Friday 22 September 2017

It's time to level the playing field

Political pensions paid out to under 65s are among the most unfair of costs to taxpayers, writes Emer O'Kelly

The dictionary describes a pension as "a periodical allowance for past services paid by the Government or employers; a similar allowance to a person for goodwill, to secure services when required, etc." Just as a pensioner is "one in receipt of a pension; a dependant; a hireling."

That last word rings a comforting bell: there's something about the word 'hireling' that conjures up the kind of person who appears in Shakespeare's plays hooded and grovelling, brandishing a wicked-looking knife to do the bidding of the villainous king.

Because under that dictionary definition, our hale and hearty politicians who have other occupations, and are anything but old and decrepit, do actually qualify as pensioners, even though they may be raking in additional six figure annual incomes (in some cases, even more than that).

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