Decision to allow people to take this cash early is just cynical

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I did not think I could despise this Coalition Government more than I already do, but their latest electoral ploy has succeeded.

Their decison to allow people to stop paying into annuities intended to bulk out inadequate state old age pensions is one of their most cynical moves to date.

No doubt electorally popular because it gives voters a financial boost here and now ahead of next year’s General Election, but it disregards the consequences for them in later life.

They have created an illusory boost to voters’ incomes which costs the Exchequer nothing.

There are, of course, no assurances to make up the difference by raising the state old age pension accordingly.

That will never happen, and old people will suffer in future.

The Government knows perfectly well that before we grow old, most of us find it difficult to imagine ourselves being old. They themselves will never have to depend on the old age pension in their old age.

Look out for many more electroral sleights of hand in the near future, Meanwhile, the Labour Party dare not oppose these measures for fear of electoral retribution.

What Ed Miliband should be doing is to find the courage to point out the dangers to people who cannot or will not take the longer view.

He might even be surprised to discover that voters respect him for it.

Barbara Green