Thursday, 15 November 2007
The first strikes happened in Europe - as far as I know - around 1850 and the main reason was the same as the one that occurred in ancient Egypt, more than 3000 years ago "we are hungry".
Right now, here in France, all the public transport has come to a standstill, trains, subways, buses.
The reason for this is quite clear: these transport people have a special pension scheme. They retire at 50 or 55 and get a pension equivalent to 100 percent of their last salary. The money for this comes from taxes meaning from all those other working people who retire at 60/65 and get 50 to 70 percent of their last salary.
During the electoral campaign, The newly elected French president promised to end this situation and now he is trying to implement this. Thus the strike.
In Germany we have a strike of the train conductors, freight trains and passenger trains. Those conductors created first a trade union for themselves and now ask for a 30 percent rise of salary. The German Railway refused, thus the strike.
Has this anything to do with "we are hungry"? I don't think so. This is pure blackmail carried out by a group of people who happen to own something like a "joker".
On the French and the German telly, I see the faces of these trade union bosses. I see glee and triumph there, kind of "fuck you, we shall overcome". "We'll get you, shell out the money or kick the bucket."
That is what I see on their faces. If the country comes to its knees, they don't care. They want the money and pronto, a soft life for their members, featherbedding paid by others who work harder and longer.