Pension hypocrisy

It is instructive, but no surprise, that no politician or top public servant has had the guts to reply to Marcus Brooks’ excellent article (Business, 19 December) sub-headed “Politicians plundering pensions but preserving their own final-salary schemes”.

As he said, their pensions are unfunded (paid for by future taxpayers) and often worth “way in excess of the pension cap” they hypocritically impose on the rest of us.

Had the coalition had the common sense and decency in June 2010 to have abolished their schemes – and all such public sector schemes – while preserving all accrued benefits, and replaced them with money-purchase schemes like the vast majority of the private sector, then they might reasonably have claimed “we are all in it together” and would have earned the moral authority to demand the austerity they expect of others.

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As it is, their moral compass remained skewed, the moral high ground beyond their reach, and they squandered the goodwill they enjoyed then, their incompetence summed up in David Cameron’s later admission that he did not realise how difficult it would be to cut the deficit.

John Birkett

Horseleys Park

St Andrews