Skip to main content

Budget 2009

The budget looks like an attempt to hold things together until the General Election in the vain hope that something will turn up.

A few years ago I got a copy of the Treasury Economic Model programmes. However, without the data that the Treasury put into the model the model cannot be properly scrutinised. The treasury refused to provide the figures.

I would presume that the government have "kitchen sinked" the 2009-10 figures so they can point to improvements from their forecast for what I expect to be a general election in 2010. However, it is still not clear that their forecasts beyond that are at all reliable.

Superficially it appears some progress has been made on bingo taxation, however.

The real challenge is one of how we move towards providing public services in a more cost-effective manner. We haven't really managed to do that in the past. My own personal view is that we need to look at the bureaucratic overhead in running services and try to move away from overly complex assessments towards designing systems with localised feedback.

The government has gradually made the provision of public services more and more complex and at the same time prone to error. It is that approach that needs a systematic revisiting.

Talking as I do to refugees who have left the UK for other European Countries it seems clear that public services in other places are a higher quality. In Sweden, for example, they are very worried about any patients who have been in an English hospital. They immediately place them in an isolation unit to protect against MRSA.

Those doctors who have been concerned about "dumbing down" in the NHS are I think right to be concerned. I have seen two people recently in my advice bureau who have been harmed by wrongful initial diagnosis by less qualified practitioners.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Millionaires and politics

The Labour Party spent most of the last election criticising me for being a successful businessman (aka millionaire). That is business in the private sector employing over 250 people. It is worth looking at the situation for the Labour Candidate now:

For the year 2016-7 Annual Income from Parliament74,962Specifically for her book51,250Other media income etc5,322.82Total declared income131,534.82

Traditionally anyone with an annual income of over £100,000 has been considered to be a millionaire. I did not use my position in parliament to increase my income.


I have been asked for sources for this. This BBC piece looks at how one should define rich. It was written in 2011 so the figures will be slightly out of date. There are perhaps 2 relevant pieces:
"In 1880 a rich person would have had £100,000 in assets or an income of £10,000 a year, he says. About a hundred people a year died leaving £100,000 and by 1910 this was 250 - "a microscopic fraction of the number of death…

Homelessness vs Selling Books

Candidates in elections tend to find themselves very busy with lots of things to do.  It is, therefore, necessary to prioritise things to ensure that the important things are dealt with.

To me the issue of homelessness and rough sleeping is an important issue.  Therefore, when Birmingham's Faith Leaders group contacted me to ask me what I would propose and whether I would work with them to make things better I was pleased to respond with my views and indicate that I would work with them after the election.

The Faith Leaders Group (Bishops and other religious leaders in Birmingham) have now sent out their report.

Sadly, according to their report,  I was the only candidate for Yardley to respond.  The group in their report said:

"Particularly disappointing was the lack of response from some of those candidates seeking re-election as MP for their respective constituencies."
It is worth looking at the priorities of my opponent.
Interestingly today she has decided to be at th…

Gender Issues comparison of candidates

John Hemming believes that an MP should represent everyone in their constituency.  This should be regardless of their race, religion, gender, abledness, sexual orientation or anything else.  It should be everyone.

When he was an MP he worked on issues relating to men, those relating to women and those relating to non-binary people. Everyone.

For example here is John Hemming on a demonstration outside the courts with the campaign group Women Against Rape (it related to the case of a mother who had her child removed from her because the mother was raped).




Jess Phillips, who campaigns on women's issues, notwithstanding the questions asked about her appointments in her parliamentary office, had the following response when asked for a debate on issues specifically relating to men: