Sunday, May 16, 2010

More from the bunker…

Labour hid ‘scorched earth’ debts

''THE government last night accused Labour of pursuing a “scorched earth policy” before the general election, leaving behind billions of pounds of previously hidden spending commitments. The newly discovered Whitehall “black holes” could force even more severe public spending cuts, or higher tax rises, ministers fear. ''

Posted by hpwatcher @ 05:55 AM (3273 views)
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23 thoughts on “More from the bunker…

  • c'mon correction says:

    And yet people still defend Labour’s record? They must be very, very slow learners!

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  • This is a bit of a cheap shot though – akin to the “blame me for everything” letter.

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  • To be fair to peoples learning ability, not many people will really be able to remember what Labour was like last time round. I was a teenager then and I did not really pay a lot of attention at the time. Only later did I realise how useless they were and that they were taken down by the Unions who p***ed all over them. Bit like what the banks did with them this time.

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  • But is it not the new government merely trying to excuse all the new tax rises?

    Who knows where to draw the line….probably best not to trust any of em’.

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  • Almost certainly business as usual year-on-year spending plans – there was no binge.

    Interesting that the tories have attacked it, but not the libdems. Anyone hear a cracking sound?

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  • Nothing to do with cracking, just the everyday political posturing combined with damage limitation, expect more ‘revelations’ to come in the months ahead.

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  • We should have an independant audit of the true finances and then plan accordingly

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  • krustyatemyhamster says:

    It’s all the fault of that one-eyed Scottish McBroon and his ZanuLiebour government, etc. Yawn.

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  • “Interesting that the tories have attacked it, but not the libdems. Anyone hear a cracking sound?”

    I thought Vince Cable was Libdem. Are we getting confused already?

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  • @8 Cameron was on Andrew Marr’s show this morning saying just that.

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  • clockslinger says:

    WTF? These people are in charge of getting things sorted and they couldn’t work out what was going on when their only occupation for the last ten years has been to critically scrutinise the doings of the then government from the well informed position of HM opposition! God help us if they had to wait for sight of the (nonexistent) “secret files” to work it out. They should read the HPC website…oh no, hang on, maybe they shouldn’t ’cause half the contributors on here are dumb enough to think that changing the administrator to a Tory will actually make things better.

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  • Nurse!

    Prozac for Mr Clockslinger!

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  • I imagine you’ll find a version of this in the Sun, only with most of the words left out, especially the long ones.

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  • letthemfall is right to question anything that appears Murdoch’s organs.

    Was the main aim of these expenditures to boost Lab’s election chances or to scupper the next gov’t. The article claims that Brown’s gov’t had both aims. Some mistake, shirley? If Labour was doing all this nasty stuff to help them to win the election then they would have left them with the mess if they’d won.

    The civil service and firms signing these contracts were in the know. Why then was all this a black box to an opposition that is supposed to watch the government’s moves (clockslinger’s point). And how legal and binding are contracts signed ‘secretly’?.

    To what extent did these contracts commit the new government? We read “This week the government is expected to call a temporary halt to recently signed IT contracts, while new public sector construction projects will be reviewed” and later on there’s a reference to the fact that another contract could be cancelled.

    How many votes were supposed to be gained by Balls’ school building contracts? Were the contractors local voters? The local public wouldn’t see any benefit until well after the election.

    This is an attempt to smear the outgoing gov’t by throwing the kitchen sink at it; cost over-runs (which have been a feature of gov’t contracts since Noah was a boy) are included in the “Labour wanted to leave scorched earth for its successors” narrative.

    And I’m no supporter of Brown or Labour.

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  • paranoia blue says:

    @16
    “Saw yet another example of the ranting idiot (part of the HPC elite – don’t you know!) going on about “socialists” the other day in a derogatory manner.”
    Of course, none of your descrptions is used “in a derogatory manner.”

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  • Everyone knows the UK is in a mess, even if they don’t admit to it. If I had inherited the PM job, my task, right now and for the period up to the next budget, would be to blame the “previous administration” for everything.

    We are currently borrowing 25% of the money it takes to run this country on a day by day basis (BBC). Something has to change. I guess that a variety of “political has beens” will be paraded on TV when the budget is announced….none will say that Osborne had little room for manoeuvre.

    Socialism is a good idea, the scorched earth policy was about political bitterness.

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  • Given their track record over the previous thirteen years, it would come as no surprise to me to find that these revelations about Nu Labour’s dying days were true..

    ..and no, you can’t argue that the Tories in opposition should have known about it – you can hide a lot when in govt. especially in the short term..

    I also believe that there has been systemic corruption as well, through the mechanism of contractors, sub contractors and consultants; resulting in unjustifiably large sums being pocketed by middle men, with the full knowledge and connivance of govt and their officials.

    I know the detail of one contract where the sum paid to the company that actually did the work was less than a quarter of the headline cost, and I expect there are countless more examples..

    What is vital now is that the new govt bares all and puts the full detail of all dubious deals they uncover in the public domain.

    If they hesitate, or let the mandarins talk them out of going public; they could all too easily get sucked into the mire themselves..

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  • ‘socialism is a great idea’

    so is living within your means

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  • @19 – shady deals “with the full knowledge and connivance of government and their officials”, and shady deals that you know about, so why is it that “you can’t argue that the Tories in opposition should have known about it”. Are top civil servants routinely involved in shady deals?

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  • “Are top civil servants routinely involved in shady deals?”

    As shady as a duck house, but at far greater cost to the taxpayer..

    ..they have probably convinced themselves that the deals are not quite illegal, but the court of public opinion would almost certainly beg to differ, – if all were revealed..

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  • Ah, the kinds of deals Private Eye exposes in its ‘Snouts in Trough’ and similar columns. But experience suggeats that this won’t stop under the Tories.

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  • paranoia blue says:

    This time, next year…..Rodders…trust me!

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