PASC on Good Government

The Public Administration Select Committee today publishes its report (and evidence sessions) on Good Government.

I have reproduced the main recommendations below, their analysis is well worth reading.

Especially pleasing is that they have accepted my proposal (see section 5 of the Report) that the remit of the National Audit Office be expanded to something more like that of the General Accountability Office in the USA – and specifically it takes on a role assessing the performance of government Ministries and departments. Continue reading

Democracy Demands: Show Us The Money!

In the film Jerry Maguire, Cuba Gooding Jr. famously demands of his Agent Maguire (Tom Cruise) that he “show me the money”. The message (in context) is simple – no amount of smooth talking from his Agent is good enough – Gooding’s character wants to see the actual money. This is a good lesson to apply to the latest “debate” (I use the word loosely) over the future of public spending. Continue reading

POLICY-MAKING CAPABILITY IN UK GOVERNMENT – A CHANCE TO HAVE YOUR SAY

Probably the most important role of Whitehall departments is giving policy advice to Ministers. It is therefore curious that policy-making did not figure directly in the Capability Reviews that central government departments have been going through in the past few years. Continue reading

Public Spending in the UK: Public Sector Debt

The debate on the future of the public finances and especially spending on public services has finally come to the fore after all the diversions of the past few months.

What are the crucial questions that we should demand of our politicians? Over the next couple of weeks I’m going to try to outline what are the crucial policy issues – starting with public sector debt. Continue reading

Breakfast with Brown: What Should The Government Do?

After attending the Prime Ministers breakfast seminar in No. 10 on the future of public services my overwhelming feeling was that the government is still in thrall to the tyranny of the new. An underlying theme was that they needed something ‘new’ to offer. Continue reading