Coffee House

A blank cheque to the baby boomers

16 December 2012

3:25 PM

16 December 2012

3:25 PM

After more than a decade of wrangling, it seems that a deal is finally about to be struck on long-term care of the elderly, by adopting the package proposed by economist Andrew Dilnot.  George Osborne has apparently agreed to a proposal, to be announced as early as next month, to make sure no one pays more than £75,000 towards their care costs however wealthy they are. The threshold below which their equity is exempt will also be jacked up.

The estimated cost of all this is £700 million – money that this government simply does not have. To offer this at a time of cuts to further education, aircraft carriers, local authorities and welfare would be extraordinary. Yet Osborne is contemplating moving into a new sphere altogether: paying for the social care of the asset-rich middle classes.

Gordon Brown was criticised for offering to the elderly electorate universal subsidies such as winter fuel payment and free bus transport; and for extending means-testing to ensure that hundreds of thousands of older people received pension credit. All of these policies, so it was argued, helped to wed as many pensioners as possible to a welfare state only a Labour government would protect.

But now – quietly, surreptitiously – we see the Coalition government poised to do exactly the same, universalising a system which has historically been means-tested. Reeling from this year’s ‘granny tax’ debacle and keenly aware of the effect of rising energy prices upon the elderly, political officials across Westminster all know they must do something to win over the grey vote. They desperately need a legacy going into 2015.

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And not just the grey vote. As the old saying goes, where there’s a will there are relatives. Dilnot is also about protecting savings and inheritances from the ravages of social care costs.

In the ‘sector’ one is constantly reminded that we live in an ageing society and that this is something to be celebrated, with complaints duly following about the media’s ageist presentation of the ever-increasing number of elderly as a ‘burden’. What is never said is that renouncing ageism requires something far more than watching our language. To really come to grips with the reality of an ageing society means ceasing to think of our parents’ or grandparents’ housing wealth as sacrosanct, to be preserved at all costs.

We are informed that Treasury’s concerns over cost have been allayed by setting the cap higher (the £75,000 is higher than than £35,000 already proposed). But that’s just at the beginning. When significant numbers of baby boomers come to require social care the cumulative cost will rocket, the taxpayer saddled with paying for it. Here, then, is a proposal presaging another massive redistribution of wealth from one generation to another.

But perhaps most problematic of all, to ‘do Dilnot’ now – or in 2015/16 –  would be to neglect the current crisis we face in the existing system for the poorest elderly. This is a crisis the Centre for Social Justice spent two years examining, leading to a set of reform proposals in Age of Opportunity.

So, when local authority care is starved of cash; when older men and women across the country are subjected to the ignominy of 15-minute domiciliary care visits; when the system has been declared ‘broken’ by all sides and is plagued by controversy, what is the reform proposal on the table? Bringing onto the books a whole new group of people. Without first reforming the current means-tested system Dilnot is the wrong priority for Parliament at this moment.

James Mumford is a senior researcher at the Centre for Social Justice.

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Show comments
  • http://www.facebook.com/john.ball.7549185 John Ball

    There are going to be a lot of 59 year old women and 64 year old men going off on luxury cruises. May as well spend your savings on having a good time, rather than let the state confiscate them.

  • barbie

    Well we bought our own house with two children, paid for their collage education, had no holidays, no car, didn’t smoke, or drink, the family came first. We worked for what we wanted and worked past retirement because we wanted to and because we needed to. We are not retired, so why should we have to sell our home we worked for when we see foreign aid @ £15 billion per year and rising, £55 million per year paid by the taxpayer for health tourists, and now they talk about cutting from pensioners. It beggers belief. Old age is not easy, you live on a limited income, and work is out of the question, who would employ anyone over 65?
    If you have to pay a large sum per person, for elderly care, the average home these days wouldn’t raise enough money for two persons, and then you may be sitting by another person who’s done nothing to help him/her self but still gets the same benefits. Nothing seems fair, so I’ve decided to spend all my money and gains and enjoy the rest of the time I’ve got left, and join the ones who have done nothing as they will enjoy the same benefits, so why not.

  • sceptic3

    I do wish people would stop having a go at the baby boomers as if they spent everyone else’s money. It is the boomers that made all the money that politicians then spent on everyone else. If it were not for the boomers there would have been no money for immigrants benefits.

    To say how dare we spend money on the elderly when we can’t afford aircraft carriers is outrageous. I would say how dare we not spend money on the elderly when we are spending it on the EU, foreign aid, wind farms, African wind farms, anti fart feed for South American farmers (livestock).

    It is politicians who have ruined this country not any section of the population. Most elderly are white of course; so who cares.

  • http://twitter.com/LoganDon don logan

    Look at all the greedy baby boomers bleat, pathetic spongers who have at long last been found out as the truely greedy generation they so obviously are.

    • barbie

      Don’t be so rude to your own citzens, think what they did to get where you are today and be grateful. Not all old people are wealthy they only have the state penison to live on plus pension credit, and thats been reduced. You should ask yourself could you live on it in today’s world? Think before you make statements that are silly. But eh its a free world we live in thanks to some elderly.

  • andagain

    In some countries governments give to the poor what they have taken from the rich.

    In this country, governments give to the babyboomers what they have taken from everyone else.

    • 2trueblue

      And what age are you? Big judgement to make.

      • andagain

        Money for students has been almost eliminated. Benefits are being cut in real terms,so are wages for government employees. They are talking about eliminating housing benefits altogether – for people who are too young.

        But pensioners are guarenteed real rises, and get to keep all the free goodies, and now we hear about another blank cheque for the elderly.

        Ever more money for the old, and ever higher burdens on the young make for a very easy judgement to make.

        • 2trueblue

          Benefits rose over the last 10 yrs at a far greater pace than wages.

          You really have a problem with pensioners. Tell me what have you contributed to life so far?

  • WIlliam Blakes Ghost

    I somehow find it ironic that someone from an organisation that only exists through the charity of others and has never earned a penny through providing real products or services and whose organisation doesn’t pay taxes should demand that people who have worked and paid taxes all their lives (which often have been squandered by the political classes) and have seen their pension pots pillaged on a regular basis by government should have to pay their way in full until they die.

    Isn’t it typical of the parasite classes? I don’t know if I am sick and tired of the unemployed sleeping behind their curtains but I am sick and tired of parasites from so called Westminster Freakshow think tanks procrastinating on here! Especially one who seems so bitter and twisted about the issue…..

    Hands up all those who favour raiding these think-tanks charitable trusts (in the same way pensions are raided)?

  • Tarka the Rotter

    And while the baby boomers have grown old, they have paid their taxes and helped pay for child allowance, welfare benefits, disability allowances and so on and so forth. They have been brought up to save, to put a little away each week or month, not fritter it away. So…whilst they were doing this, the politicians have signed away our sovereignty, encouraged mass immigration and thanks to the EU have dished out welfare to all comers. Oh brave new world…

    • andagain

      And while the baby boomers have grown old, they have paid their taxes
      and helped pay for child allowance, welfare benefits, disability
      allowances and so on and so forth.

      Then why have they left the country so massively in debt?

      And if you want to blame successive governments – who voted those governments into power?

      • barbie

        It wasn’t the electorate who you can blame its the governments we have been unfortunate to elect. Bankers created the problem, the Labour party made it worse by spending money we didn’t have. Cameron is borrowing just the same. They are all the same we need a new party and a fresh start, ukip comes to mind. You’ll never know till you give them the chance.

  • Jm

    Don’t work, don’t save, piss it all up the wall on shiny gadgets and consumer tat. Then retire on nothing safe thàt the state will pick up the bill. Welcome to the UK.

    • mikewaller

      I suspect that the young in the best position to do that these days are those expecting a big payout when mum and dad pop their clogs and the house is sold. Quite why such people should be enabled to think this because the the state will be picking up the tab for all the problems of old age is entirely beyond me.

      If there are other young people who think that the state on its own is going to be able to look after them in their old age in anything but the most basic conditions, they ought to be disabused very quickly. There just won’t be the money! Should the scheme spoken of actually come into being my guess is that not all that long afterwards it will suffer the fate I expect for Scotland’s current policy of no tuition fees: abandonment as unsustainable. Certainly, were I a lender to the UK Government, the mere thought of it would have me jacking up the interest rate.

  • itstheelectionstupids

    It’s just the election. The figures will change after (they think) they get in.
    Add to this the care of the young with cirrhosis, lung cancer, deafness and Type 2 from obesity and really the old just pale in to their normal insignificance with the politicians.
    On the other hand, if they have relatives (although some of you nasty commentators out there seem to have no mothers) why aren’t families looking after their own? Such a nice society we have.

  • David B

    The whole system in under strain. We are piling cost on our children and eventually they wil not be able to pay it. We need reform that cuts costs not increase them and that is across the board

  • MirthaTidville

    There really is some crackpot views, usually put forward by those who have had no dealings with the system…What Dilnot is trying to address is this….One person is profligate/lazy etc take your pick..falls ill/needs 24 residential care.Hasnt a bean, peed it all up against a wall..dont worry the local Council jumps in and pays ALL the care bills…fact..Person 2 is the very opposite and has some cash and a home, bought and paid for..well same Council then wants everything, oh yes they let you keep £23,000, and they`ll smile while they take the lot…….

    So you lot with all the answers please tell me where the justice is in that eh???…Oh yes and one thing Dilnot realised that some on here haven`t, is that people get cute and they make sure everything is spent, given away, got rid of before they need residential care.

    He`s actually trying to bring some order to a chaotic system

    • alexsandr

      bang on.Mirtha.

      whether one has the means to pay for care aslo depends upon inheritances too, so its really a lottery.

      but the other thing they need to do is to properly regulate the care sector, cos there are some real shits out there.ready to take the piss put of vulnerable old people. I know – one firm tried it on with my late dad. But again there are some realyl good firms too.

      and the amount of care given by the state is simply inadequate.Someone living in their own home is supposed to get 90 minutes a day of care and often get their ‘putting to bed’ visit at 1730 and are lucky to get contact time of 45 minutes a day cos the carers dont get enough travel time between care sessions or time to do the paperwork. And some of these people are those who fought for us in 1939-45

      but no votes in elderley care is there cos it doesnt appeal to yoof

      • HooksLaw

        Short of the entire population of Poland coming over here there will never be sufficient people to do the caring.
        Increasing old age and senility and infirmity is a real problem and there is never going to be a perfect answer.

        I believe if we prioritise the present welfare budget there is scope to look after the old. its arguable we spend too much welfare on the young.

        • Fergus Pickering

          I think old people like myself should smoke and drink a good deal more than we do. Why is it considered a triumph of modern medicine to keep people alive when they are senile and unhappy with no one left to love them?. My father could have died five years before he did. The last five years were wasted. I wouldn’t want to live like that.

      • 2trueblue

        The thing that is worrying is that the elderly and infirm are now demonised, because they need care. It is not just in the community that they are so appallingly treated, look at the evidence of the treatment in some hospitals. There is a great lack of care today and that is what should really be the start of reorganisation.

        You are right about the lack of care standards in the community which is blamed on tight traveling time. It is all contracted out and none of it done locally. Starting there could fix some of the problems.

    • David B

      Have u not realised the way government does everything has inherent unfairness. The benefit trap is caused by unfairness, the step changes in income tax is unfair, IHT is unfair generally, etc.

      When government fix one unfairness they create another and this has the potential to create the biggest.

      The pensioners of today are demanding those of a working age pay for their care but it is unlike that those people paying now will get the same service because the economy will not be able to afford it largly due to the debt that will be run up.

      • MirthaTidville

        Never said it was easy…answers never are but the system as it is at present is unfair to those who have tried to do the right thing all their lives, ie there is no incentive to save or care anymore and that will be the biggest burden on the young of today. Social care has not kept up with medical care

        • David B

          Fair is such a relative concept to your personal position. Bottom line is we cannot afford it and we will have to tax the young to the extend they will not be able to save for their retirement.

          • acorn

            Save? They don’t even think about it.

            All this is just Dave trying to recover some votes without giving up on that national emergency – you know, impose gay marriage and prostitute ourselves to Europe. Please those pensioners and these incompetent self-seeking psuedo-Conservatives might not be swept away by UKIP.

    • Duke of Earl

      That’s a pretty stupid argument, as David points out below. You should be arguing for the govt to stop subsidising Person 2, not asking for MORE subsidy for Person 1.
      That is like saying that it is unfair to high earners that their money is being taken and given as benefits to the poor, so rather than cut benefits or taxes, you begin to advocate that the govt gives money directly to the rich.
      When you really think about it, gov is always unfair to someone, so the best way to avoid this is for them to get out of the way.

    • barbie

      How right you are.

  • roger

    When I was young , in the 50s, our household was mum,dad, my brother and I, my mothers father and fathers mother. We should be a nation of families, but lost our moral compass a few decades ago. How to get back to a sensible nation will involve a serious change, a revolution, and decades of hard work.

  • 2trueblue

    Me Munford, you obviously live in another realm, which includes the politics of envy, to name one.

    In the real world some people have made provision throughout their lives, worked hard, paid their taxes, and claimed nothing. They have not objected to their taxes were used to prop up those who are in distressed situations. They have no choice to where their money goes and how it is spent. Why should they not benefit from care in their latter years? After all they have paid for it.

    • Duke of Earl

      If they have made provision then they won’t need a subsidy and the govt shouldn’t give them one.
      And no, they haven’t “paid” for anything via taxes. All that money was spent! And they repeatedly voted in govts that spunked their money up the wall and continued to raise taxes. They also voted lots of cushy benefits for themselves while they were working and now want to vote more benefits for themselves while they retire. This is without thinking of the huge debt burden they have left for their children and their grandchildren.
      I thought this was a free-market paper, yet there seems to be lots of subsidy junkies about.

      • 2trueblue

        So why then should those who save pay taxes if they mean nothing in your eyes? It is hardly their fault if governments spend it unwisely. They are not asking for a subsidy, they are asking to be treated like everybody else who has paid taxes. But then being frugal and saving is obviously worth nothing to you.

        • Duke of Earl

          What you’ve made is a very good argument for scrapping NI, cutting taxes, and removing the tax on pensions/savings (after income).

          What should NOT be happening is further transfers of wealth to the old. Especially the very wealthy old.

          It’s funny how you would probably disagree if the govt paid benefits to wealthy but unemployed young people, but would happily support benefits for the old who do not want to spend their savings. I’m being consistent and saying don’t give benefits to ANY of these groups.

          • HooksLaw

            The very well pald – hah a neat definition which means people a little bit better off than yourself.

            2trueblue is right.
            people have paid in and deserve the benefits when they need them.

          • 2trueblue

            You are not comparing like with like, just making soundbites.

          • 2trueblue

            If you take out car/house/personal insurance and you have an accident, BUT you are wealthy, do you suggest that you do not claim? If the company ran off with your money you would be pretty quick to take action against them. IF you have paid for something and the contract says you get the money, then I fail to see where you turn it around to suit yourself, ??? envy.

            • mikewaller

              The “contract” never said that you would be given care in your old age; womb to tomb only applied to health issues. Introducing such additional support at this stage would be like dear of Equitable Life dishing out yet more benefits to a favoured few as it staggered on to bankruptcy.

              As for our having paid for the care of our parent’s generation – a point made by someone else – they were folk who died a decade or more younger than, on average, we are likely to do. As a result the costs were far, far lower.

              • 2trueblue

                On the point of Equitable Life, the MPs got their money out without let or hindrance whilst others died in penury.

                The generation you think will live longer are not the total drain on society you seem to imply, in the years where they are healthy and retired they do a lot of voluntary work, and contribute. They look after their grandchildren, runs errands for those who are older and infirm, their savings are currently providing cheap mortgages for homeowners, (they are taxed on the little their savings produce).

                The contract was actually from cradle to the grave.

                What is worrying is the demonisation of the elderly, the unpleasant stench of judgment that is permeating on those who have actually been involved in a lot of what is good in this country, they often hold the line of what is decent, and it is built out of envy and greed by those who have obviously not managed their lives so well and are unhappy with their lot. They did not take this country to bankrupcy, the politicians did that and walked away. The politicians put a value on things that did not grow the economy, (this happened worldwide) grew government which produces nothing and then blamed the bankers, who assisted, but were not entirely to blame.

      • telemachus

        Absolutely
        This is just silver spoon perpetuation

      • dalai guevara

        It’s a bit like Man City in the Champions League: once you realise you cannot make the last 16, you try anything to make sure you don’t qualify for the Europa League…

    • mikewaller

      I came across a figure somewhere that suggested that you had to be in upper 40% of tax-payers to have put in more that you are likely to take out. Indeed, given their more clear-eyed approach to life and its opportunities, historically the middle classes have done rather better out of the welfare state than have those at the bottom, this not least because the better off tend to live longer and die more slowly.

      One other point, although politically it is a nuclear bomb, housing wealth is a category amongst the least deserving of tax or charge exemption. Unlike salary or the fruits of self-employment, it is largely derived from having the good luck to be born at the right time. To protect that at the expense of heaping debt and taxation on a generation which is already staggering under the triple burdens of paying for their own tertiary education, buying an inevitably very costly home of their own and building up a pension at at time of very low returns, strikes me – a 67 year old home owner with 2 adult children – as downright immoral.

      • Daniel Maris

        I doubt that’s true. It’s probably excluding the taxes we pay such as council tax,VAT, petrol, cigarette and alcohol duties, stamp duty, road tax etc.

        • mikewaller

          You may well be right, but don’t forget the staggering figure the Specie gave us a coupe of weeks ago to the effect that “financial services” contribution to economy now exceeds the total contribution from “the North”. This suggests to me that for all the machinations of Google, Amazon and Starbucks, there are still some major net contributors out there. Indeed, it explains why dear old Gordon was so keen on light regulation of the banks: it was they who for a time kept his dream world up in the air.

      • 2trueblue

        If you bought your home then you would remember rates of 16% on the mortgage. Such an opportunity! Compare that to the very low rates today, which are being subsidised by the very people you deem to be ‘lucky’. They are those who have saved. You belong with Mr Munford.
        By buying your own home you took pressure off the state to provide for you.

        • Dimoto

          Well said. The pernicious imbecile Willetts and his acolytes, like this Mumford character, are spreading their poison far and wide. It is so unjust that the “younger generation” have to wait until their late 20s to buy a house and car ! Some of the poor darlings can’t even afford a G4 ‘phone and I-pad !

          • mikewaller

            Can’t help thinking that you ought to get out a bit more, preferably beyond the Home Counties. Certainly, there are some so successful that they can afford houses, cars and all the modern trinkets, there are others who cannot afford to buy a house,and compensate by spending lavishly on the trinkets; but there are millions who can afford very little indeed. Nor are these just the little folk whose jobs went East; even our esteemed Editor singled out youth unemployment – graduates included – as one of the great scourges of the age..

            • 2trueblue

              You should get out more. The city is populated by achievers and they do not all hail from the Home Counties. Youth unemployment grew under Liebore who encouraged students to just get a degree irrelevant of its value. Everything had a value, and the bar was dropped, so the value dropped. Those who took degrees in solid disciplines are not unemployed. Peoples expectations also grew beyond what was achievable in the short term.

        • mikewaller

          I thought only “welfare scroungers” expect the state to do everything for them. I certainly expect no praise for buying a house; financially it was a the best move I ever made. The high interest rates were sometimes a problem, but usually inflation was racing ahead and it was the poor old savers who got screwed, not the house buyers. Some did get hurt, but usually because their eyes had been bigger than their purses. Conversely, I can recall several period when my house was earning far more per week than I was, and my job paid well.

          Against this background, it is appalling ingratitude for our generation to do anything other than say that on average we have been the luckiest people that ever lived. Rounding such lives off by dumping the costs of old age on a generation already up to their ears in trouble is downright wicked.

          • 2trueblue

            Remember who stole the future, Liebore. Do you suffer from gerascophobia? You certainly make me think with people like you around it could be induced.

        • HooksLaw

          Correct again. These numpties are just cherry picking. Brown ruined pensions and thus people are getting lower or no occupational pension.
          The other point is that the young today should be making even bigger contributions to cover the fact that we are living longer. I do not see them falling over themselves to pay more

          • mikewaller

            That’s rich coming from an age group (mine) who only paid for oldies who did the decent thing and keeled over a just a few years after retiring.

      • Thomas Paine

        Well said that man. This whole business is a sop to the grey vote.

        Aren’t this lot capable of cutting ANYTHING? The discourse of ‘Austerity’ is every bit as much an outright lie as Brown’s ‘no-boom’n’bust’.

        • Fergus Pickering

          And I suppose that the opposite would be a sop to the young workshy vote?

      • Colonel Mustard

        Pff!

        • mikewaller

          One cannot fail to be impressed by the sheer quality of your contributions!

          • Colonel Mustard

            Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit. In your case about the only wit you appear to have.

            I am not impressed with you at all.

  • HooksLaw

    You are a remarkable man Mr Mumford – you will never grow old, neither will your parents or children. Sodding disgrace isn’t it being old.

    • telemachus

      Not sure whether you agree with this important message
      It is surely nonsense to do this at this time
      Let’s pu the money into building for growth

      • Fergus Pickering

        What the hell is building for growth? Sounds like a meaningless soundbite to me.Utter balls, don’t yu know.

        • telemachus

          Utter Balls indeed
          And the country needs it and him

  • Duke of Earl

    If the elderly have assets and they want quality care then they should sell their assets. Or if their children want to inherit the assets then they should look after their old parents in their own home!
    I don’t know why I should subsidise anyone with my taxes and especially not wealthy baby boomers! They are the most pampered and privileged generation in the history of man, and their loony politics squandered the wealth and capital that the greatest generation left for them. I am tired of useless politicians bribing this coddled lot with my money!

    • HooksLaw

      Look after their parents in their own home? Like Miller you mean? But hey you are someone else as well who is oh so confident of never being old ill infirm and needy.

      Gobshites like Mumford are clearly confident in the mass of his largess and health in his old age.

      • telemachus

        So what else do you want to shut or cancel to pay for it

        • alexsandr

          lets start with some of the non jobs the taxpayers alliance bring to our attention, not pay the EU and sack the pilgrims.

          • telemachus

            Not pay the EU
            Lose our most important market
            Hike up unemployment
            Have no money to even contemplate this

      • Duke of Earl

        You’re kind of missing the point. Why should asset rich individuals be subsidised?
        Think of it this way, Lord Sugar can have a butler look after him in his old age and still live in his plush mansion while the rest of us have to pay for all his care over 75k.
        If people want care then they can damn well pay for it. They already get fee bus travel, subsidised energy, free tv licenses, free healthcare and a state pension!

        • MirthaTidville

          What a wonderful caring and compassionate person you are…………..

        • 2trueblue

          I think you are missing the point as you are not comparing like with like. Go do the math.

          • Duke of Earl

            If I’ve missed something obvious please point it out.

            • 2trueblue

              So paying taxes which includes NI is of no consequence when it comes to the point of delivery? You want to means test the state pension, and healthcare?

              Most people would be happy looking back to not have contributed and invested the money themselves. What is your viewpoint? Where is your cut off point?

              • Duke of Earl

                My cut off point starts at the bottom. I’d scrap NI (which is a massive con), scrap the NHS and a whole load of our benefit system. I’m not sure why you have this assumption that the state should look after our private affairs.
                If we pay less taxes then we could save more and have a better retirement. Just because the existing system is shit doesn’t mean you should go ahead and make it “shitter”.

                • Fergus Pickering

                  You want to scrap the NHS. Ah well, we need pay no attention to you. You are a mad ideologue. You probably want to scrap gun laws too. Are you American by any chance, or alternatively filthy rich..

                • HooksLaw

                  As soon as someone says ‘scrap the NHS’ you know they are thick pillocks.

                • Duke of Earl

                  I’m neither American nor rich. I just think that universal benefits are a terrible thing in all their forms. It would be much better if as in Singapore individuals had a mandatory savings account that they could then use in times of ill health. It works perfectly well, and they have cheaper and better care than the UK.

                  But of course it’s easy for you to avoid the argument and call me an ideologue.

                • 2trueblue

                  It is all about good management, or lack of it. And we have had a lot of bad management of the NHS and abuse of our taxes, both collection of and government manhandling of our money.

                  Our NHS should be for use of those who have contributed and live here. That was where we started but the vast management have not bothered to run it properly.

          • Fergus Pickering

            You mean the maths, or else you are an American and should mind your own business.

            • 2trueblue

              Manners maketh the man…… but not you.

        • HooksLaw

          Just because you own a house does not make you rich. If your house is to be taken away in old age then why bother doing anything in young age. What we may see is ordinary people – not the rich – having their life’s work and ambitions taken away from them. No one told them at the time. if you want to kick the old in the bollocks start now with the yoof and tell them what awaits them in old age and see how they like it.

          And PS
          Sugar and his ilk will be able to pay quite easily for care without troubling the taxman and even if not they pay (unless you are a lying comic) hugely into the system anyway. We need rich nob ends like Sugar.

          • Duke of Earl

            Listen, the country is broke! This generation that you are worrying about have already milked the country dry, and now they are asking to feed on its carcass.
            We can’t afford it and we should not be committing to unlimited liabilities for these people.

            Please explain to me why people who have assets should not sell them? Or why can’t their children take care of them? We’ve been using this system for hundreds of years and its worked fine. The old are just asking for more subsidy!

            • barbie

              Don’t be so silly and greedy, your point of view just won’t work in this country today. We all agree we need restraint on welfare but cutting off care and health systems to all and making them provide for themselves just wouldn’t work. We would have chaos in many areas, including social welfare and a breakdown of law and order. Its not easy if you’re poor to pull yourself out of poverty, education as let many down, perhaps the ills of society should be redefined before making things harder for people. Disease is rife in poor countries, and that would happen here too, your ideas are self centred, but you are free to have them in our democracy.

    • barbie

      That’s a bit harsh for a generation who worked just after the war when this country was on its knees. What you enjoy now wasn’t easy to achieve; it was done off the backs of those you call names. Poverty was rife then, starvation a possiblity, and families were so poor they hardly had the strength to do the hours expected of them. There was no health service as you know today, in fact having babies was a risk from infection, and deaths were frequent. The nation was poor, and still as poor as found before the war. Obviously many memories don’t stretch to that era, mine does to the early 1940s, and believe me if people had to live those times and compare with todays, you’d be glad what we have got now. Its made this nation healthier, more secure, and able to get on, benefits should be cut of that everyone knows, but believe me poverty brings many things. Some of those things you would not like, radicalism, riots, unsocial behaviour, political unheaval, read history and see what I mean. Give me tolerance and fairness any time coupled with democracy for all. Greed is a thing that festers and brings nothing but contention. Think on and be grateful for small mercies.

  • telemachus

    Dilnot is all wrong
    If folk have the capital they should use it to look after themselves
    It is just pushing megabucks to offspring
    Every generation should look after themselves
    Why push money to this and take it off disabled in wheelchairs

    • Duke of Earl

      I can’t believe I’m actually agreeing with you. *heave*

      • http://twitter.com/rlpkamath Rahul Kamath

        The problem w/ the current approach is that it dis-incentivises building equity particularly if you have a small amount of it (say under £300k). But to solve that problem you offer Dilnot to today’s 20 / 30 something’s who are working, not today’s retirees. Add it to the NhS or make it a compulsory insurance purchase.

        Mumford is right that the big winners of Dilnot as currently proposed are the children of the wealthy middle classes.

        • Duke of Earl

          I’m not sure how it is a disincentive. After all we have just had a housing boom with people rushing to buy homes.
          If you socialise old age care then you completely remove the incentive to save and you destroy capital. You will encourage a society of renters, spenders and debtors which is the jade thing we need.

          People should save for their own retirement and not expect the rest of us to cover their losses.

          • Guest

            The dis-incentive is that if you need age old care and have savings, they get wiped out paying for that care. If you don’t have savings then the state steps in and pays for your care. So why save?

            • alexsandr

              depends if your care assessment says you need residential care. If not you get a few short visits a day and a wiltshire farm foods catalogue.

            • Duke of Earl

              So your answer is that the state takes care of everyone? Does not compute.

              • http://twitter.com/rlpkamath Rahul Kamath

                It does if the state mandates that you buy insurance.

                • Duke of Earl

                  Why should the state mandate anything? I do not understand this blind assumption that the state needs to nanny anyone.
                  Save for yourself and/or sell your house. Or buy private insurance.
                  The last thing we need is the dead hand of govt stepping in to what should be a family responsibility.

                • http://twitter.com/rlpkamath Rahul Kamath

                  Bcoz when we have OAPs who can’t take care of themselves and don’t have the money to pay for care the state will be compelled to step in. What would u like those OAPs to do otherwise, die of starvation ?

                • Duke of Earl

                  No, these people should be looked after by their families or by charities. In the extreme cases then the govt can intervene.
                  That’s not what Dilnot is about though, the proposal is for a CAP in order to help the asset rich. Nothing to do with poor OAPs whom this wouldn’t help.

                • http://twitter.com/rlpkamath Rahul Kamath

                  I don’t support Dilnot in its current form as per comments above. But the issue of old age care needs to be addressed. In your world there is no room for people who don’t have charities or families helping them. This is the thicko libertarianism of Ron Paul.

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