Thursday, April 01, 2010

LobbyDog Nips at the DCLG's Ankles

The Lobbydog blog has a good story about how a piece of government spin has come back to bite the Department of Communities & Local Government.

Spin rarely shocks me anymore, but my jaw dropped when I saw the sheer deceit of a particular press release from the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) that was put out last night.

It started all chirpy: Firefighters are better equipped and prepared than ever before.

The project to deliver new FireControl centres that will answer 999 calls to the Fire and Rescue Service and improve public and firefighter safety should continue, according to a Parliamentary Select Committee report published today.

The report concerned FireControl – the Government plan to save loads of cash by closing the UK’s 47 county based fire service centres and replacing them with nine regional ones.

Yet DCLG have taken the one thing that could possibly have been twisted in their favour from this report – that it said the project should continue – and utterly warped it into a positive story.

What the report really said was that FireControl was “inadequately planned, poorly executed, and badly managed”.

In fact, it was such a hideous, abomination of a financial fiasco, the report says, that it would now be more expensive to scrap it than to continue.

The report said the scheme was costing DCLG £423 million, more than triple the original price tag, and that forecasted savings had fallen by around two-thirds.

Rather than save cash overall as first expected, FireControl is now predicted to saddle the taxpayer with a £240 million loss.

In fact, the cost to the taxpayer of this mega-botch could be up to £1.4 billion – because DCLG is already having to lease the new regional centre buildings even though they’re not in use.

Better equipped fire fighters? Maybe DCLG meant the out-of-use £25,000 coffee machine that they have installed in one of those out-of-use buildings. Unfathomable stupidity.

Here is the real killer – the report claimed DCLG officials tried to withhold documents from the inquiry in a bid to hide their incompetence.

No surprise, I suppose, after seeing the mendacious press release they put out.

Lobbydog deserves a stroke for his endeavours today.


Penfold said...

Serves them right for being so mendacious.
When we get a change of gov, will there be full enquiries into all this spinning and deception upon the electorate, or am I being toooooo idealistic and/or on a witch hunt.??

Michael Heaver said...

Chicken ZINGER~

brian in the tamar valley said...

Yes, it is an absolute fiasco. In my neck of the woods firemen, at the sharp end, are seething about this. Will anybody get fired over this incompetence - you bet they won't! Time and again public money is wasted in scandalous amounts on ill thought out projects like this. There must be millions of pounds central government has poured down the drain. I get very angry about such things.

John M Ward said...

Nice strokes for LobbyDog. Well done, that canine!

Y'know, it's funny how the animals who have infiltrated the Blogosphere tend to do good work, including Tory Bear, Tory Aardvark and others I could list.

On the other side of the coin, I'm still not quite sure about Recess Monkey, but am keeping an open mind...

wild said...

It is sometimes said that the Left are morally bankrupt, but this ignores the elephant in the room; that the Left is not (and never will be) about morality.

Appeals to "Truth" have absolutely no purchase on them. They view lies as simply a way of getting power.

If Leftists cared about truth they would never become Leftists.

A Leftist is essentially somebody who steals from the poor in order to fund a lavish dinner at which he gives speechs attacking the greed of everybody else in the room.

This is not hypocrisy (which presupposes a sense of right and wrong) it is an indifference to anything other than their own ego.

Political Leftist = Malignant Narcissist

Martin Wellbourne said...

Funny that someone should mention socialists being dedicated to providing themselves with a jolly good dinner at someone else's expense, as I believe that that paragon of efficiency, that model of integrity, that most thoughtful and intelligent of people Comrade Prescott was heavily implicated in this one.