Iain Duncan Smith to the rescue

It’s a breath of fresh air to see that Mr Smith, currently Work and Pensions Secretary calls for caution to be careful in cutting too much money from projects that already deliver good value for money.

A very good service for example is delivered by Louise Casey who delivered an excellent Crime & Communities Review for the Cabinet Office and acted as advisor for the Home Office, she has gotten her own department now. Under Tony Blair’s Respect agenda Louise Casey was in charge of delivering that policy. She is now the Victims’ Commissioner and much of her former role meant to strenghten the victims of crime and give them better support through court processes.

But since the Chancellor has asked each existing project to cut 25 – 40% there is an imminent danger that everything faces the chop, even good projects. Quality assessment is very necessary to keep the positive and reject the negative. Iain Duncan Smith has pinpointed and analysed that very well, but then Mr Smith is one of the old guard and very experienced ministers whilst Mr Osborne is having his first go on the government.

Sweeping changes taking place when governments change are often responsible for positive long-term projects to be interrupted. I have previously written about this, that some services should not be subject to administrative changes on a political whim but handled by a long-term strategy that doesn’t need political colours to function. Or those services should not depend on political colours of the political administration.

There does need to be strategic guidance and that can only come from further above the individual government minister.

Britain is currently quite hard up and has to protect front-line services above anything else and that is all we seem to be able to afford at the moment.

Yet making a business plan for individual government departments relies largely on the economy and the taxes revenue that can be raised and is dependant on monetary fluctuations and business processes, which themselves may be dependant on unpredictable factors like the weather or political changes in some regions of the world.

I think any government “business plan” also has to include austerity measures and emergency contingency that does not solely rely on the economic infrastructure, service provision that may rely on voluntary sector for example.

That also has to be seen in the light that we may face disruption to electronic communications due to heat storms in the not so far future ahead.

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