Sunday, 31 July 2011

Fear and Loathing of Oliver Letwin

Old Etonian, Oliver Letwin, MP, the Cabinet Minister in charge of the Coalition Government's reforms of the beleaguered public sector yesterday went along to the head office of KPMG, a consultancy  firm that has ripped tens of millions of pounds out of state coffers providing "advice" on efficiency over the last two decades. With his hosts eyeing more cash as the quintessential Public Schoolboy of British politics gassed his way through a speech on how they have more work to do charging for yet more advice, Letwin declared that the public sector needs "some real discipline and some fear" among its staff to get them to work harder.

Britain's hardest worker busy instilling some fear
Oliver, a man who seems never to have held a real job in his entire life (although he does have at least one lucrative consultancy "arrangement" doubtlessly entirely in his spare time), went on to warn that without this, innovation and change in schools and hospitals just won't happen. Of course, he starts from an entirely impartial point of view, having stated in 2003 that he would rather "go out on the streets and beg" than ever have his children go to a state school.

This callous statement, made at a time when the public sector is already reeling from service cuts and job losses following the slashing of budgets to pay for the massive bailout of supposedly efficient private sector banks, misses a few obvious points.

First, given the massive amount of public services already tendered out to private providers or totally denationalised, like the railways and bus services, where are the supposed efficiencies and improvements the private sector ethos supposedly brings? Public subsidies to the rail industry, for example, have more than doubled since privatisation, leaving the much-derided state company British Rail as a paragon of good service and value for money by comparison. And with social care effectively privatised, we have in the last few weeks seen the Southern Cross care company go bust, although its clearly useless directors have walked away with millions of pounds each in their greedy, grasping pockets having capitalised its property for rent-back a few years ago - the source of their financial crisis.

Likewise, KPMG and its ilk have enjoyed literally thousands of contracts for providing consultancy advice and even running contracted out services over the last two and a half decades (since Ollie was working in Mrs Thatcher's Policy Unit) - how come they have evidently made so little progress in spite of all the invoices? Any ideas? Because Oliver Letwin's certainly don't hold up at all.

BUT Oliver does know all about public money himself - he made jolly good use of the £2,145 he claimed from our taxes to fix a leaking water pipe under his private tennis court. Of course, the poor chap had to pay it all back...when he was found out. He did keep the cash for cleaning out the septic tank - how appropriate.

1 comment:

  1. What a thoroughly, biased, inaccurate, portrayal of the content of the speech, the man himself and even the last 'tennis court' story.

    Just a very nasty, anarchistic portrayal, so typical of the far left.