terça-feira, 25 de maio de 2010

Isto é que vai uma crise!

Enquanto por toda a Europa vão subindo os impostos pagos pelos contribuintes, o Parlamento Europeu continua a sua senda despesista.

Dificuldades? Crise? Apertar o cinto?

Via: The Sunday Times

MEPs get £4m taste for Apple iPad

Bojan Pancevksi

THEY are renowned for never knowingly missing a perk. Now MEPs have decided that, financial crisis or not, they will snaffle a taxpayer-funded Apple iPad for every member once the latest computer must-have is launched on the European market.

The European parliament’s bureau, its administrative office, has earmarked £4.3m for an “IT mobility project”.

Bad as the financial crisis may be, the bureau has decided that all 736 MEPs need to become more “connected” and that the iPad, a portable tablet computer, is just the device to enable them to do more on the move.

The iPads, likely to cost more than £500 each, will be highly coveted when they are released on to the European market on May 28. Half a million of the devices were bought in the United States in the week that Steve Jobs, head of Apple, launched them earlier this year.

Although MEPs have recently been equipped with new Hewlett-Packard laptops, some have told the bureau they find them cumbersome in comparison with the iPad.

The driving force behind the idea is Klaus Welle, the parliament’s German secretary-general, who is known as an enthusiast for the iPhone, already a popular Apple product.

The iPad plan was disclosed by a senior bureau source who was too worried to reveal his name. “We could get rid of our old PCs, some of which have outdated software such as Microsoft Word 2003,” the source said.

“The majority of MEPs have already got iPhones and they are very happy with them. The PC was good for its time but the iPad is a much better device.”

Marta Andreasen, the UKIP member who sits on the budget committee, said: “We were told the iPads would actually cut costs as they are not expensive and that we would be able to stay connected while outside the office or on holidays, but many of the older MEPs don’t even know how to use the internet properly.

“I am against that because it seems completely unnecessary, especially when European taxpayers are facing such difficult times.”

A parliament spokeswoman denied that there were plans to obtain iPads for MEPs in the “immediate future” and said she was not familiar with the bureau initiative.

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