Monday, August 10, 2009

The hypocrisy of trade union leaders

There was a time when ‘trade union’ was synonymous with Christian morality; such notions as justice, equity, fraternity which in England were born out of Methodism deriving from the spiritual state of the nation during the industrial age. Just as pre-industrial religiosity stressed individual faith within the context of obedience to the church and state, modern evangelicalism laid stress on faith in the context of the individual as a free moral agent. Working people created their own systems of moral authority in plebeian chapels and forged their identity as a self-managed organisation for the men of the industrial age who had little to do with government and nothing to do with the state church. The Christian Socialists expounded a belief in the brotherhood of man and the consequent development of mutual obligations. They called for moral responsibility, a just distribution of wealth, the fostering of initiative and self-restraint.

GK Chesterton remarked upon the parallels between Christian and Socialist collectivism which both arose from compassion for the unfortunate and from the belief that evil in society emanates from the incessant accumulation of riches.

But that was another age.

Now, trade union leaders are content to receive salary increases of up to 20 per cent while many of their members are having their wages cut, frozen or while they are being made redundant.

The largest rise reportedly went to Tony Woodley, the joint general secretary of Unite, whose salary increases from £88,359 to £105,761. Derek Simpson, Unite's joint general secretary, received a salary of £97,027 – up 4 per cent on the previous year – along with housing benefit of £38,340 and £24,480 toward his chauffeur-driven car.

Billy Hayes, leader of the Communication Workers Union – responsible for the recent postal strikes – has received a 5 per cent pay rise to £88,438.

Bob Crow, the militant leader of the RMT rail union, saw his pay and benefits rise by 8 per cent to £91,646 in 2008. He told The Daily Telegraph: ‘I don't really know if my pay rise was inflation busting.’

Well, Mr Crow, your ignorance is alarming. Your members ought to be profoundly concerned that they are being led not only by an egotistical bully, but by an hypocrite or an ignorant moron.

One might have hoped that those who preach social justice, equality and fraternity might lead by example and forego such obscene salary increases during a time of economic recession and hardship – if only out of seeming compassion.


Blogger Jim Bartlet said...

I read the post title and it seemed of little purpose to continue with the rest of it because Union hypocrisy is all too familiar to me. I read it anyway, and I was correct; nothing new or surprising here.

I am working class, somethings cannot be changed, but I absolutely 'hate' the modern union. People that rise up the ranks of the union are like the Borg from Star Trek; they could all be designated a number like seven of nine (thousand). They all fit the exact same bully type personality, the Tony Mcnulty/Prescott - fat bastard mould. I cannot describe the hatred enough.

10 August 2009 at 09:49  
Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

Your Grace

Nervous as this Eagle be to sympathise with the Kindly Mr Crow


How much of these High-Earners' Pay-risings do they actually receive after the 51.8% Tax Deductions made by the Inland Revenue :

40% Higher-Rate Tax
11.8% Employee's National Insurance

Then there is 15% VAT + 75% Petrol Taxes on what is left for then and their Families

AND it would be interesting to know the rates/water rates on their houses

I remain your Grace's obedient servant etc

G Eagle

wv = fuskis

What kind of language is that

10 August 2009 at 09:51  
Anonymous Anguished Soul said...

I've only been a member of a union once in my life and when I needed them, they let me down so badly, I never ever want to be a member of one again.

They seem to do little with our subs that is any benefit to us the members, whilst feathering their own nest quite superbly.

10 August 2009 at 11:02  
Blogger Albert said...

Sorry, this is off topic, and you've probably been asked this a hundred times already, but why Cranmer?

10 August 2009 at 11:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Champagne socialists.

It just shows that all their talk of "equality" and "fairness" is a sham.


10 August 2009 at 13:01  
Blogger Jim Bartlet said...


Nobody, as far as I can remember, has ever asked such a monumenatlly stupid and moronic question. You're havin a laugh right? Or are you a shop steward, that would fit?

10 August 2009 at 13:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Reminds one of another socialist who forgot his mortage was paid off.

10 August 2009 at 14:13  
Blogger Frugal Dougal said...

What strikes me upon reading His Grace's post is that the union leaders he mentions have gross salaries larger than MPs. 'Nuff said.

10 August 2009 at 14:45  
Blogger peter_dtm said...

oh well

nothing at new under the sun

they NEVER understood the cheers when Thatcher was elected did they ? Bob Crow who is now the dictator of the union I used to HAVE to be a member of is -as noted above - a typical champagne socialist.

Union Officials should by law be limited to receiving the AVERAGE salary of their members. And should - by law - not be paid any time they call a strike.

That would focus their minds -thieving scum that they are

10 August 2009 at 15:19  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Your grace, you should know by now that excrement nearly always floats to the top. It seems that the socialist sort is more buoyant.

10 August 2009 at 15:38  
Blogger Demetrius said...

Has anyone considered that these increase represent the reality of the rising costs as opposed to what we are told in the figures produced by the state? These figures are highly manipulated, structured to meet an agenda, and have little connection with the expenses major sectors of our population. They are a useful invented tool to help keep the government spending down, regardless of that it is supposed to be doing. If only the Union Leaders could make this clear to all of us.

10 August 2009 at 15:46  
Blogger Theo said...

Your Grace should not be surprised that the leaders of such organisations behave in such a manner; after all isn't the whole rationale of their leadership a corrupt and morally unjust exercise in wresting from employers the lucre that their members demand. Trade unionism, when we analyse its objectives and methodology are the politics of the bully boy, the blackmailer and the thief; hence its leaders must display greater expertise in these areas than their members. An organisation with immoral intent must expect leadership with the same values - and it evidently gets them.

The expression "Christian Socialist" is an oxymoron. If you look at the voting record of the MPs currently sitting who are members of the Christian Socialist Movement, including Brown (and Blair), they well exhibit their socialism but there is no evidence of their Christianity.

10 August 2009 at 15:46  
Anonymous not a machine said...

I always wondered when it would become apparent that the unions would become pointless by there own political mind sets , here we are they have funded they have funded the labour party all these years and what do we get , champagne socialists in both camps whilest they have ruined a country and caused social breakdown .

So much for socialism then , you end up busted , drug and alcohol problems , broken education , fraudelent government and mps . fraudulent institutions , it clearly is one big ponzi scheme and a corruption .

Goodness knows what comes next , they should go , and the unions should give there political money to set up a health care charity or somthing , because they are clearly wasting there members usb throwing it at socialist goverment .

i really dont know where it will end , i hear one mp has had her car done whilst canvassing in a deprived area of her constituancey , labour just do not understand the public resentment now towards them for what they have done , and unless they allow general election soon , this country will turn against parliment and the unions in such a way as we have never seen .

10 August 2009 at 16:13  
OpenID scottspeig said...

Your Grace, why so surprised?

After all, they are merely the pigs from "Animal Farm" are they not?

10 August 2009 at 16:23  
Anonymous philip walling said...

How right you are Theo!

Christian Socialist is the oxymoron whose general acceptance has made possible the 'left's' impregnable position atop the moral high ground over the last century and a half.
But socialism is a materialistic business: taking from those who have things and giving them to those who haven't them. Its whole ethos rests upon the belief that the having of things is fundamental to human happiness and it is right to make yourself happy by taking them from others if you haven't got them.
This is so utterly opposed to the Christian Gospel that I am unable to understand why the two have been conflated to the point that many people now believe socialism is virtually synonymous with it.
That must be why people are surprised to hear Trades Union leaders are greedy, self-serving and thuggish. How else would they behave?
Anyone who claims to be a socialist and a Christian is either deluded or a liar. That is the truth we would do well to learn.

And I don't want to get into it here, but I ought to say that 'capitalism' is not the opposite of socialism, but a disparaging word invented by leftists (and adopted wholesale) to denigrate a perfectly good and normal human desire - namely to better oneself and ones family through work. It becomes wicked when it involves greed, fraud, cruelty or any other form of viciousness, which the law ought to punish and society ought to anathematise.
But as with all other efforts to promote virtuous behaviour, socialists have to distort goodness into badness, because their creed is founded in error and lives on deceit.

10 August 2009 at 17:31  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Labour Party gets a proportion of every single union subscription.

I can't find out what proportion of each subscription is given to the party, and I've never found a way of refusing to pay it.

10 August 2009 at 21:06  
Blogger Theo said...

May I suggest that socialism has become synonymous with Christianity in the world's eyes and, dare I say it, in the eyes of many who call themselves Christian because they have confused secular with spiritual objectives. They have confused the cause with the effect. Christians have been active in charitable and relief work as a result of the command to love their neighbour and it is the transforming work of the Holy Spirit that makes such love possible. Many see good works as an end in itself; as though salvation came from good works.

Tearfund is a very good example of the confusion that exists in the minds of evangelicals. Tearfund collects money from evangelicals, many of whom believe that Tearfund is engaged in evangelism when, in fact, it is doing a job very similar to many other relief agencies, including secular agencies. It is ironic, perhaps, that Tearfund is directed by a very liberal theological leadership - no wonder the world is confused - even Christians are.

I believe that Hazel Blears calls herslf a Christian of some kind. In the recent review of the charitable status of religious organisations she said that Christian groups should be used in providing public services as long as they promise not to share the gospel. In a debate in the Commons Ms Blears she said that Christians should not should not evangelise or proslytise when providing services and they should not "imposed our Christian faith or belief on others." This lady obviously doesn't have a clue about the nature of the Christian gospel.

10 August 2009 at 21:15  
Blogger Jim Bartlet said...

I probably come accross as being a bit of a gob shite my self, but its one thing to type on a key board, and quite another to swan around the shop floor exuding your man boobs, and quivering your beer tank at people. God I can't stand them!

10 August 2009 at 21:47  
Blogger Lord Lavendon said...

Good Lord , I didn't realise that the Union Barons earned that much. Why, these are the same carade of people who critcise bankers bonuses ......

Also what about Church of England Bishops - don't they have high salaries/grace and favour houses too ?

11 August 2009 at 08:13  
Anonymous Cockney Rebel said...

"All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others".
And I've seen hard left union leaders quaffing large amounts of expensive wine and food in Egon Ronay restaurants with there radical left mates, Me? I was working there.

11 August 2009 at 12:11  
Anonymous G Eagle Esq said...

Lord Lavendon "... [C of E] Bishops - don't they have high salaries/grace and favour houses ..."

My Lord

Not if the Fire has reduced them to Ashes

Your Lordship's obedient servant etc


11 August 2009 at 15:47  
Anonymous non mouse said...

scottspeig: "After all, they are merely the pigs from "Animal Farm" are they not?" Really, I'm quite fed up with Orwell - for insulting pigs so badly!! Pigs are nice animals.

11 August 2009 at 18:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lord Lav-

Looks like C of E Bishops earn about £40k a year. Not sure about funds for maintenance of their 'palaces'. But I would say that is a good deal - they are afterall in a business sense senior regional executives .

12 August 2009 at 09:03  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was at a supermarket checkout two days ago. I couldn’t help but notice that the senior gentleman ‘serving’ me was proudly sporting a Unite Shop Steward pin on his lapel. I recall going through his checkout once before and trying to be helpful by giving him a few coppers in addition to my £20 note so as to avoid a pocket full of change. Boy did that confuse him. Anyway, this time I didn’t help him in any way. He helped himself though as when I got home I realised he’d charged me for expensive ‘Fair Trade’ bananas instead of baking potatoes! I guess that’s the Unite mindset – thinking of foreign bananas first instead of British spuds and then taking a reward.

Try a Google search for Solidarity Trade Union – now there’s a refreshing change -- a non-Marxist trade union!

12 August 2009 at 12:09  
Anonymous Steve said...

Trade Unions - the unacceptable face of capitalism.

12 August 2009 at 14:09  
Blogger Anthony said...

Ideology is a mask for basic instinct. The instinct of the Trades Unionist or the Socialist is "I want some of that" or "Gimme what you got". The instinct of the Conservative is "Get your own". Everything else is clever words, whose purpose is to persuade. I don't think they are hypocrites. They are on the take, for themselves and their followers.
Christianity is a civilising force. It is "Get your own" combined with "Look after others less fortunate". The opposite force is: "Gimme what you got" but "OK, you can keep that". That's Nu Labor.

14 September 2009 at 19:17  

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