One of the Tories’ biggest missteps in 2017 was their decision to include the ‘dementia tax’ on the homes of pensioners in care. The move – clung to in spite of the uproar that it caused, until Labour’s surging popularity forced them to drop it – showed the absolute cynicism of the Conservatives’ attitude toward even their traditional supporters.
Pensioners vote – and a lot of them vote Tory – so the conventional wisdom went. But as soon as the Tories thought, foolishly, that they were so far ahead in the polls that they didn’t need to rely on the pensioner vote, the knives came out for our older folk, too.
Do they never learn?
The ‘MSM’ are now reporting that a think-tank headed by a Tory peer is proposing a tax on all pensioners in order to fund a £10,000 lump sum to young people when they turn twenty-five, to “ensur[e] there’s a fair deal across the generations“.
Even the fact that the idea could occur to them shows the detached and simplistic nature of Tory thinking: “let’s tax old folk and give a lumper to the kids – that’ll fix things!”
Way to miss the point by a country league, let alone a country mile.
If you want ‘fairness across the generations’, give the young what their parents and grandchildren had:
- free education as an investment in their – and our – future
- housing that costs no more than two or three times the average wage
- ample social housing for those who need it (which will help costs for those who want to buy, too, by increasing supply)
- secure employment at decent wages
- decent pension provisions from their employers, linked to earnings at retirement not some fraction of a depleted pension pot
- a properly – centrally – funded and organised NHS, providing care free at the point of need, when needed, not hours, weeks or months later if they’re lucky
In other words, change society – it’s not impossible if those in charge have the political will and the economic, monetary nous – so people can build a life, rather than being forced to work till they drop and pay exorbitant rents to live in houses they could never afford to buy and exorbitant interest rates on education loans that hang round their necks until they’re grandparent-age themselves.
Do that instead of conducting a smash-and-grab raid on the elderly.
Oh right. For that you need a Labour government.
Tories can’t change their spots – as this latest debacle shows all too clearly.
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