Is this because the elderly aren’t all that thick?

Under certain assumptions, the estimates suggest that ageing societies will tend to become less averse to open immigration regimes over time.” This doesn’t surprise me at all. On the first point (paper here), as the authors Simone Schotte and Hernan Winkler point out “The old not only differ from the young in terms of age, but they were also born and raised in a different time, in a different economic and institutional context.” It is quite obvious to anyone who has parents, that back in their day it weren’t as easy as it is today son.

When we (young uns) get old, it is quite clear that our attitudes to immigration are going to be quite different to those who went before us. My generation for the most part has grown up in a much more diverse set of surroundings, and the young are the most supportive of immigration anyway. Unless  we currently think that immigrants come and take all the jobs, depress wages or sit around all day claiming benefits, we are unlikely to think that in the future, especially since it doesn’t seem to be true.

Taking a deeper look into the paper, we can read lovely sentences such as this one, which reinforce the previous point “Theories and research in the fields of sociology and psychology show that political attitudes and opinions are shaped during youth and tend to remain stable over the life‐cycle (Alwin and Krosnick, 1991)” I reserve judgement on whether this is a good thing or bad thing when it comes to political attitudes.

But, on a second point, I don’t think the next crop of old timers (50’s) in the Uki s all too out of touch, so you can call me on it in 2025 when the current (70’s) have started to die off. Anecdotal again – the elderly people I know, 70’s plus, are in my grandfathers words “too old to give a shit anymore”.

For one thing, the people who are going to be caring for them in 25-30 years time are very likely to be from abroad, and there is also the pressing question of who is going to pay for it. Well, according to the ONS, the immigrants are, because without them it looks very bleak indeed. I may well be proved wrong, but as Keynes said, in the long run the old attitudes will die out. Or something like that.

 

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