JG's blog

Who do you think you are kidding, Mr Blair?

Who is Mr Blair trying to kid? Yesterday he unveiled a swath of policy initiatives covering compulsory uniforms for punishment in the community, greater private sector delivery of welfare, personal carbon budgets and a switch in funding from national Muslim groups to smaller local groups.

Just stop it! Your time is up; no-one is listening. Stop wasting time and money unveiling so called initiatives when all that is going to happen is Gordon Brown is going to succeed you, completely ignore what you have said and pursue other ways to spend our money. You may think that you are going out with all guns blazing and laying down your legacy, but the truth is you are smouldering out and you blew any chance of a decent legacy many years ago. If you must hang on to power and really want to make a difference in your dying months – do nothing. Absolutely nothing. It would be the most productive few months of your premiership and set a real legacy that Mr Brown would be wise to follow.

PAC miss the point. Completely.

Have the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) completely missed the point?  They have recently criticised the Dept. of Health’s deal with Dr Foster, who provide the Good Hospital Guide.  They have helpfully (and rightly) pointed out that the contract represents poor value for money due to a less than competitive tendering procedure. 

Doing less pays... if you're a policeman

One of the highest priorities, and also the few areas, the Government should be focusing on is law and order and the police force. Policemen and women should all be paid the salary they deserve and not a penny less. However, it seems whatever area of life that falls in to the public sector, you are guaranteed to see money thrown away – and the police force appears to be no different.

More than 8,000 police officers are being paid full salaries to work limited hours with limited duties. It is estimated that it costs £250 million a year. This is a luxury the public sector seems to be able to afford. They just pay out more and more without anyone keeping an eye on whether it is well spent and how it is spent. No one takes an interest to deal with the problem and it will always be someone else's duty to "fix" it.

Refused a loan? Ask Gordon

What do you do if you are refused a loan for your struggling small business from the bank? Ask Gordon, of course. And why not – what do the banks know anyway? They only have decade upon decade’s worth of experience and expertise on who is sensible to loan to and who isn’t. Besides, as we all know, Mr Brown seems to have more money than he knows what to do with at the moment and what better way to waste invest it than through the state funded small firms’ loan guarantee scheme? The figures speak for themselves - almost 35% of Government loans end in default compared to 4% of commercial loans to small businesses.

Paperwork over patient care

It is reported today that Government reforms have led to patients being put at unnecessary risk by an over load of paperwork required by their carers. The British Medical Journal describes hospital wards as having "appalling conditions" and blames nurses for spending more time filling out paperwork that spending time on the wards.

All this negates the effects of a successful operation as many patients are catching hospital acquired infections or developing pressure sores.

Assets Recovery Agency to close at cost of £90m

The Assets Recovery Agency, set up four years ago with aim of seizing £60m a year in assets from organised crime, is to be closed. It cost £20m a year to run, yet only seized £4.4m a year. In total, the agency cost the tax payer £90m.
Yet another example of the Government making headlines with being tough on crime, throwing money at the problem, getting negative results and then making a silent retreat hoping no-one has noticed.