This odious looking gentleman, Michael Bichard, is a Member of the House of Lords, a former career local government officer and civil servant. He has come up with the brilliant wheeze that pensioners should be required to undertake some form of community support work or face losing some of their pension.
He has suggested that the government should use the pensions system to "incentivise" retired people.
"The current generation are very heavy contributors to the public purse, whereas previous generations have benefited from the public purse. We are now prepared to say to people who are not looking for work, if you don't look for work you don't get benefits, so if you are old and you are not contributing in some way or another maybe there is some penalty attached to that. Are we using all of the incentives at our disposal to encourage older people not just to be a negative burden on the state but actually be a positive part of society?"
Bichard says this is a new idea and he intends to look into it further. In other words, like many of the twerps in Parliament these days, he hasn't thought it through. Here's just a few clues to get you started, Baron Bonkers:
- Pensioners have earned their pensions by paying National Insurance and taxes over their working lives.
- Pensions are in fact 'deferred earnings' and it is simply immoral to suggest that pensioners should have to 'earn' their pensions all over again.
- The current generation were supported when younger by today's pensioners.
- Pensioners already provide a large proportion of voluntary workers.
- Pensioners provide free childcare for grandchildren, and are often caring for their husband or wife
- (and many more).
[Note: Bichard was the Permanent Secretary at the Department for Education when tuition fees were introduced. 'Nuff said!]