« Unemployment is rising fastest in the battleground seats | Main | Lynton Crosby is running Libertas's European election campaign »


Slightly concerning that the leader of the Opposition, and leader of the Party currently No.1 in the polls consistently has received no media coverage whatsoever..

I think its fair to say the dirty tricks have begun already..

Cameron can get around this, question is does he know how? I have few ideas...

At last.

Every business is having to do more with less. Most families as well. The public state must too.

'He didn't make precise commitments on public spending and the speech didn't get live coverage on BBC News or Sky - not even a mention in the midday bulletins ...'

This for me says it all. As the media is invariably briefed in advance of any politician's speech in this case they were clearly well aware that David Cameron would not be saying anything significant or worthwhile.
12 months away from a general election and (if the polls are correct) a Conservative government the public are entitled to have some definitive policies & proposals.

Sometimes politicians want things on the record but don't want people to notice but can say I did make it clear in my X speech...

This speech affirms that the public sector can play a role, but it must be cost-effective, productive, and be goal-orientated. There should certainly be a rigorous audit of public finances, and the establishment of a wastefinder general dept to keep other depts on their toes. I believe less can be more and that we can have more for less if resources are properly applied.

On the question of social reform, we have to be watchful that such reform doesn't degenerate into social engineering. Still, there are areas of social life in which the state can make a difference. As ever its about getting the balance right.

Hammond on The politics show said Aid was ring fenced spending, Why?

I have to say that I don't care if it is more for less, the same for less, or less for less.

The point is that whatever it is, it has to be for less.

We can't afford it that is the starting point.

People won't bother creating the wealth if they know it is going straight down the drain of public sector unaccountability.

Hammond got beat today at the DP. Neil exposed the Tory policy as a one year policy. We know there wont be an early election so the policy is bunkum...

I don't think 'empowering' the public sector to find efficiencies will achieve anything.

If there is one thing we have seen time and time again, it's the public sector's refusal to change, improve or streamline its operations. They will dig their heels in and 'protect their own', running contrary to any serious efficiency drive that will inevitably cost jobs.

Swap the word 'empowerment' for 'force' and I'll listen, otherwise this is doomed to fail from the very start.

I think the media is getting bored with the veg dinners they are being served and are waiting for the beef to come,until then we will get less coverage i'm afraid,how long do you think the media will put up with going to these news conferences only to be given more of nothing i.e. firm commitments.

Good comment gnosis!

Another wasted opportunity. If he hasn't anything to say stay home and work something out!

We are desperate for hard news on a range of things notr vague waffle like 'More for less'.

There's got to be less - much less. THAT is now inevitable whoever is in Downing Street He keeps trying to find a silver lining but there ain't one. Just a hard time ahead. Why not spell that out as the only way to save our country. With today's horrendous borrowing figures one might hope that the penny might drop!

This is further very bad news. There is a limit - unknown for the moment - to how much we can borrow before the lenders turn off the tap. In the meanwhile it will steadily get more expensive. If the tap IS turned off, the economy collapses and even the cossetted public sector workers will notice - They won’t get paid.

Since they are the only ones with any enthusiasm for voting Labour right now Brown will have to reverse some policies to save his own skin (quite literally perhaps! ]

>>Hammond got beat today at the DP. Neil exposed the Tory policy as a one year policy. We know there wont be an early election so the policy is bunkum...<<

Unless we have our crystal balls out we don't "know" any such thing.

Despite being in the minority view now, I've always said June and I still think June.

1/ G20
2/ Massive giveaway budget
3/ Spin spin spin
4/ Flash election

Of course, I could easily be wrong. But saying we "know" is, obviously, plain silly.

Now For Change.

What does that mean? It's semi-literate drivel. It could mean:

1. Now, the Conservative party are for change, whereas previously we were against it.

2. Now we are going to make changes. To yourselves? I'd agree with that. To the government? How? You are the opposition.

3. The time for change is now.

4. You are Lord Ashcroft, you've given me a large note, and I'll get you your change?

On the other hand, it's meaningless, it's uplifting, it makes no promises, it has as much substance as the speech. Maybe it's appropriate after all.

This was a speech to begin changing the narrative from the more you spend, the better you are to: we can only spend what we can affort. Be patient, the man in the bunker is about to make his final decision.

Somebody forgot to turn the bold off!!

Thanks Sally. I've turned it off.

"We know there wont be an early election so the policy is bunkum...

I wouldn't be too sure about that James Maskell - there is a school of thought that it might be May or June this year!

Thanks Tim!

"Whether in the private sector or the public sector, the absolute priority is to make sure that we get maximum out from what is put in – that we get more for less".

Two points here; one is that this is really a definition of efficiency, which this Labour government has signally failed to achieve, and the second is the need for greater equity between the public and private sector.

In the past, the public sector was often behind the private in pay, so better pension schemes, lower retirement ages, longer holidays, jobs for life and other perks made up the difference.

Now that is no longer the case, the other terms and conditions should be reduced in the public sector to match those in the private, especially final salary pension schemes, which are already an astronomical liability for the taxpayer (and, I believe, not included on the government's balance sheet).

"Now For Change."
It's a lot more literate than "Renewal" and then going backstab, backstab.

'Now For Change' is a *very* poorly conceived slogan for similar reasons to the old "It's not racist..." posters.

Just as it only took someone to cross out the 'not' on posters (and people did) to reverse the intended message, a wag only needs to overwrite the 'w' for a 't' and you get 'Not for Change'.

I'd strongly suggest not adding this slogan to any public posters etc.

I thought that Anddrew Neill was being his usual "look at me I'm so clever" self on the DP today when interviewing Philip Hammond by asking him for budget details which he knew that no sane politician could give 12 months in advance. Funny how he never does the same with his hero Cable who is allowed to get away with the most appalling generalities. Hammond did make the very interesting disclosure that after this financial year ONLY the NHS spending would be ring fenced. That jolted old big ears somewhat.

As regards Camerons excellent speech where he continues to lay the ground work to win public support for reductions in public spending, I would have thought that this should have been given some time on the BBC and Sky as it fits in with todays dreadful borrowing figures. But there we are and its not just the BBC/and the Labour loving Sky at fault here but there is no mention so far on the DT online paper - or indeed the Times.I am getting increasingly annoyed with the DT's approach to Browns statements and minimising Cameron's. Whereas in fairness the Guardian has for some hours now given it prominence plus a vey fair aticle by Andrew Sparrow on Cameron and associated with his speech.

Tim, the bold seems to have been turned from off to on.

However, James Maskell says the speech is bunkum because it is only a speech for a year. I always find this sort of thing weird, Cameron can not be the government for a year at least but apparantly, unlike any commentator, or government he is supposed to know exactly the situation in a years time. Since he can't do anything for a year anything he says now can, therefore, be labled bunkum even if he is talking of methods of formulating detailed policy. The difference between Maskell and Cameron is that Maskell is like Labour and wants instant definitive headline policy announcements that suit his views, Cameron is thinking about running a large country in big trouble in about a years time.

Toryblog.com Etc. (as I will now call you, the rest of your Moniker being far too long!) you have a fair point but clearly a very naughty mind. I wouldn't be surprised if you are the sort of person who stands behind someone being photographed and makes "rabbit ears"! ;-)

Cameroon needs to say where these cuts are going to be. It is all very well these non specific cuts but until the Conservative Party tell us where they will be some of us will continue to suspect that they have an secret agenda to make cuts in the biggest budget the NHS. If the leadership want to be proved wrong then just tell us in plain terms where the savings are going to be made!!

On the grounds Big Ears was jolted by being told that the NHS would be ringfenced from cuts, I find Scant Joke's comment above somewhat of the mark, yet again.

With an unstable government theres always going to be talk of an early election. He cant call it now. Its far too late for him to do it. He has to try and do a 1992. Brown knows all too well the dangers of giving any indication of an early election. He wont make that mistake again.

As for David Sergeant, Ive said nothing of the sort. My criticism is that the policy was announced as a hard policy, not of one that would last one year. The Conservatives announced it as a headline policy announcement that would last for longer than that because it would reassure people about schools and the NHS. Now it appears that this policy only applies for the next financial year. If an election isnt called until the last possible moment then this policy will never see the light of day because the 2009-2010 financial year would already have passed by then. There was no mention before of this being a single year policy. This is a serious point because its a core aspect of Tory economic policy through spending restraint.

"Where money hasn’t been so well spent is on the wage bill for those who work behind the front line"

So, policy advisors, that kind of thing? I wonder what the going rate is for a policy advisor, these days...


Above all the public sector individuals must be accountable. Did anyone else notice that in the recent Welsh E.coli case the butcher (who was mainly to blame) has been mentioned by name several times. The Health inspectors who were also culpable, have not been named.. Why?

Agree with the sentiment, but it has been said before.... I don't want the recurring theme of the next 18 months to be Cameron using public sector workers as a way of trying to whip up the politics of envy.

Economies begin at home. Cut MPs salaries and pensions if they want to set a good example, and if the public sector is such an easy place to be then people would surely be applying in their droves. The public sector can be an extremely demanding place to work.

I accept the need for reform, I have said this many many times- but why the case has to be made in such a crass and simplistic way I cannot understand. Messages like 'More for Less' are totally unnecessary. People's careers are on the line and it seems in poor taste to use that as an opportunity to create a soundbite.

For what it's worth there is massive scope for efficiency savings where I work- predominantly among the civilians who work in 'support' departments... but I promise you, you will never get rid of them- they have spent the last decade making themselves part of the structure of the police service so that they now have more clout than PCs themselves. I fear the same is true for the NHS, and other public services; The only efficiencies that could be made at the drop of a hat tomorrow would be cutting frontline staff such as myself (Which I hope is not the plan!).

The public sector can be a tough

'We are not going to behave like flint-faced turbo-charged accountants'. Oh dear,that is exactly what he should be behaving like.
What the Tories should be talking about now is direct cuts in the wages of the public sector,cuts in the pensions of the public sector,cuts in benefits. The Macmillan Commission of 1931 showed the way with greater cuts at the top for people such as MPs and lesser cuts further down.
Cameron has rejected the theory of boosting aggregate demand or Keynesianism and that is good but at a time of deflation why is the public sector getting pay rises. The private sector is staggering under recession and the deficit will be much higher than is anticipated.
We need pay cuts and they can be implemented immediately. Get a grip.

Anthony Scholefield. If David Cameron went in to the election saying to people in the public elect me and I will cut your wages and your pension I think he should be certified not elected Prime Minister. Do you really think that sort of policy is going to win you votes? If you do I`m afraid you need to be certified.

For some time I persuaded myself that David had some secret Conservative radical agenda but was (wisely) keeping his power dry. I'm beginning to think I deluded myself. It's being made up as we go along, isn't it? It's Tony Blair II. Lisbon Treaty and the European socialist state here we come.

Can't government do "Less for less"?

The media get a briefing about the theme and unless they can see that Cameron has actually got something to say which has any meaningful content, they won't be bothered to sit there bored by irrelevant platitudes.

Drastic action will have to be taken in the end. Why not tell people that instead of losing support a month after being elected by surprising them. And that Tony Scholefield is why he can't summon up the courage to do what has to be done. He's utterly wet.

Cameron's not a fighter; he's an appeaser - a temporiser.

More for less will do for now. But it still misses the point. Britain provides public services not because they do any good--more or less--but because people want money spent on them, preferably "free at the point of delivery."

Eventually we are going to have to echo Voltaire: "Remember the cruelties" of bug-infested hospitals, of bog-standard schools and, cruelest of all, family-busting welfare.

Sally 'Rabbit Ears' Roberts wrote: "..you have a fair point but clearly a very naughty mind"

More For Less:
Well I'll leave it to the grafitti artists to remove the 'e' from 'More' and replace it with 'on'... ;-)

ToryBlog.com Etc. - LOL!!!

Sorry, Tim - I shouldn't really encourage him....

The unemployed will do three days work for their benefits, sweeping streets, cleaning graffitti off walls, picking litter.

Existing Council employees will supervise this, at no extra cost. Those who do not turn up will lose 10% of their benefits (first time), 20% (second time) and 50%, (third time).

More for Less!


I'd object to the 'unemployed' working - if there is work to be done, then it should be done and the workers paid for it.

If the 'unemployed' sweep the streets, what happens to the existing street sweepers? Do they go on benefits and sweep the streets anyway?

An official acceptance of 'casual labour' by the tax system would be an excellent start - particularly for private citizens and small companies.

This country needs more wealth creation - free people up to create that wealth, give them a clear run at it, and tax them when(/if) they have made it...

The comments to this entry are closed.



ConHome on Twitter

    follow me on Twitter

    Conservative blogs

    Today's public spending saving

    New on other blogs

    • Receive our daily email
      Enter your details below:

    • Tracker 2
    • Extreme Tracker