Work Till We Drop

As the state pension age is raised further, the eyebrows of millions of furiously shocked Brits rise even higher.

The current pension age is 65 for men and 63 for women, slowly increasing to 65. Obviously, a clear issue is the gender inequality. Thankfully, that is changing as the state pension age is due to go up to 66 by 2020 and then 67 by 2026-8 for both men and women.

People born between 6th April 1970-5th April 1978 will be affected by a recent change of the state pension age, meaning these people will now be working until 68. Yes, 68! This was due to come into effect in 2044 but is now predicted to occur seven years earlier in 2037-39.

People born after 6th April 1978 are already subject to a pension age of 68.

Those who are OK with this will predictably (and boringly) argue ‘It’s 20 years away yet, 2037 is ages away so you have time to plan’.

But, plan what? Plan which pharmacy or doctors to go to when you’re looking down the barrel of the ’70 years old illness’- shaped gun and still working. No. You can’t make a useful plan for a later retirement. The probabilities of health issues such as dementia should not be ignored.

You also cannot plan for being made redundant at the age of 58, and the harsh truth that it’s extremely difficult to get a job again following this, compared to the relative ease of getting a job for someone half that age.

Age discrimination has become a normality for employers. So raising the pension age is only going to lengthen the suffering and financial struggle of these people who can’t get back into employment easily.

‘But people are living longer so they should work longer’. The extra years they’re spending alive are as an old person, which are still often years of poor health, physical brittleness, and mental problems.

Even if a person lives until 95, they may well have dementia by the time they’re 65 or 68 which is why a retirement age is important, because ill-health has a brutal effect on the ability to work. So why increase the length of a career when it is still very likely that illnesses will affect people before the time they are due to retire?

Surely, there’s a strongly noticeable sprinkle of blatant unfairness in making everyone retire at the same age; no matter what their occupation is. Well, not even just a sprinkle of unfairness, it’s more like when you try to decorate your bolognese with pepper, but the pepper-shaker breaks and cruelly empties the entire content onto your beloved meal, leaving you to question what you did to deserve this twisted life.

Seriously though, how can you make a bricklayer or a builder work until the same age as an illustrator? Physicality must be considered.

Obviously, being a construction worker requires a certain level of physical fitness and enduring strength. And, while lifting heavy things (and nowadays, posting a picture in a mirror and caption it ‘gainzz’), is a way of improving your physical strength, there does come a point when it becomes overly strenuous and starts to cause problems and injuries to your body.

A busy week on a building site is intensely demanding itself, so imagine what an entire career would do to your body; considering many construction workers tend to start young and often following an apprenticeship, this would mean a 50(ish) year career lifting bricks and enduring 50 winters, causing further problems to their bodies. And only then can you benefit from pension payments.

Even if the job is a sedentary one such as writing, the mental illnesses that so many elderly people have are too big of a burden to be able to work. Furthermore, for many sedentary jobs, being too arthritic to even type is a career-ending condition which disables many people from being able to do simple, everyday tasks, never mind working.

Young people are absolutely doomed. The way things are going, us unfortunate youngsters will be working until we’re on our deathbed. The bloody nurses will be working literally until they die; being their own nurse when they require health-support when they fall ill. To be honest, with the way the NHS is being dealt with at the minute, I wouldn’t rule that possibility out…

Never have I envied the current elderly people so much (apart from the fact they were alive during The Beatles era), not that it’s great for them at the minute either with Pterodactyl Theresa making them pay for their own elderly care; the cruel little reptile. That just highlights how bad things are right now.

A further extensive financial burden is brutally dropped on the innocent little heads of our young people due to the fact that we have an ageing population. More old farts.

The retirement tab is growing so the government needs more money to pay the current pensioners what they’re entitled to. Thanks to the youth-hating, future-shattering LEAVE voters, lower immigration following Brexit means that this hefty bill is being left to fewer young taxpayers.

So, not only are we paying more now in order to provide sufficient pensions for the current lucky, younger-retiring elderly, but we are also going to have to work even longer for our own pension. Not got much going for us really.

Well, at least we don’t have to pay tuition fees anym- oh wait… Corbyn didn’t get voted in, did he… Another political tragedy right there.

We know how rock n roll you are Theresa, with your crazy crop field trespassing reputation, but we’re not all Rolling Stones, you know; we’re not all cut out for a lifetime career like those weirdly energetic dudes.

James Lawson

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