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Is the GDPR being used to hide theft?

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 3,646 realitykeeper


    This article: https://www.irishexaminer.com/breakingnews/ireland/state-cites-gdpr-for-refusal-to-reveal-td-pensions-883404.html

    ... pertains to the GDPR rules which have been changed so that the pensions paid to former politicians may no longer be open to public scrutiny. The pensions paid to politicians are tied to inflation which is fine as long as inflation stays at a reasonable level. But, what if we were to enter an era of hyperinflation? In that scenario, Bertie Ahern`s pension would hyperinflate with the inflation caused by his legacy.

    The bank bailouts, state borrows etc which were necessary after Bertie Ahern`s tenure, have all been added to the national debt and all this money was made possible by the ECB`s QE stimulus. The next economic crisis (which is not far off), will require a lot more QE. The Germans, Dutch and Finns would be opposed to more QE but the Irish, Portuguese, Italians, Greeks etc would want it. This would either mean the Germans get their way and the Irish economy is crushed by the debt repayments and has to default, or the Irish gets it way and trillions of new euro cause Bertie`s pension to hyper-inflate with the rate of inflation or the Eurozone will break apart (which is what I expect) and the new Irish punt will immediately go into hyperinflation, but Bertie Ahern will not be impacted because his pension will hyperinflate with it.

    The fact that politicians tied their pensions to inflation and then set the country up for hyperinflation sounds a lot like theft to me. The pensions of politicians were always available to the media, why now are they going to hide this information? Could it be to hide the enormous increases in payments these former politicians will get if the currency goes into hyperinflation? Imagine a scenario where prices are doubling every day and people are starving but Bertie Ahern`s pension doubles every day with inflation?

    If the authorities do not expect hyperinflation as I do, why are they now choosing to keep the pension payments to politicians secret?


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Comments



  • Couple of points:

    First, the fact that you do not like the terms on which someone's pension is paid does not mean that his receipt of the pension is "theft", realitykeeper. You might find more reasonable discussions ensuing if you didn't caricature your own views like this.

    Second, your argument here rests on a statement that politicians pension increases are linked to inflation. This is false; they are not. They are linked to salary increases for serving politicians, which in turn are linked to general public sector salary increases.

    Thirdly, GDPR is not really relevant here. While the public may not be enitled to information about how much Joe Bloggs receives by way of pension, the total cost of the Oireachtas pension scheme, which is the figure relavant to measuring impacts on the public finances, is not protected by GDPR.




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    Couple of points:

    First, the fact that you do not like the terms on which someone's pension is paid does not mean that his receipt of the pension is "theft", realitykeeper. You might find more reasonable discussions ensuing if you didn't caricature your own views like this.

    Except that was not the basis of my argument. Should hyperinflation come, it will be the legacy of politicians who have retired and who were influential in the drafting of the terms of their pensions. To suggest they had no influence is like saying they had no political power.
    Peregrinus wrote: »
    Second, your argument here rests on a statement that politicians pension increases are linked to inflation. This is false; they are not. They are linked to salary increases for serving politicians, which in turn are linked to general public sector salary increases.

    Wrong again. I assure you the costs of politicians pensions will hyperinflate with hyperinflation. After all, public sector salaries are linked to inflation. Of course to pay for hyper inflating salaries, redundancies are necessary and retired people don`t get made redundant.
    Peregrinus wrote: »
    Thirdly, GDPR is not really relevant here. While the public may not be enitled to information about how much Joe Bloggs receives by way of pension, the total cost of the Oireachtas pension scheme, which is the figure relavant to measuring impacts on the public finances, is not protected by GDPR.

    This suggests a system designed to protect the anonymity of the most egregious beneficiaries of planned inequity.




  • The (nominal) costs of everything hyperinflate with hyperinflation; that's pretty much what hyperinflation means.

    Nevertheless there's no fixed link between wages/pensions and the cost of living. Real wages can and do fall, and conditions of hyperinflation are precisely the circumstances in which that is prone to happen.

    And its absurd to suggest that the principal beneficiaries of hyperinflation are wage-earners and pensioners. The principal beneficiaries of hyperinflation are borrowers and debtors, as you point out in your first post. Pensioners tend to carry less debt than average.




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    The (nominal) costs of everything hyperinflate with hyperinflation; that's pretty much what hyperinflation means.

    Nevertheless there's no fixed link between wages/pensions and the cost of living. Real wages can and do fall, and conditions of hyperinflation are precisely the circumstances in which that is prone to happen.

    And its absurd to suggest that the principal beneficiaries of hyperinflation are wage-earners and pensioners. The principal beneficiaries of hyperinflation are borrowers and debtors, as you point out in your first post. Pensioners tend to carry less debt than average.

    Are you certain state pensions are not liked to inflation? This article confirms what I recall hearing on the radio a few years ago, that they are linked to inflation:

    https://www.inmo.ie/Article/PrintArticle/8217

    The article refers to the consumer price index as opposed to inflation but it probably is more or less the same thing.




  • Are you certain state pensions are not liked to inflation? This article confirms what I recall hearing on the radio a few years ago, that they are linked to inflation:

    https://www.inmo.ie/Article/PrintArticle/8217

    The article refers to the consumer price index as opposed to inflation but it probably is more or less the same thing.
    Far from confirming what you recall hearing a few years ago, the article contradicts it. The article says that the government will consider legislation to link public service pensions to inflation, instead of to public service wages, which is the current position.

    (Yes, the consumer price index is a commonly-used measure of inflation.)


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  • Any monies like what government officials receive by working for the state should be public and it's the public who pays.

    What businesses out there are functioning without knowing what the workers are paid? The Irish people are the bosses and the Goverment should be the workers.
    Any other private money/income they receive once it's legal and taxed correctly, then i wouldn't say no to using data prodection rules in protecting their privacy but when you serve the people and use public money then the people must know on where their money is going.




  • Sciprio wrote: »
    Any monies like what government officials receive by working for the state should be public and it's the public who pays.

    What businesses out there are functioning without knowing what the workers are paid? The Irish people are the bosses and the Goverment should be the workers.
    Any other private money/income they receive once it's legal and taxed correctly, then i wouldn't say no to using data prodection rules in protecting their privacy but when you serve the people and use public money then the people must know on where their money is going.
    On the same argument, Sciprio, shouldn't I be entitled to know how much tax you paid last year, and the data on which the amount due was calculated? After all, as the boss I surely have the same right to know about the income of the business as I do about its expenditure.




  • If the authorities do not expect hyperinflation as I do, why are they now choosing to keep the pension payments to politicians secret?

    Share your own pension details...




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    On the same argument, Sciprio, shouldn't I be entitled to know how much tax you paid last year, and the data on which the amount due was calculated? After all, as the boss I surely have the same right to know about the income of the business as I do about its expenditure.
    You could if i was working for you but if i was you, you wouldn't need to ask as you'd be the boss and the boss knows what his workers are paid. If it's paid with public funds anything else as i said once legal and taxed correctly and not shipped to tax havens, anything after that private wise is none of my business. You can check me out anytime, I have a bank account to in which my wages go and i'm not even a finance minister.




  • Sciprio wrote: »
    You could if i was working for you but if i was you, you wouldn't need to ask as you'd be the boss and the boss knows what his workers are paid.
    Yes, but the boss also know what his customers are paying. If you're arguing that Ireland is a business and the people are the bosses (a fairly questionable argument, but we'll let that go) then the people have the same right to know the full details of all the income of the business as they do to know the full details of its expenditure. It would be ridiculous to argue that the people have the right to know one of these things but not the other; it would show that you don't really buy your own "business . . . bosses" analogy.


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  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    Yes, but the boss also know what his customers are paying. If you're arguing that Ireland is a business and the people are the bosses (a fairly questionable argument, but we'll let that go) then the people have the same right to know the full details of all the income of the business as they do to know the full details of its expenditure. It would be ridiculous to argue that the people have the right to know one of these things but not the other; it would show that you don't really buy your own "business . . . bosses" analogy.

    Ireland is a business and people should be the bosses and as you say, that's questionable so who are government working for? If ministers,T.Ds get brown envelopes to privatise resources that belong to us all but only do so to benefit themselves then i want to know. Any public money that is received by the government is on behalf of the people i want to know and the same with and money paid out at the end.



    I don't want anyone in government to benefit personally at a cost to the public. If someone gets a brown envelope for helping flogging a national asset and at the end receive a pension then yes i'd like to know. I'm not say this about any imparticular person but Ireland has seen corruption throughout the years.




  • Sciprio wrote: »
    Ireland is a business and people should be the bosses and as you say, that's questionable so who are government working for? If ministers,T.Ds get brown envelopes to privatise resources that belong to us all but only do so to benefit themselves then i want to know. Any public money that is received by the government is on behalf of the people i want to know and the same with and money paid out at the end.



    I don't want anyone in government to benefit personally at a cost to the public. If someone gets a brown envelope for helping flogging a national asset and at the end receive a pension then yes i'd like to know. I'm not say this about any imparticular person but Ireland has seen corruption throughout the years.
    First of all, a state isn't really a business; it's a lot more than that. And, if it is a business, citizens aren't really the bosses; they're more like the shareholders. The bosses are the people appointed by the shareholders to run the business - in the state = business analogy, the bosses would be the government.

    I think drop the business analogy; it's not helping. But the basis point is that citizens have an interest in policing conflicts of interest, and detecting and punishing corruption. I don't think you need business analogies to get that across.

    The thing is, though, that me knowing that Joe Bloggs is receiving a pension of X amount per annum tells me precisely nothing about whether his doing so is in any way corrupt. Is he entitled to that amount? If he is entitled to that amount, did he play some part in setting or influencing the rules under which that entitlement arises? The raw figure of the amount that he receives gives me zero information on these points. And treating individual disclosure as your control on corruption is going to lead to big distortions. It's the large pensions that will attract all the notice; a small (but incorrect, excessive or corrupt) pension will escape scrutiny. But there are vastly more small pensions than large ones; corruption at the lower end of the pension scale is going to affect us much, much more than corruption at the higher end.

    In short, individual disclosure of pension entitlements is a really poor, really badly-designed anti-corruption measure; if you actually care about corruption you'll do something else entirely to address it. And while I accept that an individual's right to privacy in relation to his personal affairs can be overridden by a sufficient public interest, I do think you need to show that weakening his privacy rights will in fact serve the public interest in an effective way. While there might be a public-interest case to be made for disclosing pension payments, "it's an anti-corruption measure!" is definitely not that case.




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    Far from confirming what you recall hearing a few years ago, the article contradicts it. The article says that the government will consider legislation to link public service pensions to inflation, instead of to public service wages, which is the current position.

    (Yes, the consumer price index is a commonly-used measure of inflation.)

    That was in 2013 so no doubt it is implemented by now, thus proving I am right and you are wrong.




  • Share your own pension details...

    All such information should be available to media scrutiny, I doubt the media would have much interest in my pension.




  • That was in 2013 so no doubt it is implemented by now, thus proving I am right and you are wrong.
    Your lack of doubt is considered proof, is it?




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    Your lack of doubt is considered proof, is it?

    By your standards it would certainly seem so. You obviously assume self serving government proposals are never implemented.




  • By your standards it would certainly seem so. You obviously assume self serving government proposals are never implemented.
    This wouldn't be a self-serving proposal; long-term, earnings tend to increase faster than prices, so changing the pension link from earning to prices is seen as a downgrade, not an upgrade. (As, indeed, the document to which you linked makes clear. Did you not read it?)

    Still, if this proposal was implemented, it should be trivially easy for you to prove that, with appropriate links.

    But let me save you further embarrassment and humiliation. Public servants recruited from 1 January 2013 onward are members of the Single Public Service Pension Scheme, which pays pension increases linked to the Consumer Price Index, but subject to approval by the Minister for Finance each year.

    Public servants recruited before that date are members of pension schemes which pay pension increases linked to pay increases for the post from which the pensioner retired, not subject to ministerial approval.

    Oireachtas pensions are payed on the pre-2013 rules, and so increases are salary-related, not inflation-related.

    It would have taken you five minutes of googling to find that out but, true to form, you prove that your name "realitykeeper" is a joke by taking care to maintain your ignorance, and treat your own certitude as preferable to the facts.




  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    This wouldn't be a self-serving proposal; long-term, earnings tend to increase faster than prices, so changing the pension link from earning to prices is seen as a downgrade, not an upgrade. (As, indeed, the document to which you linked makes clear. Did you not read it?)

    Still, if this proposal was implemented, it should be trivially easy for you to prove that, with appropriate links.

    But let me save you further embarrassment and humiliation. Public servants recruited from 1 January 2013 onward are members of the Single Public Service Pension Scheme, which pays pension increases linked to the Consumer Price Index, but subject to approval by the Minister for Finance each year.

    Public servants recruited before that date are members of pension schemes which pay pension increases linked to pay increases for the post from which the pensioner retired, not subject to ministerial approval.

    Oireachtas pensions are payed on the pre-2013 rules, and so increases are salary-related, not inflation-related.

    It would have taken you five minutes of googling to find that out but, true to form, you prove that your name "realitykeeper" is a joke by taking care to maintain your ignorance, and treat your own certitude as preferable to the facts.

    Yes but there is every reason the believe hyperinflation will come and the fact that politicians pensions are essentially linked to inflation suggests two things, 1) they expect inflation to rise and 2) they are not quite so stupid as they pretend.




  • Yes but there is every reason the believe hyperinflation will come and the fact that politicians pensions are essentially linked to inflation suggests two things, 1) they expect inflation to rise and 2) they are not quite so stupid as they pretend.

    There is no reason to believe hyperinflation will come




  • Yes but there is every reason the believe hyperinflation will come and the fact that politicians pensions are essentially linked to inflation suggests two things, 1) they expect inflation to rise and 2) they are not quite so stupid as they pretend.
    Politicians pensions are linked to earnings, and they have retained this link for themselves even as they switch other public service pension increases to an inflation link. Which is the exact opposite of what they would do if they expected hyperinflation.

    I've already pointed this out, but you can't seem to grasp it. Which leads to the conclusion that, whatever about politicials being as stupid as they pretend, you certainly are.


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  • Peregrinus wrote: »
    Politicians pensions are linked to earnings, and they have retained this link for themselves even as they switch other public service pension increases to an inflation link.

    Is it possible you cannot see the obvious here. They link their pensions to other people`s earnings and then link those people`s earnings to inflation. The pensions of politicians are therefore tied to inflation.




  • That was in 2013 so no doubt it is implemented by now, thus proving I am right and you are wrong.

    Around about the same time you started the doom/gloom threads predicting the next great depression.




  • Is it possible you cannot see the obvious here. They link their pensions to other people`s earnings and then link those people`s earnings to inflation. The pensions of politicians are therefore tied to inflation.
    This is insane.

    You may hope that other people's earnings will go up with inflation, and by linking your pension to those earning it will rise in line with inflation. But when you can have a direct link to inflation, as newly-hired public servants have, and instead choose to retain a link to earnings, you are passing on a guarantee of inflation-linked pension increases in order to have the hope of inflation linked pension increases. This is not something that you would do if your priority was to get inflation-linked pension increases.




  • BoatMad wrote: »
    There is no reason to believe hyperinflation will come

    Not so. The next economic crisis will rip the Eurozone apart, a bit like Brexit on steroids. The fiscally conservative countries will want to keep debt under control and the med countries and Ireland will want to inflate the currency supply. Ireland may well find itself back under UK hedgemony. There is usually a period of high inflation followed by a lull before real hyperinflation kicks in but I would estimate the end of next year at the earliest before things begin to go very very bad.




  • That was in 2013 so no doubt it is implemented by now, thus proving I am right and you are wrong.

    Its very easy to fact check.

    The fact you didn't do that before posting this rubbish is astounding.




  • sydthebeat wrote: »
    Its very easy to fact check.

    The fact you didn't do that before posting this rubbish is astounding.
    . . . but not in the least surprising.




  • Not so. The next economic crisis will rip the Eurozone apart, a bit like Brexit on steroids. The fiscally conservative countries will want to keep debt under control and the med countries and Ireland will want to inflate the currency supply. Ireland may well find itself back under UK hedgemony. There is usually a period of high inflation followed by a lull before real hyperinflation kicks in but I would estimate the end of next year at the earliest before things begin to go very very bad.


    How many Eu countries have kept the real debt burden, I.e. private debt, under control? Can't see us ever being under British control again, in fact I'd say there's a good chance of re-unification, largely due to demographic changes in the north.




  • Not so. The next economic crisis will rip the Eurozone apart, a bit like Brexit on steroids. The fiscally conservative countries will want to keep debt under control and the med countries and Ireland will want to inflate the currency supply. Ireland may well find itself back under UK hedgemony. There is usually a period of high inflation followed by a lull before real hyperinflation kicks in but I would estimate the end of next year at the earliest before things begin to go very very bad.

    You said the same thing in 2017!




  • sydthebeat wrote: »
    Its very easy to fact check.

    The fact you didn't do that before posting this rubbish is astounding.

    ... and yet nobody has bothered to counter check. Hypocrisy abounds.


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  • Wanderer78 wrote: »
    Can't see us ever being under British control again, in fact I'd say there's a good chance of re-unification, largely due to demographic changes in the north.

    I would like to think so but when you look several moves ahead, the outcome would appear to be different.


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