The Problem with Pensions

I got a letter from one of my employers last week letting my know that in September, should my wage cross a certain boundary, I would be automatically enrolled in their pension scheme. What a fantastic idea. In case you hadn’t heard, the government has run out of money, and since it can’t afford any more to maintain our ageing population, due to the stupid expenditures it has committed itself to, we have to cover ourselves.

Okay, nice idea. What’s wrong with that? It’s fair enough isn’t it? I know all the socialists will be up in arms just on the principle of it. But yeah, we earn our money, we invest it prudently in a pension scheme so we have something to live off once we retire.

So we’re now legally obliged to invest more money in the banks, which if I remember, are the same banks that have all just spent the last five years bordering insolvency due to frivolous investment. Right… So as the world treads into an ever deeper banking crisis, who is forced to deposit their money into insolvent banks? Us. You and me.

I always had a better idea to prepare for my retirement, and thanks to this new legislation, that now has a fresh hurdle. Rather than giving my money to some fat cat banker to invest, why can’t invest it myself? Why can’t I take the money I would have put into my pension my whole life long, and build up businesses, wisely chosen commodities or property, and live from the dividends that would produce. That would not only be industrious, a strength to the economy, and a very satisfying occupation for my final years, but it would support me better than any pension would.

But most people don’t want that. They don’t want to do the leg work to become self reliant. They want someone to make them a job, and give them a pension. Now that they’ve drawn so much from the government, they have to draw from their employers instead, but it’s just passing the bomb onto someone else. Ultimately all this money has to somehow come from the only part of the economy that produces wealth: the private sector. So unless some more people start making an effort again soon to produce real wealth, this system is going to collapse and fall.


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