Monday, August 01, 2005

Lies of life - Old-age pensions

"The pensions are safe" (Die Renten sind sicher). A famous sentence of Norbert Blüm, former German minister for labor and social affairs.
In 2000 he received the Münchhausen award, given to people with special abilities in acting, rhetoric, fantasy and satire.

Maybe it was awarded for this sentence.

The old-age security in Germany is part of the subdivided social security. Every employee has to take part in the system. A fixed rate (at the moment 19,5%) of the monthly salary goes to the insurance, 50% from the employee, 50% from the employer.
Insured risks are old age (main part), reduced ability to work and death (concerning surviving dependants).

The financing of the insurance doesn't follow the funding principle but the pay-as-you-go system.
The current payment for the pensioners is divided among the present contributors. This is the so called contract of generations. The young pay for the old.
That was okay in former times where the proportion between young and old people was more in direction of the young. But the pyramid of age is not a pyramid anymore. We have more and more old people and they are getting older and older.

So the system will break down. But it is the holy cow of all parties and therefore it can't be slaughtered. All politicians are afraid of telling the truth to the people. So the truth occurs bit by bit. And that is annoying, because you cannot react when you don't know the facts.
This can also lead to tensions between old and young people. Old people have the opinion, that they have worked for the old-age pension and therefore deserve them. Young people pay into a system, without the knowledge what they will ever get back in return.

What will happen? Here are some possibilities or opportunities:

  • The old-age pensions will be reduced noticeably.
  • The age limit for getting payment of the security will be increased (67 instead of 65 is being discussed)
  • A wonder takes place and tons of babies will be given birth in Germany
  • Self-employed and public servants will be integrated into the system
  • Old people will "work" and participate lifelong and will be integrated better in the society, e.g. with honorary and also regular work.
  • The will not forget that they have been young, too. And vice versa the young have to think about that they will be old one day.
  • There will be a better solution for the unemployment problems (which is hard to imagine).

Old age can mean wrong forecasts, the wealth of memories and the accidents of surviving. And always think about: You're gonna die. Maybe not tomorrow or even next year. But you're gonna die. Taste life!


Blogger Kathy said...

Hallo du! Wollte auch mal wieder einen Kommentar da lassen und hallo sagen. Hoffe euch geht's gut!

Ja ja was haben wir nicht gelacht über Uns Nobbie Blüm. Die Renten sind sicher.... dann ist's ja gut. Gut dass wir's wissen. Ned wahr?
Bin echt gespannt wie das mit der Wahl laufen wird. *schauder*
Grüße, Kathy

4:19 PM  

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