That was a nasty moment for the Silvers.
A couple of weeks before the election, 485,057 people registered to vote. Well over half of these latecomers were under 35, potentially denting one of the Silvers’ strongest bargaining chips, namely that we are the ones that turn out to vote so you’d better treat us right, politicians.
In the event, only 60% of younger voters bothered to cast their vote, compared with 75% of the over 60’s. That’s well up on the 2010 election for the young ones but it still meant 650,000 more people over 60 voted than the 18 – 24 group, and we are the growing age group. The pseudo man of the people, Russell Brand, the one who has replaced intelligence and analysis with some long words, has a lot to answer for.
Our message is simple. We understand the deal. We vote you into power, so give us the goodies. It’s quite fun watching politicians squirm as they come under attack for the largesse that they offer to over 60’s (not that we believe them, of course, they are, after all, politicians). But, in fairness, they do get it back. Over 60s contribute, net, £40 billion per year to the economy through taxes, spending power, provision of social services and the value of volunteering. They need us to be happy.
“We have the money and we have the wealth. We know that everyone wants to get their hands on it”
But we have always got what we wanted. From free love to free eye tests, cars, houses, holidays, the world has fallen into place for us. This is not, of course, true of every Silver in the land – no tribal or demographic segmentations are ever more than a dominant trend – but anyone out there trying to market to our generation would be well advised to approach with care.