Not a goer

The Herald reports:

A population professor has come up with a novel idea to cope with New Zealand’s ageing population – pay a higher pension to those who have children.

Professor Natalie Jackson, the new director of Waikato University’s Population Studies Centre, says the welfare state is “a great pyramid scheme” based on a pyramid-shaped population with only a few old people at the top supported by growing numbers of young people at the bottom.

“Just like a pyramid scheme, you have to have a continuous supply of new people coming in to support the numbers of old people,” she said yesterday. …

She said society would have to give more priority to children to maximise their contribution to the labour force and hence to the tax base that pays for pensions. And it would have to look at linking pensions to producing children.

“The welfare state has to change, and one of the potential things we might look at is limiting pensions to those who have had children,” she said.

Heh, can you imagine trying to pass that one into law. Best response is from Susan St John:

However, the co-director of Auckland University’s Retirement Policy and Research Centre, Dr Susan St John, said linking pensions to having children “doesn’t bear thinking about”.

“How do men get their pensions? Surely not more based on the number of women they happen to impregnate?”

A fair point!

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