Showing posts from August, 2004

IBOA - the brave union

IBOA, an interesting and "intelligent" union, have today expressed their annoyance at the concentration of public sector issues in national wage agreeements. Perhaps this is because due to a failure to legislate on the issue of union recognition, coupled with massive incentives for TNCs to invest in Ireland, private sector union membership has virtually collapsed. The union is considering withdrawing from Congress in order to negotiate directly with private companies who are profitable enough to deliver fairer deals for their employees.

IBOA, who pulled off a quietly spectacular coup last year in achieving recognition with the normally union-hostile HP on their Bank of Ireland IT contract, which gave a fair deal for HP workers on the contract. This, however, presents a conflicting problem for HP's other workers throughout Ireland, who are denied the right to collective bargaining. Many, of course, are contract workers, but there are a significant number of workers in…

Job Creation - an Irish myth?

The Bank of Ireland Business Banking's job index is supposedly Ireland's benchmark for job creation, however this completely spurious index totally ignores some of the most obvious inaccuracies in the job advertising market.

Myth 1: Job advertisements reflect the real level of jobs being advertised.

A large number of companies now use employment agencies to fill their positions, but desperate companies often don't use just one, but anything up to 4 or 5, and sometimes more agencies to fill their jobs. For example 4 years ago one large Dublin based computer manufacturer used agencies so heavily to fill positions in its call centre, that almost every single agency who handled this kind of vacancy hired for the company. As a result, the same job was being advertised, not just once, but up to 40 or 50 times. Likewise a call centre in Cork currently uses agencies to hire - not only are the jobs advertised by multiple agencies, they repeatedly advertise the same jobs. This m…

Legal Murder

The outrageous news this week (which didn't even make front page headlines) about a man who literally drank himself to death in a bar in Laois while the bar staff continued to serve him defines all credulity. This man literally ordered straight vodka after vodka and was served. After he passed out a taxi was ordered for him by two other custmomers but the driver refused to take him. The man was left in the recovery position in the bar. After 2 hours a doctor was called to the scene who pronounced the man dead.

All the time the bar staff just went about their business and ignored the situation. A doctor who prescribed somebody enough to kill themselves and took it in front of them would now be sitting in court charged with manslaughter if not murder. A company who allowed one of their employees to die on the site would be accused of corporate manslaughter for not intervening in a health and safety issue. Yet a publican can literally position and customer and leave him to die…

Taxed out?

Gombeen of the day: Liz McManus

Today the Labour party's Liz McManus made a major gaffe when she pointed out that more people are convicted for welfare fraud than tax evasion. What McManus, normally a pragmatic and sensible politician, missed, was that the vast majority of welfare cheats are working on the black economy, and so are also tax evaders! Most of them receive similar penalties to those who are found evading tax, except due to low incomes most are allowed pay back over time and aren't penalised as heavily - unless they've been truly screwing the system.

The fact that almost all of the major gangland masterminds of the early 90s were also drawing the dole seems to have missed McManus. There is a shocking level of welfare cheating happening in Ireland which mostly involves childminding and small scale personal services. However many of those doing it would need to get a job of 30,000 plus per year in order to maintain their lifestyles, so it is only fair and rea…