Thinking For The Individual

Formerly known as 'Thinking For The People', this site offers some reflections on the state of British society and her people from the perspective of a libertarian Conservative with a passionate belief in the pillars of freedom and responsibility.

Friday, August 19, 2005

The Civil Service: Enemies of the People

I've written here twice before about the flat tax revolution. The flat tax is a single rate of income tax, set at a low level, and preferably with a generous personal allowance. To those who have taken as little as a passing interest in the subject, it looks inevitable that some day soon we will adopt it here, and its proponents (of which I am proud to call myself one) argue the sooner, the better.

But Her Majesty's Treasury disagrees. Treasury officials have doctored a memo ('sexed down' perhaps) on the subject which proposed the introduction of this flat tax so that it gave a much more discouraging impression. Of course, we're used to this kind of stupidity from the State machinery. Perhaps they felt defensive because flat tax would significantly reduce their power. Perhaps it's because they knew a low flat tax would initially require savings in public expenditure. Perhaps it's just because it wasn't their idea!

What the Treasury thinks, doctored or not, has never been particularly important to me; not when our economy is sinking under the weight of tax and regulation, and when some of our poorest people are robbed of their hard-earned money to an incompetent Chancellor. If the elected part of the government really is interested in flat tax, then all they had to do when reading this doctored report was to say to their officials and advisors, "Get out of my office!"

But more important than the question of how many independent thoughts there are in Gordon Brown's head is the question of the Civil Service. The Civil Service has become renowned as a bloated institution, stuck in the past not just in its practices but in its elitist, Statist beliefs too. Any administration with the inclination has to shake up the Civil Service from top to bottom, and root out the prevailing patronising nature of its big government style, tearing down the structures which make politicians and bureaucrats the most powerful people in our society and which stunt the qualities and clog the capacity of the British people.

An end to massive government means the slow decline of the Civil Service as we know it. Therefore, let's speed it up by rejecting the still-prevalent post-war consensus and bringing about a radical reform of every part of our society.


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At 6:31 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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