On Saturday the predictable calls came from Labour supporting papers. Would I like to confirm that the Tories will cut 10% from budgets? Would I like to send a message to the Conservative leadership that they need to spell out more cuts? They had all the finesse and subtlety of an elephant in a living room. They might have well have asked , would I like to help Gordon Brown smear the Tories with his silly Mr 10% campaign?
It is pathetic that we are still stuck in this idiotic sound bite culture, where Mr Brown seriously believes he can frighten people from voting Conservative by continuing to fib that Tories want to sack teachers and nurses.His main reason for wanting Balls in place of Darling apparently was to have someone as Chancellor who would spend his time rubbishing the Opposition instead of tackling the serious productivity and deficit problems in the public sector.
Mr Lansley was attacked for pointing out the logic of Labour’s own spending plans – cuts of 7% in real terms overall, which would be bigger on other programmes if health and education are protected. We have seen in great detail how much money is wasted in Parliament itself in recent weeks. Now we are beginning to see how this is the tip of a big waste tip throughout the public sector, with too much money spent on needless items or wasteful ways of doing things. As readers of this site will know, the government’s wasteline has expanded, is expanding and needs to be pulled in. Evidence abounds of many things we need not spend money on, without touching a single teacher, nurse, doctor or policeman. Let the real debate begin. I have set out my list of easy targets for less spending. Let others make their contribtion.
In modern manufacturing quality control can mean as few as 100 parts per million going wrong. In the UK public sector error rates of 10,000 per million are commonplace, and in some parts of the benefit administration error rates can be several times this high level. No wonder so much money goes walk about.