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Oh how glad I am that I am aged 73

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Oh how glad I am that I am aged 73

how to become dazzled by governmental applied logic

Oh how glad I am that I am aged 73 and am too infirm to be sent down the mines. Apparently everyone is going to live longer and so our new benevolent government had decided that voters will be privileged to work longer before qualifying for State pension. We can only wait with bated breath and a definite absence of hope for the world of medical research to devise the means by which 60 to 70 year olds might retain the vigour and energy they enjoyed in their prime, and to nullify the inevitable deteriorating effects of ageing. This might enable them in their dotage to be fit enough to be employed, or to remain in employment. That is assuming any employer wants to employ cynical old farts, and by then nation-wide cynicism should be at record levels, and that is also assuming that employers haven't shunted most of the jobs abroad for cheaper pay roles. Shabby is the word that springs to mind. So folks are to work longer and receive less for their efforts. Massive staff cuts and pay freezes are to be the new way of life meaning that employees that are kept on will be expected to also share the workload of their now unemployed colleagues. All of these "we're all in this together' sacrifices with no end in sight nor, I suspect, ever will be in sight, and deepening ongoing suspicion that we are being conned by the banks and financial experts that got us into this mess, and also the government that has let the banks off so lightly. Meanwhile the nauseating bonus culture continues to grow and thrive.

Surely these are echoes of the grim Thatcher years? What is the current governmental buzz-word? Back then it was Rationalisation. This week on TV we were treated to a patronising lecture given by a no doubt well-heeled Lord somebody or other. The theme was that if because you qualify for council housing that probably will never be built you have been forced to rent from the private sector in a high rent area where you are employed, in future due to the crippling effect of housing benefit capping you should seek to rent in a low rent area (assuming any exist any more?). Am I mistaken but don't folks and their families flock to work in towns because that's where the jobs are, and so rents in towns are always higher? So you move to a low rent area where there are few available jobs but will lose your benefits unless you accept offered employment no matter whether it is suitable for you or not. Thank God we live in a free country where every case is judged upon its merit and its outcome is then always decided by inflexible blanket rules which when we appeal we are told, cannot be changed. Never mind, I gather that the UK is to create a new space programme and so maybe all of we "oldies' could be shunted to some other planet where there's no toxic black holes nor ongoing war on terror! Meanwhile I think I'll have a lie down.

Keep smiling cos we're British!

David Brittain


Now the latest governmental brainstorm announced on TV is: If you are an unemployed resident in an area of few job vacancies and are prepared to move to areas of high employment in the UK you could be offered assistance to move and would be placed at the top of the area council housing list local to the area to which you move. Of course this will mean "hard luck' for those countless poor souls who have no choice but to pay high rent in the private sector. Already disheartened after several years of patiently waiting their turn on council housing lists, they are to be left with that familiar sinking sensation that accompanies being regularly shunted lower and lower down the list to be replaced by newcomers to the area. Still I suppose these are the unfortunate folks who, at the sparkling suggestion of well-heeled Lord somebody or other, will desperately be trying to move to low rent areas. Only when you join the two TV announcements together does the brilliance of the scheme reveal itself. The unfortunate folks forced to move to low rent areas due to the crippling effect of housing benefit capping do move to those areas, and then they apply for government aid to move to an area of high employment where they are then placed at the top of the council housing waiting list. For this clever idea someone should receive a knighthood if not an earldom.

Meanwhile, keep on taking the medication.

David Brittain

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I'm David Brittain, aged 76, English and living in Essex on the beautiful coast of East Anglia in the UK. I'm a low income retired pensioner with a selection of dreary ailments with which I definitely won't bore you, and a selection of opinions and (more...)
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