Man's T-Shirt Becomes National Celebrity - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Man’s T-Shirt Becomes National Celebrity

Published November 19, 2014

Nanna Árnadóttir
Photos by
Michael Jón Clarke (Facebook)

A scathing political t-shirt belonging to music teacher Michael Jón Clarke has become a viral sensation in Iceland. The t-shirt features pictures of two prominent politicians and a luxury SUV with the tagline:

Fired the the cleaning ladies but bought themselves luxury cars – fucking geniuses! 

The t-shirt is a response to a recent and controversial decision by the Government Offices of Iceland to fire 18 cleaning workers – all low wage-earning women, most over 50 years of age – in a bid to save money.

Then shortly after, a decision came to spend 43 million ISK on three luxury vehicles for three top ranking politicians.

“I think people have to find a platform to express their opinions,” Michael Jón told Vísir. “I bought myself a t-shirt at Hagkaup, found these pictures online and had it printed up. I think it’s come out rather nicely.”

Drawing a parallel to the ongoing music teacher strike in Iceland, Michael Jón told Vísir that by contrast teachers are asking for very little.

“We’re not asking for luxury wages or perks, just a wage comparable to other elementary school teachers,” said Michael Jón.

As reported the Minister of Foreign Affairs Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson (pictured on the t-shirt) has received a Land Rover Discovery SE. The market price in Iceland for this vehicle is 13 million ISK.

The Minister of Finance, Bjarni Benediktsson (also pictured on the t-shirt), went with a Mercedes E-Class, which is valued at a more frugal 10 million ISK.

Lastly, Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson is to decide between a BMW 7 Series or a Mercedes Benz S Class – both cost 20 million ISK a piece.


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