Meaningless choice

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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1 Response to Meaningless choice

  1. Steve Coates says:

    Here’s the thing. Freedom and Choice always seems to go hand-in-hand. Like cheese and onion or fish and chips. Unlike fish and chips though, we often seem unable to distinguish between the two. They are not interchangeable.

    You can make a compelling case to argue that freedom gives rise to choice, but it does not follow that choice gives rise to freedom. Far from it in fact.

    In a dogma-ridden democracy, anything that casts aspersions on the sanctity of freedom must be a bad thing. Suggesting that choice may not always be a good thing is an infringement of our civil liberty, of our our basic human rights.

    The exponents of asset allocation pedalled the notion that choice equallled freedom too, creating legions of funds, platforms, risk-profilers and God knows what else. And yet pension savers have proved pretty conclusively over the years that choosing an assortment of investment flavours is not high up their list of Sunday afternoon pass-times, sleepwalking into default options in their droves, in spite of the promise of better returns.

    For years I’ve paid for Sky and then religiously watched little else other than QI, Mock the Week and The Big Bang Theory. Last Saturday I finally took the plunge and cancelled my subscription, admitting to myself that I don’t need, or even want, the choice anymore. And guess what? You know what I’m going to say before I say it. Now I have less choice, I feel liberated! I have my TV life back, and, if there’s nothing on on Freeview, I turn off the telly. I wish I’d done this years before.

    I’m no longer burdened by the prospect of making the wrong decision.

    So let’s not make the mistake that Pension choice = freedom. It does not. The legislators and the product designers should be catering not only for those who freedom of choice, but also for those who want freedom from choice.

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