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Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Why the Home Office Will Leak Like a Sieve
I expect David Davis's fax machine and email to be particularly busy over the next few weeks, as the Home Office turns into the leakiest department in government (as well as the most incompetent). Why do I say this? Because there's nothing civil servants in a department resent more than being accused on incompetence in public by their Secretary of State. So for John Reid to say before a Commons Committee that the Home Office was not "fit for purpose" will have hardly endeared him to his new workforce. There will be much searching through old emails for things which will embarrass the government I suspect. Now, what was that email again? davisd AT parliament dot uk, I seem to remember.
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*cough cough* think you'll find they're going to Cleggy first ;)
Inamicus, I suspect that's wishful thinking, but I suspect you are right that Clegg will get some leaks. Just not the important ones!
Reid wont care as it is his job to sort it all out, but further revelations will damage even more the political careers of Blunkett and Clarke.
This will be one of the topic's discussed on tonight's radio discussion about what's big on the blogosphere - joining me will be Nick Edwards of Londonist.com and James Graham of Liberati.net.
Here it live at 930pm on Resonance 104.4FM in Central London, on the web at www.resonancefm.com or podcasted from TheBigIssue.net.
Political Teenager is right - John Reid hasn't made this mess, it's nothing to do with him if more comes out. He's there clearing up the mess.
I think it's good that John Reid is saying that the Home Office is in an awful state - at least he's being brutally honest. Any further revelations about what's been wrong in the Home Office over the last 9 years won't hurt John Reid. It wasn't his responsibility.
Iain, you haven't yet commented on teh S2P rip off today. Can I refer you to this having been spotted months ago.
political teenager is right. The Reid strategy is to be open and direct confirming what we all know - HO is a complete dog's bollocks. This will have credibility with public. The HO will bring this Govt down. If Reid in the next 18 months improves our perception of competence , his stock will rise not just within and without the LP. With the economy going down and taxes up, Brown's stock will fall. Reid is playing a long game.
Reid cannot be hurt by what happened before he got there. On the other hand he has now raised expectations that he can clean these stables. On the third hand if he succeeds on the deportation/asylum/immigration mess his stock will rise enormously in the country.
He could be positioned to be the Norman Tebbit of the Labour party & I mean that in a nice way.
Are you out of your f***** minds?
This "chaos" is the result of deliberate policy, this govt-that reid is at the heart of-has always intended to allow all this dross in, the only reason he is talking tough, and I assure it is only talk, is to send us all back to sleep
Reid's big pitch is to be seen as the turnaround king. He has nothing to lose by making this out to be as bad as possible right now.
I'd be inclined to believe what you say if this government's stock weren't so low. In years gone by ZanuLabour managed to send us all back to sleep with "eye catching initiatives", but I suspect that the country is beginning to wake up to the lie.
And never have any of the Nomenklatura been so brutally honest, either.
No, like others, I suspect that Ried has read the tea leaves and sussed that he has little or no chance of becoming the next PM. Even if Gordon does get to wear the PM hat for a while he'll see out Labour until the Tories get in. I'll bet Ried reckons that after that the field will be open for a candidate with a reputation for honesty and achievement; and who better than Mr Fixit himself.
Well for once I agree with Reid. There must be a lot of incompetent people there. But better to identify specific people and get rid of them, rather than blindly damning everyone. Well it would be better if you actually wanted to solve the problem, rather than score a point with the Daily Mail...
Reid is lucky because whatever he does he can blame it on the previous man in office. This is whilst he appears to be sorting out the mess, at the same time mounting a serious challenge on Brown for the leadership.
There are bound to be some more leaks. John Reid's statement that the Home Office was not fit for purpose may have been true but did he give any thought to the front line staff, particularly at Border control, who now have to suffer the jibes of the public even more? Some of these officers are very senior and have been very pissed off with how things have been going under the new labour administration for some time. The fact that the civil servants in charge of IND's biggest target, tipping the balance, were reporting to Blair, not Clarke, seems to have been missed.
Lets not forget John Gieve's role in the problems of the Home Office. He was PUS under both Blunkett and Clarke. As a reward for his good management he was made Deputy Governor for Financial Stability of the Bank of England.
See the Wikipedia article on Gieve for more information http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Gieve
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