Methuselah's Children

Right to vote from birth” is the title of a conference that was held in Berlin in June. It was organised by the Foundation For The Rights Of Future Generations.In the most recent elections in Germany a third of the electors were over sixty years old. In Europe the elderly are living longer and longer and the young are producing fewer and fewer children.The result is that older people have a greater and greater weight in choosing the destiny of future generations. The solution proposed is to give the right to vote from birth, exercised by the parents in the name of their children until they are 18 years old.
Perhaps it’s time we thought of this here too. Italy has the world record for ancientness in the population. The electoral power is more and more unbalanced in favour of the elderly. The future is decided by those who will never see it.
According to Regis Debray, a French sociologist, in his recent book: The Catastrophe of living a long time”, the lengthening of the average life is a catastrophe. The rate of growth of active elderly is half that of inactive elderly.In 2020, there’ll be more people over 65 than there will be in their twenties. The health costs grow with age. One third of the medical prescriptions relate to 10% of the elderly who consume on average 8 drugs a day.The pensioners are the true brake to recovery and are aggravating the public debt. Even inheritance is a big problem. Once upon a time you got your inheritance at age 30/40. Today you get it at age 60/65. (The only way of inheriting as a young person is to kill off your 80 year old father.)Years ago, the advert for a brand of mineral water said: “You are 40 years old and you look twice as old”. Today it would say: “You are 80 years old and you look twice as old”.Why do the anti-wrinkle creams cost more than those for acne? There’s a committee for education and youth but not a committee for loneliness and elderliness? When will we get a Minister of Old Age and Cemeteries?
We need to put forward courageous proposals. Create bio parks for those who are over 69. They could be thinned out every so often by hunts organised like those for the fawns, but giving people a handicap so that it’s really sporting. Every extra year an extra kilometre to get away in your wheel chair. One solution could be even to bring in the death date at birth. A definite death date that takes account of the demographic situation of the country. It could be increased after that only after lucky events like tsunami, bubonic plague, nuclear war that reduce the population numbers.

Posted by Beppe Grillo at 11:59 AM in | Comments (16)
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OK,with me,ciao -:)

Posted by: evakulnura | August 20, 2006 09:17 AM


Giovanni, I totaly agree with you on the pollution issue...we are seeing the results already,not in 50 or 30 years but NOW...!!!However, with advanced counties buing off clean air from less polluted ones we can imagine the corruption in people's minds....

Eva, I couldn't I gree with you more!! As for politicians...why not make it 60 years of age...:o))

Posted by: paola filinesi | August 20, 2006 08:39 AM


Fart apart,instead to get rid of older people,and change laws,how about paid mother to have kids,and support and paid them like any other regular job,you would solve the demografic problems,divorce rates would be lowers,and happy mom,happy kids,and the eldery could do what is right for them,retire,enjoy life,and be granparents, this is also for the politians,65 years old retirement,you like it or not,ciao:-))

Posted by: evakulnurae | August 20, 2006 12:07 AM


I see.

At least do you agree with me about the cow's farts environmental problem?

Posted by: Giovanni Principe | August 19, 2006 08:22 PM


You never know.... But I guess not...:o(

Posted by: paola filinesi | August 19, 2006 07:29 PM


I agree with you.

You could never be me.

Posted by: Giovanni Principe | August 19, 2006 06:58 PM


Giovanni ,Your post is a very sensitive and realistic but I am afraid it would touch only the hearts of people with values and those taught to respect the elderly….:-(
Politics and religion are such difficult topics and one can rarely find others who would care to exchange ideas instead of trying to impose their own opinion…
In the case of voting maybe an age limit could be a solution… (???) And this could be reviewed in the course of the decades...like it is done with the right of voting which is given at the age of 18...(???)
I find the idea of voting for your children quite ludicrous….it like allowing the same person to vote several times under a different name….!!!

Posted by: paola filinesi | August 19, 2006 06:49 PM


Getting to blame cow's farts for global warming is just the byproduct of people who cannot understand, or doesn't want to see, that the cause is to be searched somewhere else, like for example gas emissions from cars, trucks, power stations.

Going back to this post's topic, my opinion is that the elder people in the western world lives longer but also gets smarter than people of their age 30 years ago due to various reasons (more information and natural evolution).
I think that we should concentrate more attention on the youngsters because their brains are risking to be fried from today's lifestyle and, increasingly, from drugs like Extasy, which causes certain diseases seen only in older people (Parkinson's disease).
The future could also be seen as the elderly people as a reference point for the younger survivors like ages ago.

However, I was used to see in my village years ago how the older relatives were looked after: living in the big house with their family, taking care of the kids while the parents were at work, thus teaching them all the things of value which will survive in the kids' heart forever.
Today this is not possible because the house gets smaller and the mentality considers the elders an obstacle for the well being of the family and its future.

Posted by: Giovanni Principe | August 19, 2006 05:55 PM


it is unbelievable how many problems we have in our world, isnt it?

Posted by: fab tom | August 19, 2006 12:05 PM


I once read a waco theory about the demise of dinosaurs due to the noxious flatulent gases they copiously emitted. Nothing new under the sun.....

Posted by: Enrico Rossi | August 18, 2006 09:16 PM


Dario ,non sono sicura a quale risposta ti riferisci ma almeno “You’ve made a point” :o)

Hopefully everyone understands your italian...

Posted by: paola filinesi | August 18, 2006 07:58 PM


Mucche a flatulenze-zero contro il gas serra

I bovini sono i primi produttori di metano. Un progetto congiunto di Australia e Nuova Zelanda per selezionare razze che "ottimizzino" la loro conversione del cibo in composti solidi del latte. Costo: 3 milioni di dollari

sono fuori topic, ma questa é una grande porcata. le mucche esistono da milioni di anni, la combustione di petrolio solo da 100!!!!!!!!!!!! meglio le scorreggie dei fumi tossici.

Posted by: dario allegri | August 18, 2006 07:27 PM


As I said some months ago, I already have the right to vote for my children and I did it 6 times:-)
There is no need to make new laws, it's running welle enough like that:-)

Posted by: blisco jaio | August 18, 2006 06:42 PM


My understanding is that in Italy you don't have the right to vote for the Senate until you are 25 yet you can vote for the lower house at 18. It doesn't seem logigal or rational that you can't vote until your 25 for the Senate.

I've asked friends about this and few could give me an answer. Some said that it's because a person isn't mature enough until they are 25. This doesn't make sense because you can vote in other elections at 18, also at 18 (up until recently) you could have been conscripted into the army and even go to war.

If you can carry a gun at 18 why can't you carry a pen and vote for the Senate?

Posted by: Robert Tuppini | August 18, 2006 05:03 PM


Maybe also a capability test at the age of 65 as it is done with the renewal of driving licences??!!!

Posted by: paola filinesi | August 18, 2006 02:15 PM


One could also help change the demographic trend by not having six children. When Marco Panella discussed the question in May (I think) Beppe was most adamant about his right to spawn as many children as he wishes. But perhaps this article is just a bad joke not up to Grillo's usual high standard.

Posted by: Maureen Lister | August 18, 2006 12:44 PM


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