When is a wage cut not a wage cut?

4th January, 2010


Over the Christmas break I researched and raised issues regarding the cost of government and all of it’s different elements. Parliamentary questions allowed me to quantify the huge amount of financial support that is open to Government ministers in their ministerial and constituency work. In so many cases, their special advisers are getting paid more money than the vast majority of elected politicians. This was covered by the Sunday Independent, available here. I also raised issues in relation to the cost of semi state bodies and their senior managers. This is available here.

However the need to have a serious look at this was really symbolised by the Government decision to reverse elements of the pay cut to the most senior elements of the public service. The rationale was that the end of a bonus scheme combined with the wage cut would have had an unfair effect on their total wages and the value of their pensions.

This brings home to me the way in which vested interests can with ease and speed manipulate our political system. You don’t see the same kind of swift action been taken on the carer’s allowance? This shows, yet again, the need for those at the top to take the most pain and their ability to avoid this.

I really hope this is reversed in the coming months.

While I am writing on such topics I want to extend my thoughts and prayers to Brian Lenihan. He is a lovely man, a patriot and I wish him a speedy recovery.