Wednesday, 30 November 2011


I have every sympathy for my younger colleagues whose pension schemes are about to be used as a form of extra taxation by stealth. My sympathy also extends to other public sector workers who are being similarly screwed.

However I also think, bearing in mind what has been happening to pensions in the private sector over the last few years, that slogans like this are a little insensitive, and indicate a degree of tunnel vision.
I think this poster unlikely to generate sympathy and support in private sector employees


  1. Probably the first sensible comment I've seen on the pensions issue anywhere in the medical blogosphere.

  2. But is every ordinary person getting a pathetic pension really the way to go?

    What about the huge tax savings banksters and top executives get for the whopping payments into their pensions? Why not limit the tax free payments to a reasonable amount a year.
    There was a report a year ago pointing out that the charges on UK managed pension funds were among the highest in Europe.
    Further many of the public service pension programs, eg hospital doctors, are actually in surplus and this won't change in the near future.
    Yes, the impoverishment of private sector workers in retirement is a real tragedy, but it's not the fault of public sector pensions - see above. And it's happened at a time when the wealthiest 1% have increased the gap with ordinary folk to a level not seen since victorian times - might their greed the real problem?

  3. I don't see the problem with the slogan. Everyone deserves a decent pension whether employed in the public or the private sector.

  4. I'm sorry Zorro, I agree with the last poster and not you.

  5. Actually I agree with the slogan too. The point I am making is that the strike is in protest about the pensions only of the public sector and not "everyone" so is a little presumptive. The strikers could not give a shit about private sector pensions, and it is their use of the word "everyone' that I regard with cynicism.

  6. "The strikers could not give a shit about private sector pensions". How do you know that? Have you asked them? I have. They do give a shit. They want equitable fairness? Do you want this?

  7. Quite simple. For all the years that private sector pensions went down the drain they did and said nothing. The strike has happened because their own pensions are threatened. There is no solidarity here.

  8. As for equitable fairness. At present there is a huge imbalance between public and private sector pensions in favour of the public. The object of the strike is to maintain that imbalance, not in any way to rectify it.

  9. Zorro, I have to disagree - the slogan is spot on.

    I work in the private sector and did take part in a national strike in a bid to save our final salary pension scheme - we failed, but we tried.

    If you are trying to imply that Unions only have those in the public sector at heart, I disagree; and if you are trying to imply Unions have not been battling for private sector pensions (including strike action), I also disagree.

    It may not have reached your radar but lots of work has been taking place across both public and private sectors to try and retain good value pensions.

    Baz (who's google apps doesn't appear to work with blogspot)