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The Public Trough

In the real world, the public sector must pay
Private sector workers are tired of footing the bill for bloated, inefficient services and the fat cats who run them
Camilla Cavendish

The mild-mannered head of the Audit Commission has lit the blue touchpaper and not retired — making him extremely rare among officials who usually save inconvenient truths for their valedictory speeches.

The outraged reaction to Steve Bundred’s suggestion that a year’s pay freeze for public sector workers could help to save Britain from bankruptcy shows a fascinating disconnection from reality. I am reliably told that civil servants are quietly planning for possible 20 per cent cuts in public expenditure, and that some local authorities are discussing cuts of up to 30 per cent at awaydays. But the public sector unions noisily protest that their workers “should not be punished for private sector greed”.

The unions have been abetted by sage commentators who have remarked, variously, that retiring on a full pension at 55 is a “right”, that average public sector pay is greater than average private sector pay because public sector workers are more “skilled”, and that Mr Bundred is a “fat cat” whose own quango should be abolished.

The outrage rather misses the point. There is no money. The private sector pays the public sector’s wages, and you can only stiff the private sector for so much.....

Read on as she tells a few more home truths that too many are trying to ignore.

Comments

Camilla Cavendish said this: "Of course, it was greedy bankers who triggered the recession."

It wasn't. The recession started with the dotcom crash and since then the US and UK Governments have increasingly relied on borrowings to fund their public sectors. We've had the Kenyesian spending splurge and it didn't work.

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