IT’S not an original comment – it’s been around quite a bit lately on the net – but it’s worth repeating:
“Remember when teachers, nurses, doctors and lollipop ladies crashed the stock market, wiped out banks, took billions in bonuses and paid no tax? No, me neither.”
Of course you can add quite a few other important people to that list too. All of them people whose jobs are about providing necessary services to society, not merely selling stuff that may or may not be needed (and in most cases probably isn’t).
All of whom have been told by the government that they must pay more in to their pension funds, take less out, and wait a few years longer to get it.
It is, of course, impossible to put a general figure on how much is being filched off each person. Cases vary from individual to individual.
But I have seen one calculation that put the figure for one teacher at around £350,000.
Not, of course, that that particular teacher has ever seen, or ever will see, such a sum at one time. Unlike, say, a Premier League footballer, a merchant banker or a member of Her Majesty’s government.
But reckoning total losses over an expected lifetime, that is about the size of the hole which current Tory policies will make in her hard-earned finances.
And you were wondering what yesterday’s strike – and all the coming strikes over what is sure to be a summer (and autumn) of strife – was all about?
Politicians on both sides of the House have been saying (as they always will) that the strikes are wrong.
As if the government itself hadn’t quite deliberately picked the fight in the first place.
And as if anyone should be expected to stand aside politely and without protest while their pockets are picked on such a grand scale.
GREECE is in turmoil, Portugal and Ireland could be next, Spain is said to be teetering. The Euro itself, they say, is in peril.
Over the pond, the world’s largest economy is in crisis, brought to its knees by decades of militaristic mania that began with the insanity known as the Cold War.
We’re all in debt to someone, it seems. But who?
The answer, in big, broad-brush terms, seems to be China.
So maybe the Communists didn’t lose the Cold War after all.
Of course China wisely stayed out. America and the Soviet Union were both big losers in the long run.
WHEN I hear scaremongering talk about the imminent collapse of the international banking system, a bit of me thinks “bring it on”.
If only the process wouldn’t mean so much trouble and pain for so many. Mainly the innocent.
The last time international finance collapsed – I mean really collapsed, not just wobbled a bit – it resulted in world war.
A war which slew many millions, and the aftershocks of which are still being painfully felt in several parts of the world.
In the final analysis, that is the loaded gun which the world’s bankers are holding to all our heads.
IT’S a very long time since I enjoyed Wimbledon as much as I’ve been enjoying this year’s tournament.
Especially in the women’s draw, it’s a long time since there were so many good matches right from the early rounds. Since outcomes were so unpredictable and the quality of entertainment so high.
I have heard moans that the quality of the tennis isn’t that great. But I can’t recall a time when people (mostly men) didn’t say that about women’s tennis.
They moaned when the game was dominated by just one or two players – King, Navratilova, Evert, Graf, the Williams sisters. And now they moan that the world no.1 (the admittedly rather dull Caroline Wozniacki) has no Grand Slam title under her belt.
As if that wasn’t evidence that the era of individual domination is over (for now).
It was suggested by some cynics that the Williamses would stroll in after sitting out most of the year’s other action and claim the top prizes as if by right. Well, that theory - like Wozniacki’s participation – barely lasted into week two.
The hyperactive performance of Marion Bartoli in defeating Serena Williams was thrilling and enthralling. As, until a disappointing semi-final, were the achievements of Bartoli’s conqueror, the unseeded Sabine Lisicki.
Between them, those relatively unsung players have provided some of the best sporting entertainment of the year.
AS a footnote to my two recent columns about domestic violence, I’ve been asked to draw attention to the Men’s Advice Line, www.mensadviceline.org.uk
It offers advice and support for men in abusive relationships, both those experiencing violence and abuse from partners, and those concerned about their own violence.
And is, I am told, very good and very useful.