MichaelCD - The Blog.

The thoughts of Michael Cadwallader. Coffee loving, history book reading, Cheshire man.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Union Fool

I understand the raison d'etre of trade unions is to support your members. But the First Division Association, who deal mainly with civil servants, have got some cheek for saying this:
Last week, two civil servants were moved following an embarrassing appearance by home secretary, John Reid, before the home affairs select committee.

Asked about the failure to deport over 1,000 foreign criminals, Mr Reid told the panel of MPs that his department was dysfunctional and "not fit for purpose".

The minister gave evidence to the committee for which he was subsequently forced to apologise after he discovered that figures passed to him by Home Office staff were wrong.

Two senior civil servants deemed responsible were transferred from their posts by the department's permanent secretary, Sir David Normington, just after Mr Reid told MPs that he would not rule out getting rid of incompetent staff

In an interview with GMTV ahead of its Sunday programme, Mr Baume said that while some criticism of government staff was justified, the timing of many of the recent attacks on civil servants was "driven by politics, not performance".

Er..yes, not driven by peformance? Except of course, it is driven by peformance. This peformance, this peformance, this peformance and this peformance.

The suggestion that civil servants were not accountable was "absolute nonsense", he said.

"If a civil servant gets it wrong, their department takes action under fair processes in private, not in the public glare. This is no different to any other employer."

Really? The department is a chaotic mess, and yet you are decrying (only) two people being accountable for that mess. Last year I had to provide a breakdown of work that I did using our end of year figures. I have now found out that this was an evaluation of whether it would be of financial benefit for the company, to outsource my job. Such is life in the private sector. And yet, Mr Baume has the temerity to claim there is no difference between the civil service and the private sector!

The very fact that this department surivives intact, with no inquiry, no restructure, no task force (all standard Blair responses) shows how the Blair government viewthis scandal. The same way they view immigration. They are paying lip service to the current media storm, whilst being aware that when the media find another story, the ongoing abolition of British borders, can continue. What other conclusion is there to reach?


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