Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Gordon Brown's Identity Crisis

25 million is a lot of people to piss off. Imagine this had come out in the middle of a General Election campaign. The unanimous verdict from the various anonymous informers to the BBC appears to be - they have slashed jobs and destroyed staff morale, so a huge problem like this was an inevitability. The PCS civil servants union says that the government has cut 13000 staff since May 2005 and is preparing to cut another 12,500. Aside from this, offices are closing up and down the country. This has already caused enormous problems with the delivery of services, and anyone who needs a job centre or any service frequently has to travel much further today then before. There are fewer people trying to do more work in a recently re-organised department. No wonder Mark Serwotka argues that: "The government’s so-called efficiency programme of cut backs, office closures and outsourcing is an accident waiting to happen. It is vital that the review announced today considers the effect of these cuts and halts them while the review is ongoing." It is one of the cruel paradoxes of a state that tries to cut services while increasing its control over people's lives that it ends up wasting money, and protecting no one. Relatedly, the NO2ID guys are calling in their pledges. Anyone who signed their pledge now needs to send £10 to them.