There is one thing about the current debate about cuts to public sector pensions which really annoys me.
The constant division by the media (and by certain commentators) of the two sides into ‘tax payers’ and ‘public sector workers’.
There are 5 million public sector workers. All of us pay income tax, national insurance, VAT when we buy things, council tax, road tax when we own a car and stamp duty when we buy a house. Our income tax and national insurance is taken straight from our wage packets, every month, every year for our entire careers.
I resent the suggestion, made subliminally each time the debate is rehearsed in the media, that we are not included in the ‘tax payers’ group of people.
Most of the 5 million public sector workers also have tax paying family members, husbands, wives or partners, many of whom work in the private sector, and who support their public sector family member in these issues. Looking at it in these terms, probably something like 10 million ‘tax payers’ would not wish to be automatically assumed to be part of the ‘anti public sector pension’ brigade.
This post is not about the various arguments for and against public sector pension reform. It is about being somehow labelled as not being a tax payer, when I’ve seen a sizeable proportion of my wage packet disappear on a monthly basis ever since I left school (both in the public and private sector).
The whole thing is a joke anyway; we all know where the financial problem is, where the billions are wasted.
Just watch Jeremy Kyle. I’ll be seeing it ‘live’ on every street on The Swamp this evening.