Iain Anderson, Director and Chief Corporate Counsel, Cicero Consulting
You would hardly know that Parliament has risen for its summer break for the new Coalition continues to spew out a myriad of consultations into the late July air.
The air of a purposeful and dynamic Government is being created. It compares highly favourably with the dismal, glacial pace of policy under Labour in its final years – unable to move forward with many decisions as a result of the inevitable exhaustion that sets in following a decade in power.
Civil servants I talk to commend the Coalition’s energy – and you can see it when you go in to meet ministers – they are full of ideas and those ideas are quickly forming into Green Papers and – in some cases – directly into legislation.
With the strains of coalition I can understand this urgency to get things done in the first year or two when the majority is stable and to learn the lessons of New Labour – which failed to drive forward much reform in 1997 – when it had the clear electoral mandate to do so. There is certainly not a wasted moment in the new administration.
But while I welcome the purpose and the direction – as do civil servants who want clear leadership – it is really important that our new Government takes the time to get things right. The reforms to the financial regulatory regime are going to be subject to considerable scrutiny and given the failure of the tri-partite regime that is exactly right. Our education reforms - on the other hand - have been fired through.
Let’s take the time to get our reforms right and ensure we do not get burn out. While the reform is exhilarating – lets ensure our ‘Breakneck Coalition’ lasts the pace.