Who speaks for the taxpayer?

Discussion in 'Economic issues' started by Brendan Burgess, Apr 6, 2018.

  1. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    That's a really good description of socialism.
    Maybe we could elect a local member of a parliament whom we could communicate with and that person could speak for us in that parliament. We could call it something like representative democracy.

    No system will ever be perfect but we should always strive for equality so it is not just reasonable to ask who speaks for the voiceless, it is our civic duty. There is nothing wrong will lobbying the government but when it comes to wielding influence there is no moral difference between bribery and coercion; at a political level threatening strike action in order to get you way is the moral equivalent of a brown paper envelope stuffed with cash.


    Let me ask you this; Are you happy that a small number of very rich people control so much of the media and if not how is that much different from a large Union which can threaten the government with major unrest if their demands are not met?
     
  2. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    Why don't you organize yourself, with others (there are a few of you knocking around here) to have your views represented then?
     
  3. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    They should be equal. Do you not understand that?
    Of those three bodies which ones can cause strife and disruption to the general public and damage the government?
     
  4. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    Sure, become part of the problem, that's the solution!
     
  5. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
    :rolleyes: And of course, you have a monopoly of what that equality entails? Is not possible that others take a different view of what equality entails? Is it possible that we may need a final arbitrator in the form of the ECJ to decide for us what is, or what is not equal in this instance?

    Again, who are the voiceless? You?

    No I'm not happy that a small number of very rich people control the media. So what?

    The purported 'major unrest' if their demands are not met are here;

    "Congress notes the report presented to the Oireachtas on 16th March, in accordance with Section 11 of the Public Service Pay and Pensions Act 2017.

    Congress further notes that the Report
    restates the terms of the PSSA

    • contains a global costing for the removal of the two additional points that were added to new entrant salary scales
    • shows that this costing amounts to less than 2% of the public service pay bill for 2018
    • neither constitutes a commitment by government to pay equality nor addresses the additional, disproportionate layers of pay cuts that were applied to new entrant teachers
    • provides no guidance towards a fair and sustainable resolution of the injustice of pay inequality
    • anticipates “further engagement over the coming months”
    Accordingly, Congress demands that the proposed engagement must
    commence in April 2018 and conclude by early May 2018 and

    • have the capacity to achieve a resolution of all aspects of pay inequality
    Congress agrees that any proposals that may emerge in respect of a resolution of the issues relating to pay inequality will be put to members in a ballot at the earliest practicable time.

    Congress requires that, in the event of continuing failure by government fully to engage to resolve the issues or in the event of failure to resolve the issues in the engagement, a campaign of industrial action, up to and including strike action, as mandated by members will be pursued, where possible in conjunction with the other teacher unions."


    The only demands are that a proposed engagement commences in April 2018 and conclude by early May 2018 and that the engagement has the capacity to achieve a resolution of all aspects of pay inequality.

    In other words, there has to be effective negotiation. Industrial action will only commence if the government fails to engage, or there is a failure to resolve the issues in the engagement.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2018
  6. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    :rolleyes:
     
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  7. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    In other words if the government doff their cap and tug their forelock.
    I love how the Irish Congress of Trade Unions refer to themselves as just "Congress".
     
  8. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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  9. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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  10. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    No you didn't, you said "In other words if the government doff their cap and tug their forelock."

    What I am pointing out to you is the law. Are you suggesting that the government, by complying with the law, is somehow being subservient to vested interests?
     
  11. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    That's what the output looks like.
     
  12. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    Wow! You believe the government is subservient to vested interests? So what type of government do we have? A fascist government?

    Lest anyone be minded to wonder what exactly we are talking about, here is the 'offending' section of legislation;

    "Equal pay for new entrants

    11. The Minister shall, within three months of the passing of this Act, prepare and lay before the Oireachtas a report on the cost of and a plan in dealing with pay equalisation for new entrants to the public service."


    The government, in fulfilling its obligations as directed by legislation, passed in the Houses of the Oireachtas, by members democratically elected, signed into law by the democratically elected President, produced a report on the cost of and a plan in dealing with pay equalization for new entrants to the public services.

    The dispute arises from trade unions representing their members that believe (as is their right to do so) that the report, amongst other things;

    • neither constitutes a commitment by government to pay equality nor addresses the additional, disproportionate layers of pay cuts that were applied to new entrant teachers
    • provides no guidance towards a fair and sustainable resolution of the injustice of pay inequality
    Far from being subservient to the vested interests, the government, according to the teachers union, is failing in their legal obligation in providing a plan in dealing with pay equalization for new entrants to the public services.

    I am neither judging the government or the unions here, if there is a dispute, persons or groups of persons are entitled, as taxpayers to have their views heard. If no resolution is found, if no compromise in negotiation is found, then it is likely the issue will go to the ECJ for arbitration.
    Industrial action will only occur if the government fails to engage in negotiation, or if that engagement fails to have the capacity to achieve a resolution.
     
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  13. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    Translate; industrial action will only occur if the government fails to do what they are told by the powerful Public Sector Unions.
    I agree.
     
  14. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    What you are witnessing, observing, is the democratic process at work.
    The government have entered into an agreement, parties to any agreement should be willing to engage with other parties of the agreement to resolve any issues, or difficulties, perceived or real, don't you think?
    In other words, citizens, taxpayers, have a right to represent their views to government. In this instance, they are taxpayers who have someone to speak for them - they pay for that representation through their union fees.

    What you appear to be saying is that the government has lost its authority to govern? That they are subservient to vested interests? On the basis that taxpayers are excercising their rights!
     
  15. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    No, on the basis that powerful vested interest groups can put a gun to the head of the Irish people and damage the national interest to further their own ends.
    "All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."
    The Brethren in the Unions are the pigs, the rest of us are Boxer.
     
  16. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    And all this time I thought the issue was that there was no-one to speak for the taxpayers. Clearly you have anointed yourself as spokesperson "of the Irish people" (aren't teachers Irish people too?) and you know what is best for us all.
    Personally, I think a policy of pay equality is very much in the national interest.
     
  17. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    And there I was thinking that this was just a discussion forum.
    Have you anointed yourself as spokesperson for the national interest? (If you need me to anoint you just let me know.) ;)
     
  18. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    No, just giving my personal opinion, others give theirs, sometimes individually or collectively. None have brought a gun to any table, none other than the government are mandated to speak for the Irish people.
    The government, representing Irish people (including teachers), are obligated to take on board the views and concerns of the Irish people (including teachers) and to find satisfactory resolutions on behalf of the Irish people (including teachers). This usually occurs in the form of discussion and negotiation as taxpayers (including teachers) should expect it to occur.

    That is what you are witnessing, a democratic process, where the government is being held to account to its legal obligation to report to the people, and engage in its duty to respond to the people, via recorded documentation that sets out the parameters of that engagement.

    All open and above board.

    There has been no outcome to this issue yet, you appear to not to be in favour of taxpayers (in this instance, teachers) having a say at all.
     
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  19. Purple

    Purple Frequent Poster

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    I would like all of the people, including tax payers (including teachers) to have an equal voice. At the moment I see Public Sector unions as having undue influence. It's not as bad as during the socialist partnership years when they effectively ran the country with the developers and other vested interest groups (think the pigs and other farmers at the table at the end of animal farm) and the rest of us were left outside looking in, wondering what they were saying and how they were carving up the cake, hoping that a few crumbs would be left when they had gorged themselves.
    Now things are different, though I'm not sure how different.
     
  20. TheBigShort

    TheBigShort Frequent Poster

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    Animal Farm is not an appropriate analogy. As I recall, not everything was open and above board on Jones Farm, not everything was quite as it seemed.

    You are reading paper headlines that dramatise and exaggerate greatly what is actually occurring. The €200m figure as per the government report on equal pay is already being contested for its validity. Reading between the lines of the union 'demands' it is clear to me that they are prepared to enter a negotiation that would significantly reduce that figure and, or, subsume it into the overall payroll bill over a number of years and not to be paid in one big fat cheque. But admittedly, that is speculation.

    As it stands, I can only go with what is written down officially. That is, industrial action will only occur if the government fail to engage, or any engagement fails to have the capacity to reach a resolution. In other words, (my interpretation) the teachers are taxpayers, they have a right to have a say, and they choose their trade union to represent their views. If those views are ignored then they will take what they perceive to be appropriate measures.

    Wanting everyone to have an equal voice is desirable. But what do you mean in practical terms? Do you mean every decision of government should go back to the people for a vote? I'm sure you can see how impractical that would be?
    I have already shown you how you lobby the government for own views and interests to be considered by government. This is open to everyone who is capable of doing so.
    People who choose not to engage, refuse to engage, choose not, or refuse, to have representation for their views, that is their entitlement - but it is a bit rich that they then complain about those who do choose to have representation.
     
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