Public Pensions: unaffordable, or just unpopular with the Coalition?

David Cameron and his Lib Dem allies keep telling us that public sector pensions are “unaffordable”. A pity then that the cross-party Public Accounts Committee (PAC), but Coalition MPs are in a majority, seems to think this is nonsense. In a report issued last month, the say the public sector pensions problem has already been stabilised: Continue reading

Universal Credit Faces IT Problems – it’s official

Back in November 2010, and again in January 2011, I made said that the Universal Credit reforms had insanely tight timescales for implementation, especially given the scale and complexity of the IT developments necessary to make it work – you can read the original posts here: Welfare Reform: It’s the Implementation, Stupid and Great Train Wreck of 2013. And so it comes to pass. Continue reading

Mis-Placing NHS Funds?

The NHS has traditionally been organized, like most public services, on the basis of place.

This has been both a control and a planning mechanism. It is a planning mechanism because it uses available information about the demographic and health profile of an area and seeks to match provision to need. It is also a control mechanism, that ensures that spending doesn’t get out of control and that the distribution of resources is fair, in relation to need. Continue reading