Gold plated hypocrites

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Commentators arguing against tomorrow’s strike have repeatedly referred to public sector workers’ “gold-plated pensions”.

The pension cuts which have prompted the strike were introduced by a government headed by David Cameron (private school, Oxbridge, millionaire) who has a pension pot of £550,725 and a pension waiting for him on retirement of £32,978 a year.

Deputy PM Nick Clegg (private school, Oxbridge, millionaire) has £440,000 in his pension nest-egg and an annual entitlement when he retires of £28,404.

Chancellor George Osbourne (private school, Oxbridge, millionaire) emulates Cameron, with a pot of £550,725 and a retirement expectation of £32,978 a year.

The three reverse musketeers - each for himself, all for themselves - are typical. Of the 29 members of the cabinet appointed in May last year, 23 were millionaires - a most remarkable statistic in what is supposed to be a system of “representative democracy”.

But they appear to feel not a twinge of embarrassment as they lecture ordinary workers about their greediness undermining the economy. The phrase ‘gold-plated hypocrites’ comes to mind.

Tomorrow’s trades council rally - Guildhall Square at one o’clock - will be preceded by at least one ‘feeder march’ - organised by Nipsa, leaving Altnagelvin at noon - and less formal processions from a number of workplaces and community locations.

Read more from Eamonn McCann in the Journal every Tuesday.