David Cameron is hoist with his own petard

Hat-tip to Peter Black for inspiring the title

Here below is some fascinating reading. First, a letter which David Cameron sent to the Conservative leader of Oxfordshire County Council (bearing in mind the PM’s constituency of Witney is in Oxfordshire) and then the reply he got.

Via, it seems, a somewhat incautious researcher or adviser, Mr Cameron reveals an extraordinary ignorance of local government finance, coupled with remarkable arrogance.

Cameron's Letter

Hudspeth's Letter to Cameron

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist. He is one of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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16 Comments

  • Matt (Bristol) 11th Nov '15 - 8:10pm
  • The solution is more G4S and more Serco. The state should not be providing services, the outsourcing companies are well liked, efficient and better at providing public services, than the state.

  • @Stimpson – if you want a job done properly, do it yourself.

    By the same token, government (at all levels) should do the things it is responsible for itself.

  • Do you perform your own plumbing or operate on yourself then?

  • Simon Horner 11th Nov '15 - 11:03pm

    I hope you are being ironic, Stimson, when you say that the solution is more Serco. I have just had the Serco experience and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone.
    – Sleeper from Euston to Edinburgh cancelled on 23 October (I missed half the Scottish Lib Dem Conference as a result)
    – Sleeper from Edinburgh to London on 1 November also cancelled.
    – Bus replacement service with single driver and defective heating took almost ten hours. Arrived chilled and exhausted. No refreshment or blankets provided.
    – Contradictory e-mails from company leaving us unsure until the last minute about how we would be accommodated.
    – Wrong telephone number on their poster at Euston.
    – Staff not briefed on the situation (I had to show one an e-mail I had received so that he could confirm the cancellation to another passenger).
    – Indicator board at station showed train running normally even as people were being put on the buses.
    The sleeper service to Edinburgh has been disrupted for almost three weeks due to “technical problems” with the rolling stock – that Serco is obliged to keep operational under the franchise. Hundreds of passengers must have been affected by now although the Scottish media is oddly uninterested. And the contingency arrangements are completely inadequate.

    The old BR was far from perfect but they were still streets ahead of the service I have had from Serco in the last few weeks.

    I have cancelled my future bookings with them.

  • Stimpson, G4S and Serco are not specialists at anything. So your plumber and surgeon analogy is stunningly poor.

  • @Stimpson – if plumbing was part of my duties, then yes, I’d do it myself. As it happens it isn’t, so I get a plumber to do it. I’d be extremely angry if he said his role was simply to contract the job out.

    If it makes you feel any better, I write my own code (since that’s *my* job), and don’t farm it out to someone else. My experience of development organisations that have tried subcontracting stuff out is that they rapidly find themselves powerless, but still responsible when it all goes Pete Tong.

    Pretty much the same situation as when public bodies try to outsource their functions to the private sector.

  • Don’t feed the troll, guys

  • I don’t think this shows ignorance on David Cameron’s part so much as a marked tendency toward s double standards and the electoral self interest.

  • Glenn 12th Nov ’15 – 10:41am……………..I don’t think this shows ignorance on David Cameron’s part so much as a marked tendency toward s double standards and the electoral self interest……

    Coupled with his belief that the letter would achieve the above result without ever seeing the public ‘light of day’….

    Sadly, it is impossible to ’embarrass’ such an egoist….His brazen behaviour regarding his public lie over child credits shows that…

  • I agree with John Marriott.

  • Dave Orbison 12th Nov '15 - 12:52pm

    Expats – I agree with you. Cameron is lazy and just not care about the facts or rights and wrongs on issues. Anything for an easy life and the media continue to give him an easy time as they did in the run in to the election.

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