Monday, May 24, 2010

What would you cut ?

The coalition ( have we agreed to call it that ?) is starting the process of undoing Labour's attempt to destroy our country and economy today with areas where the state has to be cut back.

What would your suggestions be ?

My starter would be OffToff ( aka Office for Fair Access )- the Labour governments anti middle class children agency.


Quiet_Man said...

Fake charities would be a decent area too.

Anonymous said...

The throat of every cabinet minister in the last 13 years.

JohnRS said...

This is indeed a target-rich environment:

All the LEAs, move schools to Gove's directly funded model based on headcount with locally elected (not appointed) parent governors. All the Exam Quality and Curiculum hangers-on. Move all exams to the International Bac or IGCSEs to keep Whitehall's sticky fingers from devaluing those as well. Much of Ofsted, I only care about results - how the schools do this should be down to the head. All Dept of Edu departments bending the Universities admissions policies to let anyone in who didnt get top exam marks.

All the unelected regional government timewasters and every spin-off committee, team, group, leech they've created.

The whole International Development Dept. Charity begins at home for the next few years.

Most of the Dept of the Environment, particularly all the eco- and green bits. Anyone involved in supporting the deceitful warble gloaming agenda.

Most of the Dept of Health, esp groups that try to alter what people do/want/eat (anti- smoking, fat, salt etc and the pro- fruit, cycling, grow-your-own nuts as well).

All the Home Office anti-citizen depts (ie the surveillance state), ACPO and all other non-operational police groups. Anyone involved in supporting the deceitful warble gloaming agenda.

Most of MoD Procurement who have wasted more money than any other spending dept.

Most of the Energy Dept. Most especially anyone involved in supporting the deceitful warble gloaming agenda. Stop delaying and start building nukes before the lights go out.

I could go one...

Mark Wadsworth said...

John R has done a good list.

I'd do BIS/BERR/DTI thingy as well, DCMS and DECC as well to be on the safe side. And get troops out of Afgh. And leave the EU, the UN, NATO and so on. And tax public sector pensions above £10,000 a year at 75%.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Oh, and DEFRA and anything to do with Climate Change.

Roger Thornhill said...

John R - I was with you until "Move all exams to the International Bac or IGCSEs..." Nope, just stop saying what they should use. Leave them to it AND get Whitehall out of the Oxford and Cambridge Exam Boards. But back on track with you thereafter ;-)

And what Mark Wadsworth says (this is a cut-out-and-keep comment, I think!).

To me, though, it is not so much what, but how much.

We need to balance the budget. That is the target for the immediate term, and after that we need to create a surplus for a number of years, probably around £900bln-£1tln overall to wipe out the debt.

So, the real big lumpy numbers are health and welfare.

We need to end the curse of state housing used as an incentive for people to have limitless kids, therefore I say that we end the addition of extra housing if someone dependent on the State increases the size of their family. So, girls still in the family home will realise that, unless they get hooked up with someone with income, they will not be able to leave their delightful family home*. You know, like mankind has been doing for, hmm, 1m years.

Healthcare spending has grown massively since 2004/5 - 33%. Of course, we are told this is "investment", so we can bloody well suspend that "investment" for now, until we denationalise the entire provision and remove monopoly rights of SHA/PCTs over our bodies and medical lives.

Though we should be backing out of overseas advenntures, we still need to ensure we have a robust and feared defence capability. Why feared? Best way to ensure it never has to be used.

* if girls want to escape a wretched home not of their making, that is another thing and should not be triggered by pregnancy

Mark Wadsworth said...

Rog: "We need to end the curse of state housing used as an incentive for people to have limitless kids, therefore I say that we end the addition of extra housing if someone dependent on the State increases the size of their family."

This is the second time today I have agreed with you. That was in your manifesto of years ago and was gleefully adopted into mine.

That said, social housing is not a curse in itself; if handled correctly, it is a useful money spinner for local councils; gives people the opportunity to avoid mortgage debt slavery AND dampens house price bubbles.

woman on a raft said...

a) Regional Development Agencies.
All of them. Gone. Nothing worth saving. (I've personally checked by going to one of their buildings to see what they were up to. Four-colour ideas and long lunches. They told me to be off with myself, ruffian.)

b) The Independent Safeguarding Authority. It doesn't safeguard, it just taxes people £64 which, I guess, is going straight to one of the main contractors. It is aiming for 11.3 million names most of which will say what we already know; this person gives no cause for concern. Except that legally it won't even say that much. All it says is "This person's name is registered".

We do, however, need to organize a sharp but much smaller list of those people who should not be allowed to work with children or vulnerable adults. Not all of these are criminals; some of them have just been shown to be completely incompetent in a civil context. The smoking remains should be given the much smaller, restricted role, of running the Not Suitable list and with appeals first to an appeals tribunal and thence to the Court of Appeal to prevent unjust listings.

c) Keep Britain Tidy. It can carry on as a charity on the 4m it gets from flogging its training courses and blue flag certificates etc, but it can do without the 5m it gets from DEFRA. (If we implement the Mark Wadsworth Protocol "MWP" a great many things will shrivel as the root is cut). At the moment we have a situation where we give DEFRA our taxes, who give it to KBT, who then use it to fund the Blue Flag Scam whereby they lean on local authorities to shell out £700 a year, plus VAT, from Council tax payers, to stick a blue flag up which doesn't mean all that much. So our own money is going round and round in circles instead of paying down our debts.

marksany said...

I'd close any organisation containg the word "Strategic" unless it is military.

I'd close anything called a "Trust"

And of course I'd agree to all Wadsworth's cuts and Tim Worstall's suggestion today. Excellent fellows both.

I'd abolish nearly all benefits and pensions and replace with a citizen's income equal for all, with 0% withdrawal rate. Abolish all tax allowances, flat rate tax. Citizens income not taxable.

Fire any policeman or pseudopoliceman who doesn't work at a nick.

Anonymous said...

I'd immediately cut 80% of NHS management. Cancel PFI's, especially in profitable service depts(why are tax payer profits going to Serco shareholders?). Then start recruiting again based on well managed pressure points. NHS managers work on Parkinsons law: "Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."

Crumpled Fiveskin said...

What would I cut?


...and start again with a new paradigm from a new start point:
tax what people spend; not what they earn.

what are the basic things you need to run a country?

1. internal rule of law (economic/property rights; personal/citizen bill of rights)
2. external rule of law = defence/border police/coast guard
3. public & private health
4. public & private education
5. infrastructure and hygiene services
6. business & investment support

I can't think of much else really that needs any state involvement.

My state would be about a tenth the size of the current one perhaps.

Robin Smith said...

I see little talk about cutting THE BIG THINGS here. Seems a common blog activity since the coalition of the feckless brainwashed us into believing "change" was about to happen.

I'd cut financial services first and save the country about £60 billion annually.

Now that is a big thing. It could be done in the morning. And given current banks are utterly useless to society no harm would be done.

neil craig said...

I'd close the Health & Safety Executive, or at least cut it 99%. Regulators cost the regulated 20 times as much as they cost to employ so 200,000 such regulators cost the productive work of 4 million full time workers. Since the correleation between national wealth & safety is far better than between safety & safety inspectors the H&S provably kill about 100 times more people than they save.

On the same principles I would cut lots of other regulatory & "environmental" bodies. While the Treasury money saved would help the economy the economic freedom would do so far more.

Mark Wadsworth said...

Mark's Any highlights another good way of cutting overheads without cutting 'frontline services' - the running cost of DWP is £8 billion (5% of what it pays out in cash benefits) and HMRC lose or spend or waste another £3 billion on paying out £20 billion in Tax Credits.

Assuming the running costs of a Citizen's Income would be in line with the running costs of Child Benefit or State Pension (i.e. less than 1%) they could easily save £10 billion without the people at the very bottom being any worse off.

And with the reduction in the effective benefits withdrawal rates he proposes, all those claimants would be on the upward side of the Laffer Curve so the cost to the taxpayer would fall by another [large amount of money].

Robin makes another good point - the banks owe the taxpayer about £400 billion so let's get that paid back pronto presto as well.