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February 17, 2012
Incentivized Suicide? -- A Modest Proposal
By Robert Billyard
Therefore I repeat, let no man talk to me of these and the like expedients, 'till he hath
at least some glimpse of hope, that there will ever be some hearty and sincere attempt
to put them into practice.
Jonathon Swift 1729
For the personal and undivided attention of our most Honourable Members:
This proposal is submitted forthwith for your most urgent consideration in solving
Canada’s recently hatched fiscal crisis. Being a socially progressive body of
legislators we trust you will find the following worthy of … ahem..Swift passage as you
have a proven propensity in this regard.
There can be little doubt the growth in Canada’s aging population and the
inconvenient tendency for old people to live longer is a dire threat to the health of our
national treasury. The following proposal has multiple benefits as not only will it cut
down the exorbitant amount our country spends on pensions, it will create a new
source of tax revenue, vastly cut Medicare costs, eliminate the unfortunate
disproportion of old folks in our society and help younger families. For the
Government of Canada this proposal is a win, win, win, situation,that will no doubt
appeal to such esteemed legislators as you.
The proposal herein is to initiate a Universal Incentivized Suicide Plan( UISP) There
would be financial incentives administered by the Government of Canada to have
people as they reach retirement age to do themselves in.
Example1: A healthy male of 65 years (we’ll call him Joe Blow) whose parents lived to
be an average of 90 years would receive lump sum death benefits of 80% of the value
of his pension benefits he would have drawn between 65 and 90 should he be willing
to do himself in at age 65. Thus, if as projected he lived to 90 the government would
have saved 20% of the money he would have received. Big win for the government a
Example 2: If Joe decided he didn’t want to throw in the towel at 65 he would have the
option of drawing death benefits at 70 and every 5 years thereafter until he might be
so audacious as to die a natural death. But each time he passed over this opportunity
the death benefit would be reduced proportionately. Joe has missed his chance to
cash out big time. Not so big a win for the government. Joe’s procrastination is
costing them money!
Example 3: Joe might be motivated to absolutely screw the government and live
beyond his life expectancy of 90, roaring on to the ripe old age of 100. Government
loses big time!
Example 4: Joe’s wife wants the money up front so pushes him down the stairs. Big
win for the government!
Example 5: Joe’s daughter pushes mom down the stairs. She wants all the money
upfront. Big win for the government!
Example 6: Joe and his wife both gone. Government saves big time on Medicare and
OAS. Big big win for the government!
Example 7: Daughter is taxed on death benefits received from parent’s estate.
Another big win for the government!
Needless to say actuaries will have to work out all the details such that savings to the
Government of Canada will be maximized and the death benefits will have to be just
sufficiently generous as to lure normally healthy people to do themselves in. Peerless
social engineers will have to put a price tag on our seniors.
Everybody will of course have to have a note from their doctor to prove their good
health as the program is designed to get rid of the healthy people who live too long
and cost too much. Sick people will have their death benefit handicapped according to
the disease they suffer.
Example 8: If you have terminal cancer you get zippo. If you have a runny nose you
might get 98% of the benefit paid to a fully healthy person.
This program will allow the Government of Canada to free up revenues for such
urgent expenditures as prisons we don’t need and fighter jets that are technically
flawed and over-priced.
It will insure esteemed legislators can keep their gold plated million dollar pensions as
they slide into their luxurious retirement years.
It will insure the government does not have to betray its homage to the corporate
It will allow the government to continue to subsidize the energy sector in its habitual
This will allow the government to further indulge itself in mimicking the insidious
American police-security state.
This will allow the government more latitude to import the worst aspects of the
American Republican Party to Canada. The idolatry is manifest.
This will allow esteemed legislators to further indulge their crippled ideological
peccadillos at taxpayer expense.
We, the people, the fat cat public purse, are committed to indulging our government’
s every need and make every sacrifice.
Canada is world renowned for its comprehensive Medicare system. Now our socially
innovative and progressive esteemed legislators can introduce the new social
contract-the UISP- which will no doubt have international appeal.
As always, for Queen and country we stand on guard for thee
Robert Billyard, Mission BC
I am a working senior being taxed at 30% with insufficient retirement income. My good
health is my biggest asset. This is thanks to my mother’s excellent genes(lived ‘til she
was ninety and never sick) and our excellent national Medicare system. I will be
around long after this government rots in hell!