The public sector union strike planned for Tuesday reeks of entitlement and thoughtlessness on the part of the strikers (“One-day strike just the start for public sector unions”, November 17).
Among the hundreds of thousands of public servants set to strike are nurses and police while crime runs rampant and public hospitals are more accurately described as early morgues. Despite the mandates of the public sector being far from fulfilled properly strikers want extra money to reward them for their failure.
When politicians raises their pay we rightly protest because they are taking more taxpayer money despite failing at their jobs. Just because police and nurses are lower down doesn’t mean they should not be held accountable.
Police have failed to curtail crime, instead becoming a source of firearms for criminals, and are notoriously corrupt. And while the collapse of public health care may not be blamed on nurses, it surely does not suggest nurses should be paid more.
The problem with the public sector is that it inherently rewards mediocrity while discouraging hard work. In the private sector, you are paid and rewarded based on your ability to produce value and do your job. In the public sector, you are rewarded for your ability to manipulate, kick up a fuss and whine.
But I am unfairly targeting police and nurses here. At least they do have a job to do. Among the strikers are hordes of overpaid civil servants who exist just to take up a salary. So perhaps the police and nurses can get a pay rise — if the redundant and useless workers are fired.
But even then I’m not sure the fiscus can take it. Taxpayers have been pushed to the brink. I would rather see more state functions privatised than sink any more money into failure.
Nicholas Woode-Smith, Cape Town
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