Thursday, November 17, 2011

Don't lecture me - don't make me feel guilty

In the UK we have a weird payment that drops through the letter box of all retired people at Xmas called the Winter Fuel Allowance.

In these troubled time it has been the target for a lot of intergenerational griping.

As you would expect there are a lot of young people who "don't think it is fair" that oldies get a cheque from HM Gov at Xmas whilst all they get is the thought of paying fees for their education. I guess you can see their point of view - but only up to a point. A very, very small point.

The worst gripers are the wealthy old themselves who either because they want a few more minutes in the media spotlight or who genuinely feel guilty having amassed larges sums of money having never exhibited any real talent. A classic case of somebody who suffers both of these ills is Joan Bakewell.

Why am I telling you this? Well, I have lots of debates with others (and myself) about the importance of attitudes that are associated with age cohorts. In the main I don't think they exist or if they do they are far less important than the attitudes that arise for other reasons (i.e. the person's education, income, health etc).

There is one emotion that I think does touch a lot of my generation and that is that they hate being lectured, especially by others who have their own agendas. Secondly, there is a distrust of giving money to a bunch of do-gooders rather than giving it directly to somebody who would spend it wisely.

As you can see I am disclosing some of my own thoughts.

So I will make a prediction that this campaign Surviving Winter will be a flop. It will be interesting to see how it works out. Dick Stroud

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