I really have nothing much to say. Iain Duncan Smith has been all over the news today because of the National Audit Office's report into how Universal Credit is going, and we've said it all on here before. The only thing which strikes me is how keen IDS has been to blame everybody except himself. Mainly, it's been the civil servants being made to carry the can.
I know people want to comment on all this, so go ahead. But don't go overboard.
If it Is the IT - this would have been put out to tender and the lowest bid won? IDS seems to want to get rid of civil servants and IF UC worked no doubt he'd try his best to do it. The UC seems a good idea but it looks like a total white elephant.ReplyDelete
*puts on devil's advocate hat*ReplyDelete
Well, to be fair, at the end of the day, IDS isn't the one at the helm of UC when it comes to the behind the scenes workings of the system. It may have been his idea, but he has to delegate to someone else to make it happen. I'm just saying, is all. Personally, I wouldn't stand up for the man myself and take the punishment for his wrong doings, but we have to be realistic about this whole situation with UC.
@Chris,that was the same excuse used by the Bankers yet they were taking the huge salaries,Knighthoods and CBE's when things were "Going" well,the second it came crashing down,it was those that they appointed that they blamed and claimed ignorance of even the very basic knowledge of the day to day operation,much like IDS is squirming now,will the WP be the next failure that is finally exposed?Delete
As Secretary of State at DWP, he's accountable. Not much than that needs to be said really, although I may as well add that this is merely the latest and most serious of a succession of calamities at DWP.Delete
That, combined with his repeated and malign misuse of statistics and anecdote has undermined any confidence in him that most people may have had. His conduct (and that of his ministerial colleagues has brought the entire department into disrepute and has poisoned the well of public discourse.
If he had any decency (and I'm certain he doesn't), he'd go.
It's interesting that in local government no councillor is allowed to criticise officers (civil servants) publicly, even without naming them, and even if the officers are obviously at fault. The councillors get suspended if they do. It's okay for ministers to blame civil servants, however.Delete
IDS on television reminds me of the CH4 interview with Emma Harrison,denial and blame shifting, everybody is wrong and I am right,the figures are wrong,next he will be telling us he has been Bullied.ReplyDelete
Um, yes reminds me of someone I work with...Delete
Here's an interesting link asking whether Smith should do the honourable thing and go:ReplyDelete
IDS always blames everybody except himself. Allegedly, he made other people take the rap for him when the media rumbled him both for Betsygate and for his dodgy CV.ReplyDelete
IDS is also a shocker for wallowing in misplaced (but perpetual) self-pity. According to him, living rent-free in his father-in-law’s house is a ‘terrible imposition’ on poor ickle IDS because f-i-l insists that IDS & Betsy must pay for the upkeep of the house. No doubt f-i-l could be making himself in excess of £5,000 pcm out of the house if he rented it out on the open market instead? Does the maintenance of Swanbourne really cost £60,000 a year that can’t be fiddled out of Parliamentary expenses? Doesn’t Lord Cottesloe (f-i-l) have a seat in the House of Lords? According to IDS, the only property that he & Betsy actually own is a one-bedroomed ex-Council flat in Fulham. So no ‘flipping’ has gone on between the flat & Swanbourne? Or is it merely that I’m a suspicious old bag?
I suspect that Mark Hoban has been parachuted in from the Treasury in order to keep IDS under control where the costs of his several (all failed) vanity projects are concerned. Amyas Morse of the NAO is a very illustrious Chartered Accountant and I believe that Hoban is a bean-counter as well.
'But he has to delegate to someone else to make it happen.' And whose responsibility is it that any work that is delegated is done so to the right people?ReplyDelete
If the National Audit Office report into Universal Credit and his management of it had been favourable IDS would have taken FULL credit. Equally, therefore, he must take responsibility for its failings.
As I said, I was talking about the people who actually work on the system itself. But, yes, if IDS was/is responsible for picking the people who work on the UC system, then it would be reasonable to suggest that he is to blame. The person who chooses to build their house on sand is the only one to blame. If you choose an idiot to build something and it breaks, then it's the idiots fault.Delete
As far as I'm concerned, all the people involved in UC are idiots. All that money could have been spent on more useful things. The problem with the government at present, is that they think that if you throw enough money at a problem, you can fix anything. Look at the high speed train line they wanted to make. What a "train wreck" that turned out to be. It would cost twice as much as projected. But hey, we've got problems, let's throw a few more billion pounds at them. Yeah, that always helps... NOT.
Some people never learn.
Sorry for the misunderstanding before. I'm just a realist and I more than often look at things a little differently.
'All that money could have been spent on more useful things.' Yes!Delete
Here's an idea - close down UC and the WP. Set up a public works prgramme to repair and resurface all the roads in Britain; use the long-term unemployed to do the job i.e. those who have been out of work for more than a year.
Read this about UC (edited) -Delete
'It is not news that such a huge and complex programme has run into difficulties. Universal credit is...cheaper for the state to operate, more responsive for the claimant. Universal credit could still be the jewel... [it] is worth fighting for...[it] is the future of government...it could be proud legacy [for IDS].'
This was written by the editor of THE GUARDIAN!!! It could have been written by IDS himself. Pathetic.
I disagree with you. Successive governments have wanted to do this, because it would be as the editor describes - if it was got right. But it's never been done because the difficulties are huge. IDS decided to plough ahead regardless, and then denied that there were any problems.Delete
Govt resources could be much more effectively spent. The priority for ANY govt should be to get people back into work rather than attempting to reform the social security payment system. I am currently looking for work and it would be more relevant to me if the govt offered more retraining or paid work exp. experience opportunites.Delete
I have listened to his rehearsed response twice yesterday. I haven't understood a word he's said. He bangs on about how he could have written the report himself, er what? He keeps saying 'pathfinder, pathfinding'. What does that mean? I doubt he could find his own arse.ReplyDelete
You can tell it was rehearsed because he wasn't blowing his top and shouting people down. But he was no less full of crap. How this man has a job still is beyond me.
According to one of the newspapers last night, the ‘Internal Whitehall Gossip Machine’ is alleged to be blaming Robert Devereux for the by now several fiascos since RD took over the DWP from Leigh Lewis in 2011. RD is also being blamed for the DfT’s cock-ups with the train-sets since RD was i/c the DfT before he moved to the DWP.ReplyDelete
My own impression of RD was very poor on the occasion when RD appeared before the Public Accounts Committee in May 2012. RD wriggled, squirmed and fidgeted non-stop physically. Everything that he said orally was also hasty, garbled and muddled, imho. I suspect that RD is out of his depth with the various Top Jobs in Whitehall but IDS is no better, in my view.
Whatever happened to "The Buck Stops Here"?ReplyDelete
The fact that UC is a train wreck waiting to happen is no surprise to many of us. Nor is it much of a surprise that the odious IDS is trying to distance himself from the wreckage and shift the blame to others. Basically this is par for the IDS course.
The truth is that IDS had what seemed to him a good idea(in truth there may be some merit in some of it) but he seems to have completely ignored the practical difficulties and not listened to those, better informed and more intelligent than he.
He should have the guts to carry the can. But he won't. Cameron should have the guts to sack him. But he doesn't and he won't.
Roll on the train wreck.
Don't most politicians blame others - the opoosition/previous government/single parents/welfare claimants etc etc. So far about 1 thousand people claim UC, would any political party admit defeat?Delete
The DWP can't correlate the data that they have on the WP in a real time manner(Sanctions/Job starts/sustainment) although these do effect people on a daily basis,the hardship created by UC if/when it comes on line will be tantamount to destroying families,employed or unemployed as it will not be able to deal with the errors that will happen in a prompt manner,unless they hire an army of staff,so where will be the savings there? I am sure the Bailiffs are wringing their hands with anticipation as well as the PayDay Lenders!ReplyDelete
I listened with interest to what he said on bbc news he kept using the words Believe, which kept ringing bells, then he used the word resile.. which meant to go back on the plan he was created. Now I havent heard that word, my mum who works in a legal field has never heard that word before. It did sound scripted by someone who is totally lost about the reality of the systemReplyDelete
I've heard the word "resile" before, curiously from Tory politicians. I seem to remember Michael Howard using it, and possibly John Redwood. It's not a word one normally drops into a conversation.Delete