The 43-Year-Old Pensioner



Former Galway Fine Gael TD Brian Walsh

Via The Sunday Times Ireland:

While [Fine Gael TD] Brian Walsh, 43, announced he would not be standing for re-election in his Galway seat last November, he told a local radio station that he would “most certainly” see out his term until election day.

Walsh resigned his seat on January 14, three weeks before President Michael D Higgins dissolved the Dail and the election was called.

On November 11, Walsh told the Keith Finnegan Show on Galway Bay FM he would not be getting a “gravy train” payout, or any pension until he was 66. The TD promised he would “most certainly” fulfil his mandate “right up until election date”.

However, on December 16, Walsh wrote to the Oireachtas to apply for “early retirement on grounds of ill health”. {Walsh said he had been admitted to hospital in 2013 “with acute diverticulitis” and spent nine days under a consultant’s care]

If his application is granted he can get his pension now instead of waiting 23 years until he is 66.

The decision will be made by Labour’s Brendan Howlin, the ceann comhairle Seán Barrett and the Seanad cathaoirleach Paddy Burke, who are trustees of the Oireachtas pension scheme.

They could grant Walsh a notional extra five years’ service if they assume he would have been re-elected were it not for his illness.

The total benefit before retirement age could be worth almost €500,000 over 23 years.

Good times.

Walsh vowed to forgo TD pension (Mark Tighe, Sunday Times)


56 thoughts on “The 43-Year-Old Pensioner

  1. Condescending Nana

    he’s 43? he looks in his late 60’s, he’ll probably be dead in a week.

      1. panga

        my man was doing that 50 times a day but still went to work…
        no choice… fat cat pension
        no twisting of rules to suit
        tough poo was gosothanks

        1. Paddy Healy


          Diverticulitis is believed to develop because of changes inside the intestines including high pressures because of faulty contracting of the intestines.[3]

          They often evolve from age-related diverticulosis and its associated pathologies resulting from increased intraluminal colonic pressure, including bleeding, abscess, perforation, stricture, fistula formation or impacted fecal matter.[4][5]

          Most people with diverticulosis do not have any discomfort or symptoms; however, symptoms may include mild cramps, bloating, and constipation. Other diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and stomach ulcers cause similar problems, so these symptoms do not always mean a person has diverticulosis.

  2. Clampers Outside!

    Sure that’s nothing…. Ivan Yates will have received in excess of €1,000,000 …yeah, €1million+…. between retiring at 50 and the State Retirement Age of 66.

    It’s not Ivan I’ve a beef with, it’s the system that gave him that ridiculously early pension. A system which was only put in place by none other than the Boss crook of all politicians, Charlie Haughey.

    No pension until 66 (or whatever the state pensionable age is at the time, so if it goes up…).
    And that should be final !

    1. ahjayzis

      Let’s not forget that while Yates was bankrupt, he was still in receipt of that pension, ring-fenced.

      If Mary Hanafin had won her seat this time around, we would make a net gain by employing her rather than paying over 100k a year in pension.

      When asked whether she was taking the full amount, her response? “But it’s my only income!”

      They want fupping shooting.

    2. delacaravanio

      Fupp that. They should not get their pensions until at least age 70, after all that’s the age they voted to raise the pension age to for the rest of us.

      The hypocrisy of our politicians is astounding.

  3. Tish Mahorey

    Politicians and their backers use the nation’s coffers as an ATM. They all know it and it’s been that way since 1922*

    The people are the fools who let it happen.

    *(replace atm with withdrawals slip before 1986).

    1. Mickey Twopints

      Not wishing to detract from your point, but it must be said: we’ve had ATMs since way before 1986. BoI had them in the 1970s.

      1. The People's Hero

        Not wishing to detract from your point but we did not have ATMs in he 1970’s…. Bol introduced the first one in 1980….

          1. The People's Hero

            ‘Fraid not. That was the demo machine. The very first ATM launched publicly was the BoI Pass Card machine and that was in 1980. Early.

            Now there were cash dispensing machines in existence from the late 60s and a few of those were knocking about the city. But they were not classed as ATMs.

            Daddy dearest worked for De La Rue and then Barclays before we relocated back home. And in an interesting twist of fate, I was part of the team in the 90’s that helped unleash the Laser card on the Irish public…. Ya!

          2. ahjayzis

            Rumour has it the ATM now located in the SU in DIT Bolton Street is the first ATM in Ireland. Rumour has it.

  4. DubLoony

    The pensions are excessive.
    There is only one justification for early pensions, and I mean only, is the Charlie Sheen defense on why pay hookers: You pay them to go away.

    If they thought that they have nothing else to fall back on, there would be no getting rid of some of them.

  5. pooter

    He applied for a pension for the rest of his life because he spent a week in hospital? Ha !! Sure the lads will look after him, no doubt.

  6. Anne

    Diverticulitis huh? That sounds deadly, like indigestion or something..
    Did he try Rennies at all I wonder?

  7. Anne

    The decision will be made by Labour’s Brendan Howlin, the ceann comhairle Seán Barrett and the Seanad cathaoirleach Paddy Burke, who are trustees of the Oireachtas pension scheme.

    The drivers of the gravy train will see to it that he stays on the gravy train no doubt.

    Let me get this straight, if he hadn’t resigned his seat, (due to the aul doze of the diverticulitis) 3 weeks before the dail was dissolved, he’d have had to wait until he was 66 to get the pension?

    How fortuitous was the aul doze of diverticulitis like? Jesus, you couldn’t ask for it at a better time like… it’s like hitting the lotto getting that diverticulitis. A lotto paid for by you and me..

  8. phil

    On a human level….

    I just read a bit about that disease , and if it was aggressive type a person was to contract , well that person would be well advised to take a few years off , give up booze , work on diet and exercise and try to remain calm . The trick there is , can a person afford to do that….

    1. ahjayzis

      That’s the injustice. I’ve no qualms about an employer looking after their employees when the worst happens.

      But politicians who run our society leave office never having to actually engage with that society again.

      Sickness benefits are rubbish – the people who write that policy will never know that first hand. So why would they work to fix it?

      Same with the public health service – they’ll never use it. Public schools – their sprogs go private.

  9. Joe cool

    He should go get himself a job if he wants money. plenty of jobsbridge internships if he’s thinking of retraining. There are many people with worse conditions than him getting up every morning and putting in a shift. The cheek

  10. Nigel

    Issues with the size of the pension, fine. Sneering at him for getting sick – feck off.

    1. Mickey Twopints

      Whilst I agree with your sentiment re the sneering, it should be remembered that Deppity Walsh served as a member of the government which enthusiastically conspired to impose a tax charge of €180.00 per annum on prescriptions for medical card holders with long-term illness and disabilty, many with a weekly income of €188 (in addition to property tax and water tax).

      1. smoothlikemurphys

        “Deppity Walsh served as a member of the government which enthusiastically conspired to impose a tax charge of €180.00 per annum on prescriptions for medical card holders with long-term illness”

        So because of that it’s OK to make fun of his own illness?

        1. Nigel

          As the person who made the initial point: sneering at his illness, bad; noting the irony of someone safely cushioned from certain negative consequences of an illness after making adding such a charge to others: acceptable.

      1. Nigel

        Yay! That\s exactly the kind of compassionate diagnosis people on disability are used to hearing! It’s almost as if it’s imposible to highlight the enormous financial privilege without imputing medical deception! But no, sick people are malingerers!

        1. LW

          Is it acceptable to wonder how he managed to survive until a couple of weeks before the Dáil broke up, and how he said he was gonna do the opposite of what he did re: serving term, and claiming pension?

  11. Kdoc1

    He can’t be allowed to get away with that. I suffered all my adult life with diverticulitis, but I had to work and wait until pension age to receive my pension.

    1. Anne

      That’s what the gravy trainitis does to ya.. terrible affliction altogether. Don’t be sneery.

  12. ahjayzis

    TDs are on five-year fixed term contracts.

    Is there ANY other profession where in a five-year contract you get sick and your employer is on the hook for 50% of your contract salary ’til the day you die?

    We need to ditch severance and anything but a standard defined contribution pension – the day they’re given the job they’re told the contract may not be renewed in five years. If that’s good enough for the plebs why is winning one or two elections a meal ticket for life?

    1. Sheik Yahbouti

      I think it may well have. Nothing like dirty dealing being exposed to bring on a dose of d’aul diverticulitis. And we have to maintain this avaricious, mendacious, bum on the double for the rest of his life? Could he outline, please, what massive service he has done for the nation in those few short years which could possibly justify this.

      1. FrPhelimYoung

        I’m surprised the pension application and then what can only be described as questionable lobbying of NAMA “in the public interest” hasn’t had more coverage.

  13. Eoin

    If you want to retire in the UK and have the same quality of retirement afforded to retirees today, you would have to work until you are 81 in order to gather the right amount of contributions. 81! I wonder if it’s the same here. Either way……nobody will get to retire at 66 anymore.

  14. nellyb

    Ah come on now, we elect them, they do to the country what the mob did to Gaddafi. And then we elect them again. Some m@$0€hi$m. Accountability is for everyone, not just state employees.
    Stop whinging and talk to your ma and da. About the link between their election choices & their retirement conditions.

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