keskiviikko 22. huhtikuuta 2015
I'm trying to explain Finnish politics to a person who has some sense. Talking on the phone to my friend.
Friend: So, what's going on in Finland?
Me: Well, nobody has a job and government has no money and they have to try and think of ways to save it. And they're starting to talk about cutting vacation pay. They'll let people take extra vacation if they don't take their vacation pay!
Friend: But wouldn't extra vacation cost them a lot money that little vacation pay?
Me: You don't understand the Finnish idea of vacation pay. First, they get their normal pay while they're on vacation. Then they get extra vacation pay on top of that.
Friend: So what? I think lots of places here give vacation bonus too.
Me: Ok, but this is not any bonus, it's a huge amount of money. Then they also get Coming-Back-From-Vacation pay.
Friend: You are making this up. Why do they get this Coming-Back-From-Vacation-Pay?
Me: Because they come back from vacation!
Friend: People get paid for going on vacation and then for coming back from it? Hey You, I think you're lying!
Me: And then there's Pekka's päivät
Friend: What's a Pekka's päivä?
Me: That's when you get a day off work for no reason. You don't have to be sick or anything. See, Finns get all these things PLUS sick days of PLUS 4-6 weeks of vacation - with pay for going and coming back - every year. And we still complain!
Friend: But no economy in the world can support that! How does anything ever get done?
Me: Ok, they're finding that out here. Now they're talking about making the school year shorter. If the lay the teachers off for two weeks, then they'll have enough money saved to give them their vacation.
Friend: So they think it's more important to pay someone to be on vacation than to pay them for doing work. Wouldn't it be more sensible to get rid of these ridiculous vacation payments? It seems to me that soon everyone's going to be doing a lot less work and still getting paid for it.
Me: You know that and I know that and I believe that they ALL know that. But they're still fighting over it.
Friend of mine: that's an amazing way to run things.
Ote Savon Sanomat kirjoituksesta.
Keskiviikko 17.3.1993 Sincerely Yours, Mary