Archive for April 22nd, 2008

Pyjamas Media

Sorry, Risin’ Time with Maxi isn’t the only thing I listen to on the radio. I heard something else today. Not sure what station it was, 98FM maybe, and there was a phone-in about people who wear their pyjamas down the street.

There was one girl trying to convince the listeners that wearing pyjamas down the street was cool, and in doing so pointed out that posh people also wore pyjamas down the street. Another girl disagreed, saying, in effect, that only poor people wore pyjamas down the street. Some dick in the studio, called Jeremy, said people who wore pyjamas were, quite simply, ‘scum’ and that pyjamas down the street were disgusting, for lazy people.

All were more or less agreed: the pyjama-wearing poor are vile.

Have you ever seen a man wearing pyjamas down the street, or is it only women? I passed a couple of women wearing pyjamas the other day. Big deal. I don’t like pyjamas myself, and only wear them in hospitals, bho am I to tell people what to wear? If someone wants to take their child to school in a Big Bird outfit, then more power to their elbow.

What I can’t stick -it got said on the programme tonight- is when the likes of Jeremy start saying that people who wear pyjamas give off the impression of being lazy. I agree: they do. But the difference between me and the likes of he is that I don’t see anything wrong with laziness (though I think idleness is usually a more appropriate term), whereas the yoof on radio phone-in shows want people to wear clothes that demonstrate hard work and moral rectitude.

Well, up theirs.

Busby Flips The Bird

Workers at BT Ireland are to stage a protest in Dublin today to highlight what they say is discrimination against the company’s workforce in the Republic.

Staff claim management are refusing to treat employees in the Republic and the North equally, despite operating its business on a 32-county basis.

I don’t know many details about this particular case, but I was thinking about the general question of how great Northern Ireland is as a ‘nearshore’ solution to keep wages down, particularly in service industries where the nature of the work is such that it may be too risky to transfer to the likes of Bangalore. Unhappy with your wages? There’s a chap two hours up or down the road who’ll do the same job for 25% less, so I’d get the head down if I wuz you. That’s the light in which the recent announcement about the 5,000 IFSC ought to be viewed.

In this case it looks as though there is union representation in the North and none in the Republic. So it isn’t really a matter of one location existing permanently as the most favourable option. The point here at the moment seems to be: run an all-Ireland operation so that the company is in a position to tell the Communications Workers Union to go to hell. Then, once the union goes to hell, the firm can start playing one location off against the other in order to drive costs down further.

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April 2008