There’s A Reason Why The Old Folks Reject Redistributed Socialism

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A recent finding, that old peeps don;t like socialism more than young peeps like it. One obvious reason presents itself:

Imagine a world in which there is no economic inheritance at all. The same pattern would exist – the young have nothing very much to their names, the old have it all. Because that all is something which is purchased over the course of a life. It’s possible to get a little more technical and talk of the lifetime income hypothesis, of income smoothing – savings are made while working so as to have a crust to eat in retirement – but the basic concept is obvious. Born naked into the world, a couple of decades before earnings start, perhaps 40 years before peak earning capacity. The young simply will have less wealth than those whose savings are at a peak before they start consuming them in their dotage.

And if you look at the statistics, pensions and housing are the major components of household wealth. Of the near £15 trillion the Office for National Statistics records, some £5 trillion is housing (calculated net of mortgage debt, of course) and £6 trillion in pensions. Granny’s antique nest of tables is only £1 trillion-ish and financial wealth – billionaires paying for their yachts by owning all the companies – is £2 trillion or so.

The wealth of the nation is largely held by the old and those with are less amenable to forced redistribution than those without. Totes Amazeballs for that observation of course.

There’s also this odd idea that with age comes wisdom. Or at least experience. Someone galloping toward pensionable age right now will have been adult, therefore possibly taking note, as the attempts on socialism of Russia, Czechoslovakia, Poland, Bulgaria, China, Vietnam, Venezuela, Zimbabwe, crumbled into the economic dust. For the Lord’s Sake, socialism even managed to make those Germans subject to it poor, an entirely astonishing achievement.

That is, the old’s opposition to socialism isn’t just selfishness, it’s observation.

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BoganboyTDBernie G.John BSnarkus Recent comment authors
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Snarkus
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Snarkus

I suggest Venezuela should be the poster child for failure of socialism. An oil exporting company running out of cash and oil seemed a farcical story, until they achieved it

TD
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TD

Once it is certain that Venezuela has been impoverished beyond all hope you can be sure that it will come to be admired by socialists all over, much as Cuba is now.

John B
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John B

‘… the young have nothing very much to their names…’ Oh? They have a damned lot more than my generation at the same age, or my parents/grandparents. What the have nothing of, is anything with which to compare what they have. If you are born on a hilltop you have no notion of what living in the valley is like, what it takes to climb the hill or how lucky you are to be spared the effort. Also some of us older people don’t like Socialism because we lived through it… UK was a Socialist State, complete with ‘workers (via… Read more »

Bernie G.
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Bernie G.

The young have advantages and incomes we boomers (at their age) could barely conceive of. What they don’t have in many cases is a home of their own – and that’s primarily a London/south east problem. That said I don’t envy them. My generation began with little and never expected a great deal, have been pleasantly surprised how life turned out. A lot has been invested in the millennial generation and accordingly they are under far more pressure to succeed than we were. Would remind you that wealth, for most of us, only began to accumulate in our 50s when… Read more »

TD
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TD

It’s been said that 90% of Warren Buffett’s wealth has come since he turned 60 and 95% since he turned 50. After the last few years of a stock market and home price run up many Boomers have accumulated a significant portion of their current wealth very recently. A professional couple who’d accumulated a million dollars in their retirement plans by 2015 may have close to $2 million today. While most seniors will probably follow the usual advice of reducing their exposure to risky investments as they age, some won’t, and of those some portion are likely to become very… Read more »

Boganboy
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Boganboy

I’d guess the reason the white haired old bastard I see in the mirror doesn’t like socialism is that they intend to redistribute my savings to them.

Fuck ’em.