Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Get them out of the Mercs!

UK cabinet minister Ed Balls was recently fined £60 for using a mobile phone while driving. We know that couldn’t happen here, because the gardai would be driving him rather than stopping him.

The 24/7 availability of state limousines with garda drivers is one of the more visible perks of ministerial office and further demonstrates the bloated sense of entitlement of the politocracy that rules us.

Any executive in a private company enjoying the 24/7 use of the company limo and chauffeur, for other than company business, would be liable for a large benefit-in-kind tax bill, but not so our political leaders. The state merc is permanently available for personal/family and political party business.

I have no difficulty with ministers having the use of state cars for state business, but they should use their own transport for party-related and personal activities

Claims that this garda limo service is required for security reasons are patent nonsense. If any politician needs garda protection, he/she should have an armed bodyguard, not a chauffeur/flunkey driving a state car.

Now that public outrage has forced a u-turn on the payment of ministerial pensions to serving politicians, another unique arrangement for the benefit of the political classes, let us next turn government ministers out of their state cars, save the country some money and free up those wasted garda resources.

In future, we should demand that our political leaders subject themselves to exactly the same rules and regulations which apply to the rest of us plebs. No more opt-out clauses for the ruling elite.

No comments: