POLITICAL: Canada starts to align retirement age with life expectancy; why can’t we?


Canada ups retirement age in bid to balance budget
By Michel Comte | AFP

*** begin quote ***

Canada’s center-right government called for the retirement age to be raised and for major public service cuts Thursday, in an austerity budget that aims to balance the books by 2016.

Tackling unpopular measures that many industrialized countries are being forced to consider as their populations age, the Canadian government said its budget would help the country move a step ahead.

“Other Western countries face the risk of long-term economic decline. We have a rare opportunity to position our country for sustainable, long-term growth,” Finance Minister Jim Flaherty said in the House of Commons.

*** and ***

Flaherty said old age security and guaranteed income supplement benefits worth up to a total of Can$15,000 and now paid out at age 65 would be offered only at age 67, starting in 2023.

He also announced the withdrawal of the Canadian penny from circulation later this year, saying it costs more to produce than its face value. The move will save the government Can$11 million annually.

*** end quote ***

Seems a simple modest change. Will it make THAT much difference to folks who are 55 now.

I’d prefer something a little more dramatic at a much earlier age. Like 40’s go till they are 70. 30’s go to 75. 20’s go to 80.

And an annual “mark to market”. Remember life expectancy is supposed to top 100 in our life time.

I’d index it to inflation and means test it. If you’ve got 10M$, then you shouldn’t need the dole. Spend down to 10 and climb aboard.

Of course, ideally, everyone would be responsible for their own retirement. Like it was in the old days.

But then we were a free country!

# – # – # – # – #