Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Christmas Bonus

Happy Christmas and a peaceful and prosperous new year to all our readers and followers.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm a civil servant....get me out of here!!! - Part 3

So tonight it is hospital porter Anto's turn to face the private sector jungle in a savage trial where the following will be involved:
  • Turning up on time.
  • Working a full 8 hour day with the possiblilty of extra (unpaid) hours.
  • Not disappearing for a smoke break every 20 minutes.
  • Not being able to skive off and drive his rented taxi during working hours while his equally bone idle colleagues cover for him.
Anto has been a SIPTU shop steward for the past 20 years. During this time he has grown used to finding ways of doing feck all and getting rewarded for it. Anto pretty much symbolises Ireland's failed experiment with social partnership. He doesn't really want to work, does his best to avoid work, when he has to work he does it badly, yet he has reaped pay rise after pay rise thanks to his comrades in the unions. And god help any poor manager who tries to get some work out of him. Anto would have no hesitation in commanding his fellow Bolsheviks to down tools in retaliation for such a reasonable request.

In fact, Anto is only in the jungle as a result of threatening to mount flying pickets on the production company's premises. You see the competition was actually only meant to be for civil servants (hence the title - I'm A Civil Servant.... Get Me Out Of Here). However, Anto thought it sounded like an easy ride so used his union connections to ensure that all public servants were eligible for the competition. Little did he know what lay ahead of him.

Life in the private sector jungle has been tough on poor Anto. He is constantly irritable because he is not allowed to take his usual 20+ cigarette breaks. The lack of paid overtime means that he can't afford cigarettes anyway. The fact that his new boss supervises him closely also means that his taxi-driving nixer is no longer viable.

During his brief stay in the jungle Anto has been a trouble maker - refusing to allow the latrines be emptied because that is the job of a grade 3 shit shoveller and there is only a grade 2 on site. And we're just getting news that in the last hour Anto called an all out strike due to a clear "demarkaaaaaaaaation" issue. His plan for a show of strength has backfired spectacularly though. The producers of this show refuse to be held to ransom by Anto and his ridiculous union antics. Therefore, they have swiftly shut down production and moved the show to Thailand where contestants will do as they are told for a lot less cash. So Anto and his "comrades" are now stranded in the private sector jungle forever. So that's it for this series of I'm A Civil Servant Get Me Out Of Here. There have been no winners of this series - only losers. Anto and his fellow wasters have paid the price for a working life spent in the fantasy island of the public sector - they are now stuck up unemployment creek without a paddle. Look out Anto.....there's a waterfall ahead!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Change to scheduled programming!

We regret to inform you that tonight's scheduled episode of "I'm A Civil Servant Get Me Out Of Here" has been postponed so we can bring you a bit of a post-budget rant.

Budget 2010 was a predictable mixture of the good, the bad and the bullshit.

The Good:
  • The public service has finally been taken in hand! At long last the decades of undeserved pay rises have come to an end. Not only have the public service had their pay cut but their top class pensions also look like they will be reviewed. Welcome to the real world public service - you now know what it's like for the rest of us poor fools who have been living with pay cuts, deteriorating conditions and general misery for the last few years.

  • Brian Latchico Lenihan has reversed his ridiculous decision of last year and returned the standard rate of VAT to 21%. That, coupled with Britain's impending VAT increase, should make shopping up North a less attractive prospect. The decision to reduce the price of a pint by 12 cent will also help in this regard.

  • A prescription charge of 50 cent per item has been introduced for medical card holders. Hopefully this may lead to medical card holders and their doctors thinking twice before allowing pharmacists to overcharge the state for trolley loads of overpriced and sometimes unneeded drugs.

  • Hospital consultants will have their pay cut by 20%. We'll see how a nice financial smackdown affects their god complexes and general lack of respect for patients.

The Bad:
  • Children's allowance cut by €16 a month. My main problem with this is that it will affect people who are already struggling with the high overheads associated with bringing up a family. The government were too spineless to take on the pensioners again and they certainly didn't want to piss off their mates in the horse racing or greyhound industry. So they decided to butcher the finances of the young families of Ireland instead of sharing the burden amongst all sectors of society. But the publicans of Ireland can rest easy tonight as the child benefit cuts don't apply to their reliable dole dependant customers.

  • Entitlements under the Treatment Benefit Scheme have been reduced to "examination only". Essentially this means that the hard working tax payers of Ireland are no longer entitled to subsidised dental or optical treatment. No more free cleaning, subsidised fillings or eye glasses. What a great reward for paying your taxes then - another kick in the hole delivered by the Latchico.

  • No increase in income tax. Despite my complete lack of sympathy for the public service there is something inherently unfair about cutting the pay of someone earning €30,000 a year by 5% and not increasing tax on an overpaid fossil like George "The Gargoyle" Hook. Surely the necessary bitter pill of a pay cut would have been easier for public servants to swallow if the whole country had to face some sort of a token tax increase.

The Bullshit:

My biggest beef with this budget is the measure introduced as a kind of political reacharound to the bunch of imbeciles that are the Green Party. These tofu eating, city dwelling, tree hugging ass clowns have participated in a financial and moral holocaust for the past couple of years in return for the introduction of this unjust tax. They have ensured that a generation of people who have been forced to live in badly built and poorly located shit holes will have to pay a substantial penalty because they don't have the luxury of the 46a and the DART on their doorsteps. Try telling the poor bastard who is forced to commute from Mullingar to Tallaght because he couldn't afford a house anywhere else that a 5 cent per litre "carbon tax" is good for the planet. Try telling him to use a non-existent public transport system to cut his carbon emissions. Not that the green sleeveens care about the average slob. They serve a class of self styled dogooder who drinks fair trade coffee, lives in a mortgage free gaff in a leafy suburb and worships Duncan Stewart as a god. May they taste our collective lightning when the next election comes around!