Military Covenant Commission

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by OldSnowy, Mar 4, 2008.

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  1. OldSnowy

    OldSnowy LE Moderator Book Reviewer

    This just out. A conservative initiative, but non-partisan:

    Stories of Armed Forces personnel being abused and of poor accomodation and inadequate support for service families have led many to conclude that the military covenant has been broken. David Cameron has set up a commission to examine the health of the military covenant and how Government and society can better support the Armed Forces.

    The Commission will address the following questions:

    What is the current state of health of the military covenant?
    How can the services provided to personnel and their families, such as housing and healthcare, be improved?
    How wide is the ‘gulf’ between the military and society and how can it be closed?
    How can we ensure that veterans are treated better?
    How can we ensure that families of personnel that are killed or injured are better looked after?
    We would like you to contribute to the Commission’s investigation. Whether you are serving currently or have served in the past, whether you’re a relative or represent a service charity, or whether you just feel strongly about the way we look after our Armed Forces, we want you to tell us your views on how we can mend the military covenant.

    Terms of Reference

    1. The Commission will be constituted as a Standing Commission that will offer advice to the Leader of the Opposition on the health of the Military Covenant.

    2. The Commission will have no fewer than six members appointed for renewable terms of twelve months. A Chairman will be appointed by the Leader and there will be a secretariat provided by the Conservative Party. It will have representation from the three Services and from commissioned and non-commissioned ranks. Appointments will be unpaid.

    3. The Commission will focus on the following areas:

    The overall health of the Military Covenant – how to ensure that the Armed Forces are treated with the respect and gratitude they deserve for the unique role they play in society.
    Armed Forces and public services – how the provision of housing, health and education services for Armed Forces personnel and their families can be improved.
    Respecting veterans – how to improve the treatment of those who have served in our Armed Forces and fought for their country.
    Care of bereaved families – how to ensure that the Government and its agencies can provide suitable services for the families of those who have lost their lives serving our country.
    4. Any recommendations made by the Commission must be paid for within existing and planned defence budgets.

    March 4, 2008
  2. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    Number 4 will ensure that nothing gets done that will actually improve things.
  3. Oh good. A load of politicians sitting round discussing what we already know.
    They will all say the right things, then go off and fill in their expenses forms and get back to sitting on the back benches, farting and reading the Beano.
    Meanwhile Tom and his family continue to get fooked by all and sundry.

    Pardon me for not getting exited.
  4. Nothing new there then
  5. Mouthing platitudes without actually grasping the nettle of increased expenditure isn't going to help HMF; they need cash.

    Fiddling around the edge's like this is no more than PR imo.

    Keeping it simple, 4% of GDP please. Even small enough for a nice soundbite.
  6. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    Maybe we could list some recommendations for them, in a spirit of helpfulness and co-operation?

    Here are a few:

    1. Bring procurement back in-house
    2. Bring major software development back in-house
    3. Sort out JPA using the savings of 2.
    4. Sort out BFPO
    5. Bring Married Quarters back into public ownership and military discipline / maintenance.
    6. More helicopters.
    7. Fewer admirals, more useful-sized ships.
    8. Sort out enough planes to go on our aircraft carriers, by kicking the defence suppliers in the delays and budgets.

    I'm sure you lot can think of more. Keep it positive, then we can mail them all to Mr. Cameron, and ask him what he's going to do about it.
  7. You can air your views via the link provided. Better that we all contribute our tuppence worth than one person covers all angles. They need to get it through their skulls that it can't be done 'cost neutral'.

  8. elovabloke

    elovabloke LE Moderator

    Great one No 4. And they are the ones that accuse the current lot of numpties of not spending enough on defence.
  9. Let's not forget that the Conservatives started the current rot with 'Options for Change' the present bunch of numpties just carried on the movement while adding wars.

    Without wishing to get into politics, I see no great promise in the Cameron bunch( at the moment)

    The biggest problem appears to be the oft cited proffessional politician syndrome. The greater part never having done a stroke in the real world.

    It's just another Focus Group.
  10. Rather they waste it..

    This looks like a good if not infuriating read..


    Jacket text for The Bumper Book of Government Waste 2008It's back and, depressingly, the figure is even bigger than last time.

    Welcome again to the world of waste. In this new edition of The Bumper Book, Matthew Elliott and Lee Rotherham have unearthed a staggering £101 billion of government misspending - all paid for by you, the taxpayer.

    It's such an enormous figure it is difficult to get one's head around it. What could be done with £101 billion? Well, you could for example, paper the entire East Midlands and London with £5 notes, and still have a few billion left over to build one hell of a crane from which to admire your handiwork. Or even convert the £101 billion into one penny coins, pile them on top of each other, and reach the moon and back five times.

    But perhaps more usefully, the government could cut the tax burden of every household by over £4,000 a year.

    Mind blowing isn't it?

    Here are just a few examples of where all of that money has gone:

    - £280,000 on a conference addressed by Blair and Brown on value for money in the public services.

    - £400 million on 'cost control' for the Olympic Games.

    - £3 million by tax inspectors at HM Revenue and Customs on flights, including £2.1 million on flights to Scotland.

    - Over £16 million on the creation and upkeep of VIP lounges in Heathrow and Gatwick despite the fact they are not government-owned.

    - £100,000 on assessing whether £400,000 reportedly spent on modern art for seven hospitals was money well spent.

    But then it's hardly a surprise that they don't have a tight grip on our finances when you see an official statistic from the government, claiming that an impressive 102% of all 3 year olds are in nursery school. With this level of numeracy, no wonder we're in trouble!

    If you're a British taxpayer, you need to read this book - even though it will hurt.

    Chapter headings for The Bumper Book of Government Waste 2008

  11. That was my opinion didnt look like they would achieve much or have much power once they discovered what we already know. Or is it just another excuse for politicians trying to gain grace and favour with the armed forces. Do they think we are that stupid and nieve??
  12. cpunk

    cpunk LE Moderator

    An utter waste of effort, and have you seen the c0cks who make up this 'Commission'? Frederick Forsyth as chairman FFS.

    The whole point is that the Military Covenant has been ripped apart because the Defence Planning Assumptions - and thus the Defence Budget - are entirely unrealistic in relation to what we're actually doing at the moment.

    I'm a staunch Tory, but this is meaningless bullsh1t.
  13. Agree with all you say except, the very last clause.

    For Tom, it may be true, but for the Conservatives, it is far from "meaningless bullsh1t". This is a deliberate ploy to try and leverage some political capital at the expense of the military. What are they going to do? Rake over all the ills and problems, without actually making any committments to put them right. Poor Tom ends up feeling even less wanted than before.
  14. Kind of agree with all the previous posts. I have been quite disappointed that the Conservatives seem to think that the current budget is sufficient - but is obviously being wasted. Number 4 seems irrelevant therefore. What is needed is for whomever is in charge (Labour or Conservative) to put into place measures which encourage wider society to value its Service personnel - this is not the role of the MOD. This would then work in tandem with the MOD funding necessities like aftercare for wounded etc.
  15. I don't think Liam Fox thinks it is sufficient, but Cameron is too scared not to go along with Labour commitments. He simply won't commit more money to the Armed Forces. Might be worth playing along with this though. What if the only way to re-arrange spending is to pull out of Iraq and even Afg?

    Wonder if the commission has an in-built mechanism for not recommending foreign policy changes to boot?