The Independant reports on the nasty party at work

‘The Independent’ – about whose ownership I am somewhat dubious, seems nonetheless to have had some interesting and informative reporting recently.

They publicised a recent report which shows that “£15bn of health service contracts have been handed to private companies since 2015.”

Free at the point of use it may be but when private companies are making profits the budget doesn’t go as far – it as if a tax is being paid on service provision that is organised on the NHS’s behalf – and this is supposed to be somehow better and more efficient…

The Indy also reported that the previous Crown Prosecution Service lead in the North West had, in 2016, warned Johnson himself of the risks involved in freeing terrorists who had not been deradicalised, but was informed (of course) that there was no money.

Then there is the surreptitious Conservative manifesto plan to curb the powers of judicial review, which when combined with their proposals to ‘update’ the Human Rights Act is unlikely to be advantageous to anyone except the government. (The Marxist dictatorship of the proletariat acquires a whole new meaning and is looking like an actual aim of Conservatism.)

Finally they pick up on the interview given to yesterday’s World this Weekend where Ian Acheson, having advised governments across the world, said he was “shocked” by what he found in British prisons when he carried out his review in 2015. He concluded “At the heart of this is the destruction of the prison and probation service through crazy, failed, ideological austerity cuts.”

Johnson likes to think he is a one nation Conservative but warehousing prisoners with no attempt to rehabilitate them, as Johnson is now suggesting by promoting longer sentences without any licence period, is a completely incoherent policy unless you lock them all up literally for their lives. If they are ever to be released then efforts towards rehabilitation have to be undertaken at some stage. Even in Johnson’s own terms, keeping prisoners in jail is much more expensive than supervising them on licence.

It is in fact cheaper to educate people rather than imprison them.

But Johnson continues the craziness and ideology by suggesting that sentencing somehow trumps prevention.


  1. Richard Bond -

    Peter – I think you’re being much to kind to Johnson. He cares not one jot about prisons, people in prisons, sentencing policy or even the cost of prisons. This is something for the underlings to deal with. He will only discuss the issue at all if he sees there is electoral capital to be had. And then only in the most insensitive and exploitative way.

    I’m sure there’s some mention somewhere. but I can’t bring myself to read the whole Tory manifesto. Even the BBC could not find Law & Order in its list of 13 key contents:

    1. Peter May -

      Perhaps. But Johnson does describe himself as a one nation Conservative and he even said to Marr that we’ve had a ‘change of direction’ since he’d been PM. I have no admiration for him but I do believe he is – maybe because it’s the only way he thinks he could stay in power…

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