WIREDGOV NEWSLETTER ARCHIVE
|Makes Osborne’s ‘Brexit makes every household £4,300 worse off’ seem piddling
The government’s total liabilities, better understood as ‘debts waiting to happen’, are even larger than its mammoth public debt at £1.85tn, according to a new investigative paper from the Adam Smith Institute. This is on top of the national debt and the ASI warns that feckless government risks burdening our grandchildren with a mammoth public pensions bill.
What is Robotic Process Automation? Is it a catalyst for Public Sector Transformation?
Robotic process automation (RPA) technology is revolutionising the way we think about and administer business processes, back-office operations, IT support processes, workflow processes and remote infrastructure. RPA software allows you to configure a "robot" to capture and interpret data from existing applications, to process transactions, validate data, trigger responses and communicate with other digital systems whilst saving money and time.
Click here to find out more and to register.
|A sign of common sense!
New rules mean unnecessary and out-of-date road signs can be removed from our roads from 22 April 2016:
The number of signs on our roads, more than doubled from 2.45m in England in 1993 to an estimated 4.57m in 2013. Now simpler rules are being brought in to give town halls the power to take down unnecessary signs and for the first time, signs that say ‘new’ layout ahead will have ‘remove by dates’ on the back so they are not needlessly left in place for years.
|NHS innovates to provide better care
|3m patients have begun to access new apps, safety devices, on-line networks, and a host of other new technologies and services during the first 9 months of the pioneering NHS Innovation Accelerator programme. 68 NHS organisations are using one or more of 17 new innovations which aim to improve care by, for example, reducing clinical incidents, helping people self-care and linking up patients with others or with research schemes.
|Improving the gateway to better healthcare
The head of NHS England has set out a multi-billion plan designed to ‘get general practice back on its feet, improve patient care and access, and invest in new ways of providing primary care’. Publishing a General Practice Forward View – developed with Health Education England and in discussion with the Royal College of GPs and other GP representatives – Simon Stevens said the NHS would now earmark an extra £2.4bn a year for general practice services by 2020/21.
This means spending will rise from £9.6bn in 2016/17 to over £12bn by 2021 – a 14% real terms increase. This investment will be supplemented by a £500m national ‘turnaround’ package to support GP practices, and additional funds from local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).
The plan also contains specific, practical & funded steps to strengthen workforce, drive efficiencies in workload, modernise infrastructure & technology, and redesign the way modern primary care is offered to patients.
|SME Supplier Locator update...
UK Government and public sector spend with SME’s is continually on the increase and by 2020, it is the stated intent of Cabinet Office that £1 of every £3 spent on government contracts goes to SME’s. The past 5 years have seen government make a priority of getting money through its supply chain into the hands of SMEs, by both setting targets and introducing new procurement mechanisms.
Against this backdrop, the WiredGov Supplier Locator service has been developed specifically to embrace the SME Agenda and provide the ideal platform for SME’s to promote their services, solutions, accreditation and success stories directly to our ever increasing audience across all government and public sector verticals and Tier 1 suppliers.
|A change of mind brings good news
|The LGA's Community Wellbeing spokeswoman, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, has responded to NHS England's announcement that it will reconsider its decision not to fund the new HIV treatment. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a new HIV prevention approach where HIV-negative individuals use anti-HIV medications to reduce their risk of becoming infected.
|Millions of eyes monitoring will help keep us safe
|The Counter Terrorism Internet Referral Unit (CTIRU) has launched a campaign to encourage the public to report online material which promotes terrorism or extremism. This includes material within social media. All reports made are anonymous unless you choose to leave your details.
|YJB: Report online material promoting terrorism or extremism
|Hardly surprising given the Labour / Lib Dem majority in the Lords
|The Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee (SLSC) recently published the report of its inquiry into the Strathclyde Review of the House of Lords’ role in scrutinising secondary legislation.
|When will VW ‘fix’ the cars?
Vehicles tested in the UK programme showed no evidence of car manufacturers, apart from the VW Group, fitting devices to defeat the approved emissions test programme.
|Not every ‘expert’ thinks Brexit will be all ‘Doom & Gloom’
According to Open Europe's comprehensive new report, UK GDP in a best case scenario, under which the UK manages to enter into liberal trade arrangements with the EU and the rest of the world, whilst pursuing large-scale deregulation at home, Britain could be better off by 1.6% of GDP in 2030.
In a worst case scenario, UK GDP could be 2.2% lower in 2030 if Britain leaves the EU and fails to strike a deal with the EU or reverts into protectionism. However, a far more realistic range is between a 0.8% permanent loss to GDP & a 0.6% permanent gain in GDP, in scenarios where Britain mixes policy approaches.
Examining the ‘sacrificial entrails’ of past promises & current announcements to anticipate the 2030+ future
Back in 1975 we had a PM who ‘negotiated’ a better deal in the EU (then EEC) and promised a rosy future - only if we stayed ‘in’. To many people ‘things could only get better’ as we were ‘in debt’ (some things never change) and ‘always on strike’, so the promises of the EEC seemed very attractive to us (yes I am that old!).
History now seems to be repeating itself, which is appropriate as ‘John & Joan’ would probably not have voted to ‘stay in’ if they could have looked ahead 14+ years and seen the how treaties (such as Maastricht (1992) and Lisbon (2009) would alter our relationship with the now European Union of 28 members (EEC then 9) with another 7+ waiting in the wings to join! (EU enlargement: The next seven - BBC News). Along the way, a planned EU Constitution was thrown out by French & Dutch voters in 2005, but what does that matter in a democratic union?
How the political establishment ‘conned’ us into believing we were joining an economic market rather than a future political & economic union has been comprehensively covered by BBC – Nick Robinson: Them or Us and it seems the current Government is set to use the same tactics they used then (Telegraph: Seven lessons from Britain's 1975 EEC referendum).
So if the government can project ahead and so ‘accurately’ foretell the UK’s economic & political future, why don’t we consider how some of the EU’s own recent press announcements could evolve over a similar time scale?
Take the European Agenda on Security: Paving the way towards a Security Union, which will probably evolve into an EU-wide police / security state with us being ‘forced’ by law to hand over all our high grade intelligence to other EU countries – some of which have a more ‘dubious’ reputation for both generating key intelligence & keeping secrets. The recent experiences of the French & Belgians is the driving logic behind this centralisation, but remember that an organisation is only as strong as its weakest link and there will be some very weak links in the (probably by 2030) other 35(?) countries of the EU. Currently we are a key member of the 5 Eyes Intelligence Alliance, but will that still be the situation in 2030? Remember even an ‘independent’ Scotland was not guaranteed automatic access to the alliance!
Increasingly when one talks of ‘security’ in the age of ISIS, one sees images of armed troops on the streets of Europe and hears talk of the need for ‘boots on the ground’ in places like Libya. Despite the EU not having any armed forces, they recently published Central African Republic: EU military training mission approved.
So where will they find ‘in the field’ experienced military personnel to provide this training, as there are probably few EU countries that have them available for deployment? As a NATO Review article says; “The numbers speak for themselves. Some 25% of NATO members do not have an air force, 30% have no naval force or maintain a navy with less than 600 sailors, and 50% are fielding an active army of less than 20,000 soldiers. Europe needs less soldiers – but more European ones - NATO
Having centralized ‘Security’, what will be more natural in an organisation that seeks ‘ever closer monetary & political union’, than the coerced merging of national armed forces by 2030? For anyone who thinks that is a wild idea, I would refer them back to the path travelled since 1975. The USA might then decide that a Union with a bigger population than theirs should be able pay to defend itself and that their part in NATO should only ‘defending’ the Atlantic up to the coast of the EU continent. Could / would all EU countries then ‘stump up’ their require 2% of GDP for military expenditure and would the UK accept ‘non-naval’ countries being able to out-vote them on the design & deployment of our ships & planes (say goodbye to the defence of the Falklands)?
After one EU expansion, we were ‘promised’ only 13,000 Polish migrants a year and ended up with 700,000 over a couple of years, but many now accept that their integration into the UK has been mainly successful. However, what happens when we start being assigned ‘our share’ of the future millions of migrants that will try & enter the EU by 2030.
MEPs are demanding new EU-wide “readmission” (return) agreements which they say should take precedence over bilateral ones between member states and third countries. They insist that migrants should be returned only if the country to which they are being returned to is safe for them.
Even in the unlikely event that the Syrian conflict ends ‘well’, that will not stem the flow by much as ‘endless millions in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Africa, etc. flee conflict, drought & famine in search of a better life in Europe, with jobs, housing, education and PEACE. For further crystal ball gazing you might care to check out; Population Institute: 2030 The ‘Perfect Storm’ Scenario from 2009.
Finally, the UK Government has assumed in its Treasury analysis that ‘all will be well’ with its path of ‘ever closer union’ (EESC encourages European Commission to go further in deepening EMU without delay), but according to EU News: Deficit targets: EC “not strict enough”, warn EU Auditors it has been found that; The EC is not strict enough in implementing the Excessive Deficit Procedure – designed to keep EU public finances in order - according to a new report from the European Court of Auditors. The auditors warn that the Commission does not go far enough in the crucial area of monitoring structural reform: its focus is on the legal aspects of the procedure rather than the actual reforms.
So, can / should we believe our UK ‘masters’ who don’t want us to rock their political boat with the UK as part of the EU?
Last time we were promised only membership of the EEC – trade but no political union & primacy of Westminster & UK laws and look where we have ended up!
This time we are told that we should stay in (‘standing to the side’), while all but 1 or 2 countries evolve into the monetary & political union of the United States of Europe combining around 33 countries by 2030+.
Before anyone decides to which way to vote in the referendum, it may pay them to (re-)read George Orwell’s book Nineteen Eighty-Four, which features the UK as is set in Airstrip One (formerly known as Great Britain), a province of the superstate Oceania (mainly Europe).
More contributions to the EU Referendum
More news, opinions, documents, claims & counter-claims;
Editor’s Note: We suggest readers monitor the ‘News’ sections of the 2 campaign sites for the 2 differing views. The WGPlus newsletter will mainly limit itself to highlighting ‘normal’ EU-related news, plus Think Tank items, PC&PE reports, etc.
More contributions to the UK constitutional debate
More news, opinions, documents, claims & counter-claims;