Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Britain on Strike today

So the Unions here in England are what the Unions in America want to become. Completely in power and unquestioned. Well it looks like they got questioned by the government here.

I am actually here and this is actually affecting my life. Due to the brilliance in union leadership approximately 2 million workers are on strike for today, including teachers. So because of this my child does not get to go to school today to further her education. Is it just one day, sure, but that is beside the point.

So what is so horrible that people would decide that shutting down border protections (cause that's a brilliant plan that couldn't possibly have serious consequences) teachers, garbage collectors, and just about every other public employee here. Take into account that most employees here are public of some kind and you have a touch of everyone thinking they shouldn't work today.

So what is so horrible and unfair to make this happen? Well according to MSNBC its this:

* An overhaul of pensions is part of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government's package of austerity measures to tackle a budget deficit that peaked at 11 percent of national output when it took power.
* The government insists that public sector workers increase contributions they pay into state-controlled pension schemes to make annual savings of 2.8 billion pounds ($4.35 billion) by 2014.
* It says pension reform is vital as the system is no longer affordable, partly because of longer life expectancy. It says public sector pensions are more generous than in the private sector, which is unfair to taxpayers.
* Workers across the public sector will be forced to contribute an average of 3.2 per cent more annually to their pension funds.
* Ministers say the normal pension age should be linked to the state pension age, meaning many public sector staff would have to work longer, as the government is planning to raise the statutory retirement age to 68 from 2020.
* The government's decision to switch to the lower consumer prices index (CPI) from the more generous retail prices index (RPI) when calculating inflation adjustments has already reduced the value of some pensions by 15 percent.
* Unions say the reforms would mean people would work longer and pay more for worse pensions.
* The government, which wants workers to receive pensions based on average earnings rather than final salaries, made a revised offer earlier this month. It was not accepted by the unions.

 So let me get this right. You might have to pay into your pension a little more, work a few more years, and have your pension based on the amount of money you actually earned and put into it. I would be confused as to why this would be a problem then I remembered it was involving unions and well we all know how that works. 

England like most of Europe, and America at this point is broke. I mean really broke. It could be because the unions basically have it so everyone gets off at 4 in the afternoon and are guaranteed 30 days paid vacation each year and other programs that are just destined to fail but why worry about those things. After all they can just print more off right?

Any of this sound familiar to the Unions in America? If it doesn't sound that way to you, I recommend a recent history lesson in the state of Wisconsin.

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