Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Topics: John O’Donoghue’s resignation as Ceann Comhairle; ministerial expenses; Brendan Drum’s bonus; Pat Kenny’s salary at RTE.
Participants: Leo Varadkar, Ciaran Lynch, Ken Foxe and Elaine Byrne.
We got over 600 texts messages. Here is a short selection of them.

*I am sickened by DRUM getting€70000 Bonus. For what... ??? I am one of the rich public servants earning €25000 a year and I work damn hard for it and ... Surprise surprise no bonus only my job in medical cards being centralised to Dublin ... Why? Supposedly to save money... What a laugh... Horrified HSE worker

*My fiancée is Norwegian and is appalled by the lavish indulgences of the politicians here.  According to him the prime minister of Norway drives himself to work, and the former King of Norway Olav was a regular user of public transport (trams) through Oslo ! I would love to see ministers driving themselves and using public transport here. Lisa.

Wouldn't it be great if michael O'Leary gave free air travel to all ministers. Why not set the pay of TD's at twice the average wage. And why should ministers get any more than the basic td salary, surely it is a privilege and the lifestyle and travel aren't bad either. Sam Bowden

John O’Donoghue should be ashamed of himself, telling us that he done what was the norm, would he cycle to the Dáil if he was in the green party. Way of back to the kingdom as he thinks he's a king. Declan Kelly

Why do all political parties cannot not make all their expenses open to the public right now, by posting them on their web-sites. I am of the opinion that all parties have something to hide the only way I can be persuaded otherwise is if they make their expenses public now. Alan Lawes.

Looking at O’Donoghue’s speech, I wonder is he the last of the Gombeen men. Tony Walsh

Pat Kenny gets paid for the revenue he brings into RTE. The politicians get expenses for making bad decisions

Ah sure Would We have a look at what’s going on in the UK even P.M Gordon Brown has been told He has to pay back what expenses He unfairly claimed. We should DEMAND the same here! John in Naas.

Pat Kenny is self employed. Kind Regards Morgan McCabe Newbridge Co. Kildare.

Brendan Drum’s salary is not that amazing considering the salaries of many consultants and earn even more

Why not treat r t e with the same outrage as others instead of the jovial tone with which u did

John O’Donoghue’s expenses were only a fraction of previous government wastes such as e voting and HSE it and payroll failures whole system is a failure John Co Kerry

How do these people think that the ordinary man or women in the street be able to take a pay cut in these times when in some cases peoples partners have been left go from their jobs an with the price of living so high. and these fat cats up on there high horse it is very easy for them an the on thousands a year. we have none nationals here draw sucking the state dry taken an whopping eight hundred a month on social welfare we are laughing stock The people running the country are the ones robbing it pay cut i rather go on social me self then pay them robbers any more money.

I wonder how the minister for social welfare would manage on 5 times my disability of 204 euro a week.

The whole wage cut thing is making people really angry and i hope people get up off their asses and aim some of this at the government, bankers and the like. Some central bank high flyer called for wage restraint, 2day what a neck these people have. Ted, Cork

I'm unemployed. The discussion on salaries and bonus's this evening are deeply saddening to me. This state is so corrupted it's unbelievable .

I've no problem with an rte presenter getting huge pay. I have serious issues with the managers in rte who signed these deals. They are supposed to understand market forces in broadcasting and pay along those lines. They offered in multiples and the presenters took the hands off them. Waste by faceless managers of our money. They should be named and dragged out to explain their reason for justifying these pay scales. John, Laois

Working people who reach the age of 60 should be allowed to retire and u would have less people on unemployment assistance. Younger people seems to be bigger spenders and money would get back to the exchequer

I drive myself to work everyday why should ministers be any different if they cant drive themselves hire a taxi plus well done to Eamon Gilmore for setting things in motion to get rid of one of the biggest spongers in Irish politic

Why should i pay a television licence when I receive all my channels through sky? In sick of the over inflated wages of Kenny, Ryan and co.

I am a nurse earning 45 000 a year how can the HSE justify this bonus to him its scandalous but typical of this country more pay cuts but some dont have to worry with the money and bonuses they earn

Will Pat Kenny please pay my tv licence fee as i can not afford it this year Eddie from County Clare

Have you not noticed that journalists and newspaper commentators who earn multiples of the average industrial wage are the people who are leading the charge for a slash and burn reduction of public sector wages and jobs. Recession proof hypocrites. Richie from Dundalk

I work for the HSE and am currently down 400 euro a month from the last pay cut or pension levy as they like to call it. If they cut my pay again i will most likely lose my home as i can barely get by now. Is the govt. Going to bail me out along with the banks?

John O'Donoghue' s arrogance is breathtaking, he should be made pay back the monies that he charged the tax payers. He seemed to think it was his right to live in the grand manner, and the idiots in south Kerry will elect him again next time round. I could weep for the state FF have got this country into

This Government is an education. It has taught us you can't keep your eye on the ball while your snout is in the trough.

Nobody in this country should be paid more than .100.000 a year

There are people who are millionaires asking for cuts in social welfare of €204 a week i would like them to try live on that amount. Noel O Neill

Why is the public service pay cuts even on the agenda. We have taken a cut with an unfair pension levy which is always going to be there even if we get back to the so called good times. If there is another cut in public pay id probably be better off on social welfare as I’m already on less than €27000. Shane in Drumcondra.

A good idea for a new rte show would be Marian Finucane fronting a programme called 'does god hate overpaid tv presenters?' (from Red Ned in west Cavan)

aren't the lads from Fine Gael & Labour great. As soon as you push them on cutting costs they agree but don't want to cut ministers cars and the need to attend "banquets" as per our Fine Gael friend. I guess they are just making sure that they get to enjoy the perks IF the public mood doesn't change by next election. About time someone asked the unelected government ie Fine Gael & Labour the odd hard question. God help the country when the nay sayers to everything get in! Pierce

Am a Garda in   Cork and we shouldn’t have to take a pay cuts. This government is a joke. I hate my job because we have no weapons when someone comes up with a gun what can we do?

I'm just in the door, was at the Helix at the Emergency Frontline 24/7 meeting, just want to update you, we are not going to take any more pay cuts or levies, its official, we nurses, gardai, prison officers, firemen and ambulance staff, are not taking any more bull from Brian Cowen and Co, roll on a general election! Sean Moran, Lucan

All presenters and politicians are forever running down us public servants and our pay , my God we are very low paid and have 2 buy our own cars, houses etc on 35k or less. Mags.

when are you going to debate the ban on stag hunting and the fact that the greens are bent on banning hunting/ blood sports as a whole . Seamus Murphy Wexford