Friday, December 12, 2008
Will the young pick up the tab?
"Politicians find these questions of intergenerational conflict very difficult. They would prefer to evade them, especially when they involve large and politically active constituencies. That's why the government was slow to introduce even Adair Turner's relatively modest proposals; why it backed away from substantial reform of public sector pensions; and why it decided to make students pay for university, rather than impose a retrospective graduate tax on those who had already benefited. But we can't afford this kind of myopia. What's the right balance over our lifetime between working and dependence, and how should we balance the competing interests of generations at a time of chaos, cuts and profound change? We all have a profound interest in the answers." —Jenni Russell