That's a poor, populist and rather crass analogy: miners were striking to save their livelihood (and, in their vast majority, all they knew to do and had to look forward to), not amendments to their pensions arrangements.
I will hazard a guess (...dangerous ground around these parts...) that miners had the public's sympathy en masse
for that reason, and am yet to be convinced (read: am very highly skeptical
) that the planned "chaotic strikes" will be as popular as union leaders claim, this time around.
As for the Unison President invoking "their
(poor hard-done by) brothers Greece and Ireland
", considering how public sector pay and perks evolved in these 2 countries throughout the 00s (particularly Ireland!), that really is taking bad faith to stratospheric levels. There's a reson why the Irish public sector at large took a 15% pay
cut (yes, you read that figure right) last year, without so much as a raised eyebrow: they knew full well how good they'd got it up to 2009.