Friday, 30 October 2009

Plan to close polling stations early?

It's all over the papers, although i know they are only plans at present - in order to try and save a measly million or few they (really, who are they?) have applied their combined brain power, reaching almost double figures on the IQ scale and come up with a plan to close polling stations early during elections! See http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/politics/article6896218.ece

Now I am not one to knock government unnecessarily, they do some good stuff and have a pretty daunting task, BUT, when we hear about the ridiculous, inefficient, apparently uncoordinated projects that fail, run over budget or behind time and cost hundreds of millions or even billions, you can't help thinking can you?

PFI projects going over budget by the bucket load: http://www.publicfinance.co.uk/news/2009/10/pfi-projects-going-over-budget-auditors-find/ ,

The MoD at least a couple of billion askew. I know the defence of the realm is critical,(although so is democracy) but perhaps the best way to ensure both are well run projects delivering what they set out to deliver, on time and on budget - or am I being unbelievably naive? 

Meeting with health service colleagues recently (couldn't possibly say where....) I heard, first hand, about the most inefficient, ineffective and wasteful practices around IT commissioning and implementation, with millions being thrown away......

Perhaps the left hand of government really does not know what the right hand is doing. Should we act as 'match makers' -
"you know that £60 M you want to save - why not have a chat with him or her...."

To finish on a realistic note, I realise and acknowledge that there are some really good innovative, operational government IT initiatives - and am grateful for them, but what really ticks many of us off is when government try to use the fact that there are some, maybe many, successes to somehow cover over or avoid the implications of those that have failed that, for the want of better management, need not have done so.

I'd like to believe that democratic engagement would not be affected for the sake of a few million whilst still throwing away billions elsewhere.

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