I think you'll find that confuses life expectancy at birth with life expectancy at 65. Allowing for all those who died before pension age (ah, the good old days) if you survived to 65 to collect your pension in 1925 your average remaining life span would be about 10 years. Even in 1909 when the pension was first paid at 70 you'd probably get five years (on average). An 80 year old then could still expect an average of more than 18 months (though chances are they had independent means to have survived to 80). Making people work till 68 means more people will die before getting any pension, and not retiring till 68 will cut post-pension life expectancy. That's progress. Just pay the taxes.