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How about we get that nice James chap to write a report to show how serious we take it at the same time? Oh.

We have to prove the false notion that spending more money on public services increases the quality of provision. The last decade would show this view to be incorrect.

I think that Osborne was right to commit to current spending levels. By pledging to decrease spending, we would open ourselves up to 'Tory cuts' headlines.

If we were to agree to the current spending levels whilst reforming structures, this would leave room to significantly reduce taxes in the future.

If you want to cut government waste then get out of Europe.
80% of legislation passed in Westminster is EU generated. It is gold plated by our toss pot civil service then imposed without any thought as to cost or impact. Brussels is not concerned about the impact or cost of legislation, it is simply their means of imposing their fiat, the result of stealth and the creep towards federalism.
"Elf and Safety" is a classic case point that has cost business, industry and employers dearly.
The authors rightly address and identify the issues, but the real waste lies within the big figures; the inordinate number of administators in the NHS, who tally the box ticking; the greedy tail of the Armed Forces, (i.e. the MOD) that consumes all the money; ineffectual procurement; cancellation fees for ad-hoc "investment" in IT and systems; bloated payrolls in the civil service; costly procurement over-spends; overspends in general; Tax Fraud and Avoidance; Vat Carousel fraud; Asylum and Immigration because we scimp on Borders and Immigration; Tax Credits overpayments; ID Cards; The bloody Olympics; MP's pensions, pay, expenses and perks.....the list is endless.
But, whilst the horizon is distant, we need to bear in mind that the majority of these bear the imprimateur of NuLab. They cannot argue inheritance, a decade of rule is surely sufficient for change to be made. Unless, NuLab now wish to state that change cannot be achieved, as the EU causes policy problems, that entail the demise of radical and effective change implementation.

Local government is just as guilty in wasting money on items that are of little local interest. Here is a fine example of local wannabe politicans trying to portray themselves as arbiters of art.

Egyptian statue that cost council £440,000 is a forgery:

Wednesday, April 25 2007 @ 01:01 PM EDT
Contributed by: Admin
Views: 961
General NewsThe offer from the antiques dealer seemed too good to be true.

He had a 3,000-year-old Egyptian artefact, a statue of King Tut's half-sister, which had been in his family for more than a century.

And although it was worth £1million, he was prepared to sell it to his local authority for a knockdown £440,000 so it could remain in his home town.

After experts from the British Museum and Christie's had vouched for its authenticity, Bolton Council raised the money to buy the sculpture, known as the Amarna Princess.

It was not until three years later, when a similar item arrived at the Museum, that the Princess's guilty secret was exposed.

She was a fake. Far from being made in Ancient Egypt, the alabaster sculpture has more in common with Modern Lancashire. Police believe the sculpture was created in Bolton. When they raided a house in the town, they discovered marble and other artists' equipment inside.

An elderly couple and their two sons have been arrested and charged with offences connected to forgery.

The 20-inch figure was said to date back to 1350 BC, and to be one of only three known pieces from the period in existence. The forgery came to light when another sculpture, from Syria, was sent by a private client for examination at the British Museum.

This time, experts failed to be taken in and on further investigation discovered that it must have come from the same dubious source as the Amarna Princess. Scotland Yard's Arts and Antiques squad seized the Syrian relief, along with two other pieces from London, and impounded the Princess. But by then the sculpture, much feted despite its lack of head, arms or lower legs, had been proudly displayed across Britain.

The vendor had claimed that his great-grandfather had bought it at the auction of the property of the Earl of Egremont in 1892. Bolton council officials who uncovered a copy of the sale catalogue were unable to find any mention of the Princess in it. But they went ahead anyway.

Grants were obtained of £360,000 from the National Heritage Memorial Fund, a part-Government funded body, as well as £75,000 from the independent charity the National Art Collections Fund and £ 2,500 from the Friends of Bolton Museum and Art Gallery.

A series of experts said that the woman was the daughter of King Akhenaten and Nefertiti, his most senior wife. Akhenaten was succeeded by Tutankhamun, his son by another wife.

The sculpture initially went on display at the the Hayward Gallery, on London's South Bank, as part of its Saved! celebration of 100 years of saving art for the nation, before being moved to Bolton Museum in January 2004.

At the time, securing the Princess was hailed as a great coup for the town. Councillor Laurie Williamson, spokesman on culture, said: 'This latest addition will enhance Bolton's reputation as a cultural destination.' Last week, antiques dealer George Greenhalgh, 84, and his 82-year- old wife Olive were quizzed by detectives from the Metropolitan Police.

The couple and their 52-year- old son, Shaun, have each been charged with conspiracy to defraud, including alleged offences of selling faked and forged works as genuine between 1989 and 2006 and money laundering the proceeds of the sale of such antiques.

George Greenhalgh and Shaun Greenhalgh also face an additional charge of laundering the proceeds of the sale of the Amarna Princess.

The couple's elder son, George jnr, aged 53, has also been charged with money laundering. The four are due to face Bolton magistrates on Thursday.

Edward: "How about we get that nice James chap to write a report to show how serious we take it at the same time? Oh."

A few reactions, Edward:

1. The James report was good but it wasn't marketed well. It had no real cut-through. We need a way of marketing awareness of waste - not just analysing it.

2. Every year that goes by is a year in which there is more awareness of waste. Less appetite from taxpayers for more of their money to be poured into hospitals like Maidstone.

3. We undermined our tax cutting agenda at the last election by Oliver Letwin, then Shadow Chancellor, suggesting six months before an election that tax cuts wouldn't be believed and then only announcing timid tax cuts at the last minute.

" It's the £101bn our government frittered away last year."

Presumably this 101 bn is total government spending. Are you seriously suggesting it is all waste?

The Government spent over £500 billion of taxpayers money last year. Therefore waste of 20%, whilst I think it is a little on the high side in terms of an estimate....or certainly hope so!, it isn't beyond the realms of possibility.

Of course waste can be a somewhat subjective term.

I have read this book, and wasn't sure whether to laugh or cry by the end. It's well-written and very interesting though, I highly recommend it.

Clearly Gordon Brown's wastage of our valuable resources must be highlighted but when are we also going to plug the other side of the same coin i.e. that managing big operations properly cuts down on waste?

Nulab has demonstrated time and time again that it couldn't manage the proverbial party in a brewery: (the Home Office, Defra, the NHS etc). Manage something properly - clear lines of communication, people owning responsibility for parts of the whole operation etc and waste will reduce as a by product, not as the prime target.

Sorry, but this too, is a WASTE of our time, even discussing it. I place the blame, YES BLAME, fairly and squarely on our front bench in the House. After all, who could be better placed to ensure that this was brought not only to OUR attention, but also into the general arena at the relevant time.
We lost the last two elections by giving them (Nu Labour), too much slack and not exposing their credibility and dishonesty. Once again it’s a case of too little, too late..

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