Twenty plus years ago my brother and some of my friends looked around at possible careers and thought "hmm joing the the Police is an option. It sounds ok, it will certainly be interesting, the pay is crap but once you have worked for 30 years you get to retire with a good pension. On the balance of things that seems like a fair deal". Other people looked around at the same time and said “the police, that looks dangerous with shitty hours and crap pay. I think I will go and become a lawyer or an accountant or maybe even a politician, where the pay is much better and I'll be safe".
Twenty years on and the people who became politicians are now enviously, eyeing up the policemen’s impending long retirement and nice pensions and saying “ooh I am not sure the country can afford to pay that now! Since people are living longer and we have blown the money we invested to pay for your retirement bailing out useless bankers we will have to change your deal so you should work until you are 60 or maybe even longer”.
And for some reason normal people seem to think that it’s ok.
Is it fuck! You made a deal and now you should stick to it, irrespective of whether the conditions have changed. A deal is a deal! They have done their part of the bargain; they have been stabbed, shot at, attacked, spat on and worse. They have worked long, anti-social hours and kept your pathetic arse safe while you worked 9-5 and put 3 or more times their salary in the bank. Well now its time for us to repay them not and not try an weasel out of our commitments.
When I suggested this last week in a discussion, somebody quoted "Force Majeure" and said that the circumstances had changed, therefore the contract was invalid. That is utter bullshit, nothing has really cahnged except people live a bit longer than they used to and if you can't predict that you shouldn't be in power.
When the flawed economic policies of the Bitch Thatcher meant that the interest rates on peoples mortgages went from 6 to 17% in a couple of months and hundreds of thousands of people lost their homes there was no option to go to the building society and say “Force Majuere - that was not predicted, I think I will just pay you 7% and you will be happy”. No, the concept of renegotiating a deal when conditions change only seems to work one way and as usual it’s the people down the ladder who suffer.
I have no problem with them setting different terms and conditions for people who join the force today. That is fine. They can look at the deal and decide if they like it. If they don’t they can go and do something else (most of them probably will and then we are buggard!), but to go back on a deal that is already in place is just low – it’s so low it could only come from a Tory government with a idealogical agenda that would see the rich living in secure gated communities and sod the rest of us.