10 Downing Street Twitters While UK Pensioners Freeze

Ten Downing Street has a new website, or rather blog.

Brown’s website is Web2.0tastic
Based on open source WordPress code, the site ticks off every Web 2.0 word-bingo box – even claiming to be in Beta. It’s got everything the kids want: A Flickr page, a YouTube channel, podcasts and even a Twitter section – “it’s 10 Downing Street here! I’m at 10 Downing Street!”

If you want the latest news from 10 Downing Street, then you can just follow them on Twitter.

Unfortunately for certain UK pensioners, the latest news always turns out to be the same old same old. Today 10 Downing Street responded to a petition from Roy and Joan Brentnall of Canada that closed on 11 June 2008. It asked the Prime Minister to remove the discrimination against British State pensioners who retire to the Commonwealth countries rather than Europe or the USA.

It has taken over 60 days to produce a response.

080813 response 10 downing street

It is largely a copy and paste version of what was given to a petition on January 3rd of this year. Perhaps as a signal of the priority given to UK pensioners, even the copy and pasting created an unintelligible sentence. Presumably the petition that Derek Richards of New Zealand started, which closed 11 July 2008, will get the same response whenever they have time to copy and paste that one.

On the 100th anniversary of Lloyd George setting up the UK state pension system, it would be nice to see the discrimination removed and pension parity restored.

6 thoughts on “10 Downing Street Twitters While UK Pensioners Freeze”

  1. UK pensioners are continuing to live a nightmare existance on a state pension worth just 16 per cent of National Average wages because the state pension remains linked to inflation and not national average wages.

    This is because New Labour have not reversed Margaret Thatcher’s 1980 pensions policy of breaking the link with earnings.

    New Labour have kept state pensions linked to the lower inflation rate at 10 times the cost to tax payers than restoring the link with earnings.

    There is no shortage of money to pay pensioners a decent state pension based on at least 50 years of working and paying contributions after the war and todate.

    But this isnt about cost, this is about right wing dogma, because since their general election victory in 1997, New Labour have embraced Thatcherism, 100 per cent.

    And that’s the bottom line

    Michael Thompson
    Link-Age/Countrywide & member of The Devon Pensioners Action Forum.

  2. Barry Welford, if you can read this, contact me and I will send you some facts and figures the government don’t want you to know.


  3. Barry, What makes matters much worse is not just the national apathy on this issue from both richer pensioners with other income, from the general public, from the British media, and from the the two major political parties in this country.

    It is that the money is there, with this Government sitting on a National Insurance “surplus” of around £40 billion, which is expected to be 74.1 billion by 2012.

    And also that the Government’s Pension Credit means test system is costing tax payers 10 times more than the restoration of the earnings link.

    At 60 last year, 2008, and having been campaigning for the elderly generations in this country for 20 years, what I dont know about this issue could be put on a pin head.

    To think that our war veterans and younger pensioners are means tested for extra money on a £90 odd quid a week state pension makes me puke, when MP’s themselves are sitting pretty thank you, and still we British largely do nothing.

    We get what we deserve in this country, but our pensioners do not.

  4. I wonder how many UK pensioners living abroad, are among those who in 1979 voted for the very same Thatcherite government in the first place who severed the state pensions link with national average wages in 1980 all those years ago, and who had other income enough to move abroad, leaving their poorer counterparts to suffer the anguish of a dimished state pension todate ?

    And I also wonder how many of these same pensioners living abroad merely voted Tory in 1980 because their parents were also Tory voters, but that these pensionbers who voted Tory in 1980, had no ida of what Margaret Thatcher had in store for their contributary state pension that was linked to earnings or inflation by the 1974 Labour Government ?

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