Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister, claims in today’s Financial Times that the Coalitions policies are “fair” and we shouldn’t get hung up on “the numbers”. Nice try Nick, but no prize I’m afraid. Continue reading “Fairness is about Outcomes, not just Opportunity, Nick”
Month: August 2010
Universal versus targeted benefits?
One idea to resolve the universal benefits versus targeted benefits issue, at least for the elderly, comes from an old friend Anne Bradford who has, to put it mildly, quite a lot financial experience in banking and as an adviser to people in hardship: Continue reading “Universal versus targeted benefits?”
The Audit Commission – chronicle of a death unforetold
Britain has one of the least corrupt public services in the world. Mistakes, yes they happen. Inefficiencies, certainly – what large complex organisations don’t have a constant battle with becoming overweight? But public servants pocketing public funds, or demanding bribes to do their jobs, is mercifully a very rare occurrence, now.
Continue reading “The Audit Commission – chronicle of a death unforetold”
I predict a riot
No, not the irritating Kaiser Chiefs song, a real riot. The revelations that up to 15,000 jobs, and 22% of the budget, is probably going to be slashed from the Ministry of Justice – which runs prisons in England and Wales – started that little ditty running around my head again. Continue reading “I predict a riot”
Smaller Desk, Sir Humphrey? Reality imitates TV…
The Daily Telegraph reports that Treasury civil servants are being expected to squeeze up a bit and use less floor space and smaller desks as part of Whitehall’s efficiency drive. Continue reading “Smaller Desk, Sir Humphrey? Reality imitates TV…”
Monster Cuts versus Alien Reforms
All pretence that the Coalition government is merely trying to sort out the country’s public finances is long gone. It is a Liberal Conservative government, in the 19th century sense of wanting a small, liberal, state with the minimum of compassion for the ‘deserving poor’ and as little socialized provision as possible. It is setting out to achieve what Thatcher tried and only half succeeded in – reversing much of the great liberal-social democratic reforms of the 20th century. Continue reading “Monster Cuts versus Alien Reforms”