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Our bloated civil service gets even more bloated

Wednesday/Thursday blog

Today’s blog is probably rather less important than my Monday/Tuesday blog explaining how our rulers could solve world hunger by the end of this week by increasing food supply by more than 100 million tonnes over the next 12 months thus significantly lowering food prices. But as this blog covers an area too boring to be mentioned by the mainstream media, I thought I’d cover it anyway.

Our self-serving civil service

Here’s a chart showing how Britain’s civil service has evolved over the last 11 years from 2012 to 2022:

(to see the chart in glorious widescreen tehnicolour, left-click on it and then left click again)

The chart shows two things: the number of civil servants we pay for (the red line on the chart) and the proportion of civil servants at each grade (the blue, yellow, brown, grey and black areas on the columns).

Ever more civil servants

As the chart displays, the civil service saw a general reduction in staff numbers from 2012 to 2016. But the civil service headcount rose from 418,000 in 2016 to 510,000 in 2022 a 22% rise in just 6 years. So much for Conservative governments making any attempts to control public spending. They’re about as effective at this as they are in stopping Albanian illegal migrants crossing the Channel for a life on benefits and crime in the UK.

Ever more managers

But perhaps more interesting is the distribution of civil service staff by grade. Rather counterintuitively, the chart features the lower grades at the top of the columns and the higher grades lower down.

In 2012, 28.6% of the civil service was in the top three grades (grey, brown and black on the chart). By 2022 the proportion in the top three grades had shot up to 44.9%. Meanwhile the proportion in the lowest grade fell from 45.6% to just 28.2%.

In 2016, we paid for 146,300 managers to manage 272,000 staff at the lowest two grades. By 2022 our once great country apparently needed 228,990 managers (a 56% increase in managers) to manage just 280,000 (a mere 3% increase) lower grades.

Let me just repeat that – between 2016 and 2022, the number of managers in the civil service increased by 56% while the number of staff they manage only increased by 3%.

This is important because it is precisely those at the lowest levels who are most likely to be directly involved in delivering services, while those in the higher grades are most likely to spend their lives in ‘important’ meetings, having ‘important’ discussions, making ‘important’ decisions and developing ‘important’ strategies. These lucky 228,990 managers live in a world far removed from us ignorant, unwashed proles who just happen to pay our civil service managers’ extremely generous salaries and even more generous pensions.

Different department, same sickness

I have previously used this chart. It shows how the number of hospital beds per manager in the NHS fell from around 8 beds per manager to around 3.6 beds per manager under New Labour between 1997 and 2011:

Under New Labour, the number of managers in the NHS (England) shot up from about 25,000 to over 40,000 while the number of beds fell from 195,000 to just 144,000, falling further under the Coalition to 135,000 by 2013:

Once again, we see ever more managers being hired to do ever less work.

Cyril Northcote Parkinson

Writing in the Economist in 1955 Cyril Northcote Parkinson gave us what came to be known as Parkinson’s Law: ‘Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion’. While employed in the British Civil Service, Parkinson observed that a bureaucracy will grow at a rate of five to seven per cent a year ‘irrespective of any variation in the amount of work (if any) to be done’. One example he gave was from the Royal Navy where, between 1914 and 1928 the number of ships fell by 68 per cent and the number of sailors by 32 per cent. At the same time, the number of dockyard managers went up by 40 per cent and the number of Admiralty officials increased by 78 per cent.

Ignore the coming screaming and wailing

As we enter recession and government spending shoots up while tax receipts collapse, our government will have to face up to the fact that our bloated public sector needs to be reduced if we are to avoid national bankruptcy. When this happens, there will be much howling and wailing from the BBC and C4 News and the Guardian as they claim public services are being destroyed.

But please ignore all the mainstream media screaming and wailing by remembering that most of the growth in public spending over the last few years has been the employment of ever more managers many of whom probably do little real work while costing us billions and getting in the way of the staff at lower grades who actually do have to do something that would be recognised as work.

9 comments to Our bloated civil service gets even more bloated

  • Hardcastle

    Spot on David,we could probably reduce the management by at least 50percent without even noticing a difference.Let us hope that the upcoming financial collapse will actually persuade ( force ) our politicians to do something about it.The same argument applies,perhaps even more to our Local Authorities,where the headcount increases whilst the services diminish.

  • A Thorpe

    We should be asking who is in control and taking responsibility, because it certainly is not the government, and parliament is also failing in its duty to hold the government to account. The cost of the civil service is insignificant to the costs and damage caused by their policies, with net zero and lockdowns standing out as the most insane decisions ever made. It is government decisions that are causing deaths from starvation.

    All we have is endless talk about these problems, as with Harry, but no solutions. The solutions are easy with climate change because we can do nothing to control it, so do nothing, but that does not generate any concern or interest. Producing more, as with food and extracting more fossil fuels will both reduce costs and give us reliable supplies of essentials. The answer to all our problems is an end to collectivist governments, free competitive trade and personal responsibility.

  • Eric Legge

    That is the solution, Thorpe, but how do we implement it with all of the sycophantic sheeple doing the biding of the diabolically evil sickos in charge across the west.

    They used equality to worm their way into power and are excluding the return of the most able. Look at what is happening to Trump at their hands because they fear he will run for President in 2024. He faced and survived a non-stop barrage of attacks from them when he was President.

    Nietzsche predicted precisely in the 1880s what was coming and said that the only way out was for the whole corrupt thing to collapse. That the collapse should take place as quickly as possible in order to leave as much standing as possible. He wrote that the decadence of the politicians was already past the point of no return in his time and that the weakest would perish and that the strongest would overcome the “values that pass judgement” on everything.

    I just heard on the news that vaccinations for polio are being offered to children aged 1 to 9. I would bet my bottom dollar that this is just a sneaky way of getting the mRNA DNA-changing technology into children. Apparently, the means of getting the “vaccinations” delivered to populations via the atmosphere is available.

    The wise of us are going to have to give public health services a wide berth as much as possible and only eat fresh food and filtered/distilled water, etc. Unfortunately, that is not an exaggeration or a conspiracy theory, in my opinion.

  • Bad Brian

    ( In Homage to The Pride of Miss Jean Brodie).

    Door opens !!!

    Hardcastle, Thorpe and Legge !

    Always the same three boys !, the Three Little Piggies who are never slow to voice an opinion but never deem to keep their heads down and work hard like all my other boys and girls.

    You will find that when you leave this institution to make your way in a very different world out there, that you will learn to appreciate the wisdom of the words of a strong man like Mussolini and dare I say an up and coming fascist like Mr Sunnik , who only has our country’s welfare close to his heart. Indeed you will learn to follow than question and appreciate the opportunity to follow and not question.
    Only then will you be revealed as the Creme de la Creme.

    If the three of you had been in the same class at school that would have been a sight to behold indeed, it makes me laugh to think about the state of the poor teacher !

  • Brenda Blessed

    BB, I take it that you wrote that guff immediately after you had sniffed some empowering white powder from the cistern of a toilet out of habit in order to avoid the wrath of a dominatrix lover. Either that or you are fully vaccinated and showing symptoms that are unique to you.

  • Marc Ager

    I have just received a letter from the NHS asking me to make an appointment to be vaccinated against shingles. I have not been a big enough sucker to have any of the Covid shots so I will be giving this a miss as well. I have zero confidence in that outfit due to the Covid fiascos and now pay for private health insurance, which is probably just as untrustworthy but I will get immediate treatment for a broken limb or an operation, etc.

    Quote:””You are now due your vaccination against shingles – a condition that can be very painful and have long-lasting effects. please contact your surgery to arrange your appointment to receive the free shingles vaccination. Depending on your age you may also be offered a vaccination against pneumococcal disease which can cause severe pneumonia.”

    The Sun 21/4/21 – “SHINGLES could be a new but rare side effect of the coronavirus vaccine, doctors have discovered.
    Experts in Israel found that patients with certain autoimmune diseases who received the Pfizer/BioNTech jab were more likely to develop the rash than those without the condition.”

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/14716699/shingles-new-rare-side-effect-covid-vaccine/

  • Stillreading

    Marc, go and have your singles jab. It is a PROPER vaccine which has been around for at least a decade now and is very effective. Anyone who had chicken pox as a child – and that’s most of us – can develop shingles in later life, or indeed if we are younger but under significant stress and generally a bit “run down” as our parents used to say, the virus can erupt and cause shingles. This is because the herpes zoster virus which causes chicken pox in children lies dormant inside us for ever more, waiting to erupt into shingles. Having witnessed an older friend die from the debilitating effects of shingles – it affected her head and an eye and she virtually went blind, gave up and died – I couldn’t wait to be jabbed when I reached the minimum age and went along as soon as summoned. It’s a one-off, never needs boosting and will give protection for the remainder of your life. Indications are that people who develop shingles after the mRNA covid jab are doing so BECAUSE the covid jab, whilst arguably protecting for a limited time against covid, actually reduces general immunity to other diseases, including the ability to suppress the dormant herpes zoster. Apologies to you Marc and any other readers if I sound a bit didactic, but I am just stating that the shingles jab bears no relation to the mRNA covid jab – any further offerings of which, having already had three, I am firmly refusing. The more I read about it, the less I like either its immediate effects or its as yet unknown long-term consequences for the multiply jabbed.

  • Bad Brian

    Dear Marc,

    I think that Stillreading may quite a strong argument regarding the shingles vaccine. I was pleased to see he had sent you a message as such.

    I have seen this illness in older people and if a bit more research is needed by you to make up your mind, then get onto the WEB and read up on this again.

    Best of luck,

    And Brenda, No Peruvian marching powder required, I was only admiring the solid opinions of our first three contributers whom I will wager have stuck up for their own views since they left the cradle, and are still doing so now ( as do you !) , which makes this blog such fun to watch.

  • Marc Ager

    Thanks for that info, Stillreading, But I am not going to have any vaccinations. I simply do not trust anything that is coming out of the health services anywhere. The last ones I had were for polio and smallpox as a very young child.

    The current germ and virus theories being used by Big Pharma to make us use chemotherapy and vaccinations are way out of date. The latest research – that is not being released – says that neither bacteria nor viruses transmit disease. They both clean up poisons in the body that are the causes of the diseases. Even Louis Pastern admitted in his notes, which he said must never be published but were, that he was unable to use bacteria to transmit diseases between people.

    There is no shortage of new poisons, such as DDT (banned now) and other pesticides that we ingest with our food. Our bodies are also constantly being poisoned by electromagnetic radiation. It started with radio then went on to radar and now is at Wi-Fi. There is all sorts of other pollution that is poisoning us.

    Watch “The Virus Challenge” on Dr Tom Cowan’s website (link below). There are several discussions in videos on viruses on that site. The aim of the challenge is to prove or disprove viral theory beyond any doubt, which, amazingly, has never been done. Dr Tom Cowan and Dr Mark Bailey discuss how to go about the experiment for which they have funding.

    https://drtomcowan.com/pages/the-virus-challenge

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