Stop blaming the baby boomers.
Few generations have been so subject to mythologising as the Western baby boomers, born in the 20 years after the end of the Second World War. According to their detractors (who are often baby boomers themselves) they had it all: free love, free universities, final salary pensions, at least two property booms and a guaranteed job. Their offspring, by contrast, cannot afford to buy, or even rent, a home; leave university with debts they will never pay off; will never have a steady career; and can look forward to a miserable state pension at the age of 70 – if they are lucky.
I have to say, I’ve been sick of the anti-boomer barrage of bollocks over the past few years. The reality is as stated in the report, the only commonality is the year of birth. Sure, things like university education was free to the student and people had grants for subsistence. However, this was balanced by very few going to university. Like many of my peers, my retirement plan is to keep working. What pensions I do have are in small (very small) pots and aren’t worth a damn. So, it’s keep on working.
There is some truth in this. But only some. The pension of a younger baby boomer aged around 55 will probably be worse than that of his father, since the defined benefit schemes that the last generation enjoyed have largely ended. Moreover, few plan to retire early since many need to look after both their adult children and ageing parents – a new social phenomenon. A report today by the Ready for Ageing Alliance, a group of national charities for the elderly, points out that the baby boomers are an eclectic group with a wide range of needs, incomes and savings (if any).
The idea that a whole generation of diverse individuals is, in some way, disadvantaging those who followed is pure unadulterated bollocks. Time it stopped, frankly.