestly inefficient so, in my view, better to support the kids or charities with it.

Which pops up another aspect of modern life. The bank of mum and dad is a thing. Certainly my kids have made much use of it. It didn’t exist for me, or anybody I knew in my youth. So should this alleged inter generational problem be one for the state or the family?

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Yet, someone who hasn’t had a pay rise of that level, will be paying for it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Moore
Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Moore

Amongst those someones are pensioners who saved their entire working life and are now being hit hard with additional taxes on the dividends and capital gains the (we) rely on for an income.
The lord giveth and the lord taketh away 🙂

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Those additional taxes will also be applied to those who are currently working. It could be argued that you’ve built up those savings, while those who come after you, won’t have that benefit. It’s also worth noting that the contribution to the state pension is far higher than it was say 30 years ago and the age when you can claim it has increased.

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Those additional taxes will also be applied to those who are currently working. It could be argued that you’ve built up those savings, while those who come after you, won’t have that benefit. It’s also worth noting that the contribution to the state pension is far higher than it was say 30 years ago and the age when you can claim it has increased.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Moore

Pensions are supposed to be paid out of the contributions that the pensioners paid during their working lives.

This is a requirement for private pension underwriters – why should it be different just because the “pension underwriting company” happens to be the government?

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Moore

Amongst those someones are pensioners who saved their entire working life and are now being hit hard with additional taxes on the dividends and capital gains the (we) rely on for an income.
The lord giveth and the lord taketh away 🙂

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  Andy Moore

Pensions are supposed to be paid out of the contributions that the pensioners paid during their working lives.

This is a requirement for private pension underwriters – why should it be different just because the “pension underwriting company” happens to be the government?

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Yet average wages have risen much more slowly than 10%, therefore working age people are becoming poorer in order to pay for your pension, despite your demographic being on average the wealthiest cohort.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Either
1. I’ve “saved” enough through my contributions to now pay my pension ie I paid for it, or
2. When I was working in the high inflation 70’s and getting no, or lower than inflation, increases I was paying for the generations before me and now it’s the younger generation’s turn.

While we’re on the semantics of accounting treatments, what is wealth? The “wealthiest cohort” are mainly just people who own houses. They have to live somewhere. Is a highly illiquid, and life necessary, asset, really wealth in the way you seem to be interpreting it?

I actually think there is a strong case for some means testing now, given the change in life expectancy and economic developments over those years, but the underlying moral case isn’t clear cut. We already, rightly, have progressive tax scales. Introducing similar thinking to what the state pays out, to those who’ve paid in, is a very slippery slope.

This article attempts to create yet another societal dividing line, this time between the generations, with a fairly blatant “gimme” demand. It’s not helpful.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

I think you make some valid points, but I don’t think it covers the current situation completely.
There’s a high level of fluidity in the economy right now and extrapolating much further than a year or two is well nigh impossible. However, I strongly suspect that the state pension model will change ever more significantly. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility state pensions will be a thing of the past or so heavily means-tested as to be worthless to a great many.
Such a situation will be politically incendiary as a generation who have effectively paid for the pensions of the older generations will find no similar deal for them when they retire.
For one reason or another, the ponzi scheme is crashing; we’re out of growth and populations are stagnating. The question is which pin of the welfare state will fall first, pensions, health or benefits? Politically, the conservatives can’t afford to change pensions, at least not downwards.

Rocky Martiano
Rocky Martiano
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The Ponzi scheme is exactly the right description. I know of no other European country (although I stand to be corrected) which doesn’t have a pension fund system where contributions are ring fenced and invested to produce a return, in order to pay out in proportion to what is put in.
Only in the UK do national insurance contributions disappear into the black hole of state tax revenues, which inevitably saddles future taxpayers with the liability to pay out for previous generations.

Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

France is as fucked as UK

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

“Heaven be praised!”

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

“Heaven be praised!”

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

Its not only the national pension system. When I started work benefits were only paid to those who contributed, no “ni stamp” no dole. At some point in the last 50 years our social security system has changed from a contributary one to an “entitlement”. As far as I remember I dont think this change was ever advertised as policy by any political party but it still happened. Isn’t democrasy wonderful (sic).

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Bob Pugh

Most of these major changes seem to happen without any appearance in a manifesto, without public debate and by whichever party is in power.

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Bob Pugh

Most of these major changes seem to happen without any appearance in a manifesto, without public debate and by whichever party is in power.

Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

France is as fucked as UK

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago
Reply to  Rocky Martiano

Its not only the national pension system. When I started work benefits were only paid to those who contributed, no “ni stamp” no dole. At some point in the last 50 years our social security system has changed from a contributary one to an “entitlement”. As far as I remember I dont think this change was ever advertised as policy by any political party but it still happened. Isn’t democrasy wonderful (sic).

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

I agree, we have to run out of road soon. I’m not sure it’s just the Conservatives who can’t afford to change. The elderly in the red wall are more likely to be genuinely dependent on the state pension than those in the shires.

Rocky Martiano
Rocky Martiano
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

The Ponzi scheme is exactly the right description. I know of no other European country (although I stand to be corrected) which doesn’t have a pension fund system where contributions are ring fenced and invested to produce a return, in order to pay out in proportion to what is put in.
Only in the UK do national insurance contributions disappear into the black hole of state tax revenues, which inevitably saddles future taxpayers with the liability to pay out for previous generations.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Dalton

I agree, we have to run out of road soon. I’m not sure it’s just the Conservatives who can’t afford to change. The elderly in the red wall are more likely to be genuinely dependent on the state pension than those in the shires.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

The difference is that the generations before you paid to give you a start in life, be it through council houses that kept house prices and rent’s reasonable, free further education or on the job training etc and other bits and pieces, all schemes that were scrapped once it was your generations turn to fund for the youngsters who were coming up behind. Therefore if you refused to help those at the start of their working lives (and even now fight to prevent much needed housing being built and insist on pensions rising much faster than anything else), why should the young struggling with high rents, out of reach house prices, stagnant wages and the largest tax burden since the war feel obliged to fund your retirement?

Andrew Dalton
Andrew Dalton
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

I think you make some valid points, but I don’t think it covers the current situation completely.
There’s a high level of fluidity in the economy right now and extrapolating much further than a year or two is well nigh impossible. However, I strongly suspect that the state pension model will change ever more significantly. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility state pensions will be a thing of the past or so heavily means-tested as to be worthless to a great many.
Such a situation will be politically incendiary as a generation who have effectively paid for the pensions of the older generations will find no similar deal for them when they retire.
For one reason or another, the ponzi scheme is crashing; we’re out of growth and populations are stagnating. The question is which pin of the welfare state will fall first, pensions, health or benefits? Politically, the conservatives can’t afford to change pensions, at least not downwards.

Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

The difference is that the generations before you paid to give you a start in life, be it through council houses that kept house prices and rent’s reasonable, free further education or on the job training etc and other bits and pieces, all schemes that were scrapped once it was your generations turn to fund for the youngsters who were coming up behind. Therefore if you refused to help those at the start of their working lives (and even now fight to prevent much needed housing being built and insist on pensions rising much faster than anything else), why should the young struggling with high rents, out of reach house prices, stagnant wages and the largest tax burden since the war feel obliged to fund your retirement?

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  Billy Bob

Either
1. I’ve “saved” enough through my contributions to now pay my pension ie I paid for it, or
2. When I was working in the high inflation 70’s and getting no, or lower than inflation, increases I was paying for the generations before me and now it’s the younger generation’s turn.

While we’re on the semantics of accounting treatments, what is wealth? The “wealthiest cohort” are mainly just people who own houses. They have to live somewhere. Is a highly illiquid, and life necessary, asset, really wealth in the way you seem to be interpreting it?

I actually think there is a strong case for some means testing now, given the change in life expectancy and economic developments over those years, but the underlying moral case isn’t clear cut. We already, rightly, have progressive tax scales. Introducing similar thinking to what the state pays out, to those who’ve paid in, is a very slippery slope.

This article attempts to create yet another societal dividing line, this time between the generations, with a fairly blatant “gimme” demand. It’s not helpful.

David Simpson
David Simpson
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

In my little world (as in, financially circumscribed), that’s a useful increment!

Last edited 1 year ago by David Simpson
R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

It shouldn’t be going up at all.

Andy Moore
Andy Moore
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Yet, someone who hasn’t had a pay rise of that level, will be paying for it.

Last edited 1 year ago by Andy Moore
Billy Bob
Billy Bob
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

Yet average wages have risen much more slowly than 10%, therefore working age people are becoming poorer in order to pay for your pension, despite your demographic being on average the wealthiest cohort.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago

Wow my pension’s going up by 10%, a full £18.50 a week. Think I’ll go to Barbados.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Let’s be clear about something else. The current generation of pensioners are people who know about inflation, having lived through it. They know about the futility of saving cash.

They are people who in large numbers, made a fairly straightforward decision which was theirs to make; that investing in a house was a good investment. It would always be worth the current price of a house, after all. People always need houses, don’t they; it would provide them with somewhere to live, theirs in perpetuity and the prospect of a rent free old age, or an inflation proofed savings sum.

They were not greedy. They were not racist bigots. They were certainly not engaging in some sort of ideologically motivated, orchestrated wickedness, as is so commonly claimed today. They were ordinary working people of limited means, doing the best they could for themselves and those they cared about.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Let’s be clear about something else. The current generation of pensioners are people who know about inflation, having lived through it. They know about the futility of saving cash.

They are people who in large numbers, made a fairly straightforward decision which was theirs to make; that investing in a house was a good investment. It would always be worth the current price of a house, after all. People always need houses, don’t they; it would provide them with somewhere to live, theirs in perpetuity and the prospect of a rent free old age, or an inflation proofed savings sum.

They were not greedy. They were not racist bigots. They were certainly not engaging in some sort of ideologically motivated, orchestrated wickedness, as is so commonly claimed today. They were ordinary working people of limited means, doing the best they could for themselves and those they cared about.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Let’s be quite clear about something. The State Pension is between ÂŁ160 and ÂŁ200 per week. Typically around ÂŁ360 for a married couple.

The howling and bawling about “percentage increases” are designed to obscure the fact that they are percentages of a very small sum.

If anyone thinks these are generous sums to live on, they are welcome to try.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

Let’s be quite clear about something. The State Pension is between ÂŁ160 and ÂŁ200 per week. Typically around ÂŁ360 for a married couple.

The howling and bawling about “percentage increases” are designed to obscure the fact that they are percentages of a very small sum.

If anyone thinks these are generous sums to live on, they are welcome to try.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

What absolute dross. The way to eliminate “intergenerational unfairness” and control the rental market is to provide an option – to build credible social housing on a credible scale, and control its letting at affordable rates to suitable applicants. This DOESNT mean immigrants, who should wait their turn like everyone else with NO housing benefit in the meanwhile.

Subletting should be ruthlessly clamped down upon, with both tenant and sub-tenant evicted and sent firmly to the end of the waiting list and left there. Any tenant found subletting without being resident themselves, should be disqualified from future social housing of any description whatsoever.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

What absolute dross. The way to eliminate “intergenerational unfairness” and control the rental market is to provide an option – to build credible social housing on a credible scale, and control its letting at affordable rates to suitable applicants. This DOESNT mean immigrants, who should wait their turn like everyone else with NO housing benefit in the meanwhile.

Subletting should be ruthlessly clamped down upon, with both tenant and sub-tenant evicted and sent firmly to the end of the waiting list and left there. Any tenant found subletting without being resident themselves, should be disqualified from future social housing of any description whatsoever.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

This all avoids a crucial feature of the post-WW2 social consensus, specifically that social homogeneity would be preserved.

The post-War generation didn’t expect these benefits simply for themselves, but for their heirs and successors in perpetuity. The post-War “boomer” would be born into a land of orange juice, vaccination and social housing. They would be educated at the expense of the State.

Their parents would bear the cost of their upbringing from their wages. In due course, those “boomers” would earn wages, pay taxes to support their parents in turn.

Opening the doors to unlimited incomers who would benefit without ever contributing was no part of that vision. Nor was institutionalised mass unemployment, underemployment and wage erosion.

Until the late 1960s this held good. The electorate managed to impose upon the political elite, their belief in immigration control which held good until the collapse if two-party politics in 1997.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

This all avoids a crucial feature of the post-WW2 social consensus, specifically that social homogeneity would be preserved.

The post-War generation didn’t expect these benefits simply for themselves, but for their heirs and successors in perpetuity. The post-War “boomer” would be born into a land of orange juice, vaccination and social housing. They would be educated at the expense of the State.

Their parents would bear the cost of their upbringing from their wages. In due course, those “boomers” would earn wages, pay taxes to support their parents in turn.

Opening the doors to unlimited incomers who would benefit without ever contributing was no part of that vision. Nor was institutionalised mass unemployment, underemployment and wage erosion.

Until the late 1960s this held good. The electorate managed to impose upon the political elite, their belief in immigration control which held good until the collapse if two-party politics in 1997.

David Simpson
David Simpson
1 year ago

If only the current PM had the courage and honesty to lay all this out before his MPs, his party and the country. He has a 2 year window in which to win the argument and reset the national agenda. It could be done (although arguably the biggest block to real change are his own MPs and the House of Commons as a whole). If he proposed a radical programme – planning reform and house building, fair allocation of resources between young and old, wealth, property and land taxes vs simple income tax, a serious attempt to make us self sufficient in energy and food (not the lunacy of Net Zero) – and spoke over the heads of his MPs and party members, to the country as a whole, I think he might be heard. Whether the parliamentary opposition would listen and offer support is an open question. But the country might, despite the huge trust deficit politicians as a class have built up over the last 25 years.

David Simpson
David Simpson
1 year ago

If only the current PM had the courage and honesty to lay all this out before his MPs, his party and the country. He has a 2 year window in which to win the argument and reset the national agenda. It could be done (although arguably the biggest block to real change are his own MPs and the House of Commons as a whole). If he proposed a radical programme – planning reform and house building, fair allocation of resources between young and old, wealth, property and land taxes vs simple income tax, a serious attempt to make us self sufficient in energy and food (not the lunacy of Net Zero) – and spoke over the heads of his MPs and party members, to the country as a whole, I think he might be heard. Whether the parliamentary opposition would listen and offer support is an open question. But the country might, despite the huge trust deficit politicians as a class have built up over the last 25 years.

Malcolm Webb
Malcolm Webb
1 year ago

Come to think of it when was the Conservative Party any good? In the last hundred years or more only twice. Once in a War when a romantic party switch hing maverick luckily took charge of it and second in the 1970s when another inspired maverick shook it up no end – and much to the discomfort of the old guard . But it soon reverted to the pretty useless, muddled, self serving bunch of under performers it has ever been over the last century and more. Sadly the only real alternative over that same period has been even worse.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Malcolm Webb

I think you’re right. Conservatism on its own doesn’t have a stellar record except of course in the sense that if its only function is to stop the lunatics on the Left from implementing most of their stupid ideas, that alone is worth having.

The point is that it’s no use when genuine change is required, and that’s where we are now.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Malcolm Webb

I think you’re right. Conservatism on its own doesn’t have a stellar record except of course in the sense that if its only function is to stop the lunatics on the Left from implementing most of their stupid ideas, that alone is worth having.

The point is that it’s no use when genuine change is required, and that’s where we are now.

Malcolm Webb
Malcolm Webb
1 year ago

Come to think of it when was the Conservative Party any good? In the last hundred years or more only twice. Once in a War when a romantic party switch hing maverick luckily took charge of it and second in the 1970s when another inspired maverick shook it up no end – and much to the discomfort of the old guard . But it soon reverted to the pretty useless, muddled, self serving bunch of under performers it has ever been over the last century and more. Sadly the only real alternative over that same period has been even worse.

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago

We spend more on pensions because of the sheer quantity of pensioners and today’s longevity. Pensioners are among the poorest groups in society. You try living on around ÂŁ600 a MONTH. The young don’t have a worse standard of living than their parents and grandparents. They have more of everything – except home ownership. They don’t actually work as hard. Half of them don’t start work or paying tax until 22 compared with 18 or even 16 in the recent past. It’s not a stretch.or ‘unfair’ to expect them to retire later. Famous are going to inherit property wealth and are already subbed by older family members.

There aren’t actually that many of these so-called NIMBYs (5%) – and are they wrong? What’s the point of putting large housing developments in pockets of the countryside where singles and young families can’t find work or services. The young want to live in trendy urban disticts or neighbourhoods which took their grandparents a lifetime to acquire.

I agree that students loans should be low interest.

Deb Grant
Deb Grant
1 year ago

We spend more on pensions because of the sheer quantity of pensioners and today’s longevity. Pensioners are among the poorest groups in society. You try living on around ÂŁ600 a MONTH. The young don’t have a worse standard of living than their parents and grandparents. They have more of everything – except home ownership. They don’t actually work as hard. Half of them don’t start work or paying tax until 22 compared with 18 or even 16 in the recent past. It’s not a stretch.or ‘unfair’ to expect them to retire later. Famous are going to inherit property wealth and are already subbed by older family members.

There aren’t actually that many of these so-called NIMBYs (5%) – and are they wrong? What’s the point of putting large housing developments in pockets of the countryside where singles and young families can’t find work or services. The young want to live in trendy urban disticts or neighbourhoods which took their grandparents a lifetime to acquire.

I agree that students loans should be low interest.

Gordon Black
Gordon Black
1 year ago

I have travelled a lot and every country was a “two-nation” as described. Can anyone suggest a genuine one-nation country in the world?

Gordon Black
Gordon Black
1 year ago

I have travelled a lot and every country was a “two-nation” as described. Can anyone suggest a genuine one-nation country in the world?

Frances McMahon
Frances McMahon
1 year ago

There is a divide between rich and poor. Scrabbling around to find a divide between old & young gives a false & unhelpful picture. Most employed young people are on very good incomes. Many older people live in squalid conditions in dire need. Can no longer work. Struggle to find care when physically or mentally incapacitated. Benefits for younger recipients should have kept pace with cost of living. The fact that they have not is not due to the old. They should not be set up as a punching bag for Gov decisions.

Frances McMahon
Frances McMahon
1 year ago

There is a divide between rich and poor. Scrabbling around to find a divide between old & young gives a false & unhelpful picture. Most employed young people are on very good incomes. Many older people live in squalid conditions in dire need. Can no longer work. Struggle to find care when physically or mentally incapacitated. Benefits for younger recipients should have kept pace with cost of living. The fact that they have not is not due to the old. They should not be set up as a punching bag for Gov decisions.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago

What should also worry the Tories at this point is that someone like me, who has always voted Tory and am now in middle-age with housing equity, pension savings and a reasonably good income, is also not going to vote Tory next time.

Someone like me cares deeply that younger people can’t get on the housing ladder and not out of pure altruism either. I’ve been saying for years that unless we get more houses built and restore affordability for the majority, the older generations will simply lose their housing wealth to new and rapacious taxes. I don’t want that to happen to me, so I will support a form of politics that crushes the NIMBY vote and gets land into development, even if it means the view from my window containing JCBs and mud instead of fields and trees.

Older people have got to get this into their heads: they can’t just keep their massively overpriced houses: they either get out of the way of planning reform or they end up selling their homes to pay wealth taxes. In due course we’ll see which choice is made, and at that point I recommend zero sympathy for anyone who complains that they couldn’t just keep the status quo.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

You say “unless we get more houses built”, i.e. increase the supply, which will lead ultimately to all of Englan d’s green and pleasant land being concreted over.

There is an alternative: reduce demand. That can be done handily by ending immigration and repatriating all recent immigrants.

We boomers are dying off rapidly, so within a very few years our houses will become available for younger folk. All they have to do is make sure immigrants don’t grab them first.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

The vast majority of England is still green – over 90% of it it undeveloped. You could double the amount of land built upon and the country would still be overwhelmingly green. As it is, we need to increase the housing stock by only 10%, which might be difficult to achieve quickly given the constraints of how quickly the construction industry can expand, but in no way would be limited by the availability of land and would make no perceptible difference to the amount of urbanisation or loss of green land.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

If you were my age and you could look, as I do, at land that I remember as green and pleasant when I was a kid, but which is now become housing estates, you would realise the dangerous falacy of your argument.

Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

If you were my age and you could look, as I do, at land that I remember as green and pleasant when I was a kid, but which is now become housing estates, you would realise the dangerous falacy of your argument.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  Bill Tomlinson

The vast majority of England is still green – over 90% of it it undeveloped. You could double the amount of land built upon and the country would still be overwhelmingly green. As it is, we need to increase the housing stock by only 10%, which might be difficult to achieve quickly given the constraints of how quickly the construction industry can expand, but in no way would be limited by the availability of land and would make no perceptible difference to the amount of urbanisation or loss of green land.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Bill Tomlinson
Bill Tomlinson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Riordan

You say “unless we get more houses built”, i.e. increase the supply, which will lead ultimately to all of Englan d’s green and pleasant land being concreted over.

There is an alternative: reduce demand. That can be done handily by ending immigration and repatriating all recent immigrants.

We boomers are dying off rapidly, so within a very few years our houses will become available for younger folk. All they have to do is make sure immigrants don’t grab them first.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago

What should also worry the Tories at this point is that someone like me, who has always voted Tory and am now in middle-age with housing equity, pension savings and a reasonably good income, is also not going to vote Tory next time.

Someone like me cares deeply that younger people can’t get on the housing ladder and not out of pure altruism either. I’ve been saying for years that unless we get more houses built and restore affordability for the majority, the older generations will simply lose their housing wealth to new and rapacious taxes. I don’t want that to happen to me, so I will support a form of politics that crushes the NIMBY vote and gets land into development, even if it means the view from my window containing JCBs and mud instead of fields and trees.

Older people have got to get this into their heads: they can’t just keep their massively overpriced houses: they either get out of the way of planning reform or they end up selling their homes to pay wealth taxes. In due course we’ll see which choice is made, and at that point I recommend zero sympathy for anyone who complains that they couldn’t just keep the status quo.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago

The current pensioners, as a cohort (individual being unique and having each their own personal case) have been reaping insane money from this house price inflation.
Money that is taken from, as a cohort, the young workers.
Pensioners got cheap housing, home equity appreciation, triple lock pensions, cheap service employee (as immigration supresses wages) and state provided medical care (which elderly people disproportionately consume).
Young workers get supressed wages (through immigration), insane housing prices, inflation (they don’t have triple lock on wage, neither do they have job security). UK has expensive universities, expensive child care, but free NHS service.
Boomers are waging generational warfare

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

What complete and utter bollocks. I suggest you knock on a few doors, and ask any pensioners you might meet to SHOW YOU the money they have accrued.

What you WILL find is pensioners who expect to spend their supposed “gains” in nursing care costs; who with luck, might leave their children a useful contribution to THEIR housing in turn.

Wealthy pensioners? Utter shite.

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Seconded. As a general rule you’re quite right, but I would say that there is nonetheless a class of wealthy suburban and rural older homeowners who despite their small numbers can have a disproportionate effect on planning policy. They are not always that old though, so categorising them as “boomers” is nonsense, and it is also nonsense of course to say they typify older generations anyway.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Grant Rafferty
Grant Rafferty
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/pensions-retirement/news/number-millionaire-pensioners-quadruples/ ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

John Riordan
John Riordan
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

Seconded. As a general rule you’re quite right, but I would say that there is nonetheless a class of wealthy suburban and rural older homeowners who despite their small numbers can have a disproportionate effect on planning policy. They are not always that old though, so categorising them as “boomers” is nonsense, and it is also nonsense of course to say they typify older generations anyway.

Last edited 1 year ago by John Riordan
Grant Rafferty
Grant Rafferty
1 year ago
Reply to  ben arnulfssen

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/pensions-retirement/news/number-millionaire-pensioners-quadruples/ ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago

No money is “reaped” until assets are sold. At the moment an individual owning a single property that they live in is not liable for capital gains tax on any gain realised when the property is sold, removing this exemption would take a lot of the froth out of the housing market even though it would be deeply unpopular with property owners and those who aspire to own property. Remember all the MP’s “flipping” properties on expences by living in them (often only on paper) for the minimum required time to avoide cgt.

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago

What complete and utter bollocks. I suggest you knock on a few doors, and ask any pensioners you might meet to SHOW YOU the money they have accrued.

What you WILL find is pensioners who expect to spend their supposed “gains” in nursing care costs; who with luck, might leave their children a useful contribution to THEIR housing in turn.

Wealthy pensioners? Utter shite.

Bob Pugh
Bob Pugh
1 year ago

No money is “reaped” until assets are sold. At the moment an individual owning a single property that they live in is not liable for capital gains tax on any gain realised when the property is sold, removing this exemption would take a lot of the froth out of the housing market even though it would be deeply unpopular with property owners and those who aspire to own property. Remember all the MP’s “flipping” properties on expences by living in them (often only on paper) for the minimum required time to avoide cgt.

Emmanuel MARTIN
Emmanuel MARTIN
1 year ago

The current pensioners, as a cohort (individual being unique and having each their own personal case) have been reaping insane money from this house price inflation.
Money that is taken from, as a cohort, the young workers.
Pensioners got cheap housing, home equity appreciation, triple lock pensions, cheap service employee (as immigration supresses wages) and state provided medical care (which elderly people disproportionately consume).
Young workers get supressed wages (through immigration), insane housing prices, inflation (they don’t have triple lock on wage, neither do they have job security). UK has expensive universities, expensive child care, but free NHS service.
Boomers are waging generational warfare