Monday, February 09, 2009

Reflections on a crazy week- Let's fight to make it different

Tonight I watched Brian Lenihan who's supposed to know what's going on in our country and economy and Eamon Gilmore on the Week in Politics programme and I saw why the people I've met on the street are really connecting with the Labour Party and its leader. Putting it simply, Eamon wiped the floor with Lenihan in a calm, rational and yet really passionate way. In that he has been joined by Joan Burton, who's now coming across as the only really knowledgeable voice on the economic front. It took her questioning to discover during the week that the pension levy would be tax deductible and therefore would bring in far less than the Government pretended.

Put simply this has been a week which typifies all that is rotten about this Government. The politics of the soft touch has seen people like myself and others on far lower rates of pay than mine scapegoated by this Government.

Of course our local Junior Minister John McGuinness started the softening up process months ago with his mean-spirited attack on public servants. The media has fallen for this spin hook, line and sinker, making it so easy to attack us this week. The unfairness of it all was brilliantly described by SIPTU's Jack O' Connor on Wednesday when he said that a public servant on €40,000 would now pay an extra 7% of their salary effectively in tax, while a self-employed hospital consultant in a private hospital would pay an extra 2% on a salary of €250,000 a year. Worse still the property developers and the bankers who brought us to this mess get off scot-free.

I for one hope that my colleagues across the public service now revolt. We don't mind paying our share in a difficult situation but let's see others bear the pain also.

For now it's time for us to organise to get this shower out. This month Labour are asking you to get involved. If you're in Kilkenny please contact me to join the Labour Party and get involved. If you're anywhere else click here to sign up. The time for talking and criticising is over-the time for action is now and you can play your part.

Bí linn agus is féidir linn

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