BLiar tries to get everyone in the country in his pocket

Is Bliar trying to effectively buy the electorate?

  • Yes

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Stop being such a paranoid git, stoaty!

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters

In their schooldays, my younger sister and her friends evolved a coded language of their own, in the irritating way that teenage girls have, so that only members of their gang would understand what they meant. Among the conventions of this language were special gestures and inflexions of the voice to indicate whether they were lying or telling the truth.

For example, if they passed a strikingly ugly, acne-ridden boy in the street, they would put their hands on their hips, tilt their heads to the left and say: "I really want to go out with him." This, they called "primary sarcasm".

But if they came across a young Adonis whom they liked the look of, they would clench their fists and press them into their armpits, with their elbows sticking out and slightly forward, like the wings of a duck taking off from a pond.

Then they would tilt their heads to the right and make the same sort of remark, in the same heavily ironic tone of voice: "He's a handsome lad, isn't he?" This was "double sarcasm". They were saying what they really thought.

There was a point during the State Opening of Parliament on Tuesday when my sister's secret language sprang to my mind. That was when the Queen solemnly intoned the words written for her by her ministers: "My Government is committed to reducing bureaucracy and the costs of government and to promoting efficiency."

Did I detect the slightest tilt of Her Majesty's head to the left, a millimetre's involuntary movement of her hands towards her hips? I wish that I could say that I did. For here was as glaring an example as I have ever come across of what my sister and her friends would have called primary sarcasm. Dutiful, long-suffering woman that she is, however, the Queen didn't even wink.

Tony Blair's claim that the Government is committed to reducing bureaucracy belongs to a different order from all the other fibs that he has told since he became Prime Minister. It is not a half-truth, or a stretching of the truth, such as his famous claim that British intelligence believed that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction, ready for use within 45 minutes. No, the claim that the Government is committed to reducing bureaucracy is the exact opposite of the truth.

In the early days after Mr Blair came to power, I thought that it was just because he was incompetent that he was allowing the public sector to expand at such an alarming rate. Every project that he touched, from Scottish and Welsh devolution to the "modernisation" of Whitehall and the welfare state, seemed to involve employing tens of thousands more bureaucrats, inspectors, regulators and lesbian and gay outreach liaison officers.

With my weakness for trying to see the best in people, I put all this wastage of taxpayers' money down to his inexperience, and told myself that, given time, he would see the folly of his ways and start trying to rein the Government in a bit.

Seven years on, we must all come to terms with the fact that the expansion of Britain's bureaucracy under Labour is not an unintended by-product of the party's yearning for "social justice". It is a deliberate policy in its own right - an end in itself.

After seven years of this Government, the size of the Civil Service is now equal to the population of Sheffield. As Oliver Letwin, the shadow chancellor, wrote in these pages in the summer, the bureaucracy in Whitehall alone now costs each household in the country £850 a year.

Every day since 1997, 15 new regulations have come into force, with armies of regulators and inspectors appointed to see that they are obeyed. Every head teacher in the land has to deal with 12 pages of official paperwork each day of the school year. For every job lost in the private sector last year, two were "created" in the public sector.

Almost every one of the 37 Bills and draft Bills foreshadowed in the Queen's Speech this week will mean more regulators and bureaucrats, not fewer. There will be more animal welfare inspectors to make sure that we have changed the water in the goldfish bowl, more equal rights commissioners to check that Christians are saying nothing rude about Druids, more charity regulators to grill private schools on whether or not the education they offer is a "public benefit". And who knows how many thousands of bureaucrats and consultants will be employed to introduce the new identity card scheme?

How dare Mr Blair force the poor old Queen to announce to Parliament that her ministers are committed to reducing bureaucracy and the costs of government? They are committed to increasing them, for reasons that become clearer with every week that passes.

All governments in modern times have looked to the "payroll vote" to help get their Bills through Parliament. Until now, the phrase has meant only those ministers in the Lords and Commons who draw their salaries from the public purse, and depend on the Prime Minister's patronage for their livelihoods. But Mr Blair's administration is attempting something much more ambitious, and more sinister.

The idea behind this relentless expansion of the public sector, at the expense of the private, seems to be nothing less than to spread the payroll vote throughout the entire country. At the rate we are going, there will soon be enough public servants in every constituency, dependent for their livelihoods on the taxpayers' largesse, to tip the electoral balance in favour of the party of bureaucracy and big government.

Years ago, the great Keith Waterhouse wrote a novel called Office Life - a fantasy about a vast organisation, employing dozens of personnel officers, canteen staff, accountants, health and safety specialists, and buyers and distributors of stationery.

I make no apology for giving away the twist at the end, because any reader of average intelligence could see it coming a mile off. The punchline was that the company produced absolutely no goods or services. It consisted entirely of a whole lot of bureaucrats and their support staff, inspecting, regulating and servicing each other in one huge, vicious circle.

This clapped-out Government seems to have much the same sort of idea in mind for Britain. And that's not primary sarcasm. It's double.
And this is on top of the fact that 40% of people now receive benefits of some kind!

So I'm not going mad - as predicted: more stealth bribery :roll:
stoatman said:
[And this is on top of the fact that 40% of people now receive benefits of some kind!
Is it that bad to get some extra cash, or some help in this fcuking money mad world.

How can he be buying the electroate off when half of them are being robbed blind by the 60+ extra taxes (and increases in the existing ones) to pay for it all? :evil:
MikeMcc said:
How can he be buying the electroate off when half of them are being robbed blind by the 60+ extra taxes (and increases in the existing ones) to pay for it all? :evil:
Well, when 49% are robbed blind to pay for the 51%, that's 51% who won't vote for a government promising to reduce bureaucracy, therefore he has an almost guaranteed majority.

And mimiTJ: Nice. Couldn't have said it more succinctly myself!
Cpl_ripper - Unnecessary benefits are simply you being given money that has been taken away (i.e. stolen) from somebody else who has earned it. I have no problem with benefits for people who physically cannot work, but surely things like the "working families tax 'credit'" (which isn't really a 'credit' at all, it's a benefit to try to get LMC people to vote Neue Arbeit) would be cheaper to administer by simply taxing working people less? That would make it free to administer!
MikeMcc said:
How can he be buying the electroate off when half of them are being robbed blind by the 60+ extra taxes (and increases in the existing ones) to pay for it all? :evil:
Because many people don't event notice the massive rise in regressive taxation - so long as income tax appears low (forget NI for a moment) they're obviously better off. :roll:

It's a simple world if you keep your mind shut and just keep listening to the lies. Mr Blair must be such a nice man - he's nearly always smiling.
miniTJ said:
ripper: it is when you don't need it and your defrauding taxpayers.
So that I'll be the 40% tax bracket then

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