Some years ago, I was working for TACIS (the technology transfer arm of the EU) in Tajikistan. The economy had collapsed and my team’s job was to assist in reviving it. I remember some of the characteristics of that failed economy and draw some ominous comparisons with the UK now. We have increasing crime but have police stations closing on a wide scale. We have a growing population but not enough nurses and are closing wards in hospitals. We have poor productivity and yet we have a growing civil service. Yet we pay more taxes, or some of us do. There was a warning recently from one of the think tanks that the national debt would reach £3 trillion. That will be around £100 million pa interest, maybe more. I remember the historian, Jane Marshal, observing;
“It is in the history of the world that whenever an empire collapses and for whatever reason, those left in government in the centre pass more and more regulations (or whatever they call them at the time) in the belief that they can stop the decline. What always happens is that they stifle innovation and inhibit entrepreneurial activity and accelerate the rate of decline. That is what is happening here (the UK) and now.”
We really do need to urgently axe some layers of government, otherwise the whole lot will go.
Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd 13 June 18