Friday, 24 December 2010

Happy Christmas and Thank You

Happens every year, dunnit? Christmas, that celebration of all things good and shiny (not to mention the kitsch that we all secretly love). Or is it some religious occasion?

However you think about it, Christmas is a time when - just maybe - we think a little beyond our usual selfish bounds. Stretch our minds - if not our time and cash - towards others and their problems. This isn't some kind of indulgence but a good thing - those who try to put it down to schmaltz or whimsy are missing the point that thinking about others is the starting point for us doing something for others. Without the thought there is no action.

Now I know I talk about the inefficiency and ineffectiveness of public services - and I mean it when I say that the private sector is (most of the time) vastly superior in service quality, timeliness and reliability. However, this isn't ever meant as a criticism of individual public servants - people who, on the whole, try to do a decent job within a rubbish system. And quite often - I've seen plenty of examples in recent snowy and icy days - go above and beyond duty to serve the public.

I've no time for these people's so-called leaders - fat-cat union bosses like Bob Crow and Len McCluskey who think there's something clever in behaving like playground bullies. It isn't just the ignorant left-wing ideology but the hectoring, ranting and divisive style that does no service at all to public servants.

However, this Christmas around 100,000 public sector workers are looking gloomily at an "at risk" notice - an indication of possible redundancy - and wondering whether the sugary finger will point at them come the New Year. And there's perhaps another 100,000 who know that letter is just around the corner. All this on top of the tens of thousands of public and voluntary sector people who have already been made redundant (not of course to forget the private sector).

The Government may have run away with the idea - egged on by rapacious bankers and developers - that the magic money pit was bottomless. The country may be in a huge financial hole - much of it created by the profligacy of Blair and Brown. But it isn't the fault of those public servants with redundancy notices any more than it's the fault of the ordinary taxpayer who is about to get the bill for that criminal government we dumped in May.

So if you know someone with that letter telling them their job's "at risk" or who is counting down the days to redundancy go and give them a hug, buy them a beer or simply wish them well. It's the least we can do really. That and say...

"Happy Christmas and Thank You"



Dick Puddlecote said...

What a nice message. Have a great Christmas yourself, Simon.

(can I exclude public health nannies from the good wishes ... that's if any actually end up being sacked, of course)

SadButMadLad said...

I would include climate change officers in the list of excluded.