Thursday, August 27, 2009

Infamy Infamy

"Infamy, infamy, they've all got it in for me", no marks for guessing which 'Carry On' movie that line came from and who said it!

It's encouraging to see that someone with a sense of fair play, a forensic passion for detail and no political axe to grind has decided to take his own look at a number of allegations that have popped-up recently on two of the the more 'left-leaning' local weblogs.

Michael Child has done a little sleuthing of his own and you can find the results on his ThanetOnline weblog. I'm sure that astute readers will draw their own conclusions over the motives behind several weeks of unrelenting mud-slinging and perhaps now it will come to an embarrassed halt.

Back to news of the economy then and a report from The Times that millions of public sector workers will have their pensions slashed under plans to deal with a massive shortfall in the value of government pension funds.

The writing has been on the wall for some time but the recession and the massive deficit will now lead to the inevitable as the public sector burden becomes unaffordable.

Local government pensions, which are ultimately guaranteed by the taxpayer, are funded by investments, but most others are paid for out of the public purse and this is now is a Black Hole of such a size that it will never be filled.

The Times reports "Local authorities are already resisting government plans to force better-paid staff to make bigger contributions to help to bail out pension funds. Some experts say that when actuaries examine the funds next year they will find a shortfall of at least £60 billion."

So not only is Government looking at the prospect of cutting back the public sector workforce by up to 10% and as a result, driving up unemployment to record levels but the value of the so-called 'Gold-plated' pensions will most likely be axed as well, as they are simply unafforable in the present economic context.

Many of us are old enough to remember reading by candlelight during the 'Winter of discontent' in 1978 and those times may yet come again. Curiously enough, I've been asked by BNFL to survey several of their nuclear reactors, which are soon to be decommissioned. This rather begs the question of where tomorrow's energy is going to come from to fill the gap between the decommissioning dates and the arrival of some magic new energy solution to keep the lights burning!


Jean said...

So what exactly are the pension regimes for senior council staff?

How do they compare with those lower down the scale.

And how do either compare with the average private sector pension?

Call me Infidel said...

I haven't been following the "allegations" but I think the increase in hysteria from the local left reflects the general sense of panic at Labour HQ. now they realise the gravy train is coming off the rails, and many of them are unemployable.

They will settle on anything now to smear their opponents, it has been a constant thread running through Labour from Campbell to Balls to McBride to Draper. It's what they do. For example today we have Dan Hannan's remarks made five months previously where he had the bad taste to admit that he admired Enoch Powell. “somebody who understood the importance of national democracy, who understood why you need to live in an independent country and what that meant, as well as being a free marketeer and a small government Conservative.”
Then Peter Mandelson the minister for just about everything you can imagine pops up to attack him. They will clutch at any straws and no smear is too small. The sense of panic is palpable. Where is Brown by the way?

Twelve years of Labour incompetence is coming to an end and the death throes will not be pleasant. Which brings me to the gold plated pensions issue. There wouldn't have been such a problem with final salary pensions if Gordon Brown had not made his tax raid on pension profits the moment he entered 11 Downing St.

Anonymous said...

anon again!
Ah, you see the distant relevance to Politic's somewhere between the 'mud slinging' then. Try to remember the awful condition that Britain was in when Labour beat the them in a landslide victory 12 years ago. Labour Government is still sorting out the Conservative 'mess' they inherited. Apart from the financial problem, that was caused by American Greedy Banks, I think they have done a grand job so far. The only thing I don't like is that Labour's Leader was sort of shuffled in, without a proper election taking place.
I think that all parties should co-alise & get Britain out of the mess. Then hold an election to see who can muck up perfection again.

Jean said...

Can you tell us how the pensions of senior council staff compare with the average council pension and how does that compare with the average private sector pension?