Our European Commissioner was ''doorstepped '' and asked about her current pension/s in the light of the waiver of pension entitlements in the case of a retiring banker ...
With an overly hasty riposte she said to the reporter "That is a question that I have refused to comment on up to now and I continue to refuse to comment on it.''
The pique was palpable , and the affront visible .. she then canceled an arranged interview with RTE .
..but she is not alone .. and FG and Labour also have their formidable pension earners while still working..
and some ( teachers ) .. are they still blocking the appointment of a full time pensionable locum tenens ? - ''subs '' while they are in politics..and accruing more years for their teacher's pension also..
Our European Commissioner was ''doorstepped '' and asked about her current pension/s in the light of the recent waiver of pension entitlements in the case of a retiring banker .
This is the commissioner who ''dumped ''on ms De Burca ,in the apparent belief that Ms de Burca would prove too conservative in the areas of stem cell research for example ."
This reply was made without any attempt at charm.It was terse and unequivocal.The commissioner gave the impression that she regarded the question as an affront. . It suggested an arrogance which we have become all too familiar within the ranks of Fianna Fail particularly .The notion of entitlement to privilege is not even tenuously concealed . The chosen ones are just chosen and they live their lives in a different manner to those they legislate for.
But just to put it in context . Having been asked if , would she consider taking a cut in her income, which consists of a TD's pension, a ministerial pension and her present salary.; which comes to , € 351000 ( €44,000 plus €64,000 plus €243,000.) P/A
- At a time when the average industrial wage is somewhere around €35000
The commissioner was so piqued by the question that she later canceled an interview with she had agreed to give to RTE.
So this woman who earns approx 10 times the salary of the average industrial wage earner states ''That is a question that I have refused to comment on up to now and I continue to refuse to comment on it." - and walks away .
Of course there was an immediate bleating ( if indeed bleating can be immediate) from other TD's and Ministers across the house, all proclaiming their Damascene conversion .
One would imagine that in the circumstances whereby thousands are emigrating , hundreds waiting for the axe to fall on their jobs by the week, dole queues NOT yet burgeoning because of the degree of emigration , that a seasoned politician such as the commissioner could have shown just a degree of circumspection .
But the hubris and hard-wired sense of assumed privilege is such that she displayed a sneering contempt towards the reporter .
One was humbled ( revolted too - but we say ''humbled''- it has more political panache ) - in the presence of such indomitable and self aggrandized personage .