I have fallen for it myself and attacked the Public Sector for all the usual cliches.
But on reflection, a private sector worker has far more in common with a public sector worker
- they both work for a living to benefit someone else;
- they pay unavoidable taxes on the earnings of their labour;
- pay mortgages on properties which have lost value;
- have been ripped off for years eg retail and childcare, college registration charges;
- most will not have a great pension (contary to mythology) and will have to work right up to 65 (at least);
- and are powerless as individuals to change the way the country operates.
Yet, the powers that be have fostered disunity - where could they have got that idea? Divide and conquer...
We are where we are....
1) This strike is esssentially futile. It will not stop the further 7% pay cut on public sector (PS) workers. It may save the face of the Union leaders who colluded with the Government in Social Partnership.
2) The PS have already had a 7.5% levy, cut in expenses to date, and increases in income tax so to suggest that they have not taken heavy hits is false.
3) During a strike there is a propaganda war. The tiny minority of public sector workers who (lawfully) travelled to Newry today have let down the picketing colleauges. It was seized on by Pay Kenny and here (including me here despite it obviously been a small minority)
4) The public sector pay bill is just under €19bn. The logic is that since we tried income tax increases in April and revenue fell, cuts must be made in all government expenditure.
5) The total public pay bill has fallen by 2.2% this year (due to embargo and pension levy).
6) Deflation is at 6.8%.
7) Becasue many public sector workers are still getting their incremental pay rises, have a guaranteed job and pension in a time of job insecurity and stock market, the latter are like gold (and due to the embargo private workers cannot get in). There is therefore a built in envy factor which has been seised on by FF.
8) The "debate" has been raging for months and people are sick of the cliches and misinformation (roll's royce pensions, we must all share the pain, trophy houses and we are where we are etc).
9) People are no longer interested in the fact that Fianna Fail:
a) blew a boom
b) turned a surplus into a massive deficit.
c) narrowed the tax base to very narrow levels.
d) allowed crazy banking practices jeopardise the State.
e) provided for a a €54bn bailout of banks by way of state-aid with the State picking up the tab of overpayments and higher interest rates while preserving bank shareholders and sparing bondholders
f) continue to allow mad tax emptions to exist eg hotels and other properties and huge subsidy of private sector pensions.
g) will have to inflict severe cuts in social welfare, public services and pay.
h) is massively dependant on corporate donations and those of rich benefactors and they faciliate accepting donations so that they do have to be declared (eg spread over two accounting years, in the names of a few family members, off-set against the cost of a particular event).
i) The wealthy have been hit through their own poor investments but nit as yet through government intervention.
j) FF continue to appoint insiders to ensure the show stays on the road.
We are where we are because Fianna Fail have brought us here.
10. But to bring about election...
1) The FF backbenchers must be pressurised to go independent and take their chances.
2) the Greens must be prised away.
3) Grealish, Behan (who voted against NAMA) must vote against goverment. FG should beg/offer a place on their ticket/a senate seat to FF backbenchers.
4) Lowry and Bertie must resign their seats (assuming negative Tribunal reports).
5) Any but FF win the Donegal by-election - someone must move writ Pat the Cope Gallagher is not dead so no period of respectful mourning is required.
6) The Private sector workers should unite to support the Public Sector ones in their camapaign which should focus on getting rid of corrupt/incompetant FF.
7) The Budget must not pass.
11.) The election:
1) The 30-35% of people who do not vote must be encouraged/pressurised to do so.
2) FF canvassers should be in fear (though press campaign rather than actual intimidation) of calling door to door and just dropping.
3) All non FF voters must vote tactically and fill the ballot. A link has to be made in people's minds that voting FF for a 1,2,3 or 4 preference, is a vote for Ahern's digouts, banker bailouts, corruption and cronyism, dodgy deals. An ABFF education shoudl be co-ordinated. (see here: http://www.politics.ie/fianna-fail/1...-complete.html )
4) Being associated with FF needs to be seen as anti-social. Or basically anyone in FF should be treatde in the same way as an Nazi Anglo-Irish boardmember who has just farted. Eventually the media will cop on.
12.) Then the real tough job: The FF state needs to be dismantled.
1. Provide real accountability for spending public monies.
2. Abolishing over 800 quangos.
3. Kicking out the unqualified friends of FF from boards and bodies.
4. Ending dependence on social welfare for 720,000 citizens.
5. Greater regulation of certain aspects of business and community life eg planning and financial services.
6. Abolish a host of tax shelters and 6,000 lawful avoiders.
7.adopting EU regulations on time and then then enforcing them eg pollution, habitats and Floods.
8. Reform the national broadcaster.
9. Break the power of the press barons.
10. Improving the education system to a high standrd of quality and ending inequality (eg rotate teachers).
11. Providing for equality in access for all non-elective healthcare.
12. Citizens being treated as members of a society rather than economic units.
13. Abolishing corporate donations to cut off their money supply (and limiting undeclared donations to €200 and requiring all gifts above that value (bar engagement rings) to be declared)).