So, who are these money-grabbing public sector workers? Well, generally they are people whose jobs involve contributing, in some way, to our society to make everyone's life that little bit easier and in some cases, actually massively improve people's lives. I don't want to fall into the divide and rule trap being set by the media of public vs private sector workers and their rights, but you have to admit, not all but the majority of private sector jobs contribute to the production or sale of pointless crap that no-one actually needs (and some may argue actually contributes to mass debt, inequality and vain materialism – but that's another argument). That's totally up them – but maybe, when they get all grumpy about their own pensions now being worth sweet FA, they should think about WHY that is and whose fault that is (I'll give you a clue – maybe, just maybe, something to do with the financial services sector?) and just because their own futures have been ruined, does that mean they should hate the remaining helpful citizens who are also struggling to make a living, for trying to stop their futures being destroyed too? And I'd bet my bottom dollar that most of those on strike tomorrow are not simply concerned about themselves and their families, they also care greatly about the effect of the cuts on society.
I'm not sure where the press get their stats from, but coming from a well-educated social group, in my experience my friends who work in the private sector get paid a fuck of a lot more than those who work in the public sector, WITHOUT EXCEPTION. With salaries of circa £50 - £80K being blithely banded around as though this is normal – for their contributions to the sale of wealthy people's real estate or fancy home furnishings (bought up cheap from poor countries by multinationals). If I hear one of THEM complaining about the rights of public sector workers, I smell the burning of Jags.
Admittedly, some call centre monkey might be on an equivalent wage or (shock) even lower wage than a data-inputter working for the local council, but hey, doesn't that make some sense? Contributions to society and all that.
And the strike tomorrow isn't just about pensions. Pensions were the only thing that the diverse range of workers could realistically take a legal strike ballot on. This strike is about expressing the average person's disgust at the fact that the 99% are paying the price of the meltdown of the financial markets, public money being used to bail-out of the banks and the subsequent savage cuts across all public services.
It is easier, from a distance (I'm in Montenegro now, not the UK), to see through the media BULLSHIT as I am no longer exposed to the drip drip drip of propaganda that seeps into your brain all day, every day, back home. Okay folks, guess what? These “austerity measures” i.e. massive cuts in public services/people's pay have not been put in place because the government has been paying everyone too much. Let's get this straight – let's see through the media fog that has been created. The cuts have been put in place because the country is (supposedly) skint* because the economy has almost collapsed because....da dah.....gambling on the financial markets sent the economy into meltdown....then the government used OUR money to bail out the banks (who are now doing very nicely, thank you very much)......then they tried to persuade us that this was all in our own interest so we should knuckle down and shut up.......and when millions of people decided they didn't want to shut up, they use the Murdoch-owned press and the BBC to persuade us that they are being GREEDY.
I would say “how very clever”, except it is not. It is extremely transparent.
Remember, blaming the strikers is EXACTLY what they want you to do.
The final straw yesterday was hearing the government's desperate line about “the public sector strike damaging the economy”. Splutter, splutter – what????!! Public workers could do quite a lot to make people's lives difficult if they chose to, however, a one-day strike is a protest designed to draw attention to the value of the public sector; it will not wreck the economy and bearing in mind what HAS been done to wreck the economy, this comment certainly is fighting talk.
* I would also propose that regardless of the country's financial woes, any Tory government would be implementing these policies as this is completely in line with their ideology. The current situation simply gives them a very convenient stick to beat us into submission.