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Murphy's Law-Half pay for politicos

A new twist in the on again off again saga of the "glorified county council" that is the Six County suspended Stormont parliament, has seen Paul Murphy, the Secretary of State, announce that the pay of elected members will be reduced by half.

Called MLAs rather than MPs, this is one of the cruelest cuts ever inflicted on politicians, Unionist, Nationalist, or whatever, in that tiny area of Ireland to which England still clings, a blood stained remnant of a decayed empire.

The Northern Ireland Assembly has had an intermittent existence since its establishment in 1998, being suspended almost at whim by the Secretary of State of the day. Its present suspension has lasted eight months, dating to October 2002. Elections scheduled to have been held in May have been postponed.

First the salaries of its members were cut to £31,817, about 75% of the original full salary. Now Murphy has decreed they be reduced to £20,660.

No sittings-half pay. Its a constitutional revolution which, if it ever extends to Canada, will see the cost to taxpayers of the Canadian Senate, that unelected affront to democratic principles the world over, drop dramatically.

A day's work for a day's pay! How quixotic! An application of this new version of Murphy's Law to Canada will have our S.T.Ss. (sober thinking Senators) writhing in their pocket books, twisting in their bank books, doodling in their account books, staring poverty in the face as it stares right back at them.

Would-be appointees will shudder each time their telephones ring, fearing an offer from the Prime Minister of a seat in the Senate.

"What have I done to deserve this?"

What indeed?


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