So, it looks like the tories are basing their Â£12bn of savings the government can make on the musings of Sir Peter Gershon. Some people may think that name sounds familiar. Well, back in 2003, he was commissioned by the then government, those despicable Labour men, to come up with a special report. This report was going to show how the government could save money. So what did he come up with? Well, his big ideas included using ICT as a way to automate a lot of work, and therefore reduce inefficiency. Luckily, all of these big government IT systems worked. For example, we all know what a success things like JPA and NOMS have been. He also suggested that moving bits of government out of London to the regions would be cheaper and provide better service. So for example the move of the NHS BSA to Newcastle. One of the key suggestions he made was that departments got in their own efficiency savings consultants (you know, the big 4 accountancy firms) to identify where processes were inefficient and sort them out. Yes, this has gone incredibly well. After all, the current state of MOD procurement after the last round of consultancy is lauded worldwide as a model of efficacy. In addition, the removal of back office jobs that were superfluous by collating different bits of a department and putting them into a single functional repository. Again, we all know how well that has worked with the HMRC, and how they never have any problems because of, for example, cutting back on their Information Security and Compliance teams. So all in all, a really big success story. We know he has been a really big success because those Labour boys have told us so. So here is my question - how come this did nothing to dent the departmental spends? Seems a strange one to me. So what is he suggesting to create savings for an incoming tory government? Well, the biggest saving is going to come from cutting IT costs. Hold on I hear you say, are those the IT costs that were going to save a huge amount in staff costs only 5 years ago? They are those very same ones. So he is now saying that the way to save money was to not do what he suggested in the first place. Next, we should reduce spending on consultants. Yes. Consultants. Those ones that Gershon suggested that we should get in to help. Now he wants them out. Finally, when staff leave don't replace them. Well, that seems sensible. So when my local NHS Trust loses its cardiologist, we will just not replace him. Teacher retiring, well lets add his pupils to other teachers already overloaded classes. Policemen, well, law and order isn't all that important. Really. You couldn't make this up. I wouldn't trust Gershon if he told me that my screen name was Bazzinho1977. Tory savings plans? Anything based on Gershon should be taken with a pinch of salt, a shot of whisky and a healthy helping of LSD if you are going to believe it.